Days of Change

Live in the Now | December 23, 2017

One thing most people would agree with about Donald Trump is that he is an expert at self-promotion. This is not due to a PR team or a complex media strategy. In fact, Trump was known to be his own hype man under the pseudonym of John Miller. Trump has spent his whole life defining his own reality and had few people interested enough to dispute. It is a singular quality that may make Trump different than any other president.

What Trump and his supporters call success relies on some level of confirmation bias. If something good happens, it was the direct, but not necessarily quantifiable result of Trump’s actions. When something bad happens, it was either out of his hands or the result of some nebulous enemy standing in Trump’s way.

The Steve Bannon controlled site breitbart.com best exemplifies trying to control Donald Trump, failing, and eventually having to simply flatter him and hope for scraps. This article both gives credit to Trump for everything good, while spewing hatred toward the “Never Trumpers” who are supposedly inconsequential yet belong on an enemies list for the rest of time.

If you’re not a Trump booster like 70% of the US population, what does that mean? Back in 2016, I suspect the conservatives who didn’t vote for Trump were motivated by the toxic behavior of his supporters more than any tape from an entertainment show. I certainly wouldn’t make a “I hope he fails” statement about President Trump. Mostly, I want the Republicans to succeed. If Trump’s success is fueled in part by calling every Republican a swamp creature and blaming them when Trump can’t lead the party, I’m not inclined to hope for that kind of individual success either.

Bannon plans to run a stable of candidates in Republican Senate primaries in 2018. His promotion of Roy Moore over Luther Strange actually cost the party a Senate seat. If the Democrats get to 51, prepare for more blocked legislation and a lack of new judges for years to come. Of course, Trump can still argue Republicans lost on their own merits, but that just means Trump was powerless except for his own self-promotion.

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