It’s time to add my voice to the never-ending media firestorm encircling our Commander in Chief. The man’s so controversial, I should’ve talked about him before, but I must’ve gotten sidetracked by the horrors of the Bowling Green Massacre.
So what do I think of him?
In short, I think he’s a doofus.
The long version: There’s never been a more ineffective president. His ineptitude staggers. He doesn’t know how to do anything. It’s baffling to watch him in action – or inaction, I should say. He flounders around helplessly, occasionally exploding at someone on Twitter in a vain effort to keep himself relevant.
But he isn’t relevant. The world figured out pretty quickly he was a blowhard with no expertise in any political area besides demagoguery, and has moved along without him. He’ll be watched closely by his foes (the number of which grows by the second) in case he somehow does something world-threatening, but his grandiose promises and juvenile ranting have long ago lost any power to effect legislative action.
Why should anyone take him seriously? Trump will say X is good on Monday, then on Wednesday he’ll say X is bad, very bad. How can anyone plan around this? How can anyone craft policy? How can other countries deal with us, when they don’t know which direction the wind is blowing? Trump’s emotions flit from one end of the spectrum to the other, like an angst-ridden teenager’s.
But unlike an angst-ridden teenager, who is mostly a problem to his parents and schoolteachers, Trump is POTUS. The entire country – nay, the world – has to cope with his neuroses and daily outbursts.
If Trump tried to live up to the office, at least a little, people would cut him some slack. But he’ll remain in his current incarnation – forever. He doesn’t want to learn about anything. He doesn’t want to listen to disagreement. He doesn’t want to swallow his galaxy-sized pride and do something out of duty.
He doesn’t want to do anything but what he, Donald Trump, wants to do.
That’s not a person who’s good presidential material.
The Trump sycophants will say, “He’s rich, so that means he is capable! #MAGA!”
While it is known that Trump has accumulated some amount of money, his presidency has made it very clear that successful businessmen aren’t demi-gods. Our fetish for all things business in America blinds us to an obvious fact: politics is a different game entirely.
Trump can’t build consensus. He can’t do the inevitable horse-trading that occurs when any bill is moving through Congress. He can’t inspire. He can’t bypass or counteract criticism. He can’t handle foreign leaders effectively.
His only mode is, “I’m Donald Trump, and I’m gonna steamroll over everyone until I get my way!!!!”
It seems to have worked, for the most part, in Trump Tower – but it won’t work in the White House. A wiser person would’ve figured this out by now, but “wisdom” and “Donald Trump” don’t exactly fit hand-in-glove.
How did we get here? Much discussion has been had about this. People are pissed off: the working class is tired of being ignored by elites sitting smugly in their coastal ivory towers. They’re tired of an immigration policy that’s basically, “Well, they’re here already, so they should stay.” And they’re really tired of candidates like Hillary Clinton, people who no one likes and who cannot articulate policies that appeal to a large swatch of the electorate.
I could go on, but I’ll move on to a question that, in my opinion, is far more thought-provoking: What happens next?
If Trump can persevere through his first term – and there are many who believe he’ll either resign or be impeached – he will, of course, go up against the next hopeful Democratic messiah, and potentially at least one third-party candidate.
Who will this Democratic candidate be? That vexes me, reader – it vexes me mightily. Because I fear the Dems – and the media and political elite in general – haven’t learned their lesson.
There’s been much talk about a “reassessment” in the wake of Trump’s victory. The Dems must regain the trust of the white working class, and the elites must stop acting insufferable. But, for all the talk, I don’t think things have changed. The Dems will continue to be clueless, and the elites will continue to live in their technocratic bubble.
Sure, the messaging will change – that’s a given. But messaging needs to be backed up by policy achievements to be effective. Trump’s “Make America Great Again” slogan was brilliant, but he’s been unable to live up to its enticing promise – much like Obama’s “CHANGE” fizzled after he meandered along on a moderate course for most of his presidency.
I fear the Democrats (or any independent candidates) will have a pitch-perfect message, tuned to the white working class, but that they’ll have no intention of actually doing anything related to that message. If Trump is beaten, the winners will crow, and declare that “extremism and bigotry have been vanquished, and comity and decorum is restored” – then do nothing for four years, leading to the rise of another Trump-esque candidate.
Like Trump, the Dems lack wisdom. They’ve limped along for years, afraid to carve out their own identity. Their (in)actions have only driven people away from them in droves, either to their opposition or to a political wilderness, where people wait for them to get their act together. While I’m a liberal, there is no place for me in the modern Democratic party. I see nothing but a self-satisfied, wishy-washy attitude, and a too-high regard for Social Justice Warriors, along with (paradoxically) the military-industrial complex and Wall Street.
Saying, “We’re better than the Republicans, so you have to vote for us!” is not a viable long-term strategy.
If the Democrats get themselves together, and a candidate comes along who doesn’t spew out carefully-calibrated feel-good tripe…and who ignores the Social Justice Warriors and their victimization competition…and who does outline policies that help a majority of the populace…and who then enacts those policies…well, then we have no reason to fear Trump 2.0
But, being the cynic I am, I don’t see it happening. Trump will be so weakened, and his opposition so ravenous, that he’ll lose in 2020. The new “progressive” president won’t do anything worthwhile, and so we’ll be seeing a rerun of this whole loony show in 2024. Rinse and repeat indefinitely into the future.
I hope I’m wrong. I hope we’ll get a president (even a Republican!) who isn’t a narcissistic ignoramus, and who actually does something worthwhile. But between the foolish political class, the right-wingers, the Social Justice Warriors, the libertarians, the flat-earthers, the Holocaust-deniers, and the fifth-wave (is that the right number?) feminists, you can be sure things’ll get fucked up somehow.
Agree? Disagree? Agree to disagree? Or are you simply too jaded to care anymore? Let me know in the comments.