Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Watch what you wish for....

For quite some time now I've felt Trump has been punking us. I've always believed that he entered this race as just another vanity endeavor (much like many of his endeavors), and as with The Apprentice, which caught on like wildfire and he rode until it inevitably burnt out, he's again riding this streak. 

Yes, this is not his first rodeo, he's run for president in the past, but this time around he learned a thing or two. From who? From Mitt Romney. Once a moderate Republican, who no less gave birth to Obamacare in MA, Romney learned quickly when he was running to be the Republican nominee that he had to start saying outrageous nonsense and fact-free crap to win over the kooky GOP base. And lo and behold, it worked and Romney became the chosen one. Trump likely saw that it worked for Romney and decided to do it on steroids -- and what a shocker, it's working! 

Implicit in all of this is I have to (or want to) believe that Trump is not actually as crazy as he sounds. Indeed, Trump has supported more liberal positions in the past (such as Planned Parenthood to this day). In fact, I predict in about a year or so that Trump will appear on his buddy Howard Stern's radio show and admit that he was just saying the most outrageous fact-free crap because he knew much of the GOP base would love it (and of course he's right, as we can plainly see).  This does not excuse what he's doing or saying, but it at least professes that he's been acting. In stark contrast to Cruz and Rubio who actually believe the crap they spout, they are definitely for real, and therefore they're much scarier than Trump.

So what Trump is doing might be a gag (as I'm positing), but it's a gag that's working. So what does that say about the modern day Republican? As in the the classic movie "Network," Howard Beale was mentally incapacitated, going through a crisis, and yet the people loved and adored him. I'm not suggesting Trump is Beale, disassociated from knowing what he's doing or saying, far from it, but rather that the audience, or the people (in this case Republicans) are the fuel to the fire. There would be no Trump mania at this point if not for the popularity giveth by Republican voters. 

And yet "respectable" Republicans are freaking out. Trump is throwing a monkey wrench into the plan of how it's supposed to go.

But back to Trump himself, I have to think a part of him just can't believe it, that these rubes are eating up his crap, he probably didn't think he'd go this far for so long, and now he has to keep going (like rollercoaster, strapped in, can't get off now). In large part, perhaps, it's why he keeps upping the ante with his comments, like his penis size reference and go-beyond-waterboarding stance in the last debate, like he's almost trying to get out of this. And yet the more outrageous and crazy and fact-free he gets, the more the base loves him. Recall that when Howard Beale started to convey facts, albeit dour messaging, his popularity plummeted.

Trust me, when the GOP finally does implode, they'll be writing about this moment, when a billionaire with funny hair said all kinds of irresponsible nonsense and the "adults' in the room, i.e. Republican voters, ate it up and applauded. It's why Louis CK is not too far off in making Hitler comparisons to Trump, as Hitler said all kinds of crazy hateful rhetoric and yet the German public loved it and hoisted him into power. Hitler of course was absolute evil, but he couldn't have done it without the many Germans supporting him. 

If Republicans want to get angry at Trump, just look in mirror, he wouldn't be where he is right now without the help of Mr. & Ms. Republican. You reap what you sow.

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