Trump’s supporters and conservative media say he won. Hillary’s supporters and the liberal media say she won. But who lost the presidential debate last night? Well, America did.
America lost because Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are among the most unliked candidates in American political history. We lost because Trump is a billionaire who spent his entire career benefiting from politicians to make his fortune. We lost because Hillary is a politician who spent her entire political career benefiting from billionaires to make her powerful (and rich).
America lost because corporate politicians make promises they never deliver on. We lost because both candidates say they are going to change things, but we already know they won’t. We lost because both candidates stood in front of 100 million Americans last night and lied to us with straight faces. We lost because the main reason people are voting for Trump is he’s not Clinton, and the main reason people are voting for Clinton is she’s not Trump.
America lost because the debate was just a highly publicized reality show episode that seemed to focus more on personality wars than policies or ideas. We lost because the few ideas that these candidates do propose are simply stale, old philosophies that have been proven to fail the majority of working Americans for decades. We lost because the two mainstream political parties are almost indistinguishable when it comes to their top priorities (save for wedge social issues, which continue to divide the populace).
America lost because the political discussion has been limited to these two (very unlikable) choices. We lost because Republicans and Democrats have a duopoly over our political system. We lost because the media refuses to give fair coverage to third-party candidates. We lost because 50 percent of us wanted third-party candidates in the debate, but the private corporation that runs the debates refused. We lost because this corporation is deeply entrenched with the two-party system it protects.
America lost because despite the overwhelming unpopularity of Trump and Clinton, paired with Congress’ approval rating, which can hardly out-poll cockroaches (or Nickleback), we continue to vote for these people thinking something will somehow change. We lost because career politicians continue to be reelected at an overwhelming rate despite being completely unrepresentative of their constituents.
America lost because this country has become an oligarchy. We lost because both Trump and Clinton have been longtime members of this ruling class. America will continue to lose the debates. America will also lose the 2016 election because one of these candidates will win. Our only hope is for some kind of drastic change by the time the next election rolls around.