Wasting Ink on Donald Trump and the Political Cage Fight

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Posted by The Savvy Retiree on April 6, 2016 in Uncategorised

“Dictatorship naturally arises out of democracy and the most aggravated
form of tyranny and slavery out of the most extreme liberty.”
Plato

This morning, we woke with a startle. We rushed to the bedroom shutters to see what helter-skelter might be afoot on the streets below.

Surveying the scene, we noticed the sun rising from the east, more or less as expected. The sky, for its part, was still blue. And when we dropped a yellowish leaf off our little Juliette balcony, just to check, it blew a little in the breeze…but then tumbled gently to earth.

Let’s see. The heliocentric model. Rayleigh scattering. Newtonian gravity.

Everything seemed to be in order. And yet…

Something wasn’t quite right.

Grabbing an imaginary candlestick and adjusting an imaginary nightcap, we proceeded down the hall to our office to check the The Savvy Retiree Daily reader mail…ordinarily a source of calm and permanence in a frequently chaotic universe.

And there it was. The source of our vague unease…

More on that, below. But first, a little refresher about our mission here.

Recall that the beat of this publication is independence…it’s about discovering ways to live a simpler, better, freer life.

At a minimum, that means not being dependent on a system that only works to hold us back. A system rooted in debt…mindless consumerism…reality television…empty politics…cerebral claptrap…paycheck-to-paycheck subsisting…fake plastic food…fake plastic celebrities (but we repeat ourselves)…

In addition to tending our own garden, it also means remaining vigilant…keeping an eye on potential threats to our wealth, our health and our general wellbeing.

And so it is for this reason—and for sheer entertainment value—that we occasionally turn our attention to one particular arena.

Last week we took a break from another muddy topic (we were discussing money, or wealth independence)…and waded knee deep into the even swampier subject of politics.

In an issue titled “Black Holes, Diapers and Trump’s Winning Strategy,” we set to wondering what it is that makes The Donald so popular?

We were curious, you see. Still are.

We want to understand how a man who lives in a $100 million penthouse nevertheless manages to “connect with the everyday, man-on-the-street.” From high up on the 66th floor, it’s a wonder he can see down that far. His voters must appear to him as ants on the pavement…

And yet, he has so many of them. They line up to shake his hand…to rally at his events…to cheer on their hero.

What gives?

When we checked the T&P mailbox this morning, we noticed a few readers had written in to suggest—politely, for the most part—that your editor might have lost his mind to waste any digital ink on Mr. Trump.

Our “vague unease” laid bare…it was at least kind of our readers to suppose we had much mind to lose in the first place. (If you missed your chance to take umbrage at our remarks, you may wish to do so here.)

“Trump’s ‘Winning strategy?'” fumed one reader. “What’s ‘winning’ about the guy, exactly? He’s a racist, xenophobic misogynist with no understanding of what it takes to run a company, much less a country!”

We have no argument with our reader’s observations. To the charges leveled against him, The Donald enters his own plea every time he opens his mouth.

But what’s “winning” about the guy, as we noted in our essay, is his strategy. At least it is so far. That’s not our opinion, by the way. It’s what the numbers tell us. At time of writing, The Donald leads the republican pack by a hefty margin.

Of course, “winning” at politics isn’t quite the same as “winning” in other areas of life. Marriage, for example, rewards honesty…fidelity…and not a little humility.

These virtues are to politics as a vacuum is to nature, namely: abhorrent.

When it comes to “victories” in politics, we rather prefer the sentiments of J.R.R. Tolkien:

“The most improper job of any man… is bossing other men. Not one in a million is fit for it, and least of all those who seek the opportunity.”

Nevertheless, the Trump train is impossible to ignore. Especially if you enjoy a good spectacle. His headline-grabbing campaign careens from state to state…scooping up delegates across the country…and eviscerating the GOP establishment in the process.

We thought the Democrats, especially, would be thankful for what Trump has done to his own party. The left has spent years—and countless millions of dollars—throwing their best men and women at the “deep right wing.” Now, here comes a man from within the party itself…to tear the whole thing asunder!

The two favored “G-men,” Bush and Rubio, are both down and out. Cruz has one knee on the mat. Kasich is still in the corner, wondering if the bell has rung to begin the fight.

We watch from the bleachers…eager to see who will throw the next chair, who will deliver the next body slam, who will pin whom to the mat.

We have no beef with our dear reader’s opinion, above. We only wished they’d written in earlier, so we could have quoted them in advance!

“Racist…xenophobic…misogynist…and with no understanding of the task at hand?”

Sounds like politics to us. Turns out, all really is right with the world.

Image ©iStock.com/andykatz

T&P Tool Shed

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By the staff of Truth and Plenty

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