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Mr. Gripes: A premonition moment, Hillary’s Calamity of Missteps

Mr. Gripes: A premonition moment, Hillary’s Calamity of Missteps

By Jim Israel, aka ‘Mr. Gripes’

Sweet Revenge….It was seven or eight years ago, and a fair distance from home, that Mr. Gripes experienced the moment when a victory by a persona like Donald Trump became inevitable.

Reminiscing a bit, in those days I had a lot of free time, so I’d travel down South or into the Midwest to tour minor league baseball parks: for six or seven days, I’d drive from one city to another – usually small obscure towns – to attend one game per day, typically at night. A lot of driving ensued:  I opted to travel on roads no longer used much, essentially devoid of automobiles, as newer, brawnier federal highways had superseded the older, crumbling thoroughfares.

I was on one of these sojourns, probably in 2010 or 2011, motoring one early evening from South Carolina to Augusta. It was a typically beautiful Carolina summer night, with a full moon dramatically looming through my windshield, amidst gorgeous pines lining the road. Suddenly, I noticed through a thicket of brush and tall grass, a completely empty building – a factory, for sure – on the side of the highway. Nothing stirred, just that imposing structure – and an enormous deserted parking lot adjoining the plant. It was deathly quiet — I parked and took it all in for several minutes.

dead-factoryIt was a very somber, sad sight: the formerly frenetic business of the factory – it had been a ‘textile’ manufacturing plant – must have formerly employed hundreds, if not thousands, of individuals. Now?  Nothing but a relic. It resembled a tomb.

Fifteen miles later, another empty factory, vines growing up its walls. I counted about ten or so factories along that road, within 50 miles, all idle.

And, then, in an instant, I was struck, as if I were slapped across my face, by an epiphany: these low-to- middle-income workers, undoubtedly loyal employees for years, after the decision was made to move the plants overseas, were discarded and cast aside as if they were used Kleenex. Bill Clinton with his misconceived NAFTA mess, the large corporations backing the free-trade pacts, and the uncaring political/plutocratic classes, didn’t give one sh_t about these people. Once their employers closed the plants, the laid-off workers were stranded and abandoned, as if they were road-kill. They were betrayed.

Yes, at that moment, I just felt in my gut – I knew! –someday these furious workers, and others in similar circumstances all over the country, eviscerated by very powerful, implacable forces aligned against them, would one day exact a harsh punishment on the perpetrators. It took a long time, and I had no idea in what form it would take,  but Donald Trump’s victory surely must have been sweet, sweet revenge to those forgotten workers.

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