Wednesday, September 16, 2015

At What Cost?

Recently, I was a participant in a radio show.
The topic was Donald Trump.

I heard many give their support for Donald and I heard others give their reasons for why he should go away.

I got to thinking about this, and started focusing on Trump's appeal, instead of his presentation.

Years ago, there was a great Peter Seller's movie called Being There.

In the movie, Seller's character is a man who has grown old, but not up.
He has been raised in the home of an older wealthy man, but with little personal growth, watching television always, and upon the death of that man he is put out on the street.
Due to some good screenwriting, he ends up in the home of another wealthy old man whose younger wife (Shirley MacLaine) becomes enamored with him.
Chance the Gardener is the true tabula rasa. There is nothing there.  But he is Being There.
Some time that's all it takes.

The extreme is when Shirley starts coming on to Chance. Chance watches TV while she sees to her own "enjoyment", after which she exclaims what a great lover he is.

Her political friends read great wisdom in Chance and he's off to the presidency.
Everybody sees in him what they hope to see.

Like Donald Trump.
I'm not denigrating Trump, but what is happening, I believe, is that people are so longing for a strong leader with no PC restraints, they see in him what they hope to see.

I fear however, that many of his "conservative" supporters who applaud his America First stance, are willing to see him disregard Constitutional restraints on the presidency, as long has he puts America on the course they want.
"Obama has broken the restraints."
"We need our own strong man."
I challenged that approach and was told the train has left the station.
We are not that country anymore.

Heck. I myself wanted a military coup at one point, but this is different. This is not fix the system.
This is "Make the trains run on time"

Google that.

It leaves me with concern.

I don't know what Trump is.
I fear what his supporters might be.

I was on Bill Bennett's Show this morning with Steve Hayward (of Power Line) and Peter Wehner, talking about this.


  1. I remember this movie and loved the Pink Panther movies of his too. Interesting thoughts regarding projection and restraints. For me, it's early and I just like the thumb in the eye of the establishment. I wasn't able to watch the first debate cuz I was on vacation, but will be watching this one.

    1. "I just like the thumb in the eye of the establishment."
      A caller to Bennett just before me said similar.
      A common refrain and well understood.

  2. Trump will do fine as POTUS. Far better than the criminally incompetent orator we have now. Is Trump perfect? Nope. Was Dubya perfect? Not even up to The Donald's standards.

    It's early, though. Any of the remaining GOP candidates will do fine. And Rick Perry would have done fine.

    Chance the Gardener would have done fine. Anybody at all, pick a name out of the New York City phone book, would have done a better job than Barack Obama.

    1. Thank You Fredd.
      I really appreciate your response. I had some concerns about your reaction to this post, seriously.
      And I agree with you.

    2. " Anybody at all, pick a name out of the New York City phone book ..."
      Mohammed Mustafa.

      Careful what you wish for.

  3. I think thats a fair assignment of what's going on in people minds, but I do believe he is up for the challenge. I'd rather see Cruz, but the nice thing about trump is that we've known him for decades..intimately.

  4. Hi Ed,

    You wrote, "Make the trains run on time".

    We all should know what that means. I wonder how many do?

  5. He puts his finger in the eye of the Establishment, and he may even be doing it with their approval. Think of it as confession of a sorts that frees the souls of whatever conscience still exists in the members of the hierarchy. "We told them what and how we've gotten away with for so long. And I feel better already. That Donald will still not resurrect the damned republic is what counts."

    That's what's been bothering you Ed and it's down at the heart of your concerns. I know because I was bothered by the same. And you actually wrote it while I only thought about it and forgot it. "I challenged that approach and was told the train has left the station." Our once great republic is dead and we both wish it was not so.

    1. Another way at looking at our current situation with The Donald, an upfront autocrat in action and attitude, is that the meaning of Obama's 2012 slogan of FORWARD is clearer. Forward to placing the nails in the coffin.

    2. yes Pascal. exactly right. it's heartbreaking to watch and know that the wheels are grinding inexorably forward.

    3. He hooks into a desire to be done with the oligarchy. Bernie Sanders does the same thing in much more responsible way.

      Now would Trump affect any change in the underlying power structure? I say, no.

    4. "much more responsible way."
      "WASHINGTON—Sen. Bernie Sanders, whose liberal call to action has propelled his long-shot presidential campaign, is proposing an array of new programs that would amount to the largest peacetime expansion of government in modern American history.
      In all, he backs at least $18 trillion in new spending over a decade, according to a tally by The Wall Street Journal, a sum that alarms conservatives and gives even many Democrats pause."

      That's responsible alright. 18 trillion worth.

  6. you've gotta love Ducky ..Socialism, apparently, is a far more RESPONSIBLE WAY :-)

    I agree with much you said here, Ed. And good point about Sanders....$$$$$ GIVE IT AWAY...WE"VE GOT MORE is his motto.

    1. Z, truly mental disease. They can't show you a single successful socialist system but they crave it. That's a mental disease combined with a loser who wants to steal other people's money to live off of.

  7. NONE of them impress me... I'm getting really worried.

    1. Carly? Walker impresses me, but not many others so electability comes in to play.

  8. Great post. Yes, Trump is popular because he says what many of us think and electing him would be a chance to really stuff it to the RINOs (99% of the republican party)
    I like Carly. Because she is an outsider like Trump, and because she doesn't stick her feet in her mouth every other day like Trump does and because she is smart and can articulate her position very quickly and effectively.
    Great movie too.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Carly is GOPe. She demonstrated she knows how to lose to an eminently flawed Dem when she ran against Boxer in 2010 and lost by a million votes. Without the help of Rove and the GOPe and their money she'd not have beat in the primary the best conservative CA had in a long time, Chuck Devore.

      Then there's her bad history at business. If she was Ted Cruz the media would be making a big deal about her riding Lucent Technologies into the grave and nearly doing the same to HP. She is got more time on the stage than either Cruz or Walker and that was by design of CNN and very likely ok with GOPe Priebus. See who the media doesn't attack and know who it is they want. Please help prevent the SSM select the GOP candidate again for Republicans. It's bad enough that some large number of states have open primaries, Help inform legit Republicans understand how the media works.

    3. You are and remain my friend.
      How many times did Abe Lincoln lose elections and go bust?
      And that just occurred to me.

    4. Carly is no Abe. And don't trust my word for it. Check out her performance in 2010. She knows how to speak to win primaries and then suddenly goes lame in the general. Free Republic will still have much of that that in its archives so it's not hard to find. Then if her general election behavior evokes a pattern that is familiar enough to you to raise your skepticism about her, then my effort here was worth it.

    5. Pascal, so who do you want the nominee to be?

    6. I want a real debate so I can make that determination. This was a one baited question after the other about personal attacks between the candidates rather than against either Obama or the Dems.

      Think of Lady Justice. She doesn't have her thumb on one scale and she's not peaking from her blindfold. Then watch Jake Tapper in action and maybe you understand why I called Rince Priebus GOPe. The GOPe and the media do not want any debate where real issues are discussed.

      Kid, if you got a good sense about who would be the best pro-American candidate because of their performance in this debate, I'd like to know how high are your standards.

    7. Pascal, If you're like me, what you want and what you get are two different things.

      Sure, CNN, made sure to steer each question into a confrontation between at least two of the candidates.

      How high are my standards? The question and the current candidates do not mix. Of the current candidates, Carly seems focused, able to verbalize her position clearly and is not a politician. Of the field, I'd take her. Open it up to all Americans and there are probably thousaands I'd rather have than any of the 11 on that debate.

    8. Kid, Pascal messaged me a video and a link showing Carly's positions a few years ago. Reminds me of Trumps positions a few years ago,
      One was of her praise for Hillary.
      It could be troublesome in the general.

    9. It's a mess Ed. A friggin mess.

  9. Great Post, I wonder if Peter or Steve will use your ideas. Really great.

  10. The Trump followers give me a pause, too. Where to they come from? I found out the other night having a coffee at a Waffle House with some friends. They all like Trump and the way he promises to kick ass. I don't think he is realistic.

    Now, I gotta get on Netflix to see if that Sellers movie is available.

    Thanks for a good post.

    1. Thanks for stopping by.
      I enjoy your company.