Sometimes I truly feel that this “great experiment” on which our democratic republic is based has finally, like so many other noble experiments, long surpassed its apogee — if one wishes to consider that there was such an high point at all. As Oscar Wilde supposedly said: “American is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilisation in between.”
I guess what dismays me the most is that so many of the American public are so gullible and easily manipulated by demagoguery that they are willing to turn a blind eye — no, go completely blind — to the unconscionable, morally and ethically bankrupt, sociopathic behaviour of Donald J.Trump and his toadies in the GOP. I don’t get it. Okay, I realise that he was not elected in true democratic fashion (i.e. by the public), but by the unmitigatedly antiquated system of the Electoral College; notwithstanding, that merely underpins the problem of why this man is not only unqualified, but completely and unapologetically corrupt. What disturbs me most of all is that he has blatantly lied to the people who have put the most faith in him and they refuse to see it. Instead they revel in conspiracy theories about the media (expect for Fox News of course). That in spite of what is figuratively slapping them in the face regarding employment, health care, taxes, fraud, misogyny, education, veterans rights, the “Wall,” immigration, his distain for the leaders of our democratic allies and adoration for dictators, his hatred for and attempts, if not to dismantle, at least discredit our criminal justice system, his “base” continues to worship this morally bankrupt sociopath.
Most noisome about all of this is: these people, these fools, these lemmings, number, not in thousands, but in the millions! Approximately 40 (+ or- 2-3%) percent of the American public think he’s a good president! They ignore the constant inconsistencies, the compete and total lack of historical education, that his vaunted tax law is a sham: a tax law that throws a few crumbs to middle class Americans and small business, virtually nothing to working class/working poor Americans; but almost literally throws money at the extremely wealthy and the major corporations. He chooses a woman to head up the Department of Education who has summarily expressed her distain for our public school system and has done her very best (even before DE) to lobby for, not only charter and private school businesses but the for profit college industry. The public be damned. Then there’s Scott Pruitt, Ben Carson, Steve Mnuchin, Wilber Ross, and the overtly racist Jeff Sessions; all of whom are surrounded by criminality or some form of impropriety. And those are only the ones still employed! Trump has had largest turnover in White House personnel in history — 49 and counting; and that’s only after less than a year and a half.
His “believers” are so incredibly blind and stupid that, unfortunately, Trump was very likely right in assuming that “[he] could shoot somebody on Fifth Avenue and not lose any followers.” Unlike what a lot of folks have concluded: thinking that Trump’s devotees are ignorant (although that may also be the case in a substantial proportion of them), the vast majority are simply stupid. You see, an ignorant person can be educated because they simply don’t know; stupid people choose to close their minds: it doesn’t matter what the reasons are. Ignorance is unintended, stupidity is a decision. In the case of Donald Trump his appeal to the sordid, vulgar, jejune, even reptilian aspects of the human psyche has made it easy for people to find him compelling. Marginally educated, even relatively well educated people who live in and associate in primarily homogenous environments, essentially want simple answers to the complicated, sometimes inscrutable issues they see beyond their limited spheres. If those answers happen to be racist, misogynistic, insulting to anyone who isn’t as simple minded as they, or just merely disgusting and vulgar to any civilised person, all the better.
One can show, prove over and over, without qualification how Trump has lied and consistently turned his back on his supporters, that he has impudently — in your face, as it were — not “drained the swamp” but, has deepened and promulgated it “beyond the dreams of avarice,” to no avail. There’s nothing more closed minded than a zealot.
So, my fellow Americans, I seriously doubt that even with a sea change in either or both houses of Congress, the damage perpetrated on our precious dream of an eventual economically and socially egalitarian democracy is most likely all but lost. Sorry, John, Jim, Alex, Tom, etc.