It’s a good thing we have photographic evidence of Bill Clinton and Donald Trump being in the same room at the same time.
Otherwise you could really convince me that after a blowout electoral loss on Nov. 8, “Trump” will walk onstage and pull off a rubber Scooby-Doo-type mask to reveal that it was really Bill Clinton all along, acting like the dumbest candidate in the world, just to guarantee that Hillary Clinton got into the White House.
The real Donald Trump is somewhere tied up in a Brooklyn, N.Y., basement, guarded 24-7 by Clinton surrogates, wondering why he’s allowed food and drink but no access to Twitter.
That’s more believable than the idea that out of all of their options, Republicans nominated a Gold Star-family-attacking, non-party-endorsing, baby-kicker-outer to face off against an ethically challenged policy wonk who barely connects to her own party’s base.
Source: Jason Johnson | The Root
In the early days of Donald Trump’s candidacy, I never thought he would get the Republican nomination. I thought he would soon do or say something so offensive and outrageous that his followers would turn against him.
I’m still waiting for that to happen.
The daily news cycle seems to go like this.
- Donald Trump says some shocking and offensive thing.
- Washington press corps and respectable politicians denounce Trump for shocking and offensive thing.
- Donald Trump refuses to back down from shocking and offensive thing.
- Next day: Donald Trump says or does another shocking and offensive thing.
What Trump manages to do with all this is to keep public attention focused on himself. He says so many shocking and offensive things that it is hard for the ordinary busy person, who has a job and family responsibilities, to keep them straight. What remains is an impression of Trump as a strong person who doesn’t back down.
Hard-core of Trump supporters believe anything and everything he says, including that President Obama is a secret Kenyan-born Muslim socialist and that Muslim sharia law is a real and present danger to the USA. There is no way to convince them of anything different because they are not interested in separating truth from falsehood, and have no criteria for doing so.
Their support is what Nassim Nicholas Taleb calls anti-fragile. No matter what Trump’s opponents do or don’t do, their faith in him grows stronger.
Another group supports Trump not on his merits, but because they think anything is better than the status quo. The more he outrages established politicians and journalists, the better they like it. The size of this group is a measure of the failure of American government during the past 15 or so years.
By the standards of the past, Trump would have been a fringe candidate, as would Bernie Sanders. Their strong showings are due less to their own qualities than to the discontent of the American public. I don’t think Trump supporters’ will cease to be angry at the status quo because Trump makes disrespectful remarks about a Muslim Gold Star mother.
When George Wallace ran for President in 1968, his campaign slogan was, “Send them a message.” The message was that plain American working people were taking second place to what he called “the exotics.”
I think that’s what a lot of Trump voters are trying to do—send the powers that be a message about what globalization, immigration and crony capitalism are doing to their lives.
As the November election drew near, a lot of Wallace supporters began to stop and think about whether this was someone they wanted in the White House. I believe—or at least hope—this will be true of Trump supporters as well.
I am not a supporter of Hillary Clinton, but in public she seems much more presidential than Donald Trump does. She manifests more self-discipline, better judgment and greater understanding of issues than he does.
I remember in 2008, when President George W. Bush summoned Barack Obama and John McCain to Washington to discuss the economic crisis. In their meetings, Obama, not Bush, took charge. He asked the key questions, defined the alternatives and, without being disrespectful, acted as if he were already President-elect.
As it turned out, Obama, despite his eloquent and wise speeches and his deliberative decision-making process, made decisions that were just as bad as George W. Bush’s. And I fear Clinton will be no better. But at least she will not be a national embarrassment.
Clinton has a history of standing up to pressure. Trump doesn’t seem to be able to handle the ordinary give and take of a Presidential campaign. I still think that at some point he will break down. I hope it is before November 8 rather than after.
Worst Behavior: How Donald Trump’s Self-Inflicted Wounds Let Hillary Clinton Off the Hook by Jason Johnson for The Root.