I took a large step back from politics for my own mental health and well-being for the last couple of years. Now that election time is upon us, I am having to pay attention, although nothing would make me happier than to look away from the train wreck before me. The GOP candidates are a bizarre lot of clowns that defy my sense of reality. I cannot believe that these are the best they could come up with and that the head clown, Donald Trump, could actually wind up leading this country.
When the first rumors of his candidacy began to trickle through my self-imposed exile from the political sphere, I welcomed the idea. “Yes!” I thought. “Bring it on. He will highlight the idiocy of the current incarnation of the Republican party.” But flirting with this type of danger may lead to a Trump presidency. The thought makes me shudder with fear, but I also feel a sense of inevitability. This is the logical direction of a country whose electorate has grown disillusioned, angry, and distrustful of government while being barraged by the increasingly extremist messages of the far right.
The Republican party has become home to a growing number of Americans who want to burn down our political and economic systems and hang our cultural elites. They’re tired of being policed by political correctness, often with the complicity of supposed conservatives. They don’t like Republican candidates who denounce them as “takers” with no future in the global economy. And they suspect, rightly, that the Chamber of Commerce will sell them down the river if it adds to the bottom line.-R. R. Reno, editor of First Things
This post could just be a rant against the state of American politics and The Donald, but I think he is just the candidate we deserve and have asked for. Ours is a prideful nation. American Exceptionalism is the law of the land: the United States, under God, is a divinely blessed nation, and that all of our endeavors are likewise inspired by a higher power. In-your-face, loud and proud worship of God and country-love it or leave it and if you’re not from here, get the hell out. We don’t want you here. Those candidates that have questioned these truths have suffered ignominious ends.
Trump has laid bare for the world to see just what values much of the United States hold dear. He is an unapologetic poster boy for all things ‘Merica. I hold no illusions that he believes most of the things he is saying. I think he is much smarter than that. Trump is giving us what we want.
A shoot-from-the-hip, belligerent show-off is the last thing we need or can afford.
So says Thomas Sowell of the Hoover institution at Harvard University. But not so long ago we had a two-term president that embodied that very description. I dare to say that Trump is a natural heir to the W.
Trump is loud, proud, boorish, vulgar, and speaks of himself in the third person. He builds monuments to his own manhood. He has no respect for tradition nor does he bow to the establishment. The Tea Party, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh and all of their like-minded brethren are outraged and disgusted, but Trump the Candidate embodies the fruits of all their labor. He is a veritable golem of their own creation: arrogance, wealth, megalomania, and certainty topped with a feathery wisp of ginger. The problem is that this is a beast that they cannot control. This is what comes as a result of their hubris.
“Our leaders are stupid, they are stupid people.”
Trump has outmaneuvered the golden boys and beaten them at their own game. It matters not whether he wins the nomination, because all of the players have been drawn into the childish sniping and name-calling that have made the debates both entertaining and oh, so depressing. Though not substantive on the issues, it’s somewhat refreshing to witness his utter disregard for politics as usual. If Cruz attacks his stance on an issue, Trump dismisses him as a Canadian. Jeb is a mama’s boy crybaby poopypants. I’ve coined a new word for getting dealt with by Trump: a TRUMPING. Those guys endured a serious trumping. I think he would like that.
Each time the establishment chastises him for dangerous and controversial rhetoric, Trump doubles down with something more outrageous and offensive, and his supporters ratchet up their enthusiasm exponentially. He has covered all the bases and hit all the right notes for those who are tired of beating around the bush. Bring on misogyny, torture, racism, greed, and xenophobia-Make America Great Again (for the select few who deserve it).
“Would I approve waterboarding? You bet your ass I would! And I would approve more than that. Don’t kid yourself, folks. It works, okay? It works. Only a stupid person would say it doesn’t work…And you know what? If it doesn’t work, they deserve it anyway, for what they’re doing. It works.”
Trump says we need to bring back waterboarding as an interrogation method, which John McCain has stated unequivocally is torture. The man who received four student deferments before finally beating the draft on a medical deferment for heel spurs dismisses his opinion and essentially called McCain a loser for being captured. What more could we expect from a man who calls a fellow candidate a “pussy?” I see similar debate tactics on Facebook daily.
“If you had more guns, you’d have more protection because the right people would have the guns.”
MORE GUNS. ‘Nuff said.
“I am not sure I have ever asked God’s forgiveness. I don’t bring God into that picture….When I go to church and when I drink my little wine and have my little cracker, I guess that is a form of forgiveness. I do that as often as I can because I feel cleansed.”
This is American Christianity distilled. We go to church now and then, failing to contemplate the deeper meaning of spirituality. Nothing says American like our failure to be introspective. Why ask for forgiveness? What’s done is done. Those blights upon our history-the genocide of Native Americans, the hundreds of years we put people in chains, the internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII, carpet bombing Cambodia, eh…this gets tiresome. Forget about it. But when it comes to legislating morality, we are practically salivating to control each other’s bodies and behavior.
“I will build a great wall – and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me – and I’ll build them very inexpensively. I will build a great, great wall on our southern border, and I will make Mexico pay for that wall. Mark my words.”
Because Great Walls are awesome and we’ll just submit the invoice in triplicate. An amusing vignette to imagine is Mr. Trump sweating away, building the wall. HAHA, hilarious.
“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending the best. They’re not sending you, they’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bring crime. They’re rapists… And some, I assume, are good people.”
He shows his magnanimous nature here. Because you can’t dismiss an ENTIRE group of people. SOME of them are ok. Who’s going to build the wall, after all? We are tolerant, we just don’t like “thugs” or “illegals.” Speaking of great walls, what does he have to say to China?
“Listen you motherfuckers, we’re going to tax you 25 percent!”
This is the blunt hammer version of foreign economic policy. There is the small detail that Trump manufactures goods in China, but he says he has to, because it’s a good business decision. China devalues its currency so much, he can’t afford NOT to send jobs overseas! That’s why WE shop at Walmart, after all. How can you not?
“We’re fighting a very politically correct war, and the other thing is with the terrorists, you have to take out their families. They, they care about their lives. Don’t kid yourself. But they say they don’t care about their lives. You have to take out their families.”
Whoa, now we’re talking about war crimes. But hey, we’re already ok with collateral damage. It’s not just the terrorists we’re bombing. It’s called acceptable loss and it’s long been supported by most of the American people in the name of fighting terrorism or protecting American interests.
My list of quotes could go on and on, but let me point out a theme here: NONE of these quotes are anything that the bulk of GOP candidates and current office-holders haven’t said or supported in deed. Trump’s delivery is brash, but it is not controversial among the rank and file Republicans. Here is the difference: Trump has not been bought and paid for. This is the distinction that appeals to some voters. He is proudly avaricious. He has a hot wife. He doesn’t apologize for who he is: a rich, confident, powerful man. Ayn Rand would be proud.