Let me asked if you have heard this one. The President grabs his phone, tweets some absurd claim, repeats it over and over. The most powerful man in the world then goes to a campaign and rants and raves. Here is how one reporter put it.
Evergreen Tweet (fill in the blanks)
President’s campaign rally/tweet feature:
1) numerous falsehoods, also known as lies, on (variety of subjects)
2) excessive displays of (hubris)
3) attacks on (media/elites/anyone that crosses his mind)
4) the crowd buys it
All this reminds me of Frank Constanza yelling out on Senfield in the tradition of Festivus, “I’ve got a lot of problems with you people and now you’re gonna hear about it.” It’s like we are in a loop of the airing of grievances.
Now I get it. A big reason voters flocked to Trump in the first place, was because many did not understand the changes happening economically, socially, and globally. Two years after the campaign, the President continues to play into those resentments. I understand you have to play the hand that you were dealt, but at one point does that hand get hold. Politics may seem like a sprint, it’s more of a marathon.
If you know Trump’s story, the kid from Queens has always been disgruntled with those that never invited him to sit at the cool kids’ table. Forget that Trump himself was in a decent family situation and has never worked a blue-collar job in his lifetime. The base continues to see him as one of them. He is not.
When I was growing up, often the weakest bully yelled the loudest. The moment when someone with real strength showed up, the bully deflected or ran. The same has always been true with Trump. This is why Trump looked small in the death of Senator John McCain. McCain was everything Trump is not. When times got hard, McCain did not run or take the easy way. My favorite quote is also one of the most telling from the late Senator, “I am the luckiest man.” That is some statement from a man that was shot down, tortured and held as a POW for five years. When does the President speak like that?
Lately, Trump’s acrimony has increased. This week, he has lambasted those running Twitter, Facebook, Google, and the very reporters he craves attention and coverage from. He consistently attacks the Mueller investigation and those reporting facts because he doesn’t like the coverage. Like a crazed animal backed into a corner, the more likely Trump may be exposed, the louder he is getting.
A basic rule in communication is you know a person is losing when they stop trying to win the message and instead starts to attack the messager. Forget winning the argument, it’s someone else’s fault. There is always someone to blame.
When he does this, it waters down real biases that conservatives face. Back during the Reagan and both Bush administrations, often the media came out against these Presidents. The difference then instead of now, those leaders did not take the low road and play the victim. They went out and tried to win the debate. When was the last time the President tried to win someone over instead of just attacking? I wish that would change.
Some would say, why should we care about these standards. The left acts like the President all the time. It’s time we fight back. Let me ask those people this, when did two wrongs make a right? Children act like that, adults should not. If mouths simply reflect our hearts, and our hearts reflect our values, what are our current values? The problem every time Trump makes it about himself, he misses an opportunity to speak about the problems that are coming.
As the President tries to create his own reality in his own safe space, time is not standing still. This one stat alone proves how wrong the current vision is. It is estimated that automation alone could take as many as 800 million jobs by 2030. That’s only 12 years away. If the President truly cared about the people he says are being screwed, I sure wish he would speak up on that issue. No tariff can fix that.
This did not start with the President alone, but he does have the largest megaphone. It is time he started using his voice for more than personal grumbling. America would be better off if he did.