So here it is, the torrential downpour of insanity that is the Trump Presidency. Morning coffee-ruining news reads like a casualty report of liberties as the Fuhrer in the White House signs record numbers of executive orders with a record low approval rating. With each stroke of his pen Mr.Trump further unravels the fabric of democracy. His Whitehouse – with its alternative facts and its Looney Toons cabinet – is eroding what is left of “the greatest nation on earth.” American exceptionalism, which has long been based on a false premise that it is the best at everything and the one indispensable nation on this pale blue dot in the cosmos, is eroding before our very eyes.
Where are the checks and balances?
Where is the outrage from the Republican establishment that their President has abused from his very first day in office the power of the Presidency, mandating by decree in the form of executive orders wild, potentially ruinous changes to America’s foreign and domestic policies? I ask because President Obama was openly chastised for using the very same power to sign the affordable care act into law – a measure he undertook only after the Republican congress blocked the efforts of his administration to bring about a much-needed change in the way America thinks about healthcare. Where are these nay-sayers now that the narcissist in the Oval Office is living his fantasy of being King?
The border wall, a punitive but highly selective ban on muslim-majority immigration, the assignment of his counselors to the National Security Council, priority for Christian refugees over others, the green light for the Keystone oil pipeline – in stark defiance of the will of the people which halted its construction under a far more popular President more in tune with the electorate – and thus the list goes on.
Where, now, are those who told us our fears – being realized and compounded on a daily basis – were premature, alarmist, pessimistic, and paranoid? “Give him a chance” they said, against the better judgment of everyone with even a passing knowledge of history and in possession of their full mental faculties.
Their absence, their silence, their acquiescence to the despot on Mt.Olympus is telling. Whilst Zeus hurls lightning – to carry on the metaphor – they are nowhere to be seen. Embarrassed perhaps they were fooled. Taken in by the world’s most successful con-man – the charlatan masquerading as leader of the free world. Or maybe they are hoping this will all blow over, like a hurricane, which despite the damage we always survive. This is not that kind of storm. Nature does not take aim at specific places or people intent on their destruction. That is a quality of man, and a particular forte of belligerent narcissists like Trump.
Where, too, are the evangelical masses who supported the divorced, womanizing, compulsive liar in his bid for the Presidency because he is God’s chosen representative of the people? The man who is against refugees unless they adhere to the correct imaginary friend. The man who is so judgmental he can’t fully dedicate himself to the role of POTUS because it gets in the way of his Twitter time, picking fights with his many dissenters – even if those dissenters are the very people who possess the facts. The man who the Pope called a hypocrite not twelve hours ago. That guy is the one they wanted. Surely there is no greater argument in favor of atheism than Donald J. Trump being the best God can do.
Finally, and by extension, we must ask ourselves what is next? What other madness must we endure by Presidential fiat? Where indeed is the line? What must Trump do – what must happen – before we put a stop to this? Here, too, there is cause for concern; if the current system is powerless to stop Trump and his cronies, who – or what – will? The match flame has become an inferno, and still we watch transfixed, as though the flames will not burn us all. As though the conflagration will not suck the oxygen out of the very air we breathe. As though the guy with the flamethrower and a nigh-endless supply of fuel will, after 60 years of shameless self-aggrandizement, learn humility and restraint. If you believe that you are fooling none but yourselves.