Friday, May 13, 2011


My Best Friend proclaims eureka moments with an enthusiastic, “Well, there you have it!” One of those moments for me was Tavis Smiley’s recent assessment of Donald Trump. While I take exception with just about everything that Smiley’s says (I defend his right to express his opinions), I do agree that we allowed a “publicity-starved reality TV purveyor to lead us down this slippery slope” and that Trump’s allegations that Obama was not born in the US were motivated by nothing more than, “political gain, ignorance, or something more sinister…” I do wonder about Smiley’s “or something more sinister” remark, which validates that Smiley’s intent and my acceptance of his remarks are on two different planes and we would probably agree that Hitler wasn’t a nice person either - another eureka moment.

What his statements did accomplish was to bring us together (ingloriously) on one issue though Smiley sees the world only and deliberately through the filter of the Black Perspective many times to the exclusion of the bigger picture. His Achilles heel is that he honestly doesn’t understand the view from 40,000 feet and that will keep him always looking up. Smiley seemingly wants Obama to be the unilateral Black President and is discomforted when he addresses issues for the good of the many. Smiley is in the estimation of many one of the more divisive elements in our country today – espousing racist attitudes and perspectives from the far left rather than collaborating and building consensus. I could go on about Smiley (and will in another post) though this offering was originally intended to be all about Donald Trump.

Trump’s a smart guy who likes the camera, knows how to stir the pot, push buttons though one who has earned and, conversely, lost a hell of a lot of money. Trump filed corporate bankruptcies in 1991, 1992, 2004 and 2009. While Trump seemingly lives on the edge of corporate financial disaster and though he has had to relinquish some controls here and there - he has, admittedly, mostly come out smelling like a rose. By his own admission, he knows how to work the system.

The Donald is an ego maniac who has the potential to turn our whole political landscape into soap opera and theatre. For example, his recent estimation of GOP rival Mitt Romney was not to comment on his political perspectives save that he didn’t know him though he (Trump) was much wealthier than Romney therefore a better businessman? For Trump it all seems to come down to money and the ratings. Indeed, many believe that Trump’s ultimate goal is to build his celebrity and the ratings for his TV show.

Though many have applauded Trump’s resurrection of the so-called Obama birthing controversy, we feel that it will have the ultimate effect of revealing him as a threat to the legitimate political process in our country (Sarah Palin, enter right). For many of us that “birthing” issue was dead years ago, but for Trump it was the chance to stir the pot again and a vehicle to open yet another door, perhaps a run for the GOP 2012 nomination for President. Those who respond positively to his drivel and foolishness deserve him…

The whole issue is suspect at best and idiocy at its height. Obama as a former US Senator let alone presidential candidate was vetted by his own party, his opponents and we assume various agencies of the US Government. GOP candidate Mike Huckabee and Newt Gingrich (who pathetically cites Obama’s “Kenyan, anti-colonial” behavior) have seemingly also succumbed to the “birthers.”

Embarrassingly, while Trump and others were playing their “birther” cards Obama was busy with the work of the Country including the planning of the operation that brought down arch villain Osama bin Laden. Ooops! Coincidentally, we note that the Donald has been pretty quiet for the last week. One Friend opined that, “It’s difficult to talk with your foot in your mouth.”

In retrospect the timing of Trump’s reality show approach to politics should be fodder for a Saturday Night Live, but then again Trump gives us so much to work with… Maybe he’s the lead man for the Republican circus headed to town. What was surprising to me was how long it took for many Republicans to attack Trump for what he is though most appeared more concerned that the news media's fascination with Trump was distracting and diverting attention from them. That will soon change as Trump starts attacking the other Republican candidates.

Conservative newspaper columnist George Will of the Washington Post told ABC News' "This Week" in their online "Green Room" segment that Trump is a "blatherskite." Will then proudly clarified, “That is a word my grandmother was fond of as someone who blathers promiscuously." We looked it up and to our great pleasure found it to be of Scots origin dating from around CE 1650. It refers to a person who talks foolishly and at great length without making much sense. We agree.

George Will says it all for me, “So the Republican winnowing process is far advanced. But the nominee may emerge much diminished by involvement in a process cluttered with careless, delusional, egomaniacal, spotlight-chasing candidates to whom the sensible American majority would never entrust a lemonade stand, much less nuclear weapons.”

How can we trust any candidate who deliberately and with forethought chooses to address divisive, trifling matters – straying so far off course from the substantive issues of the day? The Donald has the means and the influence to accomplish so much good in his own domain yet he chooses to be a comic book character. What a waste… As Chris Matthews has suggested, The Donald has given new hope to conspiracists, everywhere. Reality where art thou?


Ned Buxton

PS – On May 15, 2011 NBC announced that it would be renewing The Celebrity Apprentice for 2012 with or without Donald Trump. On May 16, 2011 Donald Trump after flying like an eagle or perhaps more like Icarus given his falling poll numbers fell to earth as an announced non-candidate. The Donald in an eloquent and well stated press release expressed his regrets declaring that, “…business is my greatest passion and I am not ready to leave the private sector.” We have not seen the last of The Donald. NB

1 comment:

--Johnson said...

I really don't think I could AGREE with you more. Well-written and insightful. I get the feeling I never have to check your sources.--Really amazing work!!