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Posted: November 7, 2020

Winners and losers in the election of the century

“Perceptions,” by Gerry Warner

Op-Ed Commentary

By the time you read this, I suspect Joe Biden will be president-elect of the US (he is), and lawsuits will be flying. So, on a financial basis at least, lawyers will be the big winners of this election and pollsters the big losers. Doesn’t that figure for a year like 2020? Probably the most cursed year of our lives.

Time for a mea culpa. I called it wrong. But I’m not beating my breast for confidently predicting a Joe Biden landslide because even though I was wrong I was wrong for all the right reasons. Say what? Let me explain.

I admit I’m an unabashed fan of the Divided States of America and its dynamic people. Sure, I love Canada too – the True North strong and free – and I resolutely think we could teach our companions to the south a thing or two about how to run an election. But oh, the people that country has produced! Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Rachel Carson, Henry Ford, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Hank Williams, Eleanor Roosevelt, Muhammed Ali, Rosa Parks, Elvis Presley, Chief Crazy Horse, Harper Lee, John Muir, Ernest Hemingway, Bob Dylan  – and my favorite president – Jimmy Carter. The list goes on and on.

And if you don’t think the list above is dynamic you don’t know what dynamic is!

Sure, we’ve produced some great Canadians too – Terry Fox, Pierre Trudeau, Celine Dion, David Thompson, Margaret Atwood, Pauline Johnson, Tommy Douglas, David Suzuki, Emily Carr, Wayne Gretzky, Charlotte Small, Leonard Cohen and many others including my grandmother.

When it comes to Great People, Canada has its share, but we can hardly hope to match a country of more than 300 million people. Now, where was I?

I’m getting older and sometimes I lose my train of thought. Ah, the American election and why I won’t apologize for my wrong prediction. My reason is simple. Despite Donald Trump, the sometimes “United” States of America is the greatest country in the world and has no peer. I know some of you won’t like to hear that and I don’t blame you. But please don’t blame me for thinking and hoping that the better angels of the American people would have come forward in this election and purged America of the greatest threat to its democracy in history.

And that threat, of course, is Donald J. Trump, a consummate liar, an unrepentant narcissist, a serial philanderer, a vicious bully, a vulgar septuagenarian, a feckless fraud, a mean-minded creep, a misogynist moron, a tireless thief, a shameless egotist and a cunning conman – the greatest con man in American history – who has deluded millions into thinking he has their best interests at heart when his only real interest is himself.

Oh, I forgot. He’s also a closet racist and a zealous xenophobe but this doesn’t stop many extreme evangelicals from loving him as do the ultra-rich who see him as a protector of their privileged class and patrimony.

So, keep this in mind as the votes get counted down. Even with Biden winning, the US will still be a heavily flawed country, but at least it will have a chance to regain its former glory and humanity. If Trump came out on top, the country would slide into a corrupt purgatory that would shame Rome.

Gerry Warner is a retired journalist, who can’t wait for this !!%$#&!! election to be over.

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