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March 17, 2016

Handwriting on the Wall

Patricia A. Kelly

It may be over. Yes, we’ll continue to have primaries, but it will be a surprise if Ted Cruz, John Kasich or Bernie Sanders wins their party’s presidential nomination.


A brokered convention remains a faint Republican hope, among those who dislike Mr. Trump. If it does happen, it could well backfire and even destroy the Republican Party.


In case you’re wondering, destroying the Republican Party would be a bad thing because it would throw off the political balance of leadership in our country and possibly speed the march to socialism, which is now underway.


Unfortunately, the conservative wing of the party is willing to risk that. Wisconsin’s Paul Ryan, Speaker of The House of Representatives, just made a good move in not “shoving the budget down their throats.” Let them demonstrate what they can do to make something happen, rather than just refusing things.


Donald Trump is a scary guy. He’s a big narcissist, and his inflated view of himself is growing as he is validated by the electorate. Now he’s convinced he’s the cause of a national movement and is looking for sworn allegiance from supporters.


His rise is actually reminiscent of Adolph Hitler’s, but not in the way you might think, as Mr. Trump, personality disorder notwithstanding, is way more successful and not half as crazy as Hitler. He might even rise to the occasion and function fairly well as president.


The similarity between Mr. Trump and Hitler lies in the circumstances of their rise. Here in the U.S. people have been angry for years. At this point, many are completely enraged at how our political system and our federal government are working. They feel betrayed. The appearance of Donald Trump, unique in the circumstance of being the only person out there with complete financial independence, appears to them to be the answer. What he says, and even his qualifications are meaningless, in the face of his money, and his willingness to take on “the Man.”


He would not be winning like this if he were only wealthy.


You might rightly say Republicans precipitated this event by failing to capitalize on their congressional majority and to fulfill their promises. That mistake might have created the circumstance in which Mr. Trump could rise to the top.


As for Hitler, he also benefited from a mistake, and from a unique set of circumstances. Germany was at its’ lowest point, humiliated after World War I, crippled by reparations, and development restrictions imposed by the treaty that ended the war. Imposing such extreme sanctions was the mistake that left Germany completely humiliated and doomed never to rise again to financial prosperity, and thus ripe for the arrival of Hitler.


Hitler, at exactly that moment, showed up and promised to make Germany great again. People didn’t have to hear the crazy details to follow him. They were desperate….


…as are many Americans now.


Mr. Trump’s followers don’t care that he’s saying outrageous things, withholding press credentials from journalists he doesn’t like, making personal attacks on – and fun of – so many people, and wavering like the wind in his views and plans. They don’t like these things, but they are beyond committed. Some even say they would leave the Republican Party to follow Mr. Trump, should he do so himself.


If Trump wins the Republican nomination, the party may have little choice but to give him at least tacit support, leading to a very, very ugly race between him and Hillary Clinton.


The big question in that race will be how much dirt Mr. Trump can dig up on Mrs. Clinton. That’s it. She’s vulnerable. There’s a lot of potential dirt, as she has created some real messes in the past, and lied or used the “Clinton Method” of delaying answers to questions for so long that people either fell asleep or began blaming the questioners.


There may not be much dirt out there to find on Mr. Trump unless it’s in his tax returns. He is obviously impulsive, quixotic, rude, a bully, a know-it-all, a philanderer, and lacking in foreign policy knowledge. He openly admits to using our laws in whatever way necessary to make money. He says that will make him a better president – he’ll know which laws should be changed.


He may win. The top of his head may not blow off from too much self-adulation, and he may function as president. Wonder what the odds are in Vegas.



*For more on historical coincidence, I recommend reading the book “Outliers” by Malcolm Gladwell.


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