I have read these campaigns as an index of American culture. It has been like an iceberg: the campaigns are what we see, but the culture is what is below, floating the visible index of itself.
Like others, I suppose, I have been fascinated by Trump's bald narcissism (see previous post) and by how social class issues have more or less been turned upside down, by the way in which he, a privileged member of the elite class, has lately framed himself as a champion of the working class. Who would ever have imagined the Republican party as champions of the working classes???
I could note the irony--but more important, Trump has gone beyond the more common refrain about the so-called middle class. His populist pose is a clear con-game, but it has caught on. His has really been a fascinating performance, which is perhaps why we like to watch him; it's like watching something obscene, which is perhaps why it's fascinating.
Although it has taken me time to embrace HRC, I am fully behind her now. I have learned to respect her by reading more about her. I wish that like Trump, she could break through the rap about the middle-class, but nevertheless, I think she will prove herself as president, and I'm really excited about the possibility that she'll win. Most readers of this blog are probably Clinton/Sanders supporters, so I won't belabor Clinton's qualifications for being our first woman president. Jonathan Cohen has made the case more coherently than I ever could.
Also unlike the majority of TV journalists, I think we are headed for more good times. Barack Obama has been extraordinary. I regret that his terms are over, but I trust that Clinton, pushed by the Sanders progressive faction, will carry his good work forward. She will also pay attention to the social discontent (and social-class based) Trump's populism has catalyzed. I believe she is uniquely qualified to bring the seemingly contradictory factions of our country together, leading us to understand ourselves by understanding each other.
That's why I am so hopeful and feel excited about this election and its consequences. Although I don't want this electoral phenomenon to end, I can't wait for tomorrow.