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Berkeley Breathed
© Berkeley Breathed

What a strange situation in which we find ourselves. Nobody ever took Donald Trump seriously. Especially not the media, who were pretty much responsible for creating him. Not even Fox News.

The Republican party is still in denial. The establishment just knew that if they ignored Trump, he would crash and burn before things got too serious. Their timid attempts to help him crash only backfired.

Even Trump got caught up in his own reality-distortion field. At one point he thought he could take on the Pope.

Trump could still crash and burn, but assuming he doesn’t and he becomes the Republican nominee, what then?

What do the Democrats and their presidential nominee do? They can’t afford to not take Trump seriously.

The big problem is that ever since Reagan said that “Government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem” the Republican Party, Fox News, the Koch Brothers, Wall Street, and big business have been spending billions of dollars trying to convince Americans that anyone even vaguely associated with the Washington elite is tainted and worthless. Never mind that this anger is expressed as “Government, keep your hands off my Medicare and Social Security”.

Random anger doesn’t make sense. In fact, people are so much easier to manipulate when they are angry and confused.

Until they aren’t, and it backfires.

UPDATE: My favorite journalist, Matt Taibbi, has a fantastic rant “How America Made Donald Trump Unstoppable“.



  1. ebdoug wrote:

    And it was done in Germany exactly 80 years ago.

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 4:13 am | Permalink
  2. Jonah wrote:

    I’d be interested in knowing how much he is really worth

    He doesn’t spend a ton of money on ads and relies on his fame and publicity. Maybe more television stars should run for presidency. Worked at least once before

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 7:43 am | Permalink
  3. TJ wrote:

    I might be wrong, but a President Trump still scares me less than a President Cruz or Rubio would. None are ideal, for sure, but just because Trump is a boor doesn’t mean the other two aren’t just as bad or worse in all other ways.

    And while I concede there are some striking similarities in style, I just don’t agree with EBDoug’s consistent implication that America will turn into another Nazi Germany if Trump is elected.

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 8:50 am | Permalink
  4. Iron Knee wrote:

    TJ, I actually agree. Trump scares me about the same amount as Reagan did. Which is to say a lot.

    But Cruz scares me way more.

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 9:04 am | Permalink
  5. Jonah wrote:

    Interesting viewpoint from a married couple that disagrees about trump. Both republicans

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 9:05 am | Permalink
  6. Edwin Expat wrote:

    You Yanks are very slow learners, ESPECIALLY if the lesson comes from outside your borders. Did you learn nothing from the brouhaha about Toronto Mayor Rob Ford? Was he to you just a curiosity, a back page item that made it to one of your late night talk shows?
    Even now your press still treats Trump like a freak created by Fox News instead of the rather obvious genius that he really is.
    Have you also forgotten Marion Barry?

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 10:26 am | Permalink
  7. ThatGuy wrote:

    I’m not sure Ford or Barry had quite the impact of Hitler. Demagogues are, unfortunately, nothing new. They’ve inhabited U.S. politics since before there was a U.S., and provided that there are significant numbers of people who can be motivated by irrational fear (read: forever), demagogues will continue to crop up with depressing regularity. There remains a significant gulf between an opportunist like Trump and a true zealot like Hitler, however, both in actual intent and ability.

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 10:45 am | Permalink
  8. westomoon wrote:

    TJ and IK, agree — the really scary one is Cruz. And Rubio’s not much better, though scary in a completely different way.

    Didja read Taibbi’s piece on Trump in Rolling Stone?

    I’d been puzzled why Trump was freaking out the Rs so massively, when what the media quotes him on is just the usual R stuff minus euphemisms, and he certainly is not as deeply, un-pragmatically loony as Cruz or Carson — or even Kasich, who just knows how to impersonate a normal person (check out Ohio).

    Turns out Trump has some interesting economic ideas which are NOT straight out of the Rs-for-Jesus-and Capitalism playbook. E.g.: Trump says he’ll call Detroit carmakers into his office and lay down an ultimatum: Either move the jobs back to America, or eat a 35 percent tax on every car imported back into the U.S. over the Mexican border. “I’m a free-trader,” he says, “but you can only be a free-trader when something’s fair.”

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 12:14 pm | Permalink
  9. Carter wrote:

    When you make exaggerated analogies, like comparing Trump to the Nazis, you only reinforce his supporters’ belief that the “establishment” is hopelessly out of touch.

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 12:46 pm | Permalink
  10. Iron Knee wrote:

    I never compared Trump to the Nazis, although if I had to put a (however loaded) political label on Trump, it would probably be fascist. But Trump looks way more like Benito Mussolini than Hitler. 🙁

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 12:51 pm | Permalink
  11. Carter wrote:

    I was referring to EBDOUG’s comment. As for looking like Mussolini, I’m sorry, DT has way too much hair. 🙂

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 6:24 pm | Permalink
  12. Iron Knee wrote:

    Westomoon, thanks for the Taibbi link. Absolutely brilliant rant.

    Thursday, February 25, 2016 at 9:29 pm | Permalink
  13. ThatGuy wrote:

    Taibbi is the master of the polemic. Love his stuff. Great find, Westomoon!

    Friday, February 26, 2016 at 9:18 am | Permalink
  14. Anonymous wrote:

    Mussolini-Trump? LOL
    Separated at birth…

    Friday, February 26, 2016 at 9:57 am | Permalink