July 2nd 2016


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Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY CFA dispute may end up burning Victorian Labor electorally

CANBERRA OBSERVED July 2: Independence Day or Groundhog Day?

EDITORIAL Expect shockwaves as Britain votes on EU exit

CLIMATE CHANGE Coral bleaching way overdone by reef saviours

EUTHANASIA Victorian report closer to truth in dissenting voices

FOREIGN AFFAIRS Trump v Clinton race revealing of state of U.S.

SEXUAL POLITICS Transgenderism and the triumph of marketing

EDUCATION Deconstruction and other rot at school

POLITICS AND ECONOMICS Two heretics: Hilaire Belloc and R.H. Tawney

FREE SPEECH From disagreement to discrimination: section 18C

LITERATURE Tolkien, Golding and Hell

SOCIETY New lease on life for freedom machine

MUSIC AND ENTERTAINMENT Talent shows grind down singers, grind out drivel

CINEMA Puppet people pull the plug: Me Before You

BOOK REVIEW HOMOSEXUALITY, MARRIAGE AND SOCIETY

BOOK REVIEW Friendship under fire

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FOREIGN AFFAIRS
Trump v Clinton race revealing of state of U.S.


by Peter Westmore

News Weekly, July 2, 2016

With the race to the Whitehouse in November now a clear-cut competition between Republican outsider Donald Trump and Democratic Party insider Hillary Clinton, what does the forthcoming election tell us about the current state of the United States?

Can the Donald trump the lady

with dynastic ambitions?

Hillary Clinton is the candidate strongly backed by the Democratic Party machine, the left-liberal financial and cultural establishment in the U.S., and the black caucus, a powerful political constituency in the United States.

While Clinton was always expected to win her party’s nomination, the most significant aspect of it was that she was pushed to the limit by Bernie Sanders, a left-wing activist who only joined the Democratic Party in 2015.

Sanders, who is aged 74, has been involved in socialist and radical environmental politics in the U.S. since the 1960s, and until 2015 described himself as an independent.

His policies are similar to those of the Greens in Australia.

He appeals to young voters disillusioned by Mrs Clinton’s identification with the agenda of the Obama Administration, including its lukewarm commitment to alternative energy, globalisation and free trade, its continuation of unresolved wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and parts of Africa, and its soft line on dictatorships such as in China, Cuba, Vietnam and Saudi Arabia.

Wealth gap

Domestically, Sanders’ supporters are also concerned about the increasing wealth gap in the U.S. between rich and poor, rising tuition fees, stagnant employment prospects arising from the export of jobs to Mexico, China and Vietnam, and related issues.

They recognise that if elected, Mrs Clinton will simply continue the social and economic policies of President Barack Obama. Obama’s endorsement of Clinton cements their concern.

A different type of disillusionment is behind the rise of Donald Trump, the millionaire real-estate mogul who has repeatedly and successfully attacked the economic and social agenda of Wall Street and the Obama Administration on a range of issues, including free trade, the erosion of U.S. power in the world, widespread crime, climate change, immigration and Islam.

Trump’s rise is a reflection of American populism and widespread resentment at the powerlessness of middle and working-class Americans.

It is not dissimilar to the rise of Clive Palmer, the self-styled Queensland billionaire who won the balance of power in the Senate in Australia in 2013, and effectively thwarted the Abbott government’s economic agenda before imploding two years later.

It is a reflection of the extent to which mainstream America is disconnected from the political and cultural centres of power, that Sanders and Trump – from radically different perspectives – emerged as potential presidential candidates.

If the polls can be believed, Hillary Clinton will defeat Trump in the presidential election in November. But there are real uncertainties about this election.

One of the main differences between Australia and the U.S. is compulsory voting. In the United States, voters must make an entirely voluntary decision to attend a polling booth and cast their ballot. Compared with Australia, where over 90 per cent of eligible electors regularly vote, the figure in America is usually about 60 per cent.

It is widely recognised that there is deep disillusionment with Hillary Clinton personally and resentment against her attempt to establish a new political dynasty in America, as well as the alienation many blue-collar workers feel towards their traditional political home, the Democratic Party.

Add to that the many Sanders supporters who believe that Clinton stole the Democratic nomination, and Clinton’s vote is likely to be much lower than the polls suggest.

On the other side, many Republicans are dismayed that a populist demagogue with no traditional Republican connections has won the Republican nomination. They may simply stay home in November. Indeed, some leading Republicans have publicly stated that they will not support Trump.

On the other hand, Trump’s aggressive attacks on immigration, the U.S. political media, immigrants, Muslims and the US political establishment resonate with many Americans, to the surprise of many leaders of the Republican Party.

Trump’s high-risk strategy of attacking his Republican rivals certainly paid off during the Republican primaries, and undoubtedly secured the party nomination. He is clearly going to deal with Hillary Clinton in the same way.

Donald Trump may get the support of many non-aligned voters, as well as Democrats who are deeply alienated from the party’s candidate and policies, so his vote could be surprisingly high.

What all this indicates is that despite the polls, the U.S. presidential election is still wide open, and more surprises can be expected both at the party conventions next month when the party candidates are officially endorsed, and during the formal election campaign.




























All you need to know about
the wider impact of transgenderism on society.
TRANSGENDER: one shade of grey, 353pp, $39.99


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