Are President Elect Trump and his erstwhile campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, gaming all of us?
I kinda think they are.
Here’s the dealio.
President Elect Trump is doing his run-up to the oath-taking in much the same way that he did his cruel little game show, The Apprentice. You know, he called in a bunch of people and waved a “job” in front of them, then made them jump through hoops while he sat there like a little lord of the universe and either “fired” or “hired” them.
It was a sadistic show with a sadistic premise. And millions of people grooved on its sadism.
Now, we’re getting a re-run of the same show, only this time the “jobs” in question are cabinet positions and high-level postings within our government and President Elect Trump’s upcoming administration. Just like in his television show, President Trump calls in lots of candidates and puts them through various hoops in a kind of elimination finals. He parades them in front of the press and gets a fix of having people grovel before him. Then, he moves on.
I was talking about this shoddy way of doing business with friends a week or so ago and one of them remarked that they thought the Donald was using these “meetings” as a way of polling each contender for government office with the public. They think that our President Elect runs potential candidates for positions in his administration up the media flagpole of media and then watches to see how the public reacts.
That’s an interesting idea, and it probably has a bit of truth to it. But there are other factors in everything our President Elect does which I think we’re going to have to consider when interpreting his behavior going forward.
Foremost among them is the simple and obvious fact that he’s a cruel man. And he’s a vengeful man. And he cannot abide any slight to himself.
I think the latest expression of his cruelty is the very public dog and pony show he’s been running concerning the position of Secretary of State. Given the dark shadow of nuclear weapons, this is a position of some importance to our continued survival as a species. It also will have a lot to say about whether or not President Trump ends up spilling our children’s blood in an unnecessary war.
But, once again, President Elect Trump has played it like another episode of his sick little television show. Only this time, he’s gone over the top with it in order to settle a grudge.
Do you remember how he behaved after he got the Republican nomination? Remember the nasty little game he played with House Speaker Paul Ryan about how he was “considering” whether or not to endorse him? That was payback for Speaker Ryan’s refusal to endorse candidate Trump earlier, when the nomination was still a bit undecided. It was candidate Trump, playing his nasty little pay-back game and showing himself to be what he is.
I didn’t keep up with the campaign early on because I was occupied with my own life. But evidently Governor Mitt Romney opposed candidate Trump’s bid for the presidency rather vigorously.
So, everyone was tres surprised when President Elect Trump trotted out Governor Romney for consideration for Secretary of State. But there they were, smiling for the cameras, with Governor Romney looking like a puppy dog, shaking and twittering in his eagerness to please, doing the public grovel before the man he’d critiqued a few months before.
Then, just to make things spicy, Kellyanne Conway took to Twitter and the airwaves, going on about how many tweets she’d gotten from Trump’s followers denouncing the idea of Secretary of State Romney.
Now Mrs Conway has, especially since the big win in November, said things about President Elect Trump that are basically fawning in their admiration and support. She’s toed the Trump line so hard that I’ve lost faith in her willingness to part company with him if he deep-sixes pro life behind closed doors — which I am pretty sure he’s going to do.
There was a time when I regarded Mrs Conway as the canary in the pro life mineshaft. I thought that if/when President Trump sold us out, she would go at him over it and thus let us know what had happened. But I’ve put that idea away.
I’ve watched her behavior since the election, and it’s verging more and more to the role of flattering court sycophant. Just for the record, that’s what I expect to see a lot of, going forward, because I think that’s what our new president elect demands.
Now, I’m not stupid. I knew that wasn’t the deal. I mean, just think about her “reason” for opposing Governor Romney for Secretary of State. It had nothing — and I mean absolutely nothing — to do with what is good for this country. Nope. She said that Governor Romney had “hurt” President Elect Trump during the campaign. That was her reason.
The ridiculous reason Mrs Conway gave for opposing Governor Romney’s nomination was straight out of the Henry VIII Court Sycophant’s Playbook. None of this added up.
Meanwhile, the dummies in the press were going all agog about the “fight” inside Trump transition headquarters, the breakdown among his team over Governor Romney. As if.
Here’s what I think is happening. I think that President Elect Trump wanted big time payback against Governor Romney for his behavior during the campaign. One thing I’m sure of about our president elect is that he’s into petty score-settling.
I think the consideration of Governor Romney is phony. I think President Elect Trump gets off on making people who opposed him come groveling.
I also think that the dealio Mrs Conway is doing with the press is a deliberate thing, a planned act, to, you know, turn the knife a bit. I think they’re gaming us.
I also think it’s not the first time we’ve been gamed and it certainly will not be the last.
Our President Elect is a cruel man.
Sexual assault is cruelty. Going into the dressing rooms at a Miss Teen America pageant and oogling and humiliating the underage girls as they stand there without clothes is cruel. Grabbing people and ramming your hands up inside them against their will, or as he put it, “grabbing their p——“ is cruel.
Terrifying millions of people with the threat of breaking up their families is cruel. Racism is cruel. His television show was cruel.
He is cruel.
And the way he’s auditioning people for his administration is just another act in the crude, trashy way that he uses power to practice his cruelty.
I have no idea why anyone would want to be in the Trump administration. I can’t imagine allowing my name to be associated with his in any way. I wrote blog posts during the campaign when I didn’t feel like writing at all for the express purpose of making it clear that I did not support him. I did that because I do not want my grandchildren looking back on this time and being ashamed of their grandmother.
It made me sad at first that people grooved on this sadistic man’s sadism. It kind of scared me that he had activated the absolute worst in so many people. This is not a leader who appeals to the angels of our better nature. This is a man who inspires hatred, misogyny, racism and cruelty.
It scared me at first when I contemplated what this man is going to do with the Justice Department. His candidacy has already degraded the people of this country, including the Christians. Once the fear of him locks in — and it will — I have no idea how low we will sink.
All that scared me.
But no more.
For some odd reason, this sick little game with Governor Romney and the idiotic way the press has fallen for it shut down my apprehensions. In order to fall into the trap of President Elect Trump’s cruelty, you’ve got to be a bit soft in the head. Your ambition must override your ability to see what is in front of you.
Governor Romney did not have to go trotting over to that interview. He could have said no.
If they want to keep their dignity and their integrity, a lot of people are going to have to start saying no. It’s easy, really, once you get started. Just remember who you’re dealing with.
Are President Elect Trump and campaign manager Kellyanne Conway gaming us?
I think they are.
A lot of people like these cruel games. They’re going to keep watching and grooving on it and allowing it to make them meaner and crueler themselves.
But not me.
And I hope, not you.
We can do what Governor Romney should have done. We can say no.