Tuesday, Donald Trump declared himself the "presumptive nominee" of
one of this country's two major parties. He has said in the past that
his behavior, his name calling reality-show performance, was what
allowed him to vanquish the competing candidates, and that when this is
done, he would become "Presidential."
Here is the full transcript
of his speech from the New York Times. Now it can be fairly
evaluated, and let me say, that while I could not support either of the
Republican candidates, a part of me wanted Donald Trump to actually do
the transformation that he has promised. He does have a chance, based
on unknown events, to actually become our next President, to represent
this country to the world, and be the commander in chief of our
military. I wanted very much to see a different person.
As a performer he does a single. Like a stand up comedian, he has a theme, a persona, and an audience who loves him. He did not have to give this speech now. He could still be in performance mode and wait until he gets the nomination, but this was a preview of whether he had the will and the capacity to make the transition he promised. The world would be watching.
He was Donald J. Trump that Americans love"...and fear"".and hate. He has now confirmed that what you have seen is what you will get. There will be no chief executive who is eager to become more than the showman.
Here's an example of what this speech was, more of the over the top castigation of the current administration that may be the way we do politics, but it is NOT of the idiom of a statecraft.
"".. the humiliation of the United States with Iran's treatment of our ten captured sailors -- so vividly I remember that day. In negotiation, you must be willing to walk. The Iran deal, like so many of our worst agreements, is the result of not being willing to leave the table.
The implication is that the second sentence follows from the first. That the "humiliation" of the seamen was associated with inability to negotiate. Here's the reality, from this timeline released from the U.S. Navy.
Initial operational reports indicate there was a verbal exchange between the Sailors and the Iranians but no exchange of gun fire. Armed Iranian military personnel then boarded the RCBs, while other Iranian personnel aboard the Iranian vessels conducted armed over-watch of the boats with mounted machine guns. At gunpoint, the RCBs were escorted to a small port facility on Farsi Island where the U.S. Sailors disembarked and were detained for approximately 15 hours. At this point there are no indications that the Sailors were physically harmed during their detainment.
Most importantly we now know there is no Trump V 2.0, At times I actually had hope (after all this is a world class con man who made a good living on people like me) He has upped the ante, having adopted the practice of the "Big Lie" defined in Wikipedia, including Joseph Goebbels succinct definition:
The essential English leadership secret does not depend on particular intelligence. Rather, it depends on a remarkably stupid thick-headedness. The English follow the principle that when one lies, one should lie big, and stick to it. They keep up their lies, even at the risk of looking ridiculous.
Trump's version of this, has already repeated endlessly at campaign speeches, and we now know it will be continued in his Presidential Persona:
Although not in government service, I was totally against the war in Iraq, very proudly, saying for many years that it would destabilize the Middle East.
Got it now? It was because he wasn't in government service that his opposition to invading Iraq is still undocumented. As a simple citizen, just a guy in the construction business, there was nothing he could do. Of course he found a way to express himself when he wanted to -- from the Guardian
" He paid a reported $85,000 to take out advertising space in four of the city's newspapers, including the New York Times." The article begins: Yusef Salaam was 15 years old when Donald Trump demanded his execution for a crime he did not commit.
Nearly three decades before the rambunctious billionaire began his run for president -- before he called for a ban on Muslims entering the United States, for the expulsion of all undocumented migrants, before he branded Mexicans as "rapists" and was accused of mocking the disabled -- Trump called for the reinstatement of the death penalty in New York following a horrific rape case in which five teenagers were wrongly convicted.
What makes this big lie that he opposed the Iraqi war so egregious is that he did have the capacity to have been a major figure of opposition. Just as he went full bore to have five black kids convicted, he could have possibly energized the opposition, and actually done something productive that would have given him credence as an activist. He didn't. So he uses a hackneyed propaganda device to pretend that he did, demeaning all of us who actually did march, and fight against this war.