05:47:54 am on
Saturday 13 Jul 2024

The Fork in the Road
AJ Robinson

“The fork in the Road” was the punch line for a comedy routine that Johnny Carson did on The Tonight Show. It was a regular part of the “Tea-time Movie” skits. As Art Fern, Cason would give directions to some fictional deep-discount store and finish with “the fork in the road,” while displaying a map that had an actual fork on it.

We’re at the proverbial fork in the road.

That’s where we are right now, at a very important fork in the 2020 election cycle. I know people are hoping for a Biden win, maybe even a Blue Tsunami to sweep the Democrats into complete Control of Congress, but I’m not optimistic. Let’s face it, between voter apathy, voter suppression and voting interference by Russia, China, Iran and who knows who else, the chances of a completely fair election are dim.

Counties in Texas, with hugely varying populations, have one drop off place for absentee ballots. The Post Office still doesn’t have its sorting machines repaired. Those are only two of the impediments to a fair vote.

Let’s see what options we face. First, Trump and the republicans keep control of the White House and the Senate; control of the House is a pipe dream, even with all the factors I’ve outlined. That means four more years of Trump, at least two with him keeping his lap dogs in the Senate. We can expect more conservative judges on the various courts, maybe even the Supreme Court.

More importantly, the budget deficit will explode. The Trump tax cuts, defense spending and COVID-19 bailouts will send the debt spiraling out of control. How will we handle it? Trump will push for cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and all other programmes that help the common people.


Will Obamacare get overturned? Unsure, although Barrett will probably vote to destroy it, some of the other conservative justices might consider the issue a matter of settled law and vote to keep it. As for Roe v. Wade, Barrett will probably vote to overturn and it might go down as other justices agree with that view, which will throw the issue back to the states.

Some states have already passed de facto abolishment of abortions with restrictive laws. In other states the fight will re-ignite. At the very least, women will lose control of their bodies in the short run.

When it comes to immigrants, the environment and our allies, everybody gets shafted. Trump will gleefully cage more children, he hasn’t stopped doing that, the story has merely vanished from the news. That doesn’t mean the children have.

Trump will gut all environmental regulations.

He’ll push for mining and drilling. He’ll nothing related to Climate Change, except ignore it. As for our allies, they’ll have to turn to each other for support, but America will fade from the world stage.

Will Russia rise to take our place? Hard to say, Putin has stolen a lot of his nation’s wealth for himself and his friends, but he needs money to lead the world. Will China step forward to take our place? That’s another tough call. Their president might want to make China more of a global powerhouse, but his people have a long tradition of xenophobia. Are the, Russia and China incompatible.

Not a very positive outcome, eh? Now, it is possible that Biden will pull off a win, both in the general and electoral votes. Even that might not be enough to secure the office.

Remember, Pence must certify the vote before a joint session of Congress. I don’t see that happening. He may decline to certify, forcing the election into Supreme Court for a decision.

Although Trump may be sure his justices will be loyal to him, he’s in for a surprise. Part of the positive aspect of a lifetime appointment is that it does not leave you beholden to anyone. So, the court might side with Biden.

The point is Biden could pull off a win. Biden could be the new President come noon on 20 January 2021. For Trump, his troubles will begin; the lawsuits, rape charges and so forth will overwhelm him. To be honest, I don’t care.

If, after the 3 November 2020 election, control of the Senate is with the Republicans, it will hamper Biden and the Democrats ability to get policy passed. Let’s face it, “Moscow” Mitch and his cronies stonewalled Obama for years. Think they won’t do the same to Biden?

Although it would be great for the Democrats gain control of the Senate, I’m afraid that is a true long shot. For some reason I can never fathom, the voters continue to support people like Mitch and Lindsey. Mind you, if the Democrats manage to at least get fifty-one seats, which is a possibility, they’d take over and could then at least bring bills to the floor for votes. To be honest, I think that’s the most we can hope for.

Now, where do I fall in all this conjecture? Sad to say, I expect Trump, Mitch, Lindsey and all the rest to win. I know it sounds like a downer and I should be more hopeful, but I see too many people siding with these clowns and all the aforementioned obstacles preventing the true will of the people being heard.

Why do people continue to vote for them? I still have no clue. My ray of hope is 2022, the mid-term election.

Here’s how I see things going. Trump keeps promising a new health plan, but never delivers. So, he wins in 2020, Barrett joins the Court, Obamacare is overturned, millions lose their insurance, coronavirus gets worse, and the Republicans essentially “fiddle while Rome burns” because they have no plan to deal with any of this. I can see where, at that point, truly at the lowest of our low point as a nation, the Trump minions have finally had enough, and they vote Blue in 2022, giving give the Senate to the Democrats. At that point, Trump is either impeached, again, or Congress at least makes him impotent.

I’m voting Blue down the ballot, which way will you turn?

Not a very pleasant view of the future? Well, it doesn’t have to be this way. If enough people get out there and vote and truly make the Blue Tsunami real, and the Democrats take over the White House and Congress, we could see real positive changes in this country. It’s there, people, within our grasp. We have truly reached a critical fork in the road, which way we go is entirely up to all of you.

Combining the gimlet-eye of Philip Roth with the precisive mind of Lionel Trilling, AJ Robinson writes about what goes bump in the mind, of 21st century adults. Raised in Boston, with summers on Martha's Vineyard, AJ now lives in Florida. Working, again, as an engineeer, after years out of the field due to 2009 recession and slow recovery, Robinson finds time to write. His liberal, note the small "l," sensibilities often lead to bouts of righteous indignation, well focused and true. His teen vampire adventure novel, "Vampire Vendetta," will publish in 2020. Robinson continues to write books, screenplays and teleplays and keeps hoping for that big break.

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