The Art of the Deal…with the Devil

The Art of the Deal…with the Devil April 16, 2020

In 1987, Donald Trump published a book (written by Tony Schwartz) called The Art of the Deal. Unlike many of his actual deals, the book was an enormous success. Trump made his reputation as someone who is skilled at negotiating big real estate deals. The fact that he has had to file for bankruptcies for his businesses six different times seems not to have had too much of an impact on that reputation. Whether he is truly a great businessman or not is neither here nor there as far as I’m concerned. But there is one deal that I have got to give him credit for; he managed to get millions of Right Wing Christians to sign a deal with the Devil. Depsite how depressing that fact is, I really must tip my cap to The Donald, he really nailed that deal.

Trump was somehow seemed to be able to convince Right Wing Christians that he was actually pro-life. He got them to ignore the fact that he had never been against women’s rights to choose to have an abortion before he started considering a run for president. If Trump had run for president when The Art of the Deal was first published, he’d have probably run as a Democrat, and he wouldn’t have stood a chance. Twenty-five years later, when he started seriously floating the idea of running, he did a very smart thing; he surveyed the poltical landscape and looked for his easiest path. He undesrstood that the Christian Right was so tied to the abortion issue that the majority of them would vote for literally anyone if they spouted the right message about abortion and one or two other issues that seem to mean everything to them. So Trump suddenly became a “pro-life conservative Christian Republican.” It was a miracle! No, it actually wasn’t. It was a cold, calculated business choice. Trump saw a bunch of people he could exploit, he saw where most of them lived, he did the Electoral College Map math, and he saw that he had a chance. You’ve got to hand it to him–although I’m firmly convinced that the man is ignorant about most things–he had this formula figured out and played it exactly right. Once he understood just how firmly he had conned the Christian Right, he didn’t even have to hide his con from anyone anymore. He just went around saying things in public (things that should have been enormous red flags to conservative Christians) with complete impunity–I could shoot someone on 5th Avenue and they’d still vote for me–I‘ve never asked God to forgive me, I never felt the need–grab them by the pu**y–I could go on and on, but you get the point. Trump managed to get the Christian Right to buy in lock, stock, and barrel to his ruse. A man who is likely personally responsible for a considerable number of abortions put an “R” next to his name and the Christian Right just mindlessly jumped on board.

Since then, despite more than three years of a non-stop horror show that is culminating now in an unprecedented health care crisis which Trump has bungled from the start, the Christian Right (the most extreme portion, at least) seems to have only steeled their reserve when it comes to their support of this charlatan. Now, as Trump seems bent on overextending his Constitutional power by attempting to force states to begin to open back up for business as usual, despite the overwhelming majority of the scientific/medical community’s dire warning against it, we are seeing the Christian Right take to the streets to demand that the lockdown be lifted. We are seeing people who claim to be so pro-life that they would vote for a man such as Trump, saying things like, the loss of human life is not as important as getting the economy running againLet’s talk about how pro-life you are again, Christian Right.

We have seen, time and again, Right Wing pastors defying social distancing orders and holding church services despite the health risks and, predictably, we’ve seen many of those churchgoers get sick from Covid-19. At least two pastors who have railed against the “overreaction” to the Covid-19 pandemic and refused to follow proper protocols have contracted the illness and died. We have even seen some from the Christian Right threatening widespread violence should Trump lose the election. A few months ago, a Right Wing Florida pastor, Rick Wiles, issued this public statement:

“However he leaves, there’s gonna be violence in America. I believe there are people in this country, veterans, there are cowboys, mountain men, I mean guys that know how to fight,” he said, “and they’re going to make a decision that people who did this to Donald Trump are not gonna get away with it. And they’re gonna hunt them down,” the pastor said. “The Trump supporters are going to hunt them down,” he added. “It’s going to happen and this country is going to be plunged into darkness and they brought it upon themselves because they won’t back off.”

I don’t honestly know how else to interpret it. If so many Right Wing Christians are still all in for Trump after everything we have seen, it smacks of nothing less than a deal with the devil. It’s become clear that the far Right segment of Christendom is much more interested in money than in the issues they hide behind.

I wrote this song about what I’ve watched happening to my country. I hope you’ll take a moment to listen.

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