Cracks in the Pedestal (Trump’s Pedestal)
As Peter Vermilye, a sage of Wall Street, used to say to me, “Once you’re on the pedestal, you have no place to go but down.”
Crack Number One in Trump’s Pedastal:
The kerfuffle on August 28 regarding the signage at a rally for Donald Trump that read:
“Please have checks made payable to: Donald J. Trump for President, Inc., or cash ready on entry. Thank you.”
The event was being hosted by Ernie Boch, Jr. (purported to be worth $500 million), although both he and Trump (who says he is worth $10 billion, but has yet to prove it) claimed to be footing the bill. Regardless, either one of them most assuredly could have defrayed the cost of the event with a rich man’s equivalent of pocket change.
So why were attendees being asked for money, even if it was for only $50?
is how Trump has described the financing of his campaign. Notice his use of the present tense. What he has never said is: “I will self-fund my entire presidential campaign.”
Trump may be rich, but I’ll wager he doesn’t want to spend his personal fortune on what it will take to try to secure the Republican nomination. And when he capitulates, he’ll be just like all the other candidates — an ordinary person doing his best to raise sacks of money from the public, because that’s what it takes to try to become President of the United States.
Crack Number Two:
On September 3, Hugh Hewitt, the conservative radio talk show host, exposed Trump’s stunning lack of knowledge regarding the leadership of well-known political and terrorist organizations in the Middle East.
Trump’s later diatribe against Hewitt, asserting he asked a
and his retort that
“I’m a delegator. I find great people…..”
are sad defenses and will serve him ill, as future debates will inevitably focus on each candidate’s personal grip on foreign policy and global affairs.
Crack Number Three:
A day later on September 4, Donald Trump “took the pledge,” signing (in ink but not in blood) a piece of paper (not legally binding, mind you) promising to support the party’s eventual nominee, giving up the option to run as an Independent should another candidate get the Republican nomination.
In response to questions on the matter, he stated that he
“got absolutely nothing in response for signing the pledge.”
But wait a minute. South Carolina was threatening to keep his name off its primary ballot if he didn’t sign such a pledge, and Virginia and North Carolina were considering requiring loyalty pledges, as well.
Trump caved! It’s as simple as that. And the quid pro quo was huge: You take the pledge, and your name is on the ballot; You don’t take the pledge and your name is not on the ballot.
Crack Number Four:
Perhaps the lowest blow in Trump’s ad hominem attacks against fellow Republican contenders was his comment on September 2 regarding Doctor Ben Carson, whose genteel demeanor and thoughtful delivery are in sublime contrast to Trump’s own narcissistic style.
In Trump’s own words,
“I just think it’s a very difficult situation that he [Carson] puts himself into, to have a doctor who wasn’t creating
jobs and would have a nurse or maybe two nurses…. I’ve
created tens of thousands of jobs over the years.”
So the only criterion for president is how many jobs you have created? That would imply that the only legitimate candidate for president is someone from a very large private sector organization. Unless you are winking past Franklin Delano Roosevelt, whose New Deal created millions of government-funded jobs for the unemployed during the Great Depression.
Well, there hasn’t been an elected president who hailed from the private sector in Trump’s lifetime. In fact, I believe George Washington may be the only president who had a long private sector career before becoming president.
Without belaboring the point, Trump’s comment about Carson is both vile and absurd, and the litany of his vitriolic jabs against those in both the Republican and the Democratic race for president is losing its appeal as comic relief.
Bombastic rhetoric may fire up the audience, boost television ratings and steal headlines. But it is at best an edifice built on a suspect foundation.
In summary, the cracks in Trump’s pedestal are the harbingers of his day of reckoning. When grandiloquent edicts regarding issues of national, economic and social importance are not backed up by coherent and viable solutions, it can’t be long before the statue topples.
That day is fast approaching for Donald Trump.