It’s official, the GOP now belongs to Donald Trump. They’ve cast a golden figurine in the shape of orange one, dressed in flag-inspired boxer shorts and holding what I believe is an unsigned executive order. “And the people bowed and prayed to the neon god they made.”
Of course, who wouldn’t want a leader like that? Just by being Trump, he makes everybody look better. If Trump were president Ted Cruz could have spent a month in Cabo San Lucas, or the resort of his choice and nobody would have noticed. People would have been too busy reading, reporting, watching clips about what Trump said/did/tweeted about the liberals who were ruining Texas, and how he should send the army in there to shoot anybody who wasn’t going to pay their enormous energy bill.
For Republicans, Trump is a golden Get Out of Jail Free card, a shameless self-promoter with egotistical illusions of self-importance. Nothing Cruz, or Rubio, or Marjorie Taylor Greene, or Lauren Bobert seems significant when Trump is stumbling through a press conference about the pandemic and what a great job he did, almost singlehandedly, battling the virus, the CDC, the WHO, Fauci, Birx, the House of Representatives, the forces of NATO, the deep state and lethargy, complacency, apathy and ignorance. By the time you wade through that stream of untrammeled self-congratulatory offal a wall full of guns during a congressional zoom meeting almost seems mundane.
Trump, the Great Orange Distraction.
Today, Sunday, February, 28th Trump is giving the keynote speech at CPAC. He will talk about Trump, and probably how Trump won the election and how Trump was cheated, and how Trump is going to win the election in 2024. And how Trump builds stuff and makes money and is smarter than anybody else, women love Trump, men fear him, and the press lies about him. And the crowd goes wild.
Whatever he says is swallowed whole by an adoring audience. They love him and see him as a victim. He promotes and embellishes the view, everybody is out to get him. It’s a shared misery, they are victims too. Big business, immigrants, Muslims, the political establishment, the news organizations, are all conspiring against them, and Trump knows how they feel.
He tells them he is one of them, even though he isn’t. He bleeds the middle class through extravagant tax cuts for the wealthy. He leaves them at the mercy of out of control health care costs by eliminating funding for clinics and Planned Parenthood, cutting the legs out of the ACA, his HUD agency has increased homelessness to an epidemic, his Department of Education has bankrupt school districts and eliminated reforms that protected the weakest and poorest.
He doesn’t believe in trickle-down economics, not that anybody ever believed it would work. Screw the poor people, they should have been born rich. He doesn’t try to hide behind empty promises of equality or inclusion. He scorns religious conventions and beliefs and ingratiates himself to television-style evangelists, prophets of doom with built-in armies of blind followers. He brags about discrimination, hate and xenophobia, he wears it right next to the little flag pin on his lapel.
And, he is the new face of the Republican Party. Really, he isn’t so new, he is just more honest about what he wants to do, and they love him. How do you fight that?
 Sounds of Silence by Simon and Garfunkel