I've read lots of commentaries that claim Europeans are lamenting the state of our current election cycle, specifically focusing on Donald Trump.
He supposedly represents everything that's wrong with America. But having grown up in New York, I find that characterization much too broad. I think he's actually the apotheosis of The New York Blowhard.
I've met him sober and drunk, in cabs and in bars, in classrooms, parties, and on the subway. Everyone around him is "stoopid." He's the only smart person in existence. Everything he's done and touched has turned to gold and if it doesn't look that way, there's something wrong with you.
He's angry, he's contemptuous, he's a stone braggart, and he loves to mock and belittle people.
Watching Trump tonight in last night's Dirty Dozen Minus One Debate, I felt bombarded by voices from my New York past. His mantras were "successful," "great," and "tremendous"--and he swore he wasn't bragging. He also took any cheap shot he could. He also hogged the stage because New York Blowhards know more than anyone and they're like black holes: everything ends up being about them. As The New York Times reported:
Donald J. Trump had more speaking time than any other candidate. Efforts by the moderators to encourage the candidates to engage each other contributed to the imbalance; 80 percent of their questions mentioned the views of another candidate and nearly a third of questions mentioned Mr. Trump, giving him multiple opportunities for rebuttal.
I couldn't take too much of him, but before I was done, I flashed on Conan's definition of happiness: "To crush your enemies, to see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women." Sounds tremendously Trumpy to me.
Lev Raphael is the author of 25 books in many genres which you can find on Amazon.