The entire globe heaved a huge sigh of relief last night, and the global stock markets’ upsurge in the wee hours put an exclamation point on it. Donald Trump, it appears, did not advance the likelihood of his becoming President of the United States of America and probably diminished it.
How ironic that the stock markets, the vehicle through which people seek increased wealth, seem to be saying that this wealthy man would have been a President who damaged economic wellbeing around the world. And of course Trump gave them all the information they needed to draw that conclusion. Proclaiming that his wiles as a businessman are just what is needed in the Oval Office, he proudly asserted that it was good business to welch on contractual obligations, to cheat vendors out of agreed-upon remuneration, to abandon debt through bankruptcy, to pay no taxes, and generally to ensure that no win/win relationships might compromise his own self-aggrandizement.
These approaches are, of course, completely inimical to the creation and sustaining of global alliances and interdependencies on which both peace and prosperity depend. His well-honed instincts to win at all costs—costs inflicted on others—is precisely why he would never succeed as the leader of the free world. And his baser instincts offer an even-darker sense of how he would behave when the going gets tough: his clear invitation to “Second Amendment people” to have a shot at Hillary Clinton, or that her Secret Service guards should be disarmed “so we could see what happens to her”, betray his envy of Vladimir Putin’s capacity to eliminate political opponents by simply killing them.
We have many days left until November 8, but the terrifying specter of President Donald Trump faded just enough last night to allow some of us to rejoice a little bit this morning–and then get cracking to ensure that it goes away forever.