The Devil We Don’t Know

We’re all familiar with the phrase, “The devil you know…” generally used to suggest taking an option that you know to be bad in comparison to taking the choice of something you don’t know, which could, possibly, be worse. It’s time-honored.

It’s lately being deployed by many Republicans and conservatives in making arguments rationalizing not voting for Donald Trump or even against him and for Hillary Clinton.

There are those who utilize sophistry to deny that not voting for Trump is tacit support for Hillary Clinton. These are clever people, in love with their own cleverness. They live in denial seemingly convinced that they can vote for a third option; one unseen but somehow good and inculcating all that is wonderful and lacking in Trump.

Daniel Hannan makes a fantastic effort at this. I admire Hannan a great deal but insisting that rejecting Trump isn’t about supporting Hillary Clinton doesn’t make it so. When there are two alternatives, if you don’t choose one, you have chosen the other. You might pride yourself that you didn’t get your hands dirty but the deed was done anyway. Sleep well, we’ll all need it under President Hillary. What, you didn’t know that Hillary Clinton would thus win the election?

Some of these anti-Trumpers on the Republican/conservative side display a strange smugness. They brag, eager for a devastating Trump loss. It’s not that they are pro-Clinton, they insist, but they find a deep warmth in the thought of a Trump humiliation — as if President Hillary Clinton will have no effect upon them. Perhaps they are taking up residence in Never-Never Land.

Other suggest that Trump could be worse than Hillary Clinton as president. Yes, people supposedly calling themselves Republicans or conservatives find Trump more frightening, reprehensible, potentially more disastrous than Hillary Clinton. Frankly, I find such a line of reasoning to be ridiculous. Yet some make it with a straight face. (And they aren’t all Mobies.)

And a few want to punish the country with Pres. Hillary for our sins of not uniting behind fill in candidate name here.

Hannan fantasizes about Gary Johnson riding to the rescue.

I’m not sure what has come over so many that the possibility of President Hillary Clinton does not frighten them more. Or that they don’t see that possibility as anywhere on the horizon. Yes, that roaring sound and mist in distance, as we float down the swollen river, is nothing to worry over. Why it might even be our rescuers!, they seem to conclude, displaying a childlike immaturity.

It is time to wake up now, children. It’s either Trump or Hillary. It’s the frying pan or the fire. It’s the Devil or a devil you don’t know. There is not an alternative at this time.


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