Monday, November 14, 2016

An Election Analysis by Actual People - Not Politicians, Pollsters, Press, or Pundits - Part 1


One of the pleasures of publishing the Coltons Point Times is the opportunity to share with you the comments of my readers, the everyday persons working to survive and filling their life with everything they love.  A series of post-election analysis will be offered from contributing writers sharing their thoughts on the election.

They are not seasoned journalists but they are dedicated, patriotic Americans.  At times it is refreshing to hear honest observations rather than biased news so do not expect to hear from any professional politicians, pollsters, press, or pundits.

I want to thank the contributing writers and hope we can all learn more about each other if we will just take the time to read.

This Contributing Author post is hosted on the Coltons Point Times.  Contributor authors control their own work and the views do not reflect those of the Coltons Point Times.  If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email in the comment section.

Observations on the 2016 Presidential Election - Anxiety, Fear, and Failure

By Michael Thomas Kelly, 

“Mild restrictive fears affect 90% of our society…,” states the continuing education seminar on ‘Anxiety’, I recently attended on the subject.  The sources of anxiety include health, assets values, environment, self-concept, role function, needs fulfillment, goal attainment, personal relationships, sense of security, etc.  The most prevalent groups are 60 plus years of age, not college graduates, low income, unmarried, and unemployed.  They experience nightmares, flashbacks, grief, emotional numbness, depression, and avoidance behaviors.

Knowing the above to be true, I can begin to understand the 2016 election.  Donald J. Trump, (hereafter known as DJT) was a master at appealing to those fears and won the most states and electoral votes.  He started out across the Mississippi River in the state next to where I live, Iowa.  I went to a grade school auditorium for the Iowa Caucus named after a past president, to see people move to one area of seats and root for their candidate.  DJT had earlier, landed in Des Moines, Iowa in his Trump helicopter, with what was to become his signature arrival with much fanfare.                                                                                                          

Then in September of this year, I heard former Sec. Ray La Hood who was prior to being Sec. of Transportation, the Congressman from nearby Peoria, IL.  To quote, somewhat loosely, the former Secretary, “Donald Trump’s influence on the Republican Party will be felt for over 50 years…”  He also said he was not supporting him and gave a list of reasons.  Well, now the ‘influence" of President-elect Trump is written in the history books.

However, the personality of the 90% of people in the USA who suffer from episodes of anxiety tend to be ‘Perfectionistic” with their unrealistically, high standards going largely unmet.  They deny their anxiety, hold their emotions in an attempt to avoid more confusion, and have a strong need for control while attempting to maintain control by insisting on controlling others.

Low self-esteem and poor coping skills such as the use of alcohol, tobacco, caffeine, and other substance abusing techniques prevail.

“A sense of helplessness, loss of confidence and self-doubt evolve until an inability to decide what to do results in doing nothing at all.”  Symptoms include pacing, shakiness, restlessness, fidgeting, hyperventilating, dry mouth, increased muscle tension, poor eye contact, impaired concentration, and overwhelming fear and panic, resulting in painful, intense memories for those who have anxiety.

This was the animus of the vox populi that DJT so readily tapped into resulting in his Electoral College win 2016.  I facilitated much of this animus as a deputy registrar during 2 weeks of early voting in a local area of mostly Republican, about 60-40/70-30%, voters in the home town of John Deere International headquarters.  On Election Day, I was at a more Democratic voters’ area but I still saw many white, males who needed two forms of I.D. to renew their voting status.  Many used their ‘Firearms’ state of IL card for identification.  I have not previously seen so many as some have feared showing this I.D. yet this time they were very proud to show it.

It was an instant start of conversation for us while I did the paper work.  There were strength, confidence, and eye contact, I had not seen in some of these people before.  They told me of their new-found faith in the possibility of change coming their way for a change.  It was renewed interest in politics by different segments of our society who felt empowered by someone who was expressing the feelings as they had previously not felt welcome to express because of our very primitive  fear of “…not making enemies aware of their whereabouts…” has led to more than eight years of “selective mutism”, being the silent  majority.

Now, as for former Secretary and former Senator and former First Lady Hillary R. Clinton, she saw some of the instant karma that happens when you weave webs of intrigue.  The Democratic Party made Sen. Bernie Sanders pay for being an Independent all these years.  I saw that baggage coming before the Iowa Caucus.  His age did not deter him from speeches & stumping for HRC in Davenport, IA in the final days of this very long campaign.  I think in hindsight there will be soul searching about the ‘finger on the scale’ by FBI Director James Comely.

I always thought HRC would have the baggage of her past ghosts and the contempt by Americans for nepotism.  Even though we (in the USA) managed earlier in our history to elect two men president from the Adams, Roosevelt, and Bush families, the Clinton family will not make the list.

Lastly, the question we the people, will be asking is, 'are we ready yet for women in the White House?"  So far the result is two resounding “NO's” for vice presidential bids by Geraldine Ferraro and Sarah Palin, and one conflicted, anxiety generating Presidential race resulting again in, “NO!”

Someone had to do it first.  HRC did make history as the first woman to run for President, the first woman nominated by a major party, and first to win the popular vote, but alas, she lost the war.  Not surprising since women have only had the vote in the USA, (yes, I know about the state of Wyoming), for barely a century. More women than men live in the United States and the gap will continue to widen in the future.  One day a woman will become President of these United States.

Thank you, my grade school friend, Jim Putnam for the invite to’ journalize’ “Election 2016”

(About the author - Michael Thomas Kelly is a retired Registered Nurse and a Board Certified Medical-Surgical nurse who spent the last decade of his career in Emergency Nursing. Michael and his wife I live in Rock Island, IL. He has written half a dozen books of poetry but this is his first venture in journalism. Michael earned a B.A. in English-philosophy and Education. Kelly is a practicing Tibetan Buddhist and recently spent a month travelling with his Root Lama in the western part of China's Tibetan speaking area of Sichuan. He is active in his community and sits on the Board of the county owned Hope Creek Care Center, a skilled nursing facility.  Poetry, philosophy, politics, and nursing are his main passions in life.)

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