The argument of the “lesser evil” is one of the oldest and tiredest of all political ideas. As Hilaire Belloc once said:
“Always keep a-hold of Nurse
For fear of finding something worse.”
If you look at politics as a kind of team sport, as you’re encouraged to in a Liberal state, then indeed you tend to follow this logic, and you vote in the end for whoever seems less offensive and less dangerous. In Liberal politics, parties and candidates are essentially like varieties of breakfast cereal, and their promises are like advertising, so if in the end they don’t keep their promises, well, it’s your fault for being taken in by the advertising. Caveat emptor. On that basis there’s a certain logic in the argument that Hilary Clinton may be a lying, corrupt psychopathic warmonger, but at least she’s a known quantity, and, if she’s elected, the world will go on much as before.
The alternative way of looking at politics is that it’s not about teams and personalities, but about outcomes. The question is not “which of these candidates frightens me least?” but rather “what is it that I want?” At its simplest, this leads to the kind of tactical voting that puts the fear of God into professional politicians. But it goes rather beyond that. If you want the system to change, then the current one has to be dismantled. There’s nothing particularly frightening or unusual about that: political systems appear and disappear all the time. Liberal indirect democracy, conducted exclusively by professionals, has had a decent run, but it’s obviously time for something else now.
So in many countries at the moment, it makes sense to vote in such a way as to undermine the existing system and preferably hasten its disappearance. Which is why Americans who want change should vote for Trump. Not because he’s a nice man (I have no idea about that) but because through him the system can be broken and re-made. Otherwise, there is no hope, except clinging even tighter to Nurse.