Comment Of The Day: “It Looks Like Donald Trump Was Betrayed By Another One Of His Lawyers, Someone Else…Or Himself”[Corrected]

I really don’t want to contribute to the Donald Trump glut in the media and the web, and if everyone else would just ignore the guy like ex-Presidents, non-elected officials currently in office should be ignored, I wouldn’t have to post about him at all. This video from the Ethics Alarms clip archives is relevant..

But the news media won’t stop, simultaneously fueling Trump’s continued influence and prominence and claiming that he is an existential evil who must be destroyed. This obsession was excusable, sort of, when he was President, but now it is pure hypocrisy. Trump, of course, publicity junkie and narcissist that he is, loves the attention, and it makes him stronger. The other side of this weird coin is that he has also been grievously mistreated politically, journalistically  and by the culture, to a historical degree. As with Bill Clinton when he was beleaguered by the Monica scandal, I have to grudgingly admire Trump for his resilience, endurance, and resolve. Clinton, however, only went through such travails for a year or so. With Trump, it has been constant since 2015. His defiance is Churchillian.

In his Comment of the Day, Steve-O-in NJ came up with something I’ve been searching for: a good analogy for the hate that Donald Trump has been subjected to. Tellingly, Steve’s analogy is a nation, not another human being. But in Steve’s example, only one man was demanding destruction, not whole institutions and sectors of society: Cato the Elder, also known as Cato the Censor and Cato the Wise.
Boy, I would much rather write about Marcus Porcius Cato ( Born: 234 BC, Tusculum, Italy; Died: 149 BC, Rome) than Trump. His best quotes alone should pique your interest, among them:
  • “After I’m dead I’d rather have people ask why I have no monument than why I have one.”
  • “An angry man opens his mouth and shuts his eyes.”
  • “Anger so clouds the mind that it cannot perceive the truth.”
  • “Grasp the subject, the words will follow.”
  • “He is nearest to the gods who knows how to be silent.”
  • “He who fears death has already lost the life he covets.”
  • “I can pardon everybody’s mistakes except my own.”
  • “I prefer to do right and get no thanks than to do wrong and receive no punishment.”
  • “If you are ruled by mind you are a king; if by body, a slave.”
  • “Patience is the greatest of all virtues.”
  • “The hero saves us. Praise the hero! Now, who will save us from the hero?”
  • “The worst ruler is one who cannot rule himself.”
  • “Those who are serious in ridiculous matters will be ridiculous in serious matters.”
  • “‘Tis sometimes the height of wisdom to feign stupidity.”
  • “Wise men learn more from fools than fools from the wise.”

Here is Steve-O’s Comment of the Day on the post, It Looks Like Donald Trump Was Betrayed By Another One Of His Lawyers, Someone Else…Or Himself”:

***

Yup. I wonder what it feels like to be Donald Trump and to have Hollywood, most of the journalism industry, the deep state, and half the country want you dead or out of the picture and be willing to do whatever it takes to make that happen, no matter how objectively wrong it might be.

I’m trying to think of any kind of historical example to go along with this, but really the only one I can think of off the top of my head is Cato the Censor and his repeated denunciation, after every speech regardless of the subject matter, that “Carthago delenda est,” “Carthage must be destroyed.” He believed Carthage to be a threat, even though it had now been defeated twice and no longer represented a military force strong enough to contend with Rome, the same as the Democratic Party sees Trump as a threat to both democracy and its continued rule of this country.

Of course, the Carthaginians, carrying the idiot ball, chose to declare war on one of Rome’s allies in North Africa, when the terms of the peace between them and Rome specifically said they could not declare war without Roman assent. That gave the Romans all the justification they needed. They sacked Carthage and sold its entire population into slavery, although the legend that they sowed the earth with salt so that nothing could ever grow again and placed a curse on the site is just that, a legend.

The scary thing is that I can definitely see a lot of those opposed to Trump wanting him dead, every piece of property he owned sold, his name erased from public view, and the fact that he was ever a force in American society forgotten.

I wonder if too many people have been watching too many episodes of Game of Thrones or whatever other non-realistic series (Rings of Power is getting there) are out there, and picking up too much of the wrong ideas from a wrongly run series that relied too much on shocking violence and too little on plot. I think we all know that we aren’t going to kill someone in a fair fight just because we disagree with them, but that’s frankly the least of it. You’re not going to burn someone at the stake for not seeing things sufficiently your way. You’re not going to slip someone poisoned wine and watch his face contort in a disgusting manner in retaliation for a prior scheme. You’re not going to serve your enemy his children in a meat pie before you cut his throat. You’re not going to tie someone to a chair and release his own starved hounds to tear him apart. You’re not going to murder your enemy, his family, his wife, his unborn child, and all his followers just as he is about to marry the love of his life. You’re also not going to stand over a beaten and captured enemy and tell him that you’re going to keep him alive while you wipe out his entire race just so that you can then kill him with the last thing he knows being that he is the last of his kind. You’re definitely not going to burn an entire city to the ground even though it has already surrendered.

As a fantasy writer myself, I have to say I wonder just what goes on in the minds of writers who come up with these things. All but one of the items on that list come from The Game of Thrones series as interpreted for television, for a time one of the most popular shows on the tube until it outpaced the books and culminated in that misfired final season. I don’t think it would be amiss to say that some of these ideas probably leached into the minds of the viewers. It’s really not a far step from watching that sort of thing and cheering that sort of thing to kicking someone in the head and never letting him see it coming or opening up someone’s head with a metal baton driving a car through a parade with the intent of hitting as many people as possible. Heck, those actions are small potatoes compared to what’s on the small screen. It certainly no small step from that sort of thing to betrayal and the politics of personal destruction.

Way back in 2016 and early 2017 those angered at Trump’s election and irrational about it said that we could never allow something like Trump to be normalized. I have to say, I think that goal has come at the expense of normalizing a lot of other things that are not good for America or society in general. Some might say that chief among them is the targeting of one specific individual and the suspension of any and all rules, principles, and guidelines of reasonable behavior, but I’d say that equal to that is the normalization of a dualism where what you do is not good or bad objectively, but completely draws it’s moral and ethical coloration from who and what it is directed against. C.S. Lewis was already heading in that direction in the last Narnia book in which Christ expy Aslan tells someone from the other side who was basically good that he and Devil expy Tash are of such different kinds that nothing good can be done in Tash’s name and nothing bad can be done in Aslan’s, so if you swore by the devil and kept your promise, It is by God that you have sworn and God who will reward you, and if you do a cruelty in God’s name, you’ve really done it in the devil’s name. This is going a step further and saying that, essentially, Trump is worse than the devil, and nothing anyone does that opposes him, no matter how objectively wrong it might be, or who it might harm, is other than right. That’s the thinking of the provisional IRA, that’s the thinking of the communist party, that’s the thinking of the Nazis. It’s perfectly all right to set an IED that ends up killing children as well as police, it’s perfectly all right to shove a helpless prisoner’s face into a full spittoon, and it’s perfectly all right to wipe out a whole faith, as long as you do it in the name of your righteous cause.

6 thoughts on “Comment Of The Day: “It Looks Like Donald Trump Was Betrayed By Another One Of His Lawyers, Someone Else…Or Himself”[Corrected]

  1. I would really prefer that Trump retire from politics (or at least stop back to a king-maker role), but the more they go after him, the more I think that it might be nice for him to run again and win. It’s like they’re trying to create a hero’s story arc for him – first they doubted him, then he won, they still fought him, he seemed defeated…the story is just calling for a final victory.

    Ramsay Bolton got what he deserved. He used the dogs to hunt other people and tear them apart. It’s satisfying to see his tools of destruction turned against him.

    • You are right, at least from a writer’s standpoint. The end of an arc like this would be Trump’s eventual triumph and winning of a second term. The media wanted the arc where the cool new black guy rode a wave of popular discontent all the way to the White House, there’s no reason for this wave not to play out either.

      Yes, Ramsay Bolton was a sadist and a sociopath, and he got exactly what he deserved. I didn’t mind seeing spoiled brat taken up to eleven Joffrey Baratheon or treacherous mass murderer Walder Frey get theirs either.

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