Monday, October 24, 2016


UPDATE:  09:17 AM


Note:  See Akron Beacon Journal article of yesterday (10/23/2016; LINK) for a discussion a local twist in the increase of the "disgust" factor among voters on the Trump/Clinton campaigns.


As readers of The Stark County Political Report know, I am "pleased as Punch" to be a native of Gettysburg, Pa.

But it was on Saturday past troubling to see the highly "unliked" by the American public Donald J. Trump using the backgrounds of the hallowed fields which embrace Gettysburg as a back drop for his hate filled, negative presidential run.

Trump, a man, who like the man he frequently attacks; namely, the 42nd U.S. president:  Bill Clinton, who, as we all obviously know is the husband of Trump opponent Hillary, took deferment after deferment and never spent a day preserving the union.

In my prime growing up years (the 1950s), it was a dream childhood to have the historic civil war "turning point" of the American civil war battlefield to explore day-in, day-out during our summer breaks from school.

As a teenager, I was to experience another Gettysburg "claim to fame."

Then U.S. President Dwight David Eisenhower:

  • (the heroic supreme commander of World War II allied forces), 
  • having had a nostalgic military officer tour of duty at Camp Colt in Gettysburg (1915—1918) that prompted him to seek out a spot in Gettysburg as a retirement home
bought a farm just outside the borough of Gettysburg (1950, LINK) and as president, on having had a heart attack in 1955, used the farm in conjunction with The Gettysburg Hotel (LINK to history of hotel located at Carlisle Street and Lincoln Square [actually a circle]) in downtown Gettysburg as a "temporary White House."

The Olson family had a personal/political connection with Eisenhower through next-to-oldest brother John as is shared below.

But first a word about the Olson family background.

My father Arthur was about rabid a Republican as one could possibly be.

He spent his young adulthood in southwest Virginia as the son of a 1890s Swedish immigrant Sven Augustus Olson.

Sven made it pretty big financially pursuing the American dream as a logging contractor with the Hassinger Lumber Company which established "a company town" in Konnarock, VA in the 1920s.  (LINK)

But with The Great Depression came the Bank Holiday declared by the newly elected Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR), to wit:

Grandfather was one of the big losers in the belly up of the banks but did manage to salvage enough of his theretofore industrially acquired small fortune by 1920s standards to buy a farm just outside Gettysburg in the mid 1930s.

In the 1920s, of course, there were no Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) guarantees on a significant portion of one's bank deposits.

Accordingly, FDR, in particular, was in my childhood understandably a persistent object of Arthur's political scorn.  Moreover, he tried to infuse unquestioning Republicanism into each and every one of his eight children.

Father's effort eventually yielded fruit with Brother John who really took to "organized" Republicanism a larg way.

As a young man, John had secured a political patronage highway maintenance worker job under either Democratic governor George M. Leader or David H. Lawrence somewhere in the 1955 through 1963 timespan.

How painful job being at least a nominal Democrat had to be  for my father!

In 1963, Republican William Scranton was elected governor and John made the switch back to his Republican roots in order to keep his job.

The politically prodigal son returning home, no?  An occasion of great rejoicing in the home of Arthur Olson!

By 1966 John was president of the Adams County Republican Party, the elected (Republican) tax collector for Adams County's Straban Township (1978 through 1992) and a long time member of the Adams County Republican Party executive committee.

Growing up in Gettysburg, I remember the halcyon days of the 1950s which in which seemingly everybody "liked Ike" Eisenhower and his brand of Republicanism that made all of us seem safe, secure and free to pursue our individual American dreams.

Undoubtedly, little Marty Olson walked the streets of Gettysburg with my "I Like Ike" button firmly and prominently planted on by shirt.

The 50s were the days of  Nelson Rockefeller, Jacob Javits, Kenneth Keating, Earl Warren, Mac Mathias, Hugh Scott, Mark Hatfield, Margaret Chase Smith and Edward Brooke.

These folks constituted the Republican Party model that I grew up with and basked in.

But then came 1972 and Richard Milhous Nixon and Watergate with the Nixonian cover up of the criminal break-in by operatives connected to his 1972 re-election campaign (CREEP, an appropriate acronym no?).

By 1976, I was out of the Republican Party and a Democrat who was enthralled with the high moral standards of James Earl Carter.

Carter, as it turns out, and his high standards which he still evidences with his untiring work for Habitat for Humanity, is not indicative of national Democratic politicians of today especially if one focuses on the Clintons.

Who can ever forget the disgrace that William Jefferson Clinton (1992—2000) and his moral standard low points of objectifying quite a number of women which stained the U.S. presidency.

Though he bashes Clinton almost daily, the thought the cross the mind that Clinton and his behavior vis-a-vis women in his personal world was in reality a role model for Trump as being what one can get away when one is rich and powerful.

And, of course, there is model Hillary also.

Secreting away her e-mails as a government official on a private e-mail server.

Hillary, a model?

For starters, how about Trump's refusal to release his tax returns from the privacy of IRS protections for let's say "trumped up" reasons.

It took a while, but by 2008 and the start of The Stark County Political Report (March, 2008), I was politically where I feel the most comfortable:  an political independent who can see the warts of all the aligned "politico" Rs & Ds and how they collectively are dragging down the country with their self-serving ways.

As readers of the SCPR know, Martin Olson is "an equal opportunity" critic and analyst that has no affinity for either the organized Republican or Democratic parties nor for candidates like Donald J. Trump and Hillary Rodham Clinton.

In July, this was the blog of the SCPR.

As this blog is being written, Hillary Clinton's "unfavorable" rating among prospective voters stands at 53%.

If she is elect, as it appears now she will be, she will be the most unpopular presidential candidate EVER elected.

As this blog is being written, Hillary  Trump's "unfavorable" rating among prospective voters stands at 61%.

If he is elected, however unlikely it now appears he will be, Trump would be the most unpopular presidential candidate EVER elected exceeding Clinton's record unfavorable rating by eight (8) percentage points.

What a horrible state of political/election affairs, no?

Wouldn't we all like to bring back the days of "I LIKE IKE" days of the 1950s?

Isn't it more than a tad ironic and a blight on the hallowed fields of Gettysburg that Donald J. Trump (like Bill Clinton, accused of objectifying and abusing women) and the least liked presidential candidate of all time U.S. presidential election history would have the gall to hold a campaign rally in "the heart and soul" of "I LIKE IKE" land?

There are some who think that Eisenhower was "as pure as the white driven snow," as there are questions of whether he was completely and totally faithful to wife Mamie.

True or untrue, it is obvious that Dwight David Eisenhower, the 34th president of the United States, was many, many, many levels the moral superior of Donald Trump and Bill Clinton.

In 2016, dislike of our politicians had definitely triumphed over liking them.

To the extent that voters wed themselves uncritically to any political party or political candidate, voters thereby contribute to the lack of or deficiency of party/candidate accountability and consequently undermine the quality of our democratic/republican system of government.

Hopefully, future presidential candidates will pick up on the respective 61% (Trump) and 53% (Clinton) disapproval ratings and conduct future campaigns on a much higher plane than is the case with the 2016 presidential election.

No matter which of the two current contenders are elected, this election has already resulted in the worsening of American presidential politics to new all time low.

May God Almighty has mercy on the United States of America!

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