Trump ≠ America

Alas, in his own warped mind, it’s a different story.  Great column from Frank Bruni:

And the recent revelation that he would like to put himself at the center of the nation’s most prominent Independence Day celebration — moving the fireworks to a new spot in Washington and making a speech as part of the occasion — falls into that category.

Most of his predecessors did nothing of the kind. They understood that the day belonged to the country, not its leader, and they didn’t conflate the two.

Trump does, all the time, and it’s alternately annoying, confounding and galling. If you’re not thrilling to his vision and submitting to him, you’re possibly guilty of treason — remember that rant? If you’re asking legitimate questions about unholy alliances that he may have forged or conflicts of interest he may possess, you’re orchestrating a coup.

Trumpian logic, more narcissistic than syllogistic, holds that if it’s the president’s job to lift up the country, then it’s the country’s job to lift up the president — spiritually, financially, with appointments for his cronies and sycophants, with jobs for his kin, with applause and of course with parades.

A parade: That’s how this whole impulse to convert the Fourth of July into the Fourth of Trump started, according to reporting by The Washington Post

Most of his predecessors did nothing of the kind. They understood that the day belonged to the country, not its leader, and they didn’t conflate the two.

Trump does, all the time, and it’s alternately annoying, confounding and galling. If you’re not thrilling to his vision and submitting to him, you’re possibly guilty of treason — remember that rant? If you’re asking legitimate questions about unholy alliances that he may have forged or conflicts of interest he may possess, you’re orchestrating a coup [emphases mine]

And his response to effacement is hyperbole and swagger: He’s like one of those animals that puffs itself up when predators come around, using illusory might to conceal intrinsic weakness…

Independence Day commemorates the breaking free from insufficiently humble rule. It pays tribute to a country being born, not a leader being crowned. And Trump would surely fashion remarks like those during his belated visit to American troops abroad, when he performed an aria of self-congratulation — the only song he knows.

It’s music so familiar at this point that it barely registers. But sometimes you need to pause and listen. And sometimes you need to say how ugly it is.

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About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

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