Vengeance Is Mine – Donald Trump
Donald Trump has met the enemy and it is himself.
There is nary a soul in this world who could do more damage to Trump’s presidential campaign than he has. Every now and then, his tamers calm him down, he coddles the teleprompter and gets into real issues. But then someone criticizes him, his ego screeches and he trots out this glary-eyed weirdo beast from inside. It’s as if he has a psychological disorder. Let’s call it vilification dementia syndrome.
What was the first thing he did after he was officially nominated for president at the Republican National Convention? He skipped a rally and held a press conference at which he blasted “lying” Ted Cruz, who had not endorsed him in a convention speech. As much as announcing he did not deserve the nomination, Trump repeated an inane, mean-spirited accusation that the senator’s father may have had some connection with the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
What was the first thing he did after his rival Hillary Clinton was nominated for president at the Democratic National Convention? Because they criticized him in a speech during the proceedings, he spent days besmirching a Muslim couple whose son had died in combat as a U.S. soldier. What was the point other than to project himself as someone who might be a callous disgrace in the White House?
What was the first thing he did after his first debate with Clinton? He neglected important issues where she was awry to dwell on the questionable behavior of a former Miss Universe he allegedly called “Miss Piggy.” Clinton’s million-dollar ads could not have better made the case that he cares more about his thin skin being pierced than he does about addressing major afflictions being endured by supporters.
To be sure, there have been attacks on him that are not the least bit fair — we are seeing some this very minute. And despite his voluminous actual offenses, critics keep inventing imaginary ones, reshuffling reality to make it conform with imagined scandals. They call it politics, but it is more than that: Academics, journalists and others have apparently come to find few means unjustified in a time when the end is saving the nation from a triumphant Trump.
But even when in the right, Trump has better things to do than self-destructively seek petty revenge. He needs to hit back with weighty pronouncements on meaningful issues. He can leave it to aides to try to set the record straight on legends he has not yet lived up to. The problem is that it is late in the game and this particular fault fits snugly with all the others, such as unbelievable ignorance on issues, vulgarity and a stumble-tongue that can’t figure out complete sentences. Trump is also likely to remain Trump no matter what.
The problem is that we also have egregious excess on the other side of the coin. Clinton worships the state. She wants to make it bigger and more powerful, which is to say we the people will be smaller and have less say. Her endless regulatory ambitions include tinkering with free speech, and she wants to spend us into never-never land while restricting chances of economic growth. We’ve seen her judgment on foreign affairs, which is to say, take a deep breath. There is not much to say about her ethics because her ethics are nearly impossible to find.
It was the late, lamented Pogo who said in comic strips, “We have met the enemy and he is us,” the satirical point obviously being that people too often defeat their own self-interests. We the people may have done that in choosing these two candidates, and Trump, by turning on himself, has been cheating us out of an alternative to Clinton. To check her if she is elected, we desperately need a Republican House and Senate.