07 December 2015

The New Donald Trump Campaign 2016  


Every so often, a pariah pops its ugly head in presidential politics. We've had George Wallace and Strom Thurmond; creatures so vile as to play not simply to the lowest common denominator, but to conjure up false fears of our own citizens.

Donald Trump's latest call to ban all Muslim travel to the United States is the lowest kind of rhetoric. It is pond scum on the back of pond scum. It is the branding and commoditization of xenophobia. I wish I could say it would be the death knell of his campaign, but who knows which of his outlandish contortions of air will end up being, in retrospect, the end of him.

Donald Trump cares about one thing: Donald Trump. There is no thought of the Constitution, no thought of American citizens, no thought of American values; there is just the Donald Trump Index, and he is content to pump up it share value whenever he can. 

Make no mistake: Donald Trump is no Republican. He is no Democrat. He is no Independent. He is his own constituency; his own party; his own liability. 

Every picosecond of time he spends doing interviews on major news networks; every visit a giddy news anchor takes to any of his properties; every Tweet and long op-ed spent admonishing and condemning Donald Trump is public relations gold for Donald Trump. It's another private jet; another gold-plated skyscraper; another designer clothing line.

Here is what it is not: worthy of American politics. The same politics that have seen citizens such as Henry Clay, William Jennings Bryan and James Stockdale grace the spotlight. No, our politics are not perfect. We are nasty, we are base, we are grossly misleading every two-to-four years to score cheap points.

But at the end of the day, we are American. We respect the Constitution, though we may disagree on its precise interpretation on issues; we respect our fellow citizens, though we may disagree on social programs or political matters; and we respect American values, though we may disagree over which ones make us truly exceptional.

Donald Trump does none of those things, and therefore has no place in American politics. He is not angling for votes; he is purveying the most public Ponzi scheme in the history of our republic. After more than two centuries, he is all the fears our founders wrote about in The Federalist Papers incarnate.

Therefore, the most important campaign of 2016 will not be for President of the United States; it will be this:

Ignore Donald Trump 2016

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