Would Trump Dump Democracy?

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dump trump dump democracy

Would Trump Dump Democracy?

SOME in the GOP wish they could dump Trump, but do millions of Americans wish to see Trump dump democracy?

Trump’s most fervent followers want Donald John Trump to be the 45th President of the United States, whatever it takes to get the job done, democracy be damned. This scares me because a Trump victory in the electoral college looks increasingly difficult or doubtful but not downright impossible. With less than two weeks to go before  Election Day, The Donald is shouting about “conspiracy” and a “rigged” election.

Despite ample researched evidence that widespread vote tampering is not possible and is not happening, depute ample researched evidence that individual voter fraud is relatively rare, despite facts and logic, a Reuters poll show half of the electorate believes Trump about the election system begin rigged, The belief casts doubt on the entire democratic process, from local town councils to national government.

In a brazen act of hypocrisy and chutzpah, like a child having a temper tantrum, “man-baby” Trump refuses to accept the voting results will be valid “unless I win!” He plays the blame game to deny how he shot himself in the foot with his sexist, racist, and xenophobic outbursts.

Instead of thinking matters through, Trump’s most ardent True-Believer followers parrot his words, and some threaten to act on them by launching a violent revolution if he loses.

Why would Trump do and say such things, and why is all this surreal absurdity so dangerous for America and the world?

dump trump or dump democracy

Donald Trump points at others for his problems instead of looking within himself.

Ample interviews with the  people close to Trump in youth and since clearly document that the man is incapable of admitting fault or defeat. When his own mistakes cause a catastrophes Trump typically lies to himself to and others to make himself look like a winner. For him, winning is everything, and he must win at any cost, even to himself.

Some public examples include the tabloid feeding frenzy in 1990 when he was caught in Aspen cheating on his wife Ivana with younger Marla Maples, or his business empire collapsing a few years later because he put ego gratification above sensibly accounting for his 4 billion in debts.

The most recently example of Trump refusing to take responsibility for his mistakes came with release of a 2005 Access Hollywood recording in which he bragged about being able to kiss and grope any woman he wants because he’s a star, After he denied in the second debate that he’s ever actually assaulted any women, 11 women braved embarrassment by coming forward with corroborated stories to prove Trump is a liar.

The same neurotic pattern of refusing to admit mistakes is repeating itself in the final days of the campaign as his defeat looks inevitable. Trump is blaming the system instead of himself, and it looks like he may get away with it. The results may be disastrous.

Please see this situation in context: Trump’a success as a television celebrity and presidential candidate flows from feeding the emotional needs of his followers. His core supporters, according to news reports (including Fox News), are more than 60 percent white men with no college. Most feel anger at being left behind economically and culturally by America and the vast majority of women, those uppity “nasty” women.

As for the women supporting misogynist Don Trump. I wonder how many feel drawn to any white knight alpha-male hero promising to save them from themselves, or at least from thinking for themselves..

Trump plays to his core base, those who most relate to the sexism, racism, bigotry, and bullying exemplified by the showman nominee. His base thrills and cheers at his outrageous impulsive outbursts. Trump seems unconcerned that his personal life story along with his recent words and his deeds alienate thinking people outside his base, including those still deciding how to vote.

Trump keeps ignoring the advice of his running mate, his campaign manager, his advisors, Republican party officials and others who keep telling the nominee to control himself and stick to the talking points. Trump seems to lack the self discipline. From what I see, he’s driven by an inflated sense of entitlement and self importance. He’s thinking, I believe, that he can prey on the electorate the same way as he preys on women.

Win or lose, Trump is a two-edged sword that could slice America apart.

If Trump loses on Election Day, especially if he disputes the outcome and refutes a los resulting from any recount, I fear some of his die-hard followers may take matters into their own hands.

In mid-October, two Trump supporters told The Boston Globe that if Hillary Clinton wins in November, due to Trump’s unproven charges of a rigged election, her victory will be illegitimate. If trump loses, they warn, there may be a coup, an armed “rebellion” rife with assassinations and “blood in the streets.”  In late October, a Florida supporter told CNN, “We’ll try the ballot box this time. Next time it will be the bullet box.”

Trump himself seems to condone the violence. He earlier said the Secret Service agents protecting Hillary Clinton should be disarmed, and then we can “see what happens to her.” He warned that the “Second Amendment people” may want to take matters into their own hands if she wins, before she appoints any Supreme Court justices who favor gun control. (I call that an incitement to commit murder.)

On the other hand, if Trump somehow does become president, I worry that his personality may drive him to become a dictator — if we let him.

Trump  is used to being an old fashioned authoritarian boss, like his father. Having never known poverty or anything less than a life of privilege, Trump is used to being the lord of the manor, the king of the realm. He acts like his whims are the law, or they should be. What he says goes, and Anyone who gainsays him is an evildoer. “You’re fired!”

I am mindful that after his own father, Trump’s main mentor in life was Roy Cohn, who decades earlier had pulled the strings of Sen. Joseph McCarthy, who gave his name to one of America’s darkest movements, McCarthyism. Cohn for years taught young Trump to use attack-dog tactics in defending himself. Other Cohn devotees apparently are among Trump’s advisors today.

Going further, if Trump somehow become president, I fear his ascension may give rise to relentless opponents. If Trump and his government then bullies critics and all those deemed “the other” (like immigrants, women, LGBTIQ, people of color, the disabled), I predict that Americans in time will get fed up with his despotic Putin-style habits. People will grow upset at Trump’s ignorance of democratic principles and his disdain for anyone not feeding his vanity or his need for power.

As social unrest and public dissent grows, ego-driven Trump could conceivably find reasons to declare a state of national emergency and invent a trumped-up excuse for martial law. This is possible under the Patriot Acts, as I understand them.

If you think America could never turn totalitarian, I refer you to the classic satiric novel by Sinclair Lewis, It Can’t Happen Here. In the story, a populist (rather like Trump) wins the 1936 presidential election by feeding public fears, touting impossible economic reforms, and promising a patriotic return to national greatness. Once elected, the man step-by-step becomes a dictator,  such as turning stadiums into internment camps,

Lewis modeled his character on populist Senator Huey Long of Lousians and the American Silver Shirt movement of the 1930, that ran its nationalist leader for president in 1936. Lewis was thinking about the way Hitler was elected in Germany and became an absolute dictator by 1933 through blaming the Jews and others for the woes of the nation.

If you think modern America could never turn totalitarian, I refer you to the 2016 New York Magazine cover story, “America Has Never Been So Ripe for Tyranny.” Author Andrew Sullivan identifies the American trends that scare him the most about Donald Trump’s authoritarian tendencies.

Consequently, I believe it’s important that citizens have have enough cultural literacy to see a despotic populist like Trump in historic context.

Populist leaders aim to make us afraid and keep us afraid as a means of gaining and keeping power. This is why Trump claims that conditions in America are much worse than the facts show. Journalist H.L. Mencken explained the strategy. “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed and hence, clamorous to be led to safety — by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”

I suspect the Republican nominee for president sees himself is on a despotic trajectory. Given Trump’s evident personality and temperament, I suspect he really can’t help himself, not when the stakes are so great for his fragile ego. He’s trapped in the old outmoded myth of competitive and aggressive alpha male rule — the same despotic thinking that got our world into trouble in the first place.

When we come down to the root issue, Donald Trump fails to grasp that narcissism is not a valid form of government.

 

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Judah Freed

Judah Freed is the author of Global Sense and the publisher at Hoku House.

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