Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Clinton, Trump, and the Zombie Apocalypse


Photo Credit: commons.wikimedia.org


While Americans scramble around to determine who they will vote for this election season, I (and many others that know the truth of the coming zombie apocalypse) have a very different criteria for choosing a candidate.

In this post I will attempt to determine how each of these candidates might help or hinder the ability of our nation's populace to survive during the coming zombie apocalypse. First off, I will set some parameters for this exercise. I think it would be unfair to throw a zombie outbreak on either of these candidates right off so I will base this evaluation on the assumption that the candidates will be in their second term of office. This gives each of them the opportunity to put forth some of the plans in which they currently pontificate. I'll cover each candidate in a future scenario, using their current views and plans as a basis for a possible future for America and the world.

First up, Hillary Clinton.

It's spring of 2021 as Clinton settles into her second term as President. The last four years have been rough, to say the least. The economy has remained anemic and the financial markets have survived several near collapses despite the fed finally giving in to pressure and lowering the interest rate into negative territory two years ago. Clinton was unable to institute her full suite of new taxes on the rich and blames a hostile and mostly Republican Congress. Instead, she, like her predecessor, relied on the power of the pen to push forward with new regulations for corporate fiscal responsibility, instituting harsh penalties for those corporations not adhering to the guidelines of "social responsibility to the underprivileged." Many larger corporations moved their headquarters and operations offshore despite suffering heavy penalties for doing so. In many cases, these penalties proved to be less costly than adhering to the many new regulations mandating that they "give back" large portions of their profits to the government in an effort to provide reparations for those in society disenfranchised by their greedy profit-centered activities.

On the upside, Clinton's plan for universal health care has come to fruition. After the total collapse of the health insurance program instituted by her predecessor, America nearly tumbled over the brink of civil war as the last of the private insurance companies pulled out of the program or failed. Suddenly, Americans -- young or old, rich or poor -- had nowhere to go for their health insurance needs. For a short time, concierge doctors became popular and fees where reasonable but the system did not work proportionately and those that didn't have the ability to pay were left out. As congress argued over how best to solve the problem, crowds gathered around hospitals of major cities. After the third major hospital was burned to the ground, Clinton issued an executive order mandating federal health care. Everyone knew it was completely illegal to do such a thing but arguments lost their importance when the riots and violence stopped. Of course, when the government took on the responsibility of providing health care for all its citizens, the deficit skyrocketed, nearly doubling to 36 trillion dollars.

One might wonder how she managed to get re-elected with all the problems of our nation nearing the end of her first term. For one, nationalized health care was seen as a great accomplishment despite the financial cost to our nation. And, although she was not able to accomplish her plans of free college and terrorist attacks became more frequent and violent within the United States, she promised, that with a friendlier congress, she would be able to make this happen in her second term. Also, it would be important to note that, toward the end of Barack Obama's second term, he had secretly communicated with HHS and the FDA, resulting in reclassification of Marijuana into a schedule three drug. Studies on medical use and addictive qualities (both physical and psychological) began immediately. When the first studies came forth with their findings, Clinton realized that the plant, and all its derivatives could easily be declassified altogether. But, instead of allowing this declassification, she buried the information and instituted strict controls governing the growing and selling of the plant. Although there were many questions as to how growing permits were issued, the practice did result in an increase to the government coffers. Many believe that her actions in this area helped to stave off a deeper recession while others claimed she hadn't done enough.

Nonetheless, her reelection bid was nearly brought to complete halt when information was discovered within emails of the head of Health and Human Services that threatened to expose Clinton for burying their findings on the marijuana studies. The department head was subpoenaed but just the day before his scheduled interview with congress, he was found dead at his vacation property with three shots to the back of his head. Despite the fact that a weapon was never recovered and the investigation involved three separate agencies, it was ruled a suicide.

It was at the beginning of her second term when the outbreak started. The problem wasn't discovered for nearly six months as the occasional report of cannibalistic attacks was drowned among daily riots, terror attacks, and racial tensions in every major city. It wasn't until a small crowd rioting and looting over a court decision to limit SNAP benefits was gruesomely attacked by an even larger crowd of the dead. This event was broadcast on live television and there was no way for the White House Press Secretary to explain it away as drug-related or some vast right-wing conspiracy.

Fear rose quickly within the United States and people began to form into militias and gathered into small communities in order to combat this seemingly random outbreak. The large cities were hit the hardest. The concentration of people in such cities and strict gun legislation in the larger populated areas made it difficult, if not impossible, for local police to combat the growing threat alone. Rural areas were a little better off. While many of these areas held no shortage of guns, they soon found themselves with a shortage of ammunition. One of the first things Clinton did when she entered office in January of 2017 was to begin her push to congress for stricter (what she termed, "common sense") gun laws. The congress was not buying it and managed to block all of her efforts-even those that were, otherwise, reasonable. Failing to get anything done through congress, she resorted to instituting stricter controls on ammunition manufacturers. In addition, she increased the amount of ammunition required by agencies within the government, making ammunition increasingly difficult and more expensive to obtain by the populace. This effort did drive down the number of gun-related crimes and shootings but there was strong evidence to suggest that incidences of violent theft actually increased as criminals and gangs moved to the suburbs to claim ammunition previously bought by other citizens.

Clinton called upon local police and State's National Guard Units to help combat the ever-growing threat of this new outbreak. She made a plea to NATO and WHO to help but was refused as they were dealing with outbreaks worse than our own. For a while some success was found as congress commissioned a task force to capture and study people affected with this strange new disease. The task force managed to trace the origin of the disease to the Middle East and found it had been lying dormant for quite some time. Although the task force was able to find a possible origin of the disease, they found no possible vaccination or other method of combating the spread of the outbreak. They found that the first outbreaks actually occurred years before during the migration of refugees of these countries into Europe. In 2017, Clinton expanded America's refugee program, nearly doubling the amount accepted the previous year. To facilitate this expansion, vetting of refugees was diminished. Once within the borders of the United States, the refugees utilized a reformed immigration process to gain citizenship. The influx of refugees did not, as many believed, have an immediate effect on terror attacks. Nonetheless, by the third year of the program there was growing evidence to support such a claim.

At last, as it became clear that the entire population of America was being consumed by this outbreak, Clinton recalled all military forces, creating "safe zones" around military bases. When the citizens of America got word of this, anybody who had the means, uprooted their families and began the trek toward the nearest military base. Although the military had success for some time at keeping the outbreak at bay, at least near their military base, they were eventually overwhelmed with scared citizens trying to seek refuge within the shelter of the bases. There were several incidences where the military was forced to fire upon crowds that threatened to overtake base security as these crowds were themselves being literally consumed by those affected within their own group.

Despite the ever-increasing threat, Clinton would not authorize the military to use tactical nuclear weapons to destroy large pockets of infected. Oftentimes, security around military bases was diminished, as larger forces were required to guard shipments of ammunition and supplies. The first base to be overrun was Fort Benning, Georgia. As the infected overtook the headquarters, the commander requested artillery support on their location but was denied for fear of collateral damage. Clinton, even though she was clearly losing, insisted on providing a weekly radio message declaring progress in the fight against the infected. The radio messages ended suddenly in the winter of 2023. It is believed that Clinton, among others, sought refuge in a secured bunker location with many others considered the "global elite" with plans of remaining until the outbreak ran its course. Many survivors now sit around their small fires at night and tell stories of how one of those global elite members that made it inside the underground bunker was infected. The infection was not caught upon arrival and, within months, had infected the entire bunker. Many dream of someday finding that bunker and, with great malice, ridding it of its infected inhabitants. But for now anyway, most are just trying to survive the day.

And now, Donald Trump.

Trump was re-elected by a landslide against a second and final attempt to usurp him by Hillary Clinton. It was of no help to Clinton's case that during Trump's first term the nation saw economic growth rise to levels approaching five percent with real unemployment numbers dipping below four percent for ten of the previous 16 quarters. During her campaign, Clinton utilized the same tactics as her previous run of demonizing Trump for his personal decisions. Her one chance at winning the election came and went during some intense trade negotiations. China threatened a trade war, and when that failed, they hinted at calling in the chips on our debt they held. But Trump reminded them that we were their largest receiver of goods and their most reliable debtor, they quickly changed course and agreed to trade terms that were more equitable to the United States. It was that moment, in October of 2019, after the last debate, when most came to understand Clinton could not win.

However, Trump was not able to fulfill all of his campaign promises. He did manage to build the wall along the southern border but its construction was paid only in part by Mexico. Instead of outright payment, Trump insisted that America reclaimed the funding he needed from his renegotiation of NAFTA. Nonetheless, the wall was completed in record time and with a final cost of just over two billion taxpayer dollars.

One campaign promise kept by Trump was to repeal “Obamacare” although it did not happen within the first one hundred days of his Presidency. Congress argued over a replacement for nearly two years but finally settled on health saving plans with subsidies for those unemployed or otherwise unable to pay for healthcare services.

Unemployment was at an all-time low when Trump began his second term but America was not without discord. Those in the top one-percent of America’s financial elite remained so. Some gained and maintained even more wealth under the Trump administration than ever before. Those that previously made their fortunes by moving manufacturing offshore did not fare so well. Unions still posed the largest barrier to increasing manufacturing jobs as these kinds of businesses struggled to maintain reasonable prices for their goods while remaining competitive on the global market. The first Trump term saw a slight decrease in terror attacks but, with proposed changes to unemployment and government social programs in the last year of his first term, domestic terror and rioting took center-stage in many urban areas.

Nearly the entire year of 2021 was a blur of protests and riots as leaders of Black Lives Matter and the New Black Panther Organization joined forces in their quest for social justice. Trump had previously been holding a card up his sleeve and revealed it, in grand fashion, toward the end of 2022, quieting the opposition.

It is important to note that, during the last days of his term the previous President dropped a bombshell on the new President-elect, Donald Trump. In December of 2016, Barack Obama announced a change in the classification of marijuana from a schedule one to a schedule three drug. This presented a problem for the President-elect as his view on drugs and alcohol was one of total abstinence. Nonetheless, he held to his previous beliefs and mentioned in his first national address of 2017 that, although he had personal convictions against it, he would allow individual states to determine fines or punishment. He did allow federal and state research to be conducted the effects of marijuana as a drug as well as hemp for industrial and personal use.

By mid-year of 2022, initial findings supported the complete declassification of marijuana and expressed a nearly endless list of possible uses for hemp. So, when the rioting and demonstrations made rounds through the news later that year, Trump was ready, announcing the total declassification of the plant during his November state of the union address. In this address, he also announced plans support urban centers with the development of urban hemp farms. He also urged states to support research and development of the cannabis plant for both industrial and medical uses. To support these efforts, a federal tax would be levied on the sale of marijuana for non-medical or recreational use. These funds would be used to support local education, employment, and research efforts.

By the end of 2023, twenty-thousand new businesses were funded and operating in some way dealing with cannabis. Nearly a hundred new products had made their way to market from shovel handles to shirts. But this win was short-lived. Following the reports of economic success were the early reports of seemingly cannibalistic attacks on individuals. As the attacks increased, rumors spread that this was some kind of new disease or infection. At the outset, it was realized that Trump was not equipped to deal with this quickly growing pandemic.

Over the next four months, politicians in the Capital downplayed the ever-increasing attacks. The politicians, and Trump, were force to come to terms with the severity of the outbreak when a news camera operator was attacked while filming. The whole thing was seen on live television from his gruesome death to his seaming reanimation moments later. This event made clear just how quickly this virus spread. It was the first time something so graphic and disheartening was caught on a live newscast. This event prompted an immediate response from the Whitehouse. Trump urged citizens to take up arms to defend themselves against this threat. He announced that he was seeking an emergency authorization from congress to place a mandate on ammunition manufacturers to increase production. He also asked for a temporary moratorium on the ban of lead, or any other material that could be made quickly and cheaply, in bullets.

Meantime, a commission was formed to fund research efforts. This research would include every facet of the outbreak from possible cures and vaccinations to best ways to defend against attacks or even kill more of these zombie attackers with limited resources. Another issue quicker came to the forefront when number of “zombie” affected started to grow exponentially and it was an issue without a quick resolution. Because of Trump’s strong ties to the NRA and a Republican majority Congress, gun sales actually decreased throughout his first term. With this decrease in gun sales manufacturers decreased their output and were left unable to ramp up production quick enough to stay ahead of the sudden need. Again, previous decisions proved valuable to the current situation.

One of the biggest issues face by gun manufactures was not finding steel (as America’s iron and steel production was up to a point where it had become a world supplier) rather, it was creating stocks and forestocks. One of the downsides to Trumps promise to negotiate fairer trade deals was that it sparked great animosity from former oil suppliers as we ramped up our oil production. Countries like Saudi Arabia also ramped up their production and dumped their oil on the market cheap. This created a barrier for some of our fledgling oil operations leaving us shorthanded on oil. This oil was needed for the production of rifle parts that were plastic or composite. Just when it seemed we’d lost, a young urban hemp farmer from Chicago offered an ingenious solution—make the gun parts out of compressed hemp just like the handle for garden tools. Production began immediately.

For a short time it seemed America would rid itself of the zombie problem but it came as no surprise that others in the world, including Europe and South America were not doing as well. As entire countries were lost to what was now being termed “the zombie apocalypse” America become more isolated in the ongoing battle. America was now in a war of attrition with no easy solution… and the zombies were winning. South America finally fell to the zombies in summer of 2024. By now, Americans were no longer concerned with the next election, cities struggled to make it through each day. Although martial law was never called most cities became militarized with militias and roving patrols.

By winter, zombies were gathering by the millions along the southern border and many feared the wall would not hold for long. Trump gathered all his military advisors together until they came up with a plan. The United States would conduct strategic air strikes over the zombies at the border to eliminate them for good. It took nearly six months to move entire border towns north into safe zones but, by August of 2025 the air campaign was ready to begin operations. It was a risky operation. The zombies were gathered at the wall with large concentrations in several locations. Everyone knew that dropping those bombs would destroy portions of the wall but, if something was not done soon, the zombies would breach the wall through sheer numbers.

The bombings worked for a time but by the end of 2026, the United States was out of bombs, and fuel. The zombies were still coming to the southern border. Although in smaller numbers, they now walked right through the large gaps in the wall and on to populations in the north. With the ongoing struggle for mere survival, utilities and infrastructure were all but forgotten. The power grids failed one by one and soon pockets of civilization were isolation from one another as the communication system ceased to operate.

Survivors now move in small groups, foraging what they can along the way. Nobody really lives anywhere. Even though Trump is remembered fondly and stories are occasionally told around small campfires, the entire idea of a Presidency, or even a government for that matter, are just distant memories-dreams of a time forgotten.


Okay so maybe my view of the zombie apocalypse is a little disheartening. I try to tell it like it is, or will be. One might notice my concentration on a single issue in this post-rescheduling of marijuana. While I do not advocate one way or the other on this subject, I’ve heard rumors and conjecture numerous times that our current President may reschedule this plant before he leaves office. For that reason, I wanted to include this extra speculation into my post. While I am unsure what use recreational marijuana might have in a situation like this, I tried to offer my positive beliefs on the industrial uses for hemp. This is something I am interested in from an agricultural aspect as it would be very inexpensive and easy to grow in just about any environment. Its industrial uses are almost endless.