The time I let a crazy woman drive my business into the ground. And now…Trump.

It may have been a case of temporary insanity. But, you know, I was in love. And, as you also may know, these two things might be related.

I started a business in the early 2000s that enjoyed double-digit growth for 4 or 5 successive years. My significant other at the time, however, was pretty sure I could do better. And, in some kind of experimental pique, I decided to let her try.


She’s at the wheel: But it’s your car.

She would show up for work, I’ll give her that. She made all major decisions and even dictated my responses to emails. I won’t disparage her in any way, as this was my experiment. I will simply note that she was on a number of psychotropic prescription medications. Besides, when the business tanked along with most of the rest of the American economy in 2007-’08, there really was no clear line of blame to be drawn.

The reason I bring it up at all is that the feeling I have now, witnessing the administration of Donald Trump, is strikingly similar to the feeling I had then. In 2007, it was “What have I done?” Today, it is “What have we done?”

Perhaps a sizable portion of the American electorate feel as I felt: “This person appears quite certain that he/she can do better. And he/she is pretty fucking adamant about it (which may or may not be a function of psychological pathology). So, given that I haven’t been doing all that fucking well, although I’ve been doing pretty fucking well, why the fuck not give him/her the chance?” Or some fucking equivalent thereof. Ignoring the disparity between popular vote and the fucking electoral college.

And again, the line of blame is not clear. It is not clear that Hillary Clinton would have been a better choice. Trump is our experiment. And the end is not yet written.

And temporary insanity remains a possible conclusion.

KJC dingbat-thumbnail


About Keith Croes

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Posted on April 14, 2017, in Autobiographical, Battle of the Sexes, behavioral health, humor, Politics, Writing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. I agree except on the assertion that it’s not clear Hillary Clinton would have been a better choice.

    Some bad ideas end up working due to dumb luck and some great ideas end up failing due to the same, but good and bad choices aren’t made retroactively according to the outcomes. Good choices are those that yield the highest probability of good outcome, regardless of actual outcome. Often that’s hard to differentiate so actual outcome is all we’ve got to go on for the assessment, but not in this case.

    In this case we’ve got an ever-growing pile of evidence that this was the worst possible choice. I think it’s safe to say that Hillary, along with pretty much everyone except Donald, would at least know which country they’d just hit with 59 missiles, and if that somehow slipped her mind or she misspoke, what she wouldn’t do is realize she forgot and go ahead and guess what country it was. Un-fucking-believable.

    Even Obama, hated by the right with a white-hot seething rage for 8 long and suffering years, did not at any point inspire widespread fear of another actual World War, just by being himself. That may mean the left is more prone to threat-response behavior than the right, which is contradicted by neuroscience, or it may mean Donald is more of a bad choice than any President in living memory.


    • Let’s agree to disagree that HRC would have been a better choice than The Donald. But my question for you, if you have time: Are you saying that left and right have identical threat responses? Or is there simply no data on that point?


      • Data suggests larger threat-response among conservatives. Larger amygdala and smaller anterior cingulate cortex.


      • Agreeing to disagree is more useful after information has been exchanged than when it prevents information exchange, in my opinion.


        • I assume you agree that Trump’s lack of presidential qualifications is self-evident. This clip is one of many that might support that position:

          My opposition to HRC revolved around three main points: (1) Her dismissal of single-payer health care; (2) Her willingness to engage in military interventions around the world; and (3) questionable financial and strategic alliances—engaged in by her and/or her campaign—revealed by the leaked DNC and Podesta emails.

          Arguments exist against all three points, of course. But would she have been a “better” choice than Trump. For me, it remains unclear.


        • While I share those concerns about Hillary, you haven’t yet voiced a comparison with Donald on those concerns. I assert…

          (1) Hillary was dismissive while Donald was directly opposed to single-payer healthcare and furthermore made it a priority to prevent it.

          (2) Donald is clearly quite willing to engage in military actions around the world, having already done so despite not being in office very long, and his constituents and party are more willing to accept such which makes it likely to continue.

          (3) Donald has far more questionable financial/strategic alliances.

          I’m unclear as to which of those things is in dispute?

          Liked by 1 person

        • (1) The Donald at a couple points appeared to favor universal health care coverage; (2) The Donald at a couple points seemed opposed to military adventurism; (3) The Donald has many COI issues.

          Fact is, I hate both and voted for neither. But remember, I’m the guy who let a crazy woman drive his business into the ground. True story.

          This review by Robert Parry describes a few HRC issues I hadn’t considered until now:


        • The right (and Russia) spent a lot of money, not trying to convince us that Trump was any good, but rather, that Hillary was very bad. They lied over and over again, pulled every dirty trick. They did a lot of badmouthing and introduced dark suspicions, but not so much with the proof or even good supporting evidence.

          Most of what I’ve heard negative so far about Hillary is hard to distinguish from hot air, things where it isn’t really clear what the deal was, just that there must’ve been some dark purpose. The disturbing things about Donald come straight from him – zero spin, zero uncertainty.

          Can you really shrug about who would lead a country better when the man advocated multiple instances of two different war crimes? I can prove that’s how he thinks. Tell me one thing you can prove about Hillary that’s worse than that? If you can’t then I think you should consider that you’ve fallen for the rhetoric.

          All of this pales in comparison to the repercussions for mother nature. Is there any issue more important than that? In terms of that, was it unclear who would be a better choice? I doubt it. If your hatred for both of them caused you not to vote, forsaking the responsibility to be a good steward of the earth, again, I think you should consider that you’ve fallen for the rhetoric.

          Would it be unfair of me to hold you personally responsible for everything he does?


        • Hillary’s vote for Iraq was worse than that – worse than Trump’s spouting of war crimes that haven’t happened. Hillary’s support of our involvement in Libya and Syria was worse than that; her advocacy of a Syrian no-fly zone was worse than that; her insecure handling of classified material was worse than that.

          I voted for Jill Stein rather than either of the two “major” candidates (and would have gone with Bernie had he been the Democratic candidate – but, let’s see, oh yeah, he lost in the fair-and-square primaries). As with all other Americans, no matter who won the election, I’m stuck with him/her and must just barrel through with my life. Americans as a whole are responsible for the outcome (the “temporary insanity” to which I allude). I am personally responsible only to continue to support the policies in which I believe, and that includes military nonintervention; universal health care; clean, sustainable energy and environmental protections; women’s reproductive rights; and a variety of other social safety-net benefits for those who need them. I’m a democratic socialist and plan to join the group, Democratic Socialists of America (great article on khalid kamau and DSA in the May-June 2017 issue of Mother Jones).

          Too bad we didn’t discuss all this prior to the election. I’m sure I could have changed your mind about HRC. Or…maybe not… ❤


        • I was thinking just the same: Too bad we didn’t discuss all this prior to the election. I’m sure I could have changed your mind about Hillary. But it’s not too late. If Donald doesn’t usher in an apocalypse, there will be other elections, so it’s good to have our heads on straight beforehand. So please, try your best to convince me to vote for Jill. I’d love to vote for her. Problem is I find it totally selfish and irresponsible.

          Here’s some of my thinking on it:

          (1) Jill was not going to win. She acknowledges that. Nor was her participation laying a significant and lasting groundwork, nor the statistics necessary for Green Party’s entry into the system. How we could get a viable third party going in this country is through a charismatic and brilliant force-of-nature leader coincident with a relatively evenly-placed fissure in the existing majority party due to a longstanding partial disunity, such as among white collar and blue collar Democrats, resulting in two similar parties, the more conservative of which could draw people from the Republican party in that example. Jill’s wasn’t in a position to do that. Bernie might have been in somewhat of a position like that, but he chose not to.

          (2) The down-ballot usually reflects the Presidential election. People who only come out for the big election tend to have no clue about down ballot choices and so just vote straight down the line. For various voter-suppression reasons such as gerrymandering, one or both houses have difficulty these days going Democrat. One very likely combination therefore is Democrat President, Democrat Senate, Republican House (that would be Hillary’s likely combination). The other likely combination is Republican President, Senate, and House (Donald’s likely combination, which is exactly what happened).

          (3) Hillary and Donald would both engage in war. 100% chance. Hillary already did as you said. Donald made his selfish thinking styles quite clear and he owns stock in a defense contractor. It’s completely naive to think he would not start wars. The difference is mostly when and how they would do it. More or fewer war crimes? More or fewer things like Guantanamo? What terrorists and our Halliburton have in common is they want no end to war. That’s why Republicans keep Guantanamo open. It’s recruiting gold for terrorists and guarantees future defense contracts.

          (4) Democrats have a more difficult time warmongering because their constituents don’t like it. The very reasons you cite against Hillary are part of why she didn’t do better. Republicans are just the opposite. They like tough-guy war talk.

          Put those 4 points together and we get an odd but rather unavoidable conclusion that voting for anyone but Hillary makes more and longer war more likely, and in particular, makes the most vile aspects of war more likely. And here it comes.

          The same is true of green energy, environmental protections, women’s reproductive rights, and social safety nets. Roe vs Wade and the EPA itself are now each in question. For what? To cast a pure vote that feels better on the conscience? To contribute minutely towards a theoretical third party that comes about without a split?

          I’m not suggesting halting support for Jill Stein. I’m suggesting voting responsibly. Did you go to Jill Stein rallies? Knock on doors? Take note of the crowd sizes? First you have to lay the grass-roots groundwork which can progress towards making it a reality, and then strike a chord in the mainstream. Only when levels of support are large enough is it time to risk splitting the vote. Otherwise you get the worst of all outcomes with little or no real progress towards a third party. It’s always been that way.


Thanks! Your thoughts always appreciated.

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