Andrew Garfield: An Open Letter to Donald Trump — You Are Not a Party You Are a Phenomenon

Cultural Intelligence

ROBERT STEELE: Andrew Garfield is one of the two top pollsters in America. The other is Paul Ray. Andrew is the pollster who destroyed the Obama-Kerry attempt to fraudulently turn Afghanistan over to a 100% Tajik.  Andrew's polls, funded privately, rescued the Ashraf Ghani presidential campaign.

Andrew Garfield
Andrew Garfield – Click for Biography

An Open Letter to Donald Trump

You are not a party, you are a Phenomenon.  If you do as I suggest you have the chance to effect a “once in a generation” level of change that could have a profound and largely positive impact on the future of our great nation as well as the rest of the world.

I am a fiscally conservative and socially liberal voter.  Even with its lurch to the right the GOP should still be my political home.  I was born in the UK and prior to my becoming a very proud naturalized American, I voted for Margaret Thatcher and her brand of Conservatism three times.  I have seen first hand the irreversible damage that well meaning socialists can do to the social and economic fabric of a great country.  And yet, with the General Election rapidly approaching, I find it hard to bring myself to vote for you, Donald Trump.  Your lack of political and governmental experience; the paucity of your policy knowledge and understanding; and your unproven national leadership skills and qualities would make me nervous of voting for you at the best of times.  Moreover, your bellicose, sometimes offensive and mostly confrontational campaign style makes me even more concerned about your suitability for President.  All of that being said, the alternative of another four or even eight years of Democratic Party mismanagement and the likelihood of a patently dishonest and perhaps even treasonous Democratic candidate for President has forced me to reconsider my reluctance to vote for you.  This is my appeal — from the heart and with great deliberate thought — for your transformation.

So is there anything I can embrace about a Trump candidacy?  Surprisingly I think the answer is yes.  As things stand, perhaps your most positive electoral quality is that you are most definitely not a party insider and you do not appear to be beholden to Washington politicians and the special interest groups who buy their support.  You are not tainted by years of dirty dealing inside the Washington beltway.  If you choose, you could continue to speak over the heads of the leadership of both parties and the special interest groups that typically prevent real change from occurring.  And you can continue to appeal directly to the people who clearly yearn for a leader who might actually put their interests first.  Every aspiring Congressperson and Senator says they are going to change Washington but they never do. A junior congressman or senator has neither the experience nor the support needed to change anything in their first term.  And by the time they have become that influential, the very process that got them there has corrupted them entirely.  Their sole purpose then is to be reelected and protect the system on which they depend.  A presidential candidate like you, who has effectively hijacked a party to win the nomination and who is attracting trans-partisan voters back into the process could run your Administration literally as a Third Party or even better a NON-Party. Parties are increasingly toxic.

You are not a party, you are a Phenomenon. If you do as I suggest you have the chance to effect a “once in a generation” level of change that could have a profound and largely positive impact on the future of our great nation as well as the rest of the world.

Ironically for all of your perceived shortcomings, you are very close to having that opportunity.  However, to translate your party’s nomination into the presidency you must offer moderate Americans such as myself a compelling argument as to why we should trust you and then vote for you.  And of course you must learn to control your emotions and literally think before you speak.  What then can you say that would secure my vote and the millions of others you need beyond the GOP base and most especially the 50% of the voters who have dropped out and the 20% who are Independent?

Why do I even matter?  Well, I think I have similar views and values to a very large group of Americans who inhabit the middle ground of American politics, either slightly left or slightly right of center.  I do not think the extreme right or extreme left base of either party is representative of the majority of Americans and is most definitely not representative of the majority of young Americans under the age of 35.  I think most Americans are not racist and they want to see sensible immigration reform.  They are not scared of the future or change.  They are definitely not sexist and support equal rights and pay for women.  They don’t care about someone's sexual orientation, who they marry, or what bathroom they use.  They do not blame or fear all Muslims for Islamic extremism.  Their views on religion are their own and they fully support the separation of church and state.

What they do care about is their own and their country’s economic future and how we can reduce personal and national debt, while improving services. They care about job security and their cost of living.  They worry about how much tax they pay and the college debt they have or will need to finance.  They fear they will have fewer opportunities than their parents and that their children will have even less opportunity than them.   They worry about access to affordable quality healthcare, pensions and education which they and the country must be able to afford.  And they are worried about their safety and security from local threats like crime and transnational threats like terrorism.They also care about their community and their environment and they know that climate changing is occurring, even if they don’t fully understand why.  And they do not feel that the politicians in either party speak for them, care about them, or will do anything to make their lives better or safer.

These are the issues that matter to the millions of voters who will decide the outcome of the general election.  The votes of scared, older, mostly white nativist male voters may win you the GOP nomination but they will not win you the Presidency.  To do that, you have to appeal to the center comprised of Independent and small party voters as well as the sanity wings of the two parties that exclude everyone else from ballot access — in other words, to the majority of voters.  This includes women, the young, immigrants, people of color and millions of white moderate men.  To appeal to them you need to present a coherent and simple manifesto that outlines how you will deal with the issues that matter most to moderate voters and not just the minority on the right of your party.  I would suggest the following areas where clear thinking, plain talking and a true third way would resonate well with many voters.

1. Propose fundamental health care reform.  It is not enough to simply threaten to scrap Obamacare.  You need to offer a viable alternative to the millions who would otherwise be without healthcare.  And you needs to explain to those that have always been able to afford healthcare how you intend to control the spiraling costs of treatment and medicine, so they can continue to afford it. Dare to be radical: find a public private health plan that can work and which we can all afford.

2. Outline an economic policy simply and in terms that ordinary voters will understand.  How will you reduce the deficit without gutting the services on which many Americans depend?  How will you protect the jobs of employed voters and create jobs for those who are out of work?  What will you do about pay stagnation? How will you grow trade while dealing with the inequities that exist in our trade with nations like China?  How will you deregulate to stimulate growth but without removing the safeguards that protect us from exploitation and physical harm? Dare to be radical: Propose an economic model where it is acceptable to be a success like you but which also recognizes that such opportunities need to be available to every American who is willing to work hard and take a chance.

3. Completely overhaul our tax system. The current system benefits only those with the wherewithal, like you, to avoid paying taxes in the first place. This overhaul would be hugely popular and would win you significant support. Dare to be radical: consider every option to simplify the tax code and develop a fairer tax system. Successful people should not be penalized because they create wealth. Neither should they be allowed to use wealth, power and privilege to avoid sharing the same fairer tax burden as all Americans.

4. Outline a plan to reform entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare. You cannot disenfranchise the tens of millions of Americans that depend on these entitlements and who have paid into this system all of their working lives, but you can explore meaningful ways to grow the economy, avoid waste and prevent abuse to ensure that these programs can be fully funded from growth and not from debt.  Dare to be Radical: Steal the cloth of the Democrats and show how you can preserve these programs for those that deserve to receive them and deny them to those that don't.

5. Promise to conduct a fundamental review of the cost of college education, which is crippling for most American families and the number one source of debt for young Americans.  Dare to be Radical: free further education is not a viable solution but affordable education for all Americans is critical for the future of our country.

6. Promise a fundamental and independent Strategic Defense Review. Rather than throw defense under the bus of debt reduction or write a blank check for the defense department, undertake a serious review that would determine the threats we face now and will most likely face in the future and only then propose defense restructuring and an increased budget that is designed to address all of these threats.  The nation cannot afford a blank check for defense and the single services cannot always be trusted to put the interests of the nation above the interests of themselves.  Too many Generals are still too comfortable preparing for the last war and not the next. Dare to be Radical: We need a military that can deter our enemies and when necessary fight and win future wars not the last….we do not need 1000 overseas bases and a military designed to feed the military-industrial complex rather than win wars.

7. Immigration matters to tens of millions of Americans.  A wall and mass deportation are simplistic solutions that play well with the right but which are not legal, practical and/or likely to solve this significant problem in the long term.  If you are a radical dare to be radical: Don't pander to the right or left – offer a comprehensive solution not band-aids, offensive rhetoric or abject surrender.  We need to find a fair and reasonable way to deal with the illegal immigrants already here; we need to offer a timely and simplified process that allows the millions of future immigrants our economy needs to come here legally; and we need a robust and patently fair method for preventing illegal immigration.

8.  Foreign Policy still matters, you must show you understand the challenges.  On some issues your instincts are right on.  Our allies in Europe are not pulling their weight, despite actually facing a renewed and unpredictable threat from a somewhat resurgent Russia.  You are also right that we need to question who our friends are and who are our enemies and why.  However, you also need to show that you understand the complexities and contradictions of foreign policy where, for example, an obvious enemy like Saudi Arabia can also be a vital partner.  Where the instinct to avoid costly nation building is commendable but the imperative for America to still lead the world against dire threats like North Korea remains a necessity.  And you need to show that you understand the reality that while the United States has immense military, diplomatic and economic power, there are still limits on when and how that power can and should be used.  We cannot bomb everyone into defeat and we cannot solve every problem with American blood and treasure.  Nor can we withdraw from the world.  In this truly Global age, the worlds problems will quickly become ours no matter how much we try to ignore them.  Dare to be Radical; rather than offer platitudes and soundbites perhaps your best strategy with regard to foreign policy is to simply acknowledge these complexities and contradictions and your own lack of detailed knowledge and promise to assemble a team of the brightest and best independent thinkers to advise you on each and every challenge and the options available to him.  I think that kind of honesty, introspection and sound thinking will resonate well with the electorate.

And finally please, please, please think before you speak.  You need to secure the votes of not just the tens of millions of Americans you have already directly insulted like women, American Muslims and Hispanic Americans and perhaps all immigrants – you also need the votes of the tens of millions of Americans who are their friends, colleagues, neighbors or advocates. Speaking from the heart is a virtue – shooting or speaking from the hip is not.

Address even some of these issues and you have my vote.  That may not mean much to you but if I am representative of the majority of moderate Americans it should matter a lot to your campaign.

Robert David Steele
Robert David Steele

ROBERT STEELE: I have known Andrew for over 20 years. He was one of the original Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) pioneers, but was marginalized in the UK as I have been marginalized in the USA. His ability to get to ground truth, and his commitment to the truth, are world-class.

See Also:

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On Alex Jones: Cynthia McKinney & Robert Steele Talking About Donald Trump & Hillary Clinton

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Robert Steele: Washington Post Offers 10 Reasons Hillary Clinton Will Beat Donald Trump — I Counter Each (1 True, 5 False, 4 Half & Half)


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