Now that’s just silly.

People vote for whatever reasons they see fit — it might be that they belong to a family that has always voted for one party and they are comfortable with that and don’t give any great thought to policy platforms. Or they like one policy a lot and dislike the rest. Or the candidate for the other party has their eyes set too close. A dozen people all think in different directions, let alone 74 million, but if they only have two options at the ballot box, then it’s easy to claim they all have the same reasons for their choice. Sloppy logic.

Likewise your use of the term Nazi, as opposed to mine. I’m not saying the GOP is the same as the German party of eighty years ago, and Trump is a Hitler clone. That’s offensive, and I’m surprised you even imply it.

But discussing current Republican politics without mentioning Trump makes as much sense as mentioning Cuba without Castro or the Civil War without Lincoln. Or Christianity without Jesus.

Human beings are pretty much the same under the skin. We react well to charismatic leaders who tell us things we want to hear.

And on that point, there’s a proven formula for popular success that works independent of any particular policy. Tell your audience they are special people, give them symbols of identity and unity, and blame other forces for their troubles. We, as human beings, react well to that sort of tribalism because we don’t have ancestors who thought otherwise. They lived alone and got eaten by bears.

This sort of thing works well in a limited sense, but if your success only works because you need an enemy to blame for your problems, then sooner or later the wheels fall off.

For one thing, the world is so interconnected nowadays in patterns of finance and trade and transport, not to mention the physical considerations of climate and disease, that “going it alone” is not a good strategy. China didn’t get to its current superpower status without exploiting trade and co-operation. They haven’t fought a real war since Korea.

China, incidentally, gave us Sun Tzu and Lao Tzu. Great philosophical works that operate independently of the technology of the times. Trump is the epitome of the foolish leader Sun Tzu holds up as able to be beaten regardless of how many armies they command. Trump hasn’t been able to use his vast military forces effectively, but has been consistently out-manouevred in the diplomatic world. Putin must have been laughing for the last four years at the chaos in America, and Kim Jong-un has enhanced his presitige at Trump’s expense. The rest of the Western world including America’s closest allies is aghast at Trump’s embrace of a brutal dictator. Human rights and common decency go out the window when there’s a photo opportunity, it seems.

Sorry, Tyler. You can play with words all you want, but the reality is that Trump has been a disaster for the Republican party. In two years he lost House, Presidency, and Senate. The wheels have well and truly come off already, and my guess is that as the incoming administration begins to uncover more evidence, Trump is going to be an increasingly tainted commodity. And most of the Republican Party will have to wear that taint through their unflinching support of a failed tyrant.

My university days were spent on history, philosophy, and popular culture, and while I never used any of those in my employment, I’ve certainly drawn upon them with great delight in watching Trump’s antics.


Britni Pepper has always enjoyed telling stories. About people, places and pleasures.

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