Greek rationalists and rhetoricians identified a principle of reasoning: if the lesser of something was true, the greater of the same thing or kind was true. Similarly, if the lesser of something was worthy of acceptance, the greater of something was, too.
Therefore, if battery on another human person was wrong, then torturing them or murdering them would be wrong. If helping others by uttering a kind words was a good or acceptable practice, then helping others with knowledge, wisdom, finances, or material resources was a good or acceptable practice.
These ideas or principles of thinking about things enabled the Greeks to develop logical, emotional, and ethical arguments to persuade people to action.
Jesus of Nazareth was an expositor of such thinking. He identified that the seeds of adultery lay in the heart that began to form a desire and a plan to obtain one’s sexual gratification from another human being regardless of circumstances or the consequences. Fulfilling goodness out of sincerity, even if it meant the basic goodness of regret and sorrow, superseded the righteousness of the appearance of having done everything right ceremonially.
We in America are about to vote for who will be our next president. Will it be Donald Trump? Will it be Hillary Clinton? We can apply the Greek principles in two ways to these candidates: the lesser of two evils and the greater of two goods.
We have briefly examined the lesser of two evil principle. We know that Trump lies or exaggerates sometimes, perhaps even many times. We know Hillary does the same. The difference between the two lies in the magnitude of the things they lie about. Trump by and large lies about little things, most of which he does not need to lie about. Hillary lies to cover up her criminal behavior and her flaws and the grave practical and moral mistakes her flaws spawn.
Trump spoke graphically and profanely about touching women inappropriately. Hillary through her husband enabled the sexual abuse of several women over many years, and she spearheaded the effort to shut them up and to crush their hopes of obtaining relief through the law.
The never-before-heard allegations against Trump that have sprouted out of the woodwork in these last days of the campaign lack the force of fact and truth. They have arisen to give advantage to a hard-pressed political opportunist, Hillary, at a moment that has greatly benefited her campaign by casting a huge shadow of suspicion over Mr. Trump and by crippling his election effort, all with the knowledge the allegations cannot be proven, which is why no one has ever filed even a civil action against Trump in regard to these allegations.
Many witnesses have stepped forward to refute the earliest allegations but then, as if on cue, the orchestrated emergence of other women occurs to breathe apparent new life into the beast so that it may continue spouting its calumnies.
If the lesser is true, the greater is true. Hillary’s sins extend beyond the Donald’s in gravity and consequence for our country.
Then there is the question of the greater good.
If the enforcement of immigration law is good and acceptable, as proven by its practice in all nations; then practicing what is necessary to enforce those laws, i.e. increase border patrols, build a wall, expedite the obtaining of citizenship, is also good and acceptable.
If lowering taxes for some citizens allows them to keep and spend more of their hard-earned money in the way they think best, then lowering them for as many citizens as possible allows more citizens to spend their hard-earned money in ways they think best, including in ways that will stimulate economic growth and job creation.
Conversely, if spending excessive amounts of money creates debt and a servitude to that debt, as well as other ill effects, then spending even oodles and oodles more money when a country is already $20,000,000,000,000 (trillion) in debt creates an even more Titanic economy, one on the verge of being gashed by an iceberg of fiscal irresponsibility. Maintaining the not-so-Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), picking up student debt, creating more debt through the imposition of excessive and harsh regulations and tax burdens to fund new or expanded welfare programs, and providing support for illegal aliens are all part of that iceberg.
If accepting more Muslim refugees improperly vetted has produced a greater amount of Muslim terrorism in those countries taking them, then increasing our own intake of unsolicited refugees increases the likelihood of Muslim terrorism. If restricting the immigration of Muslims produces greater safety for Americans, then it should be instituted, at least until effective vetting can be established.
Hillary wants to embed a policy with greater danger to Americans; Trump wants to effect a policy that will offer greater safety.
During the third debate, Trump said Hillary had more experience than he did, but the wrong kind: She had “bad experience”. The Russian rest failed. The Iran treaty concretized that country’s path to the development of nuclear weapons. Her neglect of Benghazi cost American lives. The trade pact she supported – and hollowly claims she now does not – gives American jobs to foreign powers and creates an extra-constitutional legal power that would pre-empt American law.
Trump has little foreign policy experience, but drawing on his business experience, he can vastly improve our negotiating skill and the outcomes that go with it; and he can replace the treaties that hurt Americans with ones that help and that make us financially and militarily stronger.
Trump is the lesser of two evils. Trump is the greater of two goods.