America is Getting “Trumped” (Part 1)

There are so many reasons why Donald Trump is dominating the news cycle during the summer of 2015.  But one day, it will be a summer to forget.  Why?  Because America is getting “Trumped.

The theatrics, the bombastic speech, the insults…. all quintessential Trump.  His New York “tough-guy” background honed in the rough and tumble real estate jungle of “the city that never sleeps” is on display as if running for president were a reality TV show.  And in many ways, that is exactly what this is for THE DONALD.  This is the ultimate reality TV show.

He is an aging personality with fewer and fewer conquests to present to the world as proof of his superior, well,…..his superior…..his superior…. according to Donald, his superior EVERY THING.  And with dwindling avenues to show his family and the world how superior he his, why not run for President of the United States?

Donald-Melania-Trump-Manhattan-Penthouse_1

Trump Penthouse

But does he really want to have the job?  It is doubtful, given the constraints that would accompany the position.  He may aspire to have the  TITLE, but the actual job would prove to be too confining for his personality.  Just take a look at his penthouse and ask your self, “Is this a man who is going to be able to live in that tiny White House?”     

Title or no title,  I don’t think so!  The WH clearly lacks the ostentatious flare of the Trump personality.

In reality, NOT reality TV, what Donald Trump wants is not to be president, but to be king.  (I will discuss this further in Part 2.)  As long as this adventure in to the presidential field supplies the fuel of a would-be king, with all the grandiose characterizations….”unique”, “the summer of Trump”, “never seen any thing like this before in American politics”, and “no one can tell me [Trump] what to do.”……..he will continue to tease the American public; until he feels he might get a crown… of some sort.

 He may court the press, he may taunt the fellow contestants, and he may even come to believe himself that he in fact wants to be president.  But really, all he is seeking is a platform to feel significant, relevant, and triumphant.But triumphalism hardly coheres with the role of president.  More often than not, the job brings about a sense of failure as the PDB reveals just how many conflicts and threats and intractable problems there are in the world.  And more importantly, how little the president can actually do.  Add to the PDB, the recognition that many choices come with a certainty of negative consequences.  Unavoidable when you sit in the Oval Office.  Many times that man must reckon with the decision of least bad choices.Least bad choices?  That would not be very “DONALD-LIKE”.

In  Trump-world where every thing is framed by success, how would he contend with the radiating effects of a badly managed decision?  Or  would he resort to bullying the American people in to seeing his viewpoint after a bad actor on the world stage got the better of President Trump?   And what about his bravado?  Would THE DONALD be able find  any restraint as his mouth ran ahead of his advisers admonition to keep highly sensitive secrets within the Oval Office?  Telling THE DONALD to not talk about some thing that might embarrass an adversary?  Well, good luck with that one.  Trump has burnished his credentials as the man who will hit back and hit back harder.

Given the reality of the position of president, he may willfully self-destruct before this goes on too long, perhaps December… even January. It will appear any thing but self-destruction, but avoidance of the actual job would not be within the keeping of such a grandiose personality.  So, better to frame it as willful self-destruction. Or, ‘circumstances will necessitate such and such…’.

But as long as his time in the white hot spotlight is feeding his sense of superiority sufficiently, he will remain in front of the crowds and the cameras.  He will continue to present himself as a viable candidate for the Office of the President of the United States.  And we the public should chuckle at the notion.  Why?  Because it is certainly an office far too small for the likes of Mr. Trump.  But as long as he can convince himself and the public that he COULD hold that position, then his campaign will continue to go on.  He could win…. and that is what this is really all about.

Will he run as an Independent?  Only if he believes that the attention he gains as an Independent will serve him for years to come.  As an

Trump as an Independent?

Trump as an Independent?

Independent, he is well aware that he cannot actually win enough votes to have the job.  But if by declaring himself an Independent candidate, Mr. Trump does assess it to his advantage, then he will do so.

For now, positioning himself against Jeb Bush suits him just fine.  It keeps the conversation attenuated to the uniqueness of the Trump campaign.  And making a direct linkage between himself and Bush bolsters his viability as a REAL presidential candidate.  Insulting others along the way, it keeps him in the spotlight.  Trump knows what he is doing.  This is his game. But is it really the game that is best for the American people and most importantly for the country?

Mr. Trump has succeeded as a businessman in the United States.   By all accounts, he is a good father.  And he typifies one version of the American dream. And he is giving voice to a needed populist message.  Citizens are indeed disgruntled with the political process in the United States that creates the vacuum waiting to be filled by Trump. Yet, there is a lot at stake for the country at a time when the domestic needs are great and there are global regional hot spots that threaten to flare.  As president, there are quite a few actors in other parts of the world who would simply tell Trump to Pound sand!” and mean it quite literally.

trumplane.cnn

Trump USA

There may be one cost-effective benefit should the man of the summer of 2015 become President Trump (errr, King Trump).  And that would be?  Well, he would probably prefer to fly HIS plane around the world instead of using Air Force One.  The simple irony of such an idea reveals  the masquerade of this  “summer of Trump”.

Still, the American people need to ask themselves, what is the appeal of Mr. Trump?  And why has he been able to capture the support of so many in the country who are weary of a tired and staid political process, at this time sentimentally referred to as American democracy?

I will answer that in America is Getting “Trumped” (Part 2)

Beth is a consultant and keynote speaker. She specializes in World Issues, International Relations, and the human story. Beth assists her clients in better understanding the nexus between politics, religion, transnational terrorism, IPE, and the all important human impact. Contact Beth at info@outoftheboxintl.com. You can also send her a Facebook message at Out of the Box International or a Tweet at Beth Hill-Skinner

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