The American experiment in democracy has been around for some 248 years. On January 6, 2021, the attack on our center of government in Washington, D.C. caused many of us to question its continued shelf life. Now, in the aftermath of the “Super Tuesday” primary elections that saw a virtual return of that insurgency’s catalyst, and one who will be opposing a largely unpopular incumbent, the long-term health of our nation is in question. Should former President Donald Trump defeat Joe Biden in November, does a mine-field laden path lay ahead of us?

It took a former Prime Minister of Australia to summarize what another Trump presidency might entail. “He is attracted to dictators and tyrants like Kim Jung Un and Xi Jinping and threatened to undermine or pull out of America’s longest standing alliances,” said Malcolm Turnbull, during a recent interview on his country’s TV. He was referring to Trump and the alliance was with NATO.

Turnbull added: “When you see Mr. Trump with [Vladimir] Putin, as I have … he is like the twelve-year-old boy…who meets the captain of the football team.” He went on to say “this is a guy leading a party that is no longer committed to democracy.”

Surely, if our former leader has displayed a litmus test that indicates his stance on major world issues, it would be regarding his view of NATO. He claims to be able to end the Russian-Ukraine war in 24 hours. How? By pulling a Neville Chamberlain form of appeasement with Russia and allowing it to control parts of the country Putin so brutally attacked? And would Trump then turn his back on NATO-aligned Poland if Putin continued his march there?

While we like to think of world battles as someone else’s problems, our planet is now far too small for isolation. What affects one area can certainly do so to others. Nazi Germany didn’t stop at Poland and managed to drag numerous countries into World War II and cause untold death and destruction. Making nice-nice with a dictator, whether Adolf Hitler or Putin, never works. It merely postpones and exacerbates the day of reckoning.

Trump is inebriated with power and has promised “retribution” for those who may have challenged him. Is this in the DNA of a democracy? The chaos that follows him seems to be fuel for his psyche.

In Liz Cheney’s recent book “Oath And Honor,” the former Congresswoman related her bird’s eye view of that which excites the former president. Of the raid on our capital, she said: “The man was sitting in his dining room two miles away watching television coverage of the attack on the United States Capitol. Donald Trump refused to tell his mob to leave.” Cheney is the person who dared to challenge Trump and was rewarded by his influence bouncing her out of the Republican Party despite her voting with him on issues 93 percent of the time.

A preview of another Trump presidency appears to be in full view now, with news that NATO countries, especially Germany, are discussing plans to enter the nuclear race. They are sensing a lessening of support from the world’s long-time big brother — the U.S. Are we willing to relinquish our role as the leader of the free world and smile as the nuclear playing field widens?

“This is not the time…to be sending the message that we are not up to the task,” said Senator Mitch McConnell, of our over seven-decade affiliation with NATO and safeguard against World War III. That was mentioned a couple of weeks ago, before McConnell announced that he was stepping down as Senate Minority Leader and then embraced Trump’s candidacy.

In the ever-more prescient 1935 novel, “It Can’t Happen Here,” by Sinclair Lewis, the author described a fledgling American dictator as having the “power of bewitching large audience.” He was said to be “vulgar, almost illiterate, a public liar easily detected and his ideas almost idiotic.” Does this not sound much like Trump, the once political novice who quit his tutor of the Constitution after the fourth amendment? And, does it not cause us to recall the countless insults he has levied against any friendly adversaries and their families?

For nearly two and one half centuries our country’s path has been clear. Now it seems dotted with one filled with explosives. Let’s just hope our democracy can survive the blasts that may lay ahead.

Jeff Hurvitz ( is a free-lance writer and native Philadelphian.

4 thoughts on “Jeff Hurvitz: Primary election postscript —whither the United States?”

  1. Jeff,
    Very few people still believe the Trump propaganda. I did follow the Biden Administration’s deputy assistant secretary of Spent Fuel and Waste Disposition in the Office of Nuclear Energy antics and criminal behavior. That was wild stuff. What is it with Democrats and Nuclear fuel and waste scandals? I’ll be voting for the 3,000+ people behind Trump that do not insist on bizarre gender messaging.
    Have you missed that Liz Cheney now faces increased examination over allegations of withholding Trump’s National Guard request evidence? Did you miss the part about fact checkers being wrong about Hunter Biden’s Laptop, Covid coming from a partially US-funded Wuhan lab, the mRNA shots also causing the same symptoms as Covid (myocarditis and miscarriages) without providing the promised immunity? The insanity of the illogical Covid policies that happened under Biden? Perhaps you missed all that?
    Did you miss Biden Administration overseeing the Afghanistan debacle? Have you missed the implementation of the LGBTQIA++ agenda attacking our children? Have you noticed the DEI socialist movement in business world? Trump stinks. He insulted POWs. He could be dead come November and I will still vote for the Trump ticket.

    1. Michael, I recognize the erosion of our country under the Dems and lately through Biden. But I am going to go with the lesser of two evils and stay with erosion (for now)over outright destruction. You say few believe Trump propaganda. I believe many do, and are going to back him based on lies and stretching of the truth. We agree that the choices are slim pickings. When I vote I will hold my nose and hope that Biden lives through his term (as I shudder to think of our VP assuming his duties). I also hope our country regains its senses and presents two qualified, responsible, adult candidates in four years.

      1. Jeff, Erosion implies a wearing away – natural, accidental, or sometimes due to negligence. This far-Left Socialist agenda is not an erosion, but rather it has been a well-planned demolition and restructuring. We seem to be in the final phases of a few decades’ long campaign. This socialist far-Left agenda is an assault on families, neighborhoods, and our Western (Abrahamic – elements shared by Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) culture and way of life.
        You wrote that you would vote Biden and hope he “…lives through his term (as [you] shudder to think of our VP assuming [Biden’s] duties.)”
        1) It seems you have zero interest in waiting to see Trump’s VP pick for the ticket leaving me to presume you are actually a zealot for the far-Left Socialist agenda, I presume you are also an atheist
        2) it seems you have a ridiculous idea Biden is at the helm (in control) of the direction of The United States, not the 3,000+ people that make up the Biden Administration.
        3) A vote for the Trump ticket is a vote for the 3,000+ people that will make up the Trump Administration. The last Trump Administration accomplished:
        -Unemployment rates for African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Americans, Native Americans, veterans, individuals with disabilities, and those without a high school diploma all reached record lows.
        -Unemployment for women hit its lowest rate in nearly 70 years.
        -Lifted nearly 7 million people off of food stamps.
        -Poverty rates for African Americans and Hispanic Americans reached record lows.
        -Income inequality fell for two straight years, and by the largest amount in over a decade.
        -The bottom 50 percent of American households saw a 40 percent increase in net worth.
        -Wages rose fastest for low-income and blue collar workers – a 16 percent pay increase.
        -African American homeownership increased from 41.7 percent to 46.4 percent.
        -Signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act – the largest tax reform package in history.
        -More than 6 million American workers received wage increases, bonuses, and increased benefits thanks to the tax cuts.
        -A typical family of four earning $75,000 received an income tax cut of more than $2,000 – slashing their tax bill in half.
        -Doubled the standard deduction – making the first $24,000 earned by a married couple completely tax-free.
        -Doubled the child tax credit.
        -Virtually eliminated the unfair Estate Tax, or Death Tax.
        -Cut the business tax rate from 35 percent – the highest in the developed world – all the way down to 21 percent.
        -Small businesses can now deduct 20 percent of their business income.
        -Businesses could deduct 100 percent of the cost of their capital investments in the year the investment was made.
        -Since the passage of tax cuts, the share of total wealth held by the bottom half of households increased, while the share held by the top 1 percent decreased.
        -Over $1.5 trillion was repatriated into the United States from overseas.
        -Lower investment cost and higher capital returns led to faster growth in the middle class, real wages, and international competitiveness.
        -Jobs and investments are poured into Opportunity Zones.
        -Created nearly 9,000 Opportunity Zones where capital gains on long-term investments are taxed at zero.
        -Opportunity Zone designations have increased property values within them by 1.1 percent, creating an estimated $11 billion in wealth for the nearly half of Opportunity Zone residents who own their own home.
        -Opportunity Zones have attracted $75 billion in funds and driven $52 billion of new investment in economically distressed communities, creating at least 500,000 new jobs.
        -Approximately 1 million Americans will be lifted from poverty as a result of these new investments.
        -Private equity investments into businesses in Opportunity Zones were nearly 30 percent higher than investments into businesses in similar areas that were not designated Opportunity Zones.
        -Immediately withdrew from the job-killing Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).
        -Ended the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and replaced it with the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).
        -The USMCA contained powerful new protections for American manufacturers, auto-makers, farmers, dairy producers, and workers.
        -The USMCA is expected to generate over $68 billion in economic activity and potentially create over 550,000 new jobs over ten years.
        -Signed an executive order making it government policy to Buy American and Hire American and took action to stop the outsourcing of jobs overseas.
        -Negotiated with Japan to slash tariffs and open its market to $7 billion in American agricultural products and ended its ban on potatoes and lamb.
        -Over 90 percent of American agricultural exports to Japan now receive preferential treatment, and most are duty-free.
        -Negotiated another deal with Japan to boost $40 billion worth of digital trade.
        -Renegotiated the United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement, doubling the cap on imports of American vehicles and extending the American light truck tariff.
        -Reached a written, fully-enforceable Phase One trade agreement with China on confronting pirated and counterfeit goods, and the protection of American ideas, trade secrets, patents, and trademarks.
        -China agreed to purchase an additional $200 billion worth of United States exports and opened market access for over 4,000 American facilities to exports while all tariffs remained in effect.
        -Achieved a mutual agreement with the European Union (EU) that addresses unfair trade practices and increases duty-free exports by 180 percent to $420 million.
        -Secured a pledge from the EU to eliminate tariffs on American lobster – the first United States-European Union negotiated tariff reduction in over 20 years.
        -Scored a historic victory by overhauling the Universal Postal Union, whose outdated policies were undermining American workers and interests.
        -Engaged extensively with trade partners like the EU and Japan to advance reforms to the World Trade Organization (WTO).
        -Issued a first-ever comprehensive report on the WTO Appellate Body’s failures to comply with WTO rules and interpret WTO agreements as written.
        -Blocked nominees to the WTO’s Appellate Body until WTO Members recognize and address longstanding issues with Appellate Body activism.
        -Submitted 5 papers to the WTO Committee on Agriculture to improve Members’ understanding of how trade policies are implemented, highlight areas for improved transparency, and encourage members to maintain up-to-date notifications on market access and domestic support.

        1. Michael, you lost my interest when you made an assumption that I was a lefty and atheist. I am an independent thinker who has always leaned conservative and I believe in the all mighty. So you showed yourself to be far off base. So much for labeling!

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