The Vision Thing

  • Tonight is the first of three debates between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, beginning at 6pm PDT.

“The Vision Thing” was George H. W. Bush’s lament about which he was having trouble articulating when he was running for President the first time.

George H. W, Bush had trouble with The Vision Thing. Photo via Google images.

George H. W, Bush had trouble with The Vision Thing. Photo via Google images.

Bush, well qualified from his decades of public service, and at the time two-term vice president to Ronald Reagan, went on to win election in 1988. But the “vision thing” dogged him throughout his first term. He couldn’t create a “vision” to synopsize his goals for the American people.

He lost reelection to Bill Clinton in 1992, an election in which a third party candidate—Ross Perot—hurt his reelection chances.

It’s a lesson Hillary Clinton should take to heart.

Like it or not, Donald Trump has no trouble articulating a vision, regardless of how repugnant some find it and how mangled his syntax.

Hillary, like H. W., has decades of experience in public service. Setting aside how one views this public service, her resume for knowing the issues vastly is superior to Trump. But she can’t articulate a vision. Instead, she runs on a platform of “I am not Trump.”

John Kerry in 2004 ran against President George W. Bush on a platform of “I am not Bush.”

He lost. It’s a lesson Hillary should also take to heart.

This is the worst election in modern times. Trump doesn’t offer a vision of optimism. His Make America Great Again slogan is a platitude followed by a vision of an American that is teetering on disaster. His campaign began as an anti-immigrant champion. But he actually ignores the fact that most of these immigrants, legal or not, want to come to America to live the American dream, a better one than what they left.

Again, like it or not, Trump outlines his vision on closing the boarders, profiling Muslims, arming everybody (except Hillary’s Secret Service agents), shutting down free trade, and on and on.

The only message that comes through from Hillary is “I am not Trump.”

Her husband, Bill, successfully ran against H. W. on (unofficially, but famously), “It’s the economy, Stupid.”

It’s the Vision Thing.

 

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2 Responses to The Vision Thing

  1. Sean Smith says:

    It is with sad, heavy heart, I shuffle into the living room tonight- wondering why the fear of other was so great that a campaign flourished, and the fear of that campaign allowed such “ignore”-ance of justice that another campaign was sustained by the cognoscenti, to the greatest detriment to our integrity.

    What on earth created and instilled so rock solidly our fear of a third party in this country that we subjugated to this fear all other fears? Our fear of a third party to me is the last big falsity to crumble.

    We’ve knocked down so many falsities lately like: the war on drugs; the war on fat (replaced with war on sugar…for now), war on salt (an issue to be sure for some); you’re screwed without a college degree, all the disintermediates- hotels (Air BnB, taxis (Uber), car dealers (Tesla sales model)…all evidence we’re continuing to unfold in health ways. We have a long ways to go in many areas, but I’m going offer a suggestion. Think about how we might unfold in even better ways, faster, if we faced our fear of a third political party.

    Can anyone articulate why our fear of a third party is greater than our fear of accepting the cleanest shirt in the two-party dirty laundry hamper we’ve had shoved under our noses?

  2. Frank Blau says:

    “… but she can’t articulate a vision.”

    https://www.hillaryclinton.com/issues/

    http://www.nbcnews.com/meet-the-press/hillary-clinton-offers-obama-vision-america-n374891

    http://hillaryclintonsupporters.com/hillary-americas-future/

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/07/hillarys-message-to-america/493574/

    I could go on… the point is, she has, and she’s just often been drowned out by Trump’s misogyny, racism and carnival-huckster media presence.

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