ALAS, SHRUGGED

Political elections are a good deal like marriages–there’s no accounting for anyone’s taste. –Will Rogers

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In a March 2 Cincinnati newspaper article (titled ROAD TRIPPIN’ TO COLUMBUS FOR TRUMP), a reporter writes of accompanying four Trump backers on a drive to Columbus (Ohio) for a DONALD TRUMP FOR PRESIDENT rally: “They’re serious about their support for Trump. They shrug off his bombastic speech.”

Alas, what they also “shrug off” is any suggestion that Trump is a big-talking combination of P.T. Barnum, bully, and simplistic-solutions artist who can order away the causes of Americans’ discontent as easily as he fires ‘losers’. Shrug–the perfect word to describe the casualness with which Trump supporters dismiss his “bombastic speech.” Bombastic? More like conveniently ignorant (Trump: “I don’t know anything about [white supremacist] David Duke”), or demeaning (“Would anyone vote for that [Carly Fiorina’s] face?”), or pathetic (“He [John McCain] is not a war hero”), or despicable (mocking a reporter, named Serge Kovaleski, who has a disability). Etc. Etc. Etc. But what do his followers care, because they think he “tells it like it is.”

Here’s how columnist Kathleen Parker saw it in a recent piece titled “The GOP may get what it deserves”: “The challenge for those of us in the observation business [lest you forget, this blog is called THE OBSERVATION POST] is to illuminate what’s plainly obvious without offending those who prefer not to see. But there’s no winning once passions are engaged, and hating the messenger [aka blaming the media] is a time-honored tradition.” Such a business.

One would expect sensible people to realize that Trump is no cure for the uncompromising dogmatism that plagues our politics. So, how to account for the gullibility (or “taste,” as Will Rogers put it) of those who’ve been seduced by their beloved’s dubious charms. Perhaps some see that rivals like Ted Cruz would only deepen the dogmatic ditch that divides us. But that gives them credit for more sophistication than is their due, in my estimation. Most of them simply don’t see Trump for the humbug he is, and dogmatism is a fancy word that doesn’t pay their bills or kick butt.

But Mitt Romney knows better:

Just between us, I find myself hoping that Trump wins the GOP nomination, in the belief (promulgated by Romney and other Republican leaders) that he would lose big to Hillary….and take down with him enough right wing candidates to lose control of the Senate (and hopefully loosen political and tribalistic gridlock in the process). Not that I’m a huge fan of Hillary, but at worst, she is the lesser of two evils, and in any case, more mature, warts and all. Or I may vote for Rabbit Hash Mayor/Presidential candidate Lucy Lou, who may be a dog, but not a dog who tears people apart. Nor, oddly enough, is she the least bit(e) dogmatic.

What is so hard about understanding that working together is the most reasonable and timely way to get things done in a democracy? Hillary’s jingoistic rejoinder to Trump’s jingoistic ‘Make America great again’ campaign slogan is, at least, a starting point: “America never stopped being great. We have to make America whole.” Or at least as whole as is relatively possible in a country divided against itself.

 

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17 comments on “ALAS, SHRUGGED

  1. carmen says:

    We shake our heads in disbelief every time we see another tRumpinanigan on the news – but then again, we’ve been incredulous for awhile now.
    Great post, mistermuse! It’s cold here in the frozen north but the sap is running!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. mistermuse says:

    There has been so much said and written of Trump that I was concerned this post would seem like overkill, but Trump is far from dead in the GOP horse race, so, as long as “the sap is running,” I decided to throw in my two cents worth.

    Like

  3. linnetmoss says:

    I think it will be Donald vs. Hillary. I just hope she actually wins. The alternative is terrifying.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. mistermuse says:

    If Ohio governor John Kasich can win his home state on March 15, that could end up denying Trump the number of delegates he needs to eventually cinch the GOP nomination, leading to a brokered convention in Cleveland with Kasich having a chance to come out on top. I do think he is the most broadly acceptable of the remaining GOP contenders, but he probably lost some respect among independents because of this:
    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/03/the-40-seconds-john-kasich-will-think-about-for-the-rest-of-his-life/472341/

    Like

  5. arekhill1 says:

    Republicans have carefully massaged the egos of America’s idiots for the last fifty years, Sr. Muse, because that was the only way they could win elections. Now that the OFB has gotten out in front of them, they are merely reaping what they sowed.

    Like

    • mistermuse says:

      Kathleen Parker, the moderate conservative whose column I quoted in my post, said in the same column that John McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin as his VP running mate in 2008 “foretold a dumbing down of the GOP that eight years later may prove irreversible.” Whether it’s been eight or fifty years, Republicans are indeed reaping what they’ve sowed.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Mél@nie says:

        holy, Molly!!! THE Sarah Palin choice… she used to wave to Putin from her patio and to hunt in helicopter!!! long story, short: she hasn’t invented hot water or the butter slicing thread!!!(French expression translated mot-à-mot…) 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Don Frankel says:

    I see after your article there is an advertisement for some heart medication. Is this a subliminal message that we’ll need it?

    I don’t get too excited over Presidential candidates or Presidents. It doesn’t end well for any of them. But that doesn’t discourage a new batch every four years. Kind of amazing if you stop to think about it.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. mistermuse says:

    I don’t know about heart medication, Don, but after Lucy Lou wins the election, the White House is going to need a four to eight year supply of dog food.

    As for getting too excited, these every-four-year spectacles make great theatre (if nothing else), but this latest re-staging combines drama, comedy and farce like never before (and could turn into a tragedy if Trump is actually elected).

    Like

  8. BroadBlogs says:

    Great title! And I love Colbert’s video.

    Must admit that I’m kind of hoping Trump will get the nomination for the same reason you are — although I’m a bit scared since in 1980 the Democrats thought no one would vote for Ronald Reagan.

    If Mitt Romney’s plan were to go into effect, and they chose someone other than Donald Trump, that could alienate a lot of voters. (Yay, Hillary!)

    Their best hope is convincing Republicans that the Donald is a con artist. Still, where would Trump voters go? They’re starting to smarten up — see that the establishment isn’t for their interests.

    Could be a good year for Hillary.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. mistermuse says:

    This could play out in a number of different ways. If Trump doesn’t win Ohio and Florida, it will probably go to a brokered convention in which most of the Republican “establishment” will go all out to convince delegates to nominate someone other than Trump. As for the Dems, Hillary’s nomination seems assured, barring a bombshell revelation emerging from the investigation of her emails. Time will tell.

    Like

  10. RMW says:

    Bring back the monarchy!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. mistermuse says:

    Like they say, be careful what you wish for. If Trump (or even Cruz) becomes Pres, a monarchy is likely to be very close to what you’ll get.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Mél@nie says:

    Monsieur Colbert is sooo smart, cultured, intelligent, wise… oh, yeah, I do recall the mm=moron mormon… 🙂 btw, I also visited Salt Lake City a few years ago: you have to see it, to believe it…
    https://myvirtualplayground.wordpress.com/2014/07/02/salt-lake-city-utah-mormon-vatican/

    Liked by 1 person

  13. mistermuse says:

    I knew some of what you wrote about Mormonism, but not all – thanks for the link to your post.
    As for Sarah Palin (mentioned in your earlier comment), John McCain will never admit it, but I’m sure he realizes that he made the stupidest mistake of his life when he chose her as his VP running mate eight years ago.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. literaryeyes says:

    It looks to me like Trump will win Ohio and Florida. Hillary’s losses in Colorado and Michigan are a wake-up call for those of us who don’t want Trump to win. Right now, I think he would. Unfortunately, a lot of people still like the “strong man” (think of Russia and Israel). This is also a setback for the Conservatives who’ve been pushing an ideology all these years. They let the vitriol flow, hoping it would sweep them into power, and now they’re being swept away by the same vitriol!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. mistermuse says:

    I think you’re right about Florida, but there’s still hope for Kasich in Ohio, where he has been a pretty popular governor. He’s close behind Trump in Ohio polls and seems to be gaining ground, but if Trump wins, his path to the nomination gets a lot easier.
    Frankly, between Trump and Cruz, the fundamentalist Conservative, I see little to choose (in terms of who would be worse for the good of this country).

    Like

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