Donald Trump kicked ass last night in Super Tuesday2 – easily smashing everyone else – and gaining the very real likelihood that he’ll clinch the majority of delegates. Before everyone could scoop their jaws off the ground, he drops this gem during an interview with CNN:
“I think you’d have riots. I think you’d have riots,” Trump said Wednesday on CNN’s “New Day.” “I’m representing a tremendous many, many millions of people.”
In effect, he gave the GOP a big fat finger and told them to suck it up. He’s coming in on a tidal wave of hate and every GOP leader and candidate that gets in his way is going to feel the pain.
Okay… so that’s not an outright threat, but it’s a strong image that most reasonable people want to avoid. But here’s the thing. The GOP/Tea Party created this monster – they can f’n clean it up. If Trump burns down the GOP, it’s their own damned fault. We need a two-party system – America has done great things with that setup, but maybe Trump is right. Maybe it’s time to kill the party so that something better will come along.
What’s not to get here? The preamble of the Declaration of Independence is pretty clear about this one point:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
What it means is that the founders of the United States of America believed that ALL people must have access to the things that give life, liberty, and happiness – regardless of class, economic situation, religion, race, or creed. Bonum commune communitatis. And yet, we support a system that restricts all that is good to the limited few who can afford it.
A shocking number of American voters are ready to install a man for President who is the epitome of wanton corporate greed. I’m not a poor person myself. I still collect royalties from various projects I have had the pleasure to produce. And I still work. I haven’t taken a penny of unemployment benefits in more than 40 years. I have never used food stamps, never had the need for Medicare, and at my age, I’m not even taking Social Security benefits – because I don’t need them. Yet, when I strike out in support of Bernie Sanders (for instance) the first image that some conservatives think is that I’m a taker. To be honest, I think most of these supporters depend on the very same benefits they complain about.
When I use the word “Socialism” to describe the famous preamble, I feel like the lone surviving mole in a game of Whack-a-Mole. The very same people who malign me as a “taker” are ready to line up to call me lots of other funny little names. First off, most of them don’t even realize what they’re saying – much less understand what the word CAN mean. The good folks at People’s World have posted what I believe is one of the better, wider responses to the question: What is Socialism? But it is important to note – this country has implemented many socialistic concepts for the greater good. My father was like a lot of these guys who tote guns and sing praises of the Grand Old Party. He was also a proud, card-carrying member of the Steamfitters Union Local 638. Funny how things change, but don’t.
I hope, somehow, the majority of American voters will realize that the common good means freedom. I hope that someday we realize that “Life Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” is more than a patriotic slogan. It’s a promise.
Amazing isn’t it? The more audacious he is the more ardent his followers become. I know at least one – a woman that I know through a friend of mine. Sez she: “Trump is the best thing to happen to America in a long time.” Actually, forever. We’ve never had fascist that has resonated so well with the radical right of this country. We’ve never seen a Donald Trump because we’ve never before tolerated one to get this far. He is categorically the closest thing to a Benito Mussolini type fascist we’ve ever seen.
From a WaPo op/ed penned by Dana Milbank (Dec 8):
Trump’s chin-out toughness, sweeping right-hand gestures and talk of his “huge” successes and his “stupid” opponents all evoke the Italian dictator’s style. Monday’s breathtaking announcement that he would block all Muslims from entering the United States has many pointing out the obvious fascist overtones.
Milbank isn’t alone in his worry. Ted Koppel took the unusual approach to appear on Fox News the other day with this barb:
Well… the fact of the matter is that he and Benito Mussolini have this sort of arrogant approach in which they say very little in terms of substance, but the manner in which they say it gets the crowds excited.
Back to the woman who thinks that Trump is god’s gift. I pointed out his well-known racist remarks and asked her if that was a reason to worry. “No,” sez she. “He’s no more a racist than anyone else.” HUH? Then I ran across an op/ed by Josh Marshall on the Talking Points website.
I continue to believe that Trump’s embrace of racism, anti-Mexican immigrant bigotry and Islamophobia is largely opportunistic. My only hesitation in calling it cynical is that I think Trump may be the type who, once he finds something convenient to say, then starts to believe it.
Opportunistic racism. I was gobsmacked. That’s like saying you’ll sell your soul for a beer. Hate for fiat however misdirected, may seem logical for one driven for power. Machiavelli (another Italian) pointed this out in his treatise The Prince:
Men judge generally more by the eye than by the hand, for everyone can see and few can feel. Every one sees what you appear to be, few really know what you are.
So, in other words, we can say anything to get ahead, so long as the illusion of the eye is maintained. Yep. Sounds about right. And it comports well with the one from Mussolini himself:
You must always be doing things and obviously succeeding. The hard part is to keep people always at the window because of the spectacle you put on for them. And you must do this for years.
Il Duce Donald.