The utter and total failure of both major political parties is entertaining and terrifying. Republicans are baffled by their inability to effectively counter the diatribes and pitches of Trump with the jingoistic God & country pabulum they normally pedal, and Democrats have had to flog their patronage-driven, vote-buying cronyistic party machines as never before to fight off Sanders. Simply put, Trump is not ignorant, but he does know and understand what ignorant people want to hear, and Hillary is not naive, but she does understand what the economically and socially naïve will believe. In defense of Sanders, there may be the real possibility he believes what he is saying, and that is the terrifying part.
A few brutal facts to consider:
Despite the stone tablets carried down by Trump from on high, 1965 is not coming back. The jobs that fled the US cannot come back because they no longer exist. For the last decade, the WORLD economy has been stagnant because the value-add that is possible from the individual (putting the right bolt on the right part of the widget consistently) is now done by a machine. The middle management (read non-blue-collar middle income) jobs have been replaced by just-in-time logistics, spreadsheets, email customer notifications, and machine-to-machine communication. Walmart, with 30 times the stores ever run by Sears, operates with 1/10th the middle management, and has an in-depth knowledge about its customer base that Sears will never match. For a deeper understanding read “The Second Machine Age” (http://secondmachineage.com/ ).
Despite what Hillary or Sanders extol, good intentions and more funding will not change human nature. The “Great Society” is, at best, a dismal failure and the entitlement policies that have gutted Democrat governed cities are a testimony to the nature of man. Some people are lazy and they do not become ambitious on the basis of handouts or entitlements. Minorities are not held back by the white majority (the white majority was last seen walking into the sunset with John Boy Walton and his steam powered laptop in the late ‘70s), but they are held back by their own plantation mentality leadership blaming anyone and anything other than personal responsibility. Lower income prosperity cannot be legislated or mandated to counter the hard and fast rules of economics. A $15-an-hour minimum wage will only drive more jobs to robots and automation while reducing the number of entry-level jobs. Again, “The Second Machine Age” has a solid discussion of this reality.
If you want to understand for whom to vote, examine the 6 “killer apps” of prosperity by Niall Ferguson. A discussion of the apps They are: competition, science and the scientific method, private ownership of property, modern medicine, consumerism, and work ethic. Societies that prosper embrace and encourage these elements. If you can identify a party or a politician that at least tries to support most of these elements, put your vote there.
If you are too lazy to read Ferguson’s work, you can listen to it on a TED talk, Ferguson’s TED talk but then, that points to another problem.