Do the US presidential elections matter?

NOVEMBER 11 — According to the BBC, we will know an hour from now who the POTUS will be. It is, of course, a more significant event than the election for a new president of any developing nation. 

The president of the United States is a person whose policies and decisions would influence the outcome of many important situations. He or she wields great power. At least that is what we are led to believe. 

The frontrunners for these elections are Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Mr Trump, in my opinion, is not “in it to win it” (although it looks like he may actually win at the moment!).  

Rather he was in the race to channel all the right wing votes towards himself. A Pied Piper of the South, if you will, who will lead the right wing into the river once he is done with them. 

And believe me, the followers of this pied piper showed their true colours during this campaign season. The sexism, racism and xenophobia which emerged from the right wing conservatives showed us what minorities will have to endure if one of these people became president. 

Because you see, they actually believe in their hate. The same cannot be said of Mr Trump himself. While Mr Trump plays to the gallery very well, calling to deport all Muslims for example, it does not seem like he actually believes in half the things he says. 

Mr Trump is, first and foremost, a businessman. His role in The Apprentice shows his real purpose. In his business world, hatred is bad for business. For the business he does in the Middle East, calling for Muslims to be deported would simply alienate his business colleagues and cost him millions. Why on earth would he do that? 

And let’s think about it. Would a man who can afford the best public relations team and campaign management money can buy for his presidential elections be caught saying the most foolish things? 

It boggles the mind to think about the plagiarised speech Melania Trump made at the GOP convention. Could they not have changed the format of the speech at least? 

No, I believe these shenanigans were not shenanigans at all but rather carefully planned so as to create the image of a great buffoon. This great buffoon will alienate the more thinking right wing conservatives (who will follow the footsteps of Republican leaders and end up supporting Hillary) and it will be plain sailing for the candidate who was meant to win all along — Hillary Clinton!

In my opinion, Hillary Clinton is what your typical American president will be like, given the current political milieu. We must remember that while democracy is free, it really is not. 

That sounds like a contradiction but let me explain: democracy is free in the sense that anyone born in the United States can potentially become president. However, it is literally not free — it costs money! 

In order to fund a campaign, donations are needed and since the public are either too squeezed in the financial sense or simply are too busy voting for the next American idol, corporations step in and “sponsor” candidates. 

Hillary is the perfect candidate for corporate sponsorship. She would “believe” in anything to be populist. Her changing stance regarding same-sex marriage shows that at a very fundamental level, her only true cause is herself. She will be like Obama, a president governed by those who wield the real power — the corporations. 

And this is why I am not concerned about the US presidential elections. No candidate can bring real change beyond the paradigm of the current socio-political milieu of that nation. 

At present, in terms of Middle Eastern policies, the USA is on the very same neo-colonialist posture it has had since long before the Gulf War. 

That will not change but it is not an end in itself. It is not doing so to appease the Christian fundamentalists. It is doing so to perpetuate the enormously profitable military industrial complex. The rich will get richer. That is the bottom line. 

* This article was written before the 2016 US Election results.

** This is the personal opinion of the columnist.

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