About eleven months ago, I wrote about the beginning of the not-very-entertaining side show that was the lead-up to the primary elections. At that time I never imagined that Donald Trump would, by any stretch of the imagination, become the President-elect of the United States. The thought never crossed my mind.
It's not that I was expecting Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders to be the next President. I've been around a long time, and since George H.W. Bush succeeded Reagan, we've ping-ponged back and forth between Democrats and Republicans, with mostly two-term presidents. Having a Republican in the White House doesn't surprise me in the least.
But Donald Trump? That crude, loud-mouthed, unscrupulous, bigoted, unfiltered reality-TV star? The man who bankrupted four companies while enriching himself? The man who couldn't even contribute to the writing of his own autobiography in any meaningful way? That Donald Trump?
I honestly don't understand. Not that the Republican field was full of roses or anything, but at least one of the other candidates could have been somewhat trusted to hold his or her tongue from time to time. I don't trust Trump not to be impulsive, and that's something I don't want in a high government office.
This is not me being a liberal crybaby. I'm not a liberal anything. I voted for Gary Johnson, not because I wanted to "send a message," but because I honestly thought that, of the four candidates I could reasonably vote for, he was the one with the best track record. I don't think he was my ideal candidate, but the best I could choose under the circumstances. I always thought that's what I was supposed to do: attempt to elect the best person for the job.
I think, instead, we have picked about the worst person for the job. Not because he's a Republican. Not because he's a conservative (is he? I can't really tell). Not because he picked Mike Pence as his running mate. Strike that; that was really, really bad.
I think Donald Trump is the worst person for the job of President because he has absolutely no interest in serving anyone other than Donald Trump. This isn't supposition; it's been the pattern of his life for many decades. This is a man who can't concentrate long enough to read a book. This is a man who "negotiated with" (brow-beat) the architect of one of his grand hotels to take a fee so low that the man lost money on the deal, for no reason other than that Trump had the muscle to do it.
This is a man with no moral compass. For those of you who voted for Trump, I will not stuff you into some little category and berate you, I will not lump you in with him and accuse you of his behavior. But I will say that whatever it is that you think you voted for, you're not going to get it. Donald J. Trump is not looking out for you. He's not going to turn this country around.
Under Donald Trump, without some radical push-back from Congress (and both houses are now controlled by "his" party, if that actually means anything now), the United States could end up being just another Atlantic City. And no matter what debris Trump leaves in his wake, at the end of it all he will come out personally richer, perhaps parlaying his presidency into another reality TV show, and convinced of his own superiority, a legend in his own mind.
And the rest of us, as has always been the case, will be left to clean up the mess.