Are we expecting too much from politics?

It’s happened and it’s not going away, Donald Trump is going to be the 45th American President and there’s nothing any of us can do about it apart from bitch on Facebook and call the bloke a cunt on Twitter (I tried that, I don’t think he was that bothered).

As most people have noticed, his success has been based on a rhetorical campaign of quotes and catchphrases that capture the imagination of the electorate rather than give any real indication of policy.

Make America Great Again

It’s great marketing, it’s also not quantifiable in any shape or form, nobody will ever be able to bring Trump to account for failing to deliver a ‘Great’ country, but it sounds good and looks great on a cap.(Becoming ‘Great’ isn’t something us Brits have to worry about as we’re called Great Britain anyway).

In some respects the Trump campaign mirrors that of our own divisive and very non British Brexit experience. Divisive slogans and rhetoric for the masses in place of any informative content, if you wanted to be informed you had to do that yourself, most were happy to be sold whatever lies the tabloids decided were appropriate for a particular Day.

Take Your Country Back!

From who and to where matters little, especially if a remembrance poppy and a picture of the Queen Mother sinking a pint of Guinness are thrown in for good measure.

This over simplification begs a question. Are politicians expecting too much from themselves and are we expecting too much from them?

Politicians and the electorate are both at fault. Politicians for promising greatness that is knowingly not possible to deliver, and the electorate for knowingly soaking up the lies of a vote hungry ego maniac.

David Cameron’s Big Society is an example. A lovely sounding slogan and at a glance a half decent idea, but further examination belays a cost cutting exercise that will affect those to which the Big Society most appeals. A complete reorganisation of the way a society functions on a day to day level is simply not possible, Cameron, his party and the electorate know that. However, the slogan wins, every time.

Then there’s our own expectation as the electorate. Our own ideas of perfection and greatness have been driven by a combination of ridiculous business demands and an utterly grotesque revival of 80s materialism.

More, more, more and we can’t get enough.

The latest stupid fucking phone or this years wider Audi with even shiner wheel arches. Fairly harmless until this wanton culture spills over into our infrastructure, public services and everybody’s favourite whipping boy, the NHS. Perfection is demanded and those that promise it are foolishly championed as the business friendly alternative to the thinking liberal elite.

How difficult can it be?

And guess what? All this can be done with less taxation and less borrowing.

So instead of ‘Great’, ‘World Beating’ or ‘Second to None’, why not be a little bit more realistic in what’s achievable.

let’s make it a bit better this year and a bit better next year. Let’s see if we can clean this up a bit and maybe increase growth and do something about helping people back to work. We’ll try to do it without raising taxes but may have to do just that.

This requires honesty, which of course gets you nowhere in politics, but it’s as if we know all of this, don’t really care and want more simple sloganeering. After all, it takes less effort to understand and is easier squeeze into a #hashtag. We know that we’re not going to get the perfect NHS, just Trump supporters know full well that a 2000 mile wall across two rivers and a mountain range will never happen.

So maybe the idea of it is enough?

At least when it fails to materialise we can quote it in a meme when calling him a cunt on Twitter 2021.

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