New poll! Hillary infuriates, but Trump nauseates

December 28, 2015 Originally published on SFGate

Do you remember? That time when well over 50 percent of American population was just deeply, excruciatingly embarrassed, to a palpable and abiding degree, but the eight-year national nightmare that was George W. Bush?

It’s worth recalling. It was everywhere, that feeling, that bleak undercurrent of shame over the vicious decay of the country. There was even a viral phenomenon, the first of its kind, when Bush “won” a second term in 2004 and countless thousands of Americans posted their misery in the form of a mournful selfie (before selfies existed, per se) uploaded to the instantly famous ‘‘ website, each person holding a heartfelt – and heartbreaking – hand-written sign, apologizing to the world for what America hath wrought.

“Sorry about Bush,” read thousands of notes, held up for the camera, distressingly. “Most of us didn’t elect him.”

“It’s OK,” came the surprisingly kind responses from all over the world. “Just don’t let it happen again.”

(Note: When Obama won his first term, the site was resurrected and updated to “Hello Everybody,” giving newly proud Americans a chance to re-introduce themselves, post-nightmare, to the world).

So it’s sort of cute – if completely incorrect – to see a new poll, from Quinnipiac University, that suggests upwards of 50 percent of the county would be “embarrassed” by a Trump presidency, while “only” 35 percent would feel the same about Hillary.

This is, of course, complete nonsense.

Wrong word, Quinnipiac

Wrong word, Quinnipiac

Let’s get it straight: If you’re a hardcore Republican of the calcified old-white-male variety, you do not merely dislike Hillary. It is incorrect to say you’d be embarrassed by her leadership.

You, quite freely, despise her. Loathe and revile with a white-hot fervor stoked by two decades of crass Fox News trolling and the maddening, seemingly endless triumph of the Clinton “brand” – a success that, no matter how hard you try, only seems to gain power over time.

History, alas, has not helped your cause. Bill Clinton’s tenure is viewed by historians, economists and voters alike as one of the finest on record, a time of astounding peace and prosperity. And the man himself, despite a laughable sex scandal the GOP tried, desperately, to escalate into life-threatening but which merely made the entire world yawn, Bill himself is viewed as one of the most virtuosic and well-loved presidents in modern times.

Proof? Even now, every respectable organization in the world, no matter their political orientation, wants to be affiliated with The Clinton Foundation. It’s just that effective, valuable, a truly astonishing force for good in the world. Meanwhile, Bush paints pictures of dogs.

You hate all of this. You despise, furthermore, the fact that your boy Bush was Clinton’s polar opposite: The single-most debilitating, humiliating president on modern record, catastrophic not merely to the economy, but to America’s moral standing across the globe. Irrefutable.

It’s all made triply horrible by the fact that Obama, that awful commie socialist, has managed to do what everyone deemed impossible: He restored it all, and more – America’s prosperity, standing, integrity and deep intelligence, all against the most hateful, downright racist Republican congress imaginable.

No wonder you’re incensed.

So you can see why it’s inaccurate to say Republicans would be embarrassed by a Hillary presidency. “Mortified” or “terrified”? Absolutely. “Vengeful” or “viciously determined to stamp out the (inexorable) wave of social upheaval that’s crushing your dying worldview”? Almost certainly.

But even most Republicans can’t deny Clinton’s remarkable intelligence and powerful political savvy. She is a consummate pro. She will make an outstanding, if deeply compromised, president – just not in any of the ways the white male Republican guard would prefer.

And then there’s Trump.

This puerile, puddle-jumping land shark is, of course, light years from Bush in potential embarrassment. Whereas Dubya disgraced us all by way of sheer bumbling incompetence and a slavering deference to Dark Lord Cheney, he wasn’t quite a loudmouthed, egomaniac racist.

Let’s be clear: Bush was an unmitigated disaster, but he wasn’t a sneering, jeering, low-level chauvinist troll. He would never dare suggest a rival female candidate got “schlonged” in the last election, or make reference to her “gross” bathroom behavior, not to mention referring, in sniggering schoolboy spittle, to a female debate host’s angry menstrual cycle.

Trump is, of course, a far nastier, uglier creation, a refection of the worst of uneducated, conservative human nature. He is the meanest 7-year-old boy on the playground, crude and violent and uncontrollable.

All of which is to say: You gotta change your polling methodology, Quinnipiac (and everyone else). You are being far too simplistic. You’re not asking the right questions.

Let’s get it straight: Half of America would not be embarrassed by a Trump presidency. We’d be far too busy marching in the streets, demanding an instant recall, striding up to the gates of Trump Plaza and hauling the racist buffoon’s pallid flesh to the cliffs of common decency, and hurling him into the hellfires of Nevermore.

America is, let us all devoutly hope, done being embarrassed. Trump is merely daring us all to prove it.

Read more here:: New poll! Hillary infuriates, but Trump nauseates

Mark Morford

About Mark Morford