The Trump Paradox

donald_trumpOne person is at once the least credible candidate in the Republican race for President in 2016 and also the most reasonable candidate.

On Planned Parenthood, Donald Trump is the ONLY candidate who has clearly said that he would continue funding. All other candidates have expressed views from cutting funding to choking it off altogether.

Trump is the only candidate not busy hammering themselves up on a cross to show how Christian they are.

On tax fairness, he says, “frankly I think that wealthy people like me can afford to pay a higher percentage of their income”.

He’s probably the only Republican candidate that can’t be bought by the Koch brothers.

Trump inspired artist Berkeley Breathed to come out of a 25 year hiatus to bring Opus the Penguin, Bill D. Cat and the rest of the Bloom County menagerie to take some swipes at the Trumpster.

The deeper you look, there are actually reasons to vote FOR Donald Trump.

But then you remember he’s crass, pompous, bigoted, sexist, racist, loud, lewd, excessive, crude, and he’s absurd in every measure.

Penn Jillette, who worked with him on his show The Apprentice, said that Trump’s biggest strength, that he’s a straight shooter, is also his biggest weakness in that there’s no filter between his brain and his mouth. He would have to have one hell of a staff just to do damage control. So far he has insulted women, Mexicans, blacks, Megyn Kelly and the Chinese. He has also said he will win the women’s vote, the Mexican’s vote, and the black vote …somehow. He mustn’t be too concerned about the Asian contingent of voters or Fox News anchorwomen.

But look at the other candidates. Bobby Jindal and Ted Cruz want to turn America into a Christian Theocracy. Mike Huckabee thinks a 10-year old girl who is raped should be forced to carry any resulting pregnancy to term, never mind the danger it poses to her. Then you have Kasich who says he wants to give law-abiding illegal immigrants a path to citizenship. Let that sink in. “Law-abiding illegal immigrants”. They’re called ILLEGAL immigrants because they are not abiding by immigration law. Do they think before they speak? The list of craziness goes on…

At this point, Trump is the moderate candidate in this circus. “Circus” doesn’t adequately describe it, unless your circus involves something Salvador Dali and the Marquis De Sade dreamed up together on bad acid.

There is no doubt that Trump would run America like a business. The problem is, if he runs it like one of HIS businesses, America is in deep trouble. He has a habit of overextending his companies and then filing for bankruptcy protection. He was born into money, and seems to know more about how to manipulate it than make it work.

“If Hilary Clinton can’t satisfy her husband, what makes her think she can satisfy America?” (Donald Trump, in a deleted Twitter post, 2015.)

Perhaps the strangest thing about this is that billionaire Trump has successfully set himself up as the everyday hero, the ordinary Joe and hard-working American going against the republican elite, the renegade fringe candidate with staying power, the political outsider aiming to rock the White House, and the people are lapping it up.

There is always a level of gamesmanship in politics, of skewing reality, but I have never seen a political race look so much like “Inception”.

The Republican leadership failed to take his announcement seriously, and the time he has had in the campaign thus far has allowed him to build up credibility and support. What was largely seen as a joke, something that would last a week or two, has turned into a serious contender.

Trump has just released his immigration plan. Is it realistic? Not in the least, in fact it’s laughable as it involves deporting some 10 million people, some of them American citizens, but it’s still more substantial than anything any other Republican candidate has put forward.

“I am Batman” – Donald Trump at Iowa State Fair (2015)

Trump wants to end birthright citizenship – No longer would a person be an American citizen just by virtue of being born in the United States. He actually tossed this cherry out on the floor in the first debate – eliminating the Fourteenth Amendment – and the other candidates scrambled to get on that bandwagon. To what end? What purpose will this serve? Apparently it has something to do with immigrants. It’s like the candidates have a contest to see who can come up with the craziest platform ideas.

The only really comforting thing about Trump is that he will not be around for long. His brashness and his freshness to the political scene means he will disintegrate when it gets time to talk policy. So far his answers on policy have ranged from lacking to lunatic. His foreign policy would be nothing short of a total disaster. The question is, will Fox News ask the tough questions to show those policy shortcomings?

Right now, his supporters don’t care that he doesn’t have much in the way of policies or solutions. Honestly, they probably never will care, nor ever be able to spell “policy”, but if he plans on swaying the support from other candidates – which he will need to do – then at some point he’s going to have to come up with some policy.

My prediction is that Trump’s support will not grow much beyond what he has right now. After the first Republican debate, he was listed as having the support of 24% of the registered Republican voters. Jeb Bush was closest to him at 13%, with all other candidates in the single digits. As candidates drop off, their supporters will go to other candidates. You won’t see many switch paddles to the Trump team, but he may reach as high as 30% popularity. Eventually, Trump’s 24% will slide to the bottom of the pack, and he will be voted off the island, so to speak. The question is, will he come off the ballot early enough to start a run as an independent?

But let’s say Trump takes the nomination. Who is his running mate? Jesse “The Body” Ventura? …or Robin?

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