And so, I have determined that a series of short and to-the-point placards/posters/leaflets are what is needed. Progressives of all varieties are invited to use them as they are intended. That is, to post them; distribute them; use them as talking points; use them to brand the opposition. Improve upon them, as you will, but use them. For that is now what must be done. We must hammer incessantly on the damaged brand that the Republican Party has chosen to become and to TRUMPet (excuse the irresistible urge to put that in!) the danger to all who will listen. And let it be said -- there are way too many who are listening and who are enjoying what they hear. It unfortunately fits their anger, their frustration, their fears and their combativeness to have a leading candidate acting as though he can bring salvation based on their long-repressed thoughts, hopes and desires. They want an authoritarian, bombastic, white-supremacist-type to lead them because they believe he can make them "winners again."
That oft-repeated phrase from the GOP frontrunner suggests something positive, but unfortunately, upon closer examination, it appears that neither Trump nor Cruz have much in their platforms that can be characterized as positive. Of course, both have what one might call their blue-light specials. Trump calls for better treatment of veterans of our wars ("Ensure our veterans get the care they need wherever and whenever they need it"), and he wants big pharmaceutical companies to have free access to the drug market ("Allowing consumers access to imported, safe and dependable drugs from overseas will bring more options to consumers"). Cruz wants to take good care of veterans as well or so he says ("the VA has an obligation to provide them with timely, high-quality health care"), but specifics are few and far between. He happens to have bill titles and rhetoric that sound like they promise one thing, but really turn out to promote something quite different.
Unfortunately, neither of them establishes a platform upon any solid ground of the foundations of our heritage, our unalienable rights or our development of freedom, justice, and opportunity for all. That is not their hope nor their desire. Their themes grow out of two worlds that are an integral part of our culture and our heritage. Unfortunately, both dwell upon negative themes and principles that have never been of great value to this nation.
Mr. Trump's themes come from the world of business and finance, but not just any business; the real estate business. Mr. Cruz brings his themes and guiding principles out of a fundamentalist, evangelical Christianity; but his is a special brand inherited from his father called "Dominionism" (see my Blog of 10/13/13 for more on that interesting sidebar of Christianity).
Let us not be surprised by Donald Trump's wayward stances on just about everything. Bringing attention to his products is what motivates him and further what sells those products and services is what energizes him. Real Estate moguls like Trump are in a fierce competitive dog-eat-dog business and he who uses every weapon or tool at his or her disposal to the greatest effect comes out the winner. It doesn't much matter what consequences may get strewn in the path on the way to victory, for winning is the ultimate goal and the ultimate pay-off. He who wins eats more dogs, and the more conquests, the more obeisance and business come his way. Trump is not in this campaign to win friends; he is only in it to win and to draw a huge number of unsuspecting people, mostly losers, but enough of the powerful and influential into his circle of admiring worshippers. This campaign is all about Donald Trump, the Trump name and the Trump Enterprises. It is not about governing or serving or acting on behalf of the People. All the talk from this man is about him, his art of the deal, and the billions that will accrue to him (beyond his present wealth) as he builds a Trump empire bigger than ever expected.
Those who believe that Donald Trump is speaking their language, speaking for them in terms of their needs and wants, or is going to care one wit about whether this country wins, is #1 or whatever, has missed the point. Donald Trump is using the People, and will use the entire mechanism of both the government and the economic system, to make it work-out for him. This man is not a philanthropist; he is not a servant of the people; he is not someone who cares deeply about people's problems or hopes; he is a competitor, a bully, an authoritarian, an entertainer, a deal-maker. But don't be bamboozled friends. He is not in this campaign for any of the reasons usually given -- making our country a place of hope, building on our principles of equal justice, individual freedoms and equal opportunity. He is not seeking to protect or enhance the lives of vulnerable people, or to use government as the defender of our God-given rights. He is out to win big for himself, and will do that in whatever ways he needs or desires or wants.
And so it is time to speak forthrightly, and to put forward what is bound to happen if Donald Trump (or Ted Cruz) is elected President, and the two Houses of Congress (plus the Supreme Court) are still controlled by radical Right-wing Republicans. The first of my posters for your thoughts follows:
I take some pride in the fact that someone else whom I admire strongly agrees with the essence of what I am saying here. Take note of her thoughts on the matter:
Trump seems to know he’s a loser. His embarrassing insecurities are on parade: petty bullying, attacks on women, cheap racism, and flagrant narcissism. But just because Trump is a loser everywhere else doesn’t mean he’ll lose this election. People have been underestimating his campaign for nearly a year – and it’s time to wake up.
People talk about how "this is the most important election" in our lifetime every four years, and it gets stale. But consider what hangs in the balance. Affordable college. Accountability for Wall Street. Healthcare for millions of Americans. The Supreme Court. Big corporations and billionaires paying their fair share of taxes. Expanded Social Security. Investments in infrastructure and medical research and jobs right here in America. The chance to turn our back on the ugliness of hatred, sexism, racism and xenophobia. The chance to be a better people.
More than anyone we’ve seen before come within reach of the presidency, Donald Trump stands ready to tear apart an America that was built on values like decency, community, and concern for our neighbors. Many of history’s worst authoritarians started out as losers – and Trump is a serious threat. The way I see it, it’s our job to make sure he ends this campaign every bit the loser that he started it."
It is now up to us to call on the voters of our nation to reject these blatant attempts to take our nation in a direction that has meant hardship, devastation and even war for countries of Europe and several of the Middle East. Their authoritarian and destructive rhetoric is the key -- they both have the capacity to be obsessed by power -- be it financial as with Trump or religious in nature as it is with Cruz. They are dangerous politicians because they have no regard for anything other than their own proclivities and their own ends. It is time to call them what they are -- fascist wannabes. They want control over people because their beliefs, practices and experiences drive them to that end.
Trump even tweeted a phrase from Benito Mussolini that bespeaks his philosophy: "It is better to live one day as a lion than 100 years as a sheep."