LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Summing up of the presidential election

Well, well, well! The nation woke up on Nov. 9 to find the pundits, pollsters, and media had it all wrong! What a surprise! Meanwhile, the smug confidence of the Blue State coastal elites in the predictions of the forecasters was rudely shaken. What happened?

Before I state what were the obvious reasons for this cataclysmic shakeup, let me begin by saying that I voted for Mrs. Clinton, although I would have preferred Sen. Sanders. I believe that she had a thorough knowledge of foreign affairs and possessed a temperament suited for leadership and compromise.

But HRC and her conceited sycophants ran a terrible campaign! Too much emphasis was placed on ethnic, race, and gender politics and vague and generalized solutions to the complex and thorny immigration crisis. We hear a lot about the glass ceiling, but little about the economic issues which once united the Democratic Party. Almost forgotten were the needs of the workers (black, white, and Latino) in Appalachia, the Rust Belt, and rural pockets of poverty in the red states of the South and the Middle West. No wonder the Democrats lost the election!

The complicated economic problems which confront the nation today are not sexy and difficult to explain, but they must be tackled if the Democratic Party is to win future elections!

Some of these issues are the following:

1. How does NAFTA affect the jobs and wages of the workers?

2. How do the loopholes in the tax code help the rich and hurt the lower- and middle-income groups?

3. Can the minimum wage be raised without impairing small business?

4. How do corporate mergers harm ordinary persons?

5. How do banking laws negatively affect almost all Americans? Should the Glass-Steagall Act be restored?

A matter of supreme economic importance is the reconstruction and expansion of the crumbling infrastructure. Neither Clinton nor Trump stressed this crucial matter enough. Yet, public projects will create new revenue and millions of new jobs, especially for blue-collar men, many of whom have been left behind by the emerging high-tech economy.

Also, the automobile, steel, cement and other industries will reap the rewards of public works projects. The highway projects in the Eisenhower era provided a major stimulus for the economy in the 1950s. Remember, folks, money disbursed for the infrastructure is not wasteful spending, but reinvestment in the economy.

Donald Trump’s campaign focused on tax cuts for the rich and the upper middle class, while, at the same time, her urged massive increases in the military budget. So far, no plans have been made for funding the entitlements and growing health costs. The arithmetic does not add up, folks. His only quick solution in 2017 would be a vast infrastructure program, but the conservative Republicans would probably block him in this effort.

One further comment on the present political situation. We should adopt Sen. Sanders’ suggestion: Stop the identity politics! Nothing could be more ineffective and divisive. After all, women, Hispanics, Asians, and even African-Americans are not monolithic voting blocks, while all white men are not Republicans. Rather, appeal should be made to the economic interest of all people who form the bottom 90 percent of the population.

Oh, yes, and one request to the cosmopolitan “progressives” out there! Please, no more insensitive “guns and religion” and “basket of deplorables” remarks! They are not calculated to win back the red and purple states to the Democratic Party. And they are hard to retract!

I end with an earnest plea. Let us pray for America! She needs guidance and succor in these crucial times!

Harold W. Hurst

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