The Year End Hole December 31, 2016: A Year We’d Like To Pretend Didn’t Happen

The year 2016 will likely be remembered for the pain and grief of losing so many famous people, as well as the pain and grief of our country’s losing its collective shit and electing as President a man whose only qualifications for the job are the bare minimum spelled out in the Constitution: he was born here, he’s old enough, and he’s lived here along enough. It would have been nice if the Framers had the foresight to add a few more requirements to be president, such as knowing what the hell you’re talking about, being able to talk about it coherently, and understanding what the responsibilities and sacrifices of being a public servant are. I see none of those very desirable qualities in the man chosen by the Electoral College to be the 45th President of the United States. Nor do I see any of those very desirable qualities in the millions of people who voted for him.

I can believe a great many of them, but not a majority, were not so much voting for Donald Trump as they were voting against a version of Hillary Clinton that simply did not match the one who exists in the real world. They voted against a myth. Then there are the ones who voted for Donald Trump, but who also voted for a myth. They believed that he was a very successful businessman because he said he was one. They believed he was worth billions of dollars because he said he was. (The estimates of what his real estate holdings are worth come from him, and him alone. And they can go up or down depending on whether there are tax considerations at stake.) They believed he could do all the things he promised to do as president because he said he could do them, not because he actually had the legal or constitutional authority to do them. I could go on, but you get the idea. Neither Trump nor the people who voted for him understand the first thing about governing and being a public servant. And let’s not even talk about who Trump’s most vocal supporters were: Nazis and the KKK. And they got their reward with a senior advisor to the president whispering sweet bigotry in his ear.

I would certainly like a do-over on 2016. Bring back all the wonderful people we lost and throw out the ones we elected to run our country. I want to be hopeful about 2017. I want to think that it can’t be any worse, but then I thought 2016 couldn’t keep getting any worse and it did, day after day, right up to losing Princess Leia AND her mother on consecutive days. So it’s hard for me to believe things are going to get better just because our rocky little blue dot completed another revolution around a hot ball of gas that simultaneously gives us life and tries to take it away. But the alternative is too depressing to contemplate, so we pretty much have to hope it gets better. (Insert forced smile here.)

For a better and more humorous take on 2016, check out Dave Barry’s Year in Review. He always makes me laugh though he has yet to make my drink come out my nose. And whatever your plans this weekend, please enjoy a safe, happy holiday, and may you have a happy, healthy and prosperous 2017.

UPDATE: And just to show us 2016 wasn’t through making our lives miserable, another popular actor, William Christopher, has died. Christopher was best known for playing Father Mulcahy on both M*A*S*H and AfterM*A*S*H.

Thanks for all the jocularity, Mr. Christopher.

This is our weekend open thread, as I probably won’t post something else on Sunday. Feel free to discuss any topic you wish. Consider signing up to post your own weekly column at The Zoo. Several days available. Happy New Year.

29 thoughts on “The Year End Hole December 31, 2016: A Year We’d Like To Pretend Didn’t Happen

  1. Trump Administration defined:

    “If the citizens neglect their Duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made, not for the public good so much as for selfish or local purposes; corrupt or incompetent men will be appointed to execute the Laws; the public revenues will be squandered on unworthy men; and the rights of the citizen will be violated or disregarded.”

    Those were the words of American patriot and scholar Noah Webster (1758-1843), a thesis about to be tested in real time. My guess? Webster was spot-on; the proof will soon be on its way.

    • Looking back, I think that we experienced a taste of that during the Bush years; this time it’s going to be exponentially worse. The country is so much more divided now, and all signs point to a violent and even more hateful 2017.

      That being said, Happy Gnu Year, everyone! 🙂

    • Ok, here’s your “do-over”.

      Happy New Year folks!
      I’m with Wayne, I want a do-over.

      (it’s the best I could come up with on short notice & limited technological know-how)

  2. FTR, Trump has called us his “enemies.”

    Perfect response:

    • Hello 2017. Are you sure you’re ready to take the flame, or just flame out. To all the Zoosters, sincerely, stay safe, stay sane, stay my innertubes friends, whether I deserve you or not.

  3. Happy New Year, my wonderful Critter and Zooster friends!!!

    I know I’ve been rather “absent” this year, but I’m determined to work on being more present in the coming year.

  4. Editor of Wall Street Journal says he will not report Trump lies, even if he lies

    . . . when Trump lies, the Wall Street Journal—the second largest paper by circulation in the country—will not call it a lie, according to the its editor-in-chief Gerard Baker.

    “I’d be careful about using the word, ‘lie.’ ‘Lie’ implies much more than just saying something that’s false. It implies a deliberate intent to mislead,” Baker told Chuck Todd on Meet the Press on Sunday.

    Makes perfect sense . . . to Rupert Murdoch, at least.

  5. Hi, gang. I have parlayed my dissatisfaction into a free month of internet service so, for the meantime, I’m still here. Here’s what I’m going to do with that free month. I’m going to post this link every time it seems appropriate. I have included it in the heading of my emails. And? I have printed out a few wallet-sized copies to carry around and pass out to anyone who dares to utter “crooked Hillary”.

  6. As for the repeal of ACA, here’s an excellent article found this AM on Market Watch.
    Opinion: I’m a former health insurance CEO and this is what Obamacare repeal will do
    Salient quotes –
    Key to the large increases in premiums this year – the Congress screwed the insurers by underfunding their promised risk reimbursement
    To entice insurers into the market, the ACA also offered well-established methods to reduce risk. For example, it built in protections for insurers who enrolled especially sick people. It also provided backup payments for very high-cost cases and protected against big losses and limited big gains in the first three years.
    But when the time came to pay up for risk reduction in the Obamacare exchanges, Congress reneged and paid only 12% of what was owed to the insurers.

    So, to all the people griping about the big premium increase….It’s your elected jackass republicans you should be voting out of office.
    Do It.

  7. Trump Humiliates Billionaire David Koch By Throwing His Guest Off Trump Golf Course.

    So this past Friday, Trump threw a guest of billionaire Industrialist David Koch off Trump’s West Palm Beach Golf Club. Koch’s guest, Harry Hurt III who’d written an unflattering bio of Trump, walked over to Trump and congratulated him on winning the election. Trump’s reaction was to have his private security goons ‘escort’ Hurt out to the parking lot. Updating- Koch decided to leave with his guests.

    Trump just dissed David Koch, a REAL billionaire who isn’t in debt to Russian oligarchs and Putin.

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