Bullshit and Self-Love

March 18, 2016

Trump's my guy

Let me begin with the basics of my argument:

In spite of your legitimate anger at being sold out by our political system, if you support Trump, be ashamed. If you support Trump and you go to church, stop wasting your time, stay home, church-going is not doing you or the rest of us any good …besides, you’re clearly missing the point. If you support Trump and wave a flag, stop wasting your time, save your waving arm, it’s not doing your nation or your character any favors.

As you should know by now, in such dangerous times it would be especially odd and foolhardy to think someone like Trump will lead to salvation. Trump is not out to save anyone but himself. It’s his nature. It’s readily apparent that for Trump all things point to Trump. He’s been having a life-long love affair with his name for God’s sake! All Trump-talk is of superiority: Trump’s. And you don’t have to pry Trump’s lines apart to learn what he’s about, he crows about it every time he gets a whiff of a camera or a mike. Vows of his incestuous self-love fly out spontaneously and thoughtlessly, so don’t go claiming ignorance if he gets his political way.Trump’s rhetoric is a tsunami of narcissist goop which he plasters in thirty-foot letters on the facades of as many skyscrapers as he can and rattles off in “speeches” which he repeats over and over again to see how much of saying-nothing he can get away with —plenty, it seems.  

Watch and listen to the abundance of nothing that fill the ego purges Trump and his propaganda partner, Mainstream Media, must think of as “poll-bait” or “ratings” (respectively) —you know: the laying it on the line, the saying what he thinks— although what Trump thinks is enough to give you night sweats and heaves. And because Trump is proudly anti-political, self-absorbed and amoral, he’s actually made clear how corrupt our buck-begotten politics is. But what’s even worse is that despite his crude, brute, ignorant transparency, Donald Trump is king of the GOP heap, which should be a signal as clear as an air-raid horn that there’s sure be constitutional shrapnel whizzing in our future.

Yes, despite his often expressed anti-constitutional and moral obscenities, Trump has many zealous followers, which is a sign darker than The Donald himself. But what’s a narcissist without sycophants, even understandably angry ones?

Conservative columnist David Brooks agrees. While acknowledging the reasons angry voters have become Trumpkins, Brooks says, “Trump is epically unprepared to be president. He has no realistic policies, no advisers, no capacity to learn. His vast narcissism makes him a closed fortress. He doesn’t know what he doesn’t know and he’s uninterested in finding out.

But Trump was never a politician, he’s a celebrity and in the United States being a celebrity is one of the greatest achievements.  Being famous and/or rich is what it’s all about in our shining Trumpville on a hill. We admire and respect anyone who’s achieved the status of lounging upon a thick bed of Benjamins. But being both rich and a celebrity is, wow, jackpot! It entitles one to be a contender for the presidency of the United States of America no matter how vacant your suit might be, how much hate you spew, or how many lies you can jam into a media-subsidized prime-time rant. And Trump’s no chump when it comes to any of those.

In fact, this week, according to Brooks, Politico reporters Daniel Lippman, Darren Samuelsohn and Isaac Arnsdorf fact-checked 4.6 hours of Trump speeches and press conferences (and) found more than five dozen untrue statements or one every five minutes.

“His remarks represent an extraordinary mix of inaccurate claims about domestic and foreign policy and personal and professional boasts that rarely measure up when checked against primary sources,” Brooks wrote. “He is a childish man running for a job that requires maturity.”

Brooks ends by saying that sometimes political victors do not deserve our respect. George Wallace won elections, but to endorse those outcomes would be a moral failure.

And so it is with Trump. But so it is with those who follow and support such a man. When you lose your mind to anger, fear and hate to the extent that you put your faith in a nasty, egotist (a faux-messiah) you become as much an enemy to decent life as your perceived enemies. You become your own enemy by giving yourself up to the bull of a master bullshitter. Bullshit and self-love are all that hold The Donald together, but it’s not enough to hold a country together. To keep a pluralistic nation like the United States from descending into ruthless order or chaos you need a lot less “I” and a lot more “we”.

So, good luck in your anger management strategies unless they involve voting for Donald Trump —don’t expect any respect for that. It’s a strategy that hasn’t played out well in history.

by Jim Culleny