Undoubtedly, Trump is as surprised as anyone to have won the election. At least in candid photographs since November 8th, Trump looks more like a deer caught in the headlights than a man preparing to assume the most powerful elected office in the world. I suspect that Trump entered the presidential race not to actually win and govern, but rather to self-promote, to build his consumer brands, many of which are failing and to feed his insatiable narcissism.
Incredibly, the more outrageous his hateful, dangerous rhetoric and bullying became, the more complicit the media became, and all for free. The media could not get enough of Trump -- CNN, MSNBC, CBS, Cable News, and the rest fell over themselves to carry Trump's next ridiculous, racist, misogynist comments. That along with 24/7 primetime coverage bestowed by Murdock's FOX news, transmitted his red meat to angry, disenfranchised Americans who ate it up. Whether these paragons of the 5th estate simply sought ratings and profit, entertainment or just plain news, we will never know. But in any case a simple-minded reality TV host who reveled in bullying and firing people, just became President of the United States. We are now faced with presenting to the world the most unprepared, unqualified, overtly narcissistic, bigoted, and dangerous president as at any time in history. Never has this great nation so thoroughly embarrassed itself and risked so much of what we value as a nation.
Conventional wisdom has said that power trumps money, but as we have seen throughout the campaign, there is nothing conventional, or for that matter complicated, about Trump. It is and has always been all about Trump's ego, money and promoting his ubiquitous brand. This notoriously unscrupulous gambling casino developer proudly bragged of losing other people's money and after skimming his generous share off the top filing for bankruptcy multiple times. Leaving shareholders and investors with huge losses and small contractors broke or out of business was according to Trump, the prowess of a smart businessman. Trump properties benefit from the infrastructure -- the roads, sewers, bridges, water lines, and transportation paid for by the American taxpayers to service his hotels, towers, and casinos. Then, he brags of not contributing a penny in taxes because he is "smart," all while hiding his tax returns and net worth. Are these the qualities we want in our President? America has been "Trumped" by a con artist and we have only just begun to be the real victims, like so many of the investors in his other failed ventures.
Trump represents and exhibits the worst in human values, never mind American values. Throughout the 2016 presidential campaign Trump doubled down on his glorifying brand of opulence and greed while selling fear, intolerance, sexism, racism, and hatred in order to feed his ego, divide America, and build his brand. These are tactics you might expect in a "winner-take-all" gangster-like gambling casino developer and demagogue, not what you would seek as President of the United States. Trump's putrid values and campaign rhetoric makes America feel more like Nazi Germany as the sycophants and Brown Shirts march in "goose step" towards his inauguration, or more likely, his coronation.
Like Adolph Hitler, with his foretelling 1932 manifesto, "Mein Kampf," we must never forget Trump's brand of politics and what a huge number of angry white Americans enthusiastically support. We cannot overlook the Trump-supporting Nazis and white supremacists who hide behind their newly adopted Alt-Right personas like the Trump supporting KKK members who hide their faces behind their masks. Is it any surprise that white supremacist rallies and hate crimes are already on the rise?
We must never forget that Trump boasted about groping women's vaginas against their will and that women should be punished for making the devastating choice to have an abortion.
We must never forget that Trump said that our daughters could never be a "10 if they have small breasts."
We must never forget that Trump has made bigoted, anti-gay, anti-Semitic remarks.
We must never forget that Trump cynically mimicked a reporter with physical disabilities.
We must never forget that Trump called Mexicans criminals and rapists, that all Muslims are terrorists, and that he plans to round up and deport eleven million immigrants.
We must never forget that Trump said he knows more about military policy than "the Generals" and that he would seriously consider using nuclear weapons to resolve conflicts.
We must never forget and we must never ever be like the "Good Germans" that blindly followed Hitler to their peril and when asked why, claimed they did not know.
Honestly, how different are Trump's and Hitler's words and sentiments? More importantly, how much differently will Americans, especially white, privileged, non-gay, non-immigrant, non-Muslim, non-Jewish, non-Hispanic, non-disabled, non-rich and powerful act than Hitler's "Good Germans" did in the 1930s? Will they simply say, "We didn't know"?
Trump's rise to power is on all of us and all that matters now is how we respond. Will we be "Good Americans" and go along or will we reject Trump and fight for democracy and the soul of America values?
America has truly been "Trumped" by a morally bankrupt con artist, who probably had no interest in being President. Who in all likelihood, treasonously colluded, and may in fact even be business partners with Russian President Putin, to undermine the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton, intimidated an FBI Director, and successfully manipulated or "rigged" the US Presidential Election of 2016.
Trump is a rapist: He raped the American taxpayer, small businesses, investors, bankers, stockholders, students and, allegedly, a dozen or more women. Now he is set for his greatest rape yet, the rape of America and democratic values that countless heroes have suffered and died defending.
Will we as Americans embrace our hard-won, sacred democratic values? Or follow Trump's political brand of hate, exclusion and division marching in goose-step to the sound of jack boots down Pennsylvania Avenue.