It ain’t just the fuck you money. It’s the fuck you attitude.
President Trump has fuck you money because he defines success differently than do other people at his level of wealth. He cannot be shamed into or out of a particular action or position because he simply does not care how the chattering class views him. This, alone, makes him a fascinating character and one deserving of study. I also believe it’s what makes Donald Trump such a uniquely effective politician.
It’s this quality that has Trump’s opponents spinning like tops. They’ve gone back to the same playbook for so many years that they don’t know how to adapt to someone who is immune to their historically most potent attacks. Trump has ripped back the curtain on the wizards of public shaming and revealed them to be powerless crybabies.
But he’s the only man who could do it. He had both the money and the attitude necessary to the task. His supporters grasped the importance of this unique advantage early.
I am not alone in this assessment. What is less obvious is exactly what it is that makes Donald Trump tick. He loves to talk about winning, but how does he define winning for himself? My best guess is that it’s getting things done when other people say you can’t. It’s an internally motivated, fuck you approach to life that I don’t think most politicians possess.
Quite the opposite, actually: professional politicians have it bred into their very marrow that they must NEVER, no matter what, either literally or figuratively say fuck you to anybody, whether it’s deserved or not. Should they get caught doing so, a groveling, insincere apology that satisfies no one will immediately follow. They consider an oleaginous eagerness to please a job requirement instead of a character flaw, and Trumpian obstreperousness, his willingness to handle his opponents roughly when their behavior merits it, a career-killer.
We cannot spare this man. He fights.
Pundits on both the left and right have asserted that Hillary Clinton is the only possible candidate that a guy like Trump could have beaten. While I think that she was a terrible candidate, I also believe that they have it backwards. I don’t think a single GOP candidate could’ve beaten Hillary other than Trump, as he was the only one who inspired enthusiasm within the frustrated and dispirited base.
I’ve heard rumors that people who actually know Donald Trump say that the man they know is nothing like the one you see on television. I suspect that this is true and that most of what you see is a clever act designed both to appeal to his supporters and to frustrate his opponents.
I also believe that Donald Trump is far more intelligent and capable than his opponents and even many of his supporters believe him to be. This video of a young Donald Trump on the David Letterman show in the 1980’s gives some insight toward the man. It’s worth noting that he was banging the drum about our “allies” taking advantage of us 30 years ago. Also notice how intelligent and well spoken he is. Did he somehow lose all his smarts as he grew older or is this interview a glimpse of the man behind the mask?
The big question as we move past Donald Trump’s first year in office is whether Trumpism is a force that is dependent on the man bearing its title or whether it’s a cultural and political wave that will retain its power when he leaves.
I don’t have the answer to this question, but I think it can be confidently asserted that there is no returning to the status quo after Donald Trump has exited the stage.
It IS a damned good question at that, but I remain pretty confident myself that the movement he galvanized is bigger than he is, and will continue on without him in at least some fashion. Whether it will be as successful without him might well be another story. Trump was the perfect melding of Man and Moment, and we had been waiting for him a long time. He didn’t create the movement himself, but instead stepped in to lead it, to steer it, and that happy confluence of events might well prove to be unique, and not reproducible.
It’s another marker of Trump’s surefooted intelligence and perspicacity that he recognized his moment; of his boldness—courage, even—that he so unhesitatingly seized it; and of his competence that he rode that wave all the way to the White House despite the powerful undertow of smug dismissal and derision from the Professional Politician and Pundit Propaganda classes.
His entirely accurate estimation of the hopes and desires of his supporters, to really get them, and his ability to give voice to those hopes is another weighty factor. We longed to see America Made Great Again, and he was the only candidate to even bring it up; it never seemed to occur at all to the depressing field of Republican primary also-rans as a possibility, and the Left clearly remains violently opposed to the idea. Trump’s deep love of country couldn’t be more obvious; his unabashed pride in expressing it, horrifying as it is to the Left, is reassuring to the rest of us.
Even when we disagree with Trump or dislike a specific proposal he offers, we’re a lot more willing to accept those inevitable divergences and go on trusting his instincts in a way we would be a lot less likely to with a professional politician. Nobody expects perfection from him; his more reluctant supporters are loudly discomfited by his occasional human failing or misstep, but it’s no big deal to the rest of us. At this point, Good Enough is…well, good enough.
After so many frustrating years of servile Republicrat ass-kissing of the liberal press, Trump’s disdain for such bootless suck-uppery is invigorating, a real breath of fresh air. This is one Trump characteristic that could easily by replicated to great effect by his prospective successor, if only any of them had the balls to do it. I can’t help but wonder if maybe it hasn’t proved inspiring to Nikki Haley, at any rate, who I never really had much use for until she did this:
The United Nations General Assembly on Thursday denounced the Trump administration’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, an move that U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley said would cause Washington to rethink its financial support of the international organization.
“The United States will remember this day in which it was singled out for attack in the General Assembly for the very act of exercising our right as a sovereign nation,” Haley said. “We will remember it when we are called upon to once again make the world’s largest contribution to the United Nations. And we will remember it when so many countries come calling on us, as they so often do, to pay even more and to use our influence for their benefit.”
“Let them vote against us, we’ll save a lot,” he said. “We don’t care. This isn’t like it used to be where they could vote against you and then you pay them hundreds of millions of dollars and nobody knows what they’re doing.”
And that sentiment, forcefully expressed, is just another thing an awful lot of us have been waiting an awful long time to hear. Any future candidate as unafraid to speak such simple truth would probably get votes on that basis alone—a LOT of them, would be my guess. Myself, I’ll just add a hearty amen to Limbaugh’s enthusiastic response:
She’s got an excrement list, and those nations that target us over this are gonna go on that list. Folks, I don’t care whether the list is actually in existence or not, it’s not the point. This is overwhelmingly great. This is tremendous. This is (the) kind of representation the U.S. has not had at the United Nations or anywhere else in a generation or more. It’s all coming up roses here, as far as I’m concerned. We’re on a roll here, certainly with a lot of potential. I’m jazzed. I just have to tell you.
Yes indamndeedy, bub. I’ll take all of that from Haley I can get, anytime she feels like dishing it up, and yell for more too. It’s getting very damned difficult, in truth, to see what it is that the NeverEverEVERTrumpTards—almost all of whom have passionately lamented liberal media bias and UN flimflammery in the past—are finding not to like about this stuff.
All in all, though, I can’t honestly imagine anybody presently known to us who could do what Trump has. I’m pretty doubtful that an unknown would be capable of stepping into Trump’s shoes and carrying on either; Trump’s long-established celebrity was undeniably a big factor in his successful storming of the DC ramparts, after all. He was already a known quantity for the most part, and that familiarity can’t help but have broadened the support he enjoyed from normal Americans.
His fame was also unlikely to have pushed those already inclined against him into rejecting him outright; in most cases, their hatred of him is so fanatical, so completely witless and unhinged, that his celebrity status couldn’t possibly be all that high on their list of reasons for it. Probably more so for those on the Left, but it applies to a big percentage of Conservative Inc Trump-haters, too.
All of which makes fame a net benefit to him, whether you consider that a good thing or not. Having lived in NYC for a while and endured endless negative coverage of him, I didn’t much like him before he ran myself, if I thought about him at all. But I damned sure knew who he was, and when he announced, it hit me that his coarse, thick-skinned, irrepressible personality could well be exactly what was required if any headway at all was ever to be made at unwinding the Deep State. And so it has proven.
After a successful two Trump terms, the unfortunate likelihood of a certain creeping complacency settling in among us should probably be considered, too. Another way of putting it would be to say that we won’t be tired of all the winning; we’ll be accustomed to it, and in the assumption risk taking it for granted. It also seems likely that a split over prospective successors to Trump could occur among his supporters, which could well result in disaster.
Because the one thing we know without any doubt is that Lefty won’t be giving up, and will forever stand ready to re-insinuate himself into the DC web of power at the earliest perceived opportunity. His fanatical lust to see this country punished for its imagined sins is deathless, and has been greatly intensified by our daring to offer resistance to him, most especially in the form of Trump. He’ll be looking to inflict comeuppance most severe on his tormenters for their temerity, and that can NOT be allowed to happen.
Trump has shown career politicians a simple, easy path to success, but it’s more than probable that they can’t see it, that only an outsider could ever hope to tread it himself. His very nature as someone with no real experience running for and holding office, so dismaying to the Swamp critters who rely on DC politics as usual for their livelihood, is a crucial component of his success both during the election cycle and as President. Far from being the disqualification they self-righteously asserted, it was one of his most pivotal virtues. Which is EXACTLY as the Founders intended, and we would do well to continue to hold the attribute in high regard as a recommendation rather than a detriment.