If only it were some kind of trick

They've done it. 

Our neighbours to the south now have Donald Trump as their President. While things like the War in Iraq (ca. 2003) and Brexit (2016) are up there on the list, this is certainly one of the major blunders of the century so far... possibly the political equivalent of Boaty McBoatface

These days, most of my interaction with the US is through American magicians (meaning people who largely work in the performing arts (meaning left-leaning hippie socialists)) who were optimistically looking forward to their first female president. Instead, they wound up with what most of the world considers to be a mistake. 

Having watched the presidential campaign from a distance, the entire thing seems to have suffered from a complete lack of perspective. From the completely disproportionate obsession with Hillary Clinton's emails to the willingness to overlook dozens of faults that would have ended the campaign of any traditional politician. 

It's fascinating that there's no basic competence test to be POTUS. It's just implied, because the competition is so fierce, that the only people who become worthy of notice in the race will be eminently qualified candidates, that you needn't bother to mandate that a candidate release his tax returns or check to see if he's actually read the constitution. (Or, perhaps even having a minimum accuracy score from Politifact.) 

Over a decade ago, sitting in MGM101 (the University of Toronto's mandatory introductory first-year business course) we learned that there are some things you have to get right before you can get anywhere, but — surprisingly — once you get them right, nobody notices. It's like the bathrooms at a restaurant. Nobody pays much attention to them unless they're disgusting. But it's not enough: having the cleanest bathrooms in the world isn't going to get you that Michelin Star. It's analogous to logic and the difference between necessary and sufficient conditions. 

Simply saying things that people want to hear does not qualify someone to be president. They should have paused to think about what would actually likely happen. While I can respect the desire to vote along party lines — it's perfectly reasonable for republicans not wanting a democratic president appointing justices for the next four to eight years — it takes a certain naivety to take any claims of reform or "draining the swamp" seriously. Voting for Donald Trump is comparable to taking your family to eat at a restaurant that doesn't wash its dishes after customers eat off of them because you heard they have installed new lighting fixtures. 

The one ray of hope seems to come from the private sector. Last year, when North Carolina passed its controversial HB1 "Bathroom Bill" the condemning response from the private sector was enormous and the financial consequences to the state were severe. So there does seem to be significant momentum in society at large to counter whatever efforts Trump's new government will make to turn back the clock on social progress. 

As the proverb goes... May you live in an interesting four years...