Sunday, 28 June 2020

Is 70 the new 50: Unedited

Coming from an era that used to consider anyone over 60 as old and decrepit, I am somewhat bemused that the race for the 2020 US Presidency is between two elderly white men, Donald Trump 74 and Joe Biden 77.  Bemused is the wrong word, I just couldn't find the right one.  Astonished might be closer, but not strictly accurate, a seasoned political commentator might have seen this state of affairs coming for a long, long time.  

Saddened works too.  I am saddened that the USA aren't brave enough to give their young, fiery, charismatic leaders who definitely would force through changes to the most hated government policies, a chance to do so. That these two contenders are so old, shows that the majority, when voting, want to stick to what they are used to.  This sounds odd at this juncture, but bear in mind Trump was a fluke, not from the Hill, but he was still a rich old white man.  

They took a huge leap of faith when they voted for Barack Obama in 2009, and it paid off, they gave him a second term.  The Obama ideology became the 'norm' and Obama became one of the most popular Presidents in history.  Joe Biden, as his former right hand man, benefits from this.  He was the Vice President of an administration that had no impeachments and indictments.  The Obama administration was clean, and in a bizarre twist, is now the traditional, stable, government, Americans look back on.  

But before I go on, I should stat that my knowledge of US politics is scant, in the whole scheme of things. I remember being shocked when America voted a former Hollywood actor, Ronald Reagan to be their President, I thought Bill Clinton was an amazing orator, George 'Dubya' Bush an idiot and Barack Obama charismatic and brilliant.

I don't know a huge amount about Joe Biden, but from what I have seen and read, including the words of Lindsay Graham, he is a genuinely nice guy who is motivated by a genuine desire to 'heal' the country.  That is, he is exactly what America needs right now. 

With regard to his gaffes, the only argument from the Trump campaign against him, they are not as important as his opponents want them to be.  Anyone of any age can make gaffes, but older politicians are subjected to far more scrutiny, journalists are constantly on the look out for signs of dementia or heart failure. On the gaffs front, Trump probably beats Biden by about 100 to 1, he is obviously projecting. 

But let's get back to this age thing.  It is odd to see two such elderly men fighting for the Presidency, Trump is 74 and Biden 77.  Maybe being 70 is now the new 60. In the 21st century, being ancient in politics is now the norm, Bernie Sanders 78, Nancy Pelosi 80, Jeremy Corbyn 71.  I suppose it is a manifestation of the fact that people are staying healthier and living longer.  Or maybe the grey demographic is the silent majority?  

Naturally there is a big difference between the way younger and older politicians perform.  The Young have more passion and urgency, they are quicker to respond, more dexterous with their thoughts and words. The elderly, which sounds awful, may be slower to respond and sound less forthright, but they have a long lifetime of experience to draw on, which will shape their answer. They are more cautious about what they say because they know the implications of their words.  Younger politicians speak about hopes and dreams, older politicians are more realistic about them.

Age and experience has taught me that the slow answers are the ones worth waiting for.  I once spent an entire night watching Marlon Brando interviews.  There aren't that many but he took so long to each question, it took forever.  Being smitten by MB I didn't mind, his answers were so clear and well thought out I was in awe, I felt I had learned a lot.  

But returning to age and politics.  Cometh the hour, cometh the man (or woman).  I am sure the people of America are not in the mood to vote for something new at this time.  And who could blame them.  They want truth as opposed to daily lies.  They want someone to take control of the pandemic that is killing thousands daily, they want someone aware of the needs of ALL of those who have lost their jobs and those in need of healthcare.  Joe Biden has the unique experience of running the country from the top.  He knows how to delegate, he knows how to take advice, he knows how to behave in a crisis.  All the basic skills Trump simply doesn't have.  Saying million instead of thousand, was a gaffe anyone could make, and a pathetic argument in the face of the multiple gaffs Trump makes daily.  It exposes the weakness of Trump's re-election campaign, as in, 'is that all ya got?'.

Trump is stymied because his opponent is an old white guy like himself.  Had he been female, of colour or God forbid, homosexual, he would have had a field day.  'Sleepy Joe' just doesn't carry the same hatred and misogyny as 'Crooked (lock her up) Hilary'.  Putting 'Sleepy' in front of someone's name makes them endearing, not bad hombres, think 7 Dwarves.  He is not able to direct the same hatred towards Joe Biden, as he did with Hilary Clinton.  At that time he was an outsider on a mission to drain the swamp, Hilary being representative of the 'swamp', the establishment, every government that had gone before.  Now he's the establishment, and everyone hates him.  

Trump's inability to attack Joe Biden will be interesting to watch.  He's used all his best stuff against Obama.  He uses Biden's many years in politics as a weapon - naive, he clearly doesn't understand the concept of vocation.  His own CV of failed businesses, casinos, steaks, vodka, airlines, university, charity he stole from, overpriced condos, tv stardom, doesn't scream lifetime devoted to the blue collar workers of America.  Biden has mountains against him, and he is being assisted by members of Trump's own party.  

Perhaps Trump sees any attack on Biden, a white man in his 70s as an attack on himself, especially those gaffes that Don junior gleefully retweets.  I don't doubt that Don, at this stage of his paranoia, torments himself with thoughts of which child will stab him in the back first.  What we have all experienced this past four years, is but a microcosm of what the Trump kids have experienced their entire lives.  Ivanka is playing it safely, all her tweets are sugar and spice and all things nice and she pulls out all her best party frocks to demonstrate just how great everything is.  She has gone to that place that is far far away, where she is the beautiful princess with a fairy wand.  Sadly, that's not how the world sees her or will remember her.  I suspect Lucretia Borgia and Eva Braun would poll higher.  

I think the curious case of why Donald Trump's kids aren't rushing to put their father into a care home where he will get the help he needs, is a discussion worth having.  I remember precisely, day, place, occasion, when I became aware that my beloved Dad was losing his marbles.  I remember a long auld conversation with him, giving a minute by minute, breakdown of an interview I had that day, that took hours, filled with giggly anecdotes from him and from me that ended with him saying 'let me know how the interview goes'.  Ah bless, I thought, and I was to think that many, many times from thereon.  

The hardest part for my Dad, was the anger and frustration he felt towards himself for the gaffes he made.  He had always been a very intelligent, very articulate and very smartly dressed man, he always wore a tie and a hat when going out.  Maintaining his dignity was always his top priority, to the point where he wouldn't even use a desperately needed walking stick.  We, who loved him, turned his gaffes into humour and he would laugh heartily along with us.  But in our hearts, we knew how much it hurt him, and how much it would hurt him if anyone outside 'us' would think him a fool.  Our instincts were to protect him.   We would laugh along with, but we wouldn't allow anyone to laugh at him.  

Trump cut a lonely figure coming back from that Tulsa rally, it will become iconic like the 'the Times Square Kiss (sailor and Nurse)', that pivotal moment that marked the end of the chaotic Trump era. His 1million plus rally was attended by a little over 6,000, a public humiliation of epic proportions.  His instinct told him 'build it and they will come', but they didn't and are never likely to again.  Trump returned to the Whitehouse alone.  No wife, no son, no daughter, no friend, no paid Campaign staffer.  Just him, with his previously crisp white shirt open revealing a smear of his orange stage makeup.  His very fine (expensive) red silk tie undone and hanging tramp like alongside his very expensive crumpled suit as if he had spent the night paying for drug enhanced private lap dances. He awkwardly held a red MAGA hat, unsure whether to chuck it aside or hang onto it as a souvenir of when it was all going great for him.  He didn't put it on and boldly pronounce, hey dumb-ass Americans, I too wear this hat of racism and isolationism so carry on wearing it with pride.  I and my family feel your suffering from behind fences, barriers and walls (and a bunker).  If you catch Covid-19 you are on your own, but if you batter a black person or a democrat I will pay all your legal expenses.  So Trump didn't put the hat on, he just carried it.  He was too 'done in' for that to be a message from his advisors and spin doctors.  They would have told him to hold it up or wear it as a symbol of pride, he has a lot of hats to sell, don't hold it like it's a discarded item like a cheap deckchair found in the debris of the Trump rallies.  

But lets get back on topic.  Is age an issue for Joe Biden.  Of course.  It would be ridiculous to pretend he is the new young voice of socialism who will change the face of America as we know it.  I don't think Americans are looking for polemic change right now.  If anything they are looking longingly at the past, the safe, stable times of the Obama/Biden ticket.  

They can't have Obama, not even Michelle, but they can have the next best thing.  The man who ruled alongside him.  Biden may be old, and God bless him, a little doddery on occasion, but not on those occasions where millions of lives are dependent on his decisions.  Those are not decisions that should be based on arrogance and sociopathic self belief.  We have already seen what happens with leaders who are prepared to commit genocide.  Trump may not have state organised genocide on his record, in the same way as Hitler and Stalin, but I am writing from the here and now. I am not a scientist or a doctor, but I can see, that Trump's 'ignore the virus' politics will kill more Americans than any threat from Russia, China or the rest of the world.   

So here we are, children of the future or any readers looking at the moment.  We are facing the biggest crisis of our lifetimes, the potential that at least one third of the world's population will be wiped out by Covid-19.  Not because we did not have the scientific knowledge to prevent the spread, but because we, the masses who have the power to change things, are intoxicated by the political diatribes of scoundrels and rogues.

It is not politically acceptable to say 100,000 or 200,000 will die. The right thing to say is that no-one else will die under my watch. But, in Trump's mind he still has leeway, his advisors told him, worst case scenario, 1 to 2million will die.  For him anything less than that is a success.

I'm not religious, sadly I do not have any specific God to pray too, though I am quite fond of Buddha.  He at least puts enlightenment first and foremost.  I do pray however, for our friends in America. Most of them, I am sure, did not vote for this.  Those of us on the outside love Americans because the best of them represents the best of all us.  They are a nation of immigrants in a great big melting pot, turning out coffee coloured people by the score and we love them for it.  

Astonishing, there I used it, that this 21st century presidential race is between two old guys who's best years were in the last century, but here we are.  Maybe there just weren't any younger candidates dynamic enough to win a presidential election decisively? That is, someone with the 'X' factor like Barack Obama.  And if they had appeared, would they have had support from the anyone but trump, Republicans?  The Lincoln Project et al?  Joe Biden is a safe bet for them, at heart they are conservatives and he won't upset the equilibrium.  They can, in good conscience, support Joe Biden, intrinsically he has the values as they do.  He's a rich old white guy.

But I am, as I am sure my regular readers know by now, very much an Anti-trumper.  I hope he is defeated by the biggest margin ever, because I still love Americans, and don't believe for one minute, that the abomination that is Trump represents them.

Take care everyone, those in the USA and UK, and be cautious, trust your own instincts, don't walk into dangerous situations on the advice of false prophets.  Stay safe and take care.



    Ernest Owens

    'I agree, Trump is worse than Biden. But if we are playing the “lesser of evils” game, that would simply make Biden a lesser racist than Trump. A racist is still a racist, and I couldn’t bring myself to reward bad behavior by voting for Biden in the Democratic primary. After two previous failed attempts, Biden will — barring some new revelation — finally get the Democratic nomination for president this summer. It will be anti-climatic and perhaps the most disappointing candidate selection process in the Democratic Party’s recent history.

    Going to the polls in November will be a decision between bad and slightly less bad, not a choice between oppression and liberation. Biden has made it clear that he will be a staunch moderate on policies (such as his opposition to Medicare for All and his pandering to the super-wealthy) that will still oppress, albeit just a bit less than Trump’s. Biden’s not about raising the bar. He’s about taking the bar, which Trump has buried six feet deep, and putting it back on the floor. Groundbreaking.

    I will vote for Biden in November because there will be no other viable option for defeating Trump. For many Americans, this is all that matters. But for black millennial voters like me who aren’t willing to be shills for the establishment, all of this speaks to a bleaker future for American politics.'

    1. Thank you for your post 08:38, I am unclear as whether these are your views of those Ernest Owens, or are you Ernest Owens?

      In any case I hear you. And in a perfect world, this is not scenario you would be in. I can see how for many you are literally between the devil and the deep blue sea. Essentially you have two rich old white guys battling it out, htf did that happen? I am hoping that Biden will at least choose as his running mate Stacy Abraham or Kamala Harris, both women of substance to bring much needed diversity to the White House. The constant parade of rich old white men should be consigned to the last century where it belongs.

      I see your dilemma 08:38 with the 'Hobsons Choice' you have in front of you. At this moment in time, your choices aren't great, but you must remember, this is only a moment in time, you choice, as distasteful as it might be, will affect not only your family now, but future generations to come. What good can it do anyone of them to return to power for another 4 years, a man who tweets videos of his followers shouting 'white power'.

      For sure, Biden has made a lot of mistakes in his past 08:38, but in honesty, I could look at my own stances and views, circa 1970's and 80's and plead with the ground to open up and swallow me. Life, age and experience has made me much wiser. If we are honest, we are all guilty, we start life very naïve, we learn about all the horrors and injustices along the way.

      I am not sure you have a bleaker future my friend. The extreme right wing politics of Trump has brought out the extreme Left wing of his opposition. It is the dialectic. The thesis, the antithesis and the synthesis. The antithesis is winning, the odious politics of the man on the golden toilet is stirring up a revolution against capitalism. They won't win, but they will score enough victories to make significant changes. That is any politician wanting to hang onto his seat will have make major changes to the way in which police departments are run. Randomly killing black people will no longer be acceptable. Any politician, Republican or Democratic, not hearing that, will lose.

      And Trump is the ugly face of all those killer police 08:38, he wanted to execute the Central Park kids, he celebrates white people pointing guns as peaceful black demonstrators, he applauds a fat old white man in a golf cart putting his fist in the air and shouting white power.

      This is not America 08:38, I have always loved you lot, from afar, because my dear old dad loved you and Hollywood movies too. This is not your heart, your soul, your love of freedom. I grew up on the cowboy films, the war films, the cavalry to the rescue and the goof ball films, the Americans were always the good guys. And every American I have ever met or known has had a life altering affect on me. It breaks my heart to see you like this.

      I don't think you have much choice come November 3rd my friend. You need Trump out and Biden is the safe choice for all those Americans afraid of change. But go a few steps ahead with your chess move 08:38, Joe Biden is very old, in 4 years he will be over 80, if God willing, he makes it. His choice for VP therefore is very significant. If he chooses wisely, you may, vicariously, get exactly what you wanted.

      Thank you so much for replying 08:38, it is great to hear from someone who actually has a vote in the forthcoming Presidential election! My kindest wishes to you and yours, stay safe.

    2. "Ernest Owens

      Writer at Large

      Ernest Owens is an award-winning journalist and CEO of Ernest Media Empire, LLC. As an openly gay black journalist, he has made headlines for speaking frankly about intersectional issues in society regarding race, LGBTQ, and pop culture.

      If you had clicked on the link and noticed it was a quote (notice the quotation marks) and then checked who Ernest Owens is, you would have not tried to preach to someone and make a fool of yourself.

    3. Wow, I have literally just finished and posted that comment! You can't even have had time to read it!

      I can't click on links, my regular readers know that, a technical hitch if you like. If you read my reply, which couldn't possibly have had time to do, you will see that I am not preaching at all. I don't preach, as if? Ha ha ha, I may muse, but my favourite line is htf do I know.

      Do you think if I had known the identity of Ernest Owens that my reply would have been any different? The answer to that if you are perplexed, is no. Of course it wouldn't. I answered the post sincerely, what do I have to be embarrassed about? Do you think I would have answered different if I had known he was black and gay?

    4. Anonymous 30 June 2020 at 19:36

      Nice one. Many thanks.


    5. Goodness T, you say 'nice one' and thank a poster who thinks he/she has made a fool of me. Why would you do that?

    6. Rosalinda Hutton 1 July 2020 at 13:48

      Very sorry, my dear, concentration failure. I was looking for the name Ernest Owens, not realising it was in two comments, and got the wrong comment. I meant Anonymous 30 June 2020 at 08:38.



  2. What do you mean by “Unedited” in the title?

    How do you know that:

    “We are facing the biggest crisis of our lifetimes, the potential that at least one third of the world's population will be wiped out by Covid-19.”

    “ we, the masses … have the power to change things”

    “we … are intoxicated by the political diatribes of scoundrels and rogues.”


    How can I take you seriously when you yourself say that you are intoxicated by the political diatribes of scoundrels and rogues and appear to be supressing dissent?


  3. "But before I go on, I should stat that my knowledge of US politics is scant, in the whole scheme of things."

    Ros - just a suggestion - maybe you should blog about things that you have more than a scant knowledge on.

    All your eager followers know by now that you hate Trump - repeating it in varying different ways does not make it any more interesting for your Worldwide readers.


    1. Anonymous30 June 2020 at 18:23

      What are those "things"? Like ‘Marlon Brando brought the USSR down’?


    2. zyh

      Brandy Brandie had thrown it down the slope of a butter mountain by all accounts.

      Woody Holl

    3. Perhaps I was being modest xyz or perhaps I was inviting others with more knowledge than I to enlighten me? I do in fact know a lot about US politics, it is my main interest at the moment, to the point of obsession and, as I have told you before, if you study a subject for more than 10,000 hours, you become an expert.

      You xyz, zyx and Woody Holl (all the same person?) do not have to read my musings, alternately, you could point out instances of my 'scant knowledge' to illustrate your complaint.

      Yes indeed, all my readers know that I hate Trump, so you are suggesting, that's it, end of subject. That I should never mention one of the two biggest threats to our world again, because you've already read about it. Well sorry to bring your little world crashing down zyx etc, but I don't write for you, I don't write for the blinkered period.

      And to the Marlon Brando and butter creep, it was sicko first time round, now it is sicko and desperate.

  4. Thank you for giving your name Huanita, I feel now that I can reply to you personally.

    What did I mean by 'Unedited'. Exactly that Huanita. I wrote that blog whilst 3, possibly 4, sheets to the wind. My usual practice is to return to that which I have written hastily, and edit the text ruthlessly, plus clean up on grammatical and spelling errors. On this occasion, I chose to publish regardless, because more often than not, I have moved on, ergo, I have 500+ unpublished blogs lost in time.

    How do I know we are facing the biggest crisis of our time? I am 63 (I think) and I have never experienced a pandemic, quarantine and lockdown before. In fact, that applies to anyone under the age of 120. We, a collective we, are not taking the danger seriously enough. WHO, the World Health Organisation, are now saying the worse is yet to come. Ignoring it is clearly not working.

    Easy to mock 'we the masses' Huanita, but governments rule only with the support of the people. If they people turn against them, they are finished. Forgive me for speaking like a Marxist on an orange box, but we the people simply do not comprehend the strength we have when uniting together. Tyger, tyger, do you not know how fearsome you are?

    I can't say I have ever been intoxicated by the political diatribes of scoundrels and rogues. I'm using 'we' very loosely here, like the Marxist on the orange box. I'm not great with the whole following thing, and to be honest, I've never been much of a team player. I can't in good conscience for example align myself with Labour or even the Far Left. I used to call myself a Marxist/Feminist, but that's all a bit too strong now, especially as I can't even align myself to #MeToo. I hate the whole 'victim' culture, it is destructive, not least to those it pretends to help. Help should be about empowering people, not labelling them as helpless cabbages.

    But my subversive views on 'speaking properly', #MeToo and the victim culture, would make me far more unpopular than I already am and those who love me, tell me no. So, for now my views will be supressed until I am bold enough.

    I am not suggesting to anyone that they should follow scoundrels and rogues Huanita, in fact, in school marm mode, I don't tell anyone to follow anyone. My advice to my former students and indeed to anyone, is to make the discoveries yourself, that way it is always more meaningful.

    I have never been for supressing dissent Huanita, the opposite in fact, you will also see from the title of my blog, that I muse, subversively. Ergo, in my book, dissent is good!

    Anyway, Huanita, you are very welcome here and I am curious as to where you are from? Mostly, because I get a kick out of speaking from to people from way away places. Regardless, I do hope wherever you are, you are not being hit too hard by the Virus. Stay safe, my kindest wishes to you and yours.

    1. Ros @1829

      “I have never been for supressing dissent Huanita, the opposite in fact, you will also see from the title of my blog, that I muse, subversively. Ergo, in my book, dissent is good!”

      Then please publish BFG’s W’s Z’s comments and whatever else you’ve held back and let all your readers see that what you’ve been saying about them is not you fantasies. We are not children here, we can make up our own minds.

      Thank you.


    2. Thank you Sam. I agree with you. I suspect Ros doesn't not publish the comments unfavourable to her, even those addressed to someone else. I’ve been following this blog for years and lately it’s really been getting worse and worse.


    3. You are taking the piss at my serious questions but I see your genuine answer elsewhere “Ha ha ha, I may muse, but my favourite line is htf do I know.”

      Thanks for your favourite line anyway.


    4. Well Sam and Brenda, what can I say, are you only here for the bitchy comments about me? Odd. And how do you know so many comments are missing? Are you the senders? If so, I can see why you are so pissed off, you no longer have a platform for your hate.

    5. I gave you a long, considered and thoughtful reply Huanita, I am so sorry that you see that as taking the piss, I addressed every point you made politely and respectfully, even though I was aware of the hostility in your initial post.

      But your prerogative my friend. Take care.

  5. My polite an civil observations.

    Ros: “we … are intoxicated by the political diatribes of scoundrels and rogues.”

    Huanita: “How can I take you seriously when you yourself say that you are intoxicated by the political diatribes of scoundrels and rogues and appear to be supressing dissent?”

    Ros: “We, a collective we”

    “I can't say I have ever been intoxicated by the political diatribes of scoundrels and rogues.”



    1. You have c/p random sentences and the result is meaningless.

      Why don't you try saying what you mean in your own words Brenda, then we might get somewhere.

  6. To whom it may concern

    Personally I’d appreciate if more posters here on Rosalinda’s blog would express their own opinions, which, I believe, is necessary for meaningful discussions. The dominant view now seems to be to criticize as much as possible of what Rosalinda says, without expressing any particular views.

    Imagine if you were going to a party with the sole intention of insulting the host and also consider that you’re doing something good, then I would probably say that you belong to the category of notorious bullies, who we unfortunately have to endure.

    Moreover, quotes of more or less well-known persons don’t tell us anything about what the poster him/herself thinks about the subject in question.

    Kindest Regards

  7. Thank you Bjorn for the being the bright light that keeps this blog going! And for seeing what I see, I thought I was going crazy at times. And of course 'normal' people who look in can see it, and no doubt it puts them off posting. I've let it go on for too long.

    I've always longed to belong to some sort of 'Bloomsbury Group', with a place where intelligent people can debate, discuss history and exchange ideas. Quite a lofty idea, lol, perhaps I should have started with a book club. My blog on the discussion front, has never quite been able to take off, largely, as I now see, because of the trolls. And they are trolls, their purpose is disrupt. They never discuss the subject of the blog.

    But live and learn eh? The comments may drop off, but that's fine, the blog will continue, I'm still aiming for my Bloomsbury Club! :)

  8. Bloomsbury group, name given to a coterie of English writers, philosophers, and artists who frequently met between about 1907 and 1930 at the houses of Clive and Vanessa Bell and of Vanessa’s brother and sister Adrian and Virginia Stephen (later Virginia Woolf) in the Bloomsbury district of London, the area around the British Museum. They discussed aesthetic and philosophical questions in a spirit of agnosticism and were strongly influenced by G.E. Moore’s Principia Ethica (1903) and by A.N. Whitehead’s and Bertrand Russell’s Principia Mathematica (1910–13), in the light of which they searched for definitions of the good, the true, and the beautiful and questioned accepted ideas with a “comprehensive irreverence” for all kinds of sham.
    Dust jacket designed by Vanessa Bell for the first edition of Virginia Woolf's To the Lighthouse, published by the Hogarth Press in 1927.

    1. Sounds very good, but who’s gonna do the questioning of accepted ideas with a “comprehensive irreverence” for all kinds of sham, that is the question.