Presidential Candidate Donald Trump speaks to supporters during a rally, Tuesday, June 16, 2015, in Des Moines, Iowa.
The fairy tale is a familiar one. A little ogre barrels onto the scene with a promise of spinning gold for a price; carrying off one's first born child (let's say future) of the one who agrees to the terms. The only loophole? State the ogre's true name (a well guarded secret) and he will vanish forever, his power dispelled.
Heady with desire one runs towards the gold and a moment's satisfaction, and only then comes the gut wrenching realization that you've traded away your future to a monster. How to undo the agreement? Discover the creature's name.
Trump is a unique problem for the GOP. Born into prosperity, he continued the successful family real estate business to great success. An outspoken showman and hard line Republican conservative, he rode the roller coaster of enterprise and has had his Trump Organization bankrupt in 1991 and recovered today to the reported tune of $4 billion dollars. His deep pockets have made him a lifetime target of many GOP political hopefuls who need endless cash to support their electioneering. "I've written checks for most people here," he said at the most recent GOP debate. "When they ask, I give," he said righteously, a tell, as in poker, of the rich man upset he's getting mistreated because he paid his way in.
The self funded candidate's success has blown everyone's expectations and a few mind's on the Republican side. That he's doing better than any of the legitimate candidates had even Roger Ailes concerned, thus the "hit" he had Megan Kelly put on Trump with her head shot questions designed to take him out of the running during the Fox broadcast GOP debate.
But the attempted rub out went terribly wrong. Trump's polling numbers went up, and the social media backlash to his barking complaints and his threatened Fox boycott (he appeared on four other networks the morning after and not Fox) caused Ailes to break down and call Trump to promise him he'd be treated fairly from now on.
As he glad handed at the Iowa Fair this week, he's the GOP front runner. So the ogre playbook is winning. What should he do now? The GOP is panicking that he'll go big, clearly. Trump's a gambler, a professional entrepreneur, fast talking, confidence building, impossibly convinced of his genius. And Trump is good enough to know when you need to close a sale with attitude, go big.
Trump's biggest description of himself is that he's "a winner who doesn't like losers." He said John McCain wasn't a war hero, but only one because he was captured. He states that he himself doesn't have a weakness. "I don't' know how that would pertain to me," he answered when asked. His self confidence is so ludicrously strong, there' s no room for reality. When asked how he'd get Mexico to pay for building an enormous southern wall to keep out immigrants -- of one of his central ideas -- he answered, "You have to let me handle that, okay?" to Bill O'Reilly who disagreed with him.
Perhaps he's succeeding because there's been a breakdown in our culture of educated, well constructed opinions and responses in the media, so people are more accepting of a vague campaign platform with no substance. We are barraged daily with a deluge of idiotic, bullying, small-minded, selfish, uninformed statements on the internet, ubiquitous, never fact checked and instant, from endless bloggers and trolls on the world wide web.
Add into that the over-the-top, politically correct internet environment, where any mis-step is publicly shamed by an avalanche of righteous social messaging that has destroyed people and careers like public stoning used to do in barbaric times, and the big bullying unrepentant voice like Trump is held in awe. He truly doesn't care about backlash because he'll go to the mat defending his mis-statements. Winners can't lose, it's not in the definition.
The question is, is this the energy of a leader, or a narcissist's wet dream spun by a selfish promoter who was born with a silver spoon in his tea set, and never had to give a concern about anyone else except himself?
A look at The Donald's platform; charge Mexico for a new southern wall, lower taxes but increase the economic war chest by increasing tariff's on Mexico and China -- a trade war, mass deportations of illegals aliens by up to 11 million (on Meet the Press Sunday he said:""We're going to keep the families together...but they have to go," and stop Isis by invading where they are and taking all the oil out of the ground so they have no value (except no oil companies are lining up to work in a war zone). It all has many experts saying -- not only is there little substance to add up, "...there's just no math." says Michael tanner of The Libertarian Cato Institute.
The ogre who's spinning golden promises for a better America doesn't have exact answers for his ideas. But the bullies rarely do. They blame the state, blame the immigrants, blame the women, blame the news anchors, blame whomever's in your face. Promise a bright future with no details and say you only like winners, not losers. We've seen it and heard it before. The powerless are attracted to power. And the powerful rise up on the backs of the economically weary, the disenfranchised, the bitter and the broken happy to blame anyone for their problems, a quick fix for their suffering.
Time to say the ogre's name. The Dictator.
The unapologetic vindictive hater who supports those that like him and set out to destroy those who oppose him. Today social media, tomorrow police actions. When you categorize all those who don't support you as 'losers' you're giving yourself a lot of play. As George Will recently said;"..Do we really want to give nuclear weapons to Donald Trump?"
Being loud and not caring are fine attributes for the players in the center ring of a small town circus. That's how you get to be seen. A president has to govern over an entire country and all the "winners" and "losers" everywhere in all stages of their lives. Most probably Trump never thought he'd get this far. That's why the rest of his ideas are coming 'later'.
Trumplestilskin's platform is deceptive at best. But should he win we could have a new motto on the Statue of Liberty: "Give me your tired, your hungry, your poor -- losers! And divert them to Mexico, Latin America and Africa. Only millionaires here! The winners!"
PHOTO CREDIT: Associated Press/Charlie Neibergall