This week the candidates appeared in the honest trailer for the much-anticipated presidential debate at the end of the month. They appeared – separately – at a commander-in-chief showdown which focused on national security, right before the country commemorates fifteen years since 9/11. Recap: it’s an election year and immigration, terrorism and ISIS have been red hot button issues. The candidates spent most of their vast thirty minute TV spotlight reiterating their opponent’s failures or inexperience, and – spoiler alert – neither performed spectacularly, particularly on key sore points like regrettable tweets or illegal emails. But the biggest loser of the night was moderator Matt Lauer who didn’t play hardball with the candidates because he was worried about doing a good job… while actually not doing a good job.
Clinton said that the use of force should only be as a last resort and that troops would never ever go back to Iraq; meanwhile Trump dumped responsibility for a plan to defeat ISIS on his generals, despite hinting at a secret plan of his own for months. The person who came out on top this week? President Vladimir Putin, to whom Trump sang “I just wanna praise you” on a Russian-funded TV network, making Democrats wonder if Putin is secretly coaching Trump – especially after hearing about Trump’s shady dealings of alleged bribery in a Trump University lawsuit. This all comes after the Russian hacking of the DNC, resulting in lots of questions about rigged elections and foreign meddling.
On the list of people having a worse day than you: Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson had a brain fart and forgot that Aleppo is that hot mess in Syria, not an exotic new Pokémon. On the downside many people are saying this kind of ignorance should disqualify him from the race; on the plus side, many more people now know who Johnson is, and where Aleppo is. Ultimately, this week’s national security bent was aimed at getting military endorsements and votes, especially since many states will begin early voting this month, which includes mail-in ballots traditionally used by active-duty military. Establishment Clinton and outsider Trump are ultimately offering two very divergent futures for a military-minded America; it’s up to the people now to choose the path of familiarity or the road less traveled. The smallest mistakes now could make all the difference.
Think all terrorists can be stopped with a horse, a MAC-10 and a Harrier jet? Movie for your upbeat mood: True Lies