There is really only one person on the planet who can make Karl Rove seem a benign and likable character and that is Donald Trump. In every conceivable manner, Trump epitomizes the traits that so much of the world is beginning to mistake for the character of the rest of America. His ego, of course, is the most off-putting. Trump believes lesser humans look at him as the embodiment of miraculous accomplishment and intellect and we are all fortunate to live during the time of his incarnation. Nothing was more enjoyable in recent TV viewing than watching Trump's smug mug hover behind New Gingrich with a look that suggested Trump had created in his own image the slightly less self-involved Gingrich.
"He's an American icon, in his own right," Newt said.
He meant to add, "So am I, and I defeated Communism, invented the microchip and twist off beer caps, and have more convolutions in my gray matter than I do in my political ideology."
But he didn't say that. Instead, Newt said he would participate in a GOP presidential debate moderated by Trump. More surprisingly, he admitted this without public embarrassment. Donald Trump has demonstrated he knows as much about presidential politics and issues as he does humility. But there are Republican candidates for the White House who intend to show up and let him ask them questions.
Not Ron Paul, though, or Jon Huntsman, the only two truly principled individuals in the GOP race. Huntsman said he refused to "kiss Trump's" ring, and on her Twitter account, one of his daughters added the phrase, "or any other part of Trump's anatomy." Paul derided what he described as a "circus atmosphere" beginning to surround the GOP contest. Presumably, he didn't just notice this and was using Trump's involvement as an exclamation point on the situation.
In fact, Newt is right about Trump. The developer, reality show host, and walking human satire is an American icon. So are the former Speaker and the pizza king philanderer. They are icons of what is wrong with the Republican Party, and increasingly, America. Each has a degree of presumptuousness that is threatening any hopes of solving what ails the United States. Herman Cain seemed to have never given any thought to an issue beyond selling books when he decided to run for president and operated under the premise, as do many candidates for high office, that if I can run a business I can sure as hell run a country, which is patent nonsense. His absolute ignorance of issues and geography was an insult to the democratic process and an embarrassment for his party. He may have jumped into the contest for no other reason than to sell books and raise his speaking fees.
Trump, though, is much worse. He thinks people care what he thinks. The egoist used the early part of the presidential selection process to promote himself and his silly TV show while suggesting he was going to be a candidate. Trump, though, is a coward. He will never run for president or any other high office because he realizes no one buys into his absurd view of himself as having anything valuable to contribute. He cannot win any type of election. Although he appears to have an innate skill for judging who can do the best job of selling trinkets or vendor food on the sidewalks of New York City, this does not qualify him to be more than a broadcast bully. The Republican candidates that would sit or stand before Trump and take his questions seriously will not be taken seriously by voters. When Donald Trump has influence over the future of America, the democracy is doomed. Everything that is unappealing about our country is manifested in his ego, personality, and arrogant countenance.
Kind of like Newt.
And unlike Huntsman.
Gingrich acted like he was willing to kiss whatever body part Trump thought needed affection. They met for more than an hour, which was certainly not enough time to talk about each other's greatness, but TV cameras were waiting on the street. The Republican Party was swirling in a circle at the bottom of the toilet, given a quick flush by Newt's hypocrisy and Trump's unbridled greed.
"New York hasn't ended up a dream world for the poor," Gingrich pointed out in 1989. "It has become a place where Donald Trump manipulates the game."
Which Newt clearly thinks is okay if it's being manipulated for him. And not the poor. They need to take a shower.
And get a job.
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