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Never change, Donald

  • Published at 06:01 pm November 12th, 2016
  • Last updated at 10:58 am November 13th, 2016
Never change, Donald

“Go on, what’s the worst that can happen?”

Do the dare. Try this apple. Miss that deadline. Take the red pill. Vote for Trump … oops!

A button marked “do not press” can be so hard to resist  sometimes, especially on an airplane.

This is the only excuse I am able to understand, if not to excuse. Grown-up voters cannot say they were not warned. The rollercoaster is moving now, there is no stopping Mr Trump going to Washington.

Well all I can say is, please don’t ever change POTUS-elect, sir.

Sidebar: I have to call Donald Trump that. When Robert “I can’t do that now, he’s the President” De Niro speaks about the presidency, I listen, Travis Bickle is tight with the Secret Service.

Just think on it a moment: “Does the US and the world really need Donald Trump morphing into just another Republican politician? To magically transform from dangerous maverick outsider to a glossy tame figurehead for the same bunch of wreckers tied to the same reactionary interests who did so much to stifle some of President Obama’s better promises?”

Does a party which trampled over the American constitution to stop a routine Supreme Court nomination really deserve to latch on to Trump’s coattails and grab even more power?

I suggest not, I’ve seen the Newt Gingrich show before, the Old World odour stank enough the first time, thank you very much. Let the Donald be Donald (and I’m not just saying this for the jokes).

If, as headlines promise, a Trump presidency is going to wreck the global economy, speed up climate chaos, and boost all the world’s demagogues, fascists, and xenophobes, at least it can have the decency to begin by destroying the Republican Party (either by himself adopting their policies or by him making them adopt his, I don’t mind whichever gets the job done).

As a self-proclaimed business genius, the President-Elect knows the playbook for undertaking any large  project (like, say, destroying life as we know it) suggests such goals become easier if you break them  down into manageable bite-sized steps.

“What better way to start than for some of the famed Donald Trump magic, the reverse Midas touch which saw casinos go bankrupt, (how?!) to rub off on to the good ole Republican party?”

No small group of people has done more to deserve some self-destruction than the Republican caucuses in Congress. Well, apart from the Democratic establishment obviously. But now is not the time to intrude on private grief -- Michael Moore and Bernie Sanders were right, the Clintons mistaken, that is all.

The bar of expectations has fallen so low, some people are pathetically grateful that Trump didn’t simply turn up for tea with Obama wearing a white sheet and carrying a flaming cross

Yet, I’m afraid the way things are going, as the world’s media tries to process the Trump Ascendancy, it will simply build him up more and more -- “look, Donald has managed to get through lunch without opening a concentration camp or launching a nuclear strike, isn’t he statesmanlike? Perhaps the wall was just a metaphor, what a loveable rogue.”

Some of this would happen anyway, every fresh election winner gets a media honeymoon. Only the bar of expectations has fallen so low, some people are pathetically grateful that Trump didn’t simply turn up for tea with Obama wearing a white sheet and carrying a flaming cross.

A successful business builds a good reputation by over-delivering on promises to customers. By contrast, most politicians earn their reputation by not delivering on their promises -- and, as often as not, betraying the real interests of the groups who like and/or rely on their promises the most.

Which way “Donald Trump the outsider” flows in office is being determined in the weeks ahead.

The odds are against the more moderate and mainstream of his voters. They may really be wanting him to fulfill his promise to drain the swamp of vested interests and cash that is DC. But it’s far more likely the swamp will live up to its name and bog Trump down enough to persuade him to “go native.”

Right now, swarms of political leftovers, opportunists, has-beens, never-weres, and definitely should-never-bes are gathering around Donald Trump’s team like flies to manure. Deals are being  done. It probably doesn’t really matter who gets to drink whose Kool Aid. Little good is likely to come of it all.

Now, Trump could conceivably end up popular enough to be elected for a second term, just like Ronald Reagan. In fact, the way the world is now, with Putin and Erdogan wildly popular with their electorates no matter what capricious authoritarian tendencies they display, and the far right at loose in Europe, I fear he is just following the trend.

Or, more likely perhaps, Trump will crash and burn in ways as yet unforeseen. Either way, it’s unlikely to be good news for the rest of us.

Make no mistake, not taking your eyes off “Trump the slow-motion disaster” is the right instinct. I know, I’ve seen his television show. It had a strong, if dated, format, but Trump’s ego quickly degrades it into a gaudy celebrity-only freak show,

The only intrigue left is finding out on whose terms Trump will disappoint those who need him to deliver the most. The way of elected Republicans (historically proven to disappoint, as one would expect from a talent pool so shallow it made Sarah Palin and Gary Johnson actual governors of two of those United States)?

Or the Trump way (just how is it even possible for casino owners to lose money again?)?

Given such a choice, (which I never asked for) I’ll pick the outsider.

Trump being Trump still leaves room for fantasies about bipartisanship. Why, he could even seek to prove his promise to be president for all the people, by doing the dirty on his party and backing Obama’s pick for the Supreme Court.

Impossible I know … except strange things have been happening recently, have they not?

Now, tell me what was in that red pill again?

Asif Baul is an occasional compere and stand-up comedian.

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