The Repercussions of President Trump


Written by Luke Hamilton

It’s not difficult to imagine the heady excitement of a presidential election day which culminates in a victory rally for Donald Trump. The crisp November wind cutting through the crowd, which has huddled together to await The Donald’s speech. Barely-suppressed glee infuses the audience, as the realization that the reign of Barack Hussein Obama has ended, sets in. President-Elect Trump steps out on stage, his hair flapping in the breeze as if waving to the throng of supporters. Thunderous applause dies out as he squints into the light and opens his mouth to shout, “Barack Obama? YOU’RE FIRED!”

Mic drop. Crowd goes nuts. And a new day dawns in America.

Fast forward to March 2017. President Trump has been in office a couple of months. The patina of victorious conquest has begun to fade. He has sparked an international outcry when he told China that “they suck” and advised them to consult with the citizens of Hiroshima if they think they can mess with us. After his inauguration, the president immediately began conversations with Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan to discuss how they can fast-track his legislation through Congress. As promised, he slapped 45% tariffs on all imports from disfavored countries, which prompted those same countries and their allies to place similar tariffs on American exports.

Jump a year further into the future. Imagine that the honeymoon is now officially over, and the time has come for conservatives to take a stand. The issue could be anything: further erosion of religious liberties, support for Planned Parenthood from the Trump White House, the continuation of Obamacare’s individual mandate, etc. How would President Trump react to a grassroots effort, led by conservatives, aimed at halting progress toward one of his objectives? Would he take the opportunity to examine his position and reach out to conservative leaders in order to reach a resolution? Would he direct his policy advisors to find a way to address the concerns expressed by the base? Of course not.

He would react the same way he reacts to anyone who dares to interfere with his agenda. Effusive scorn, juvenile ridicule, and open contempt. Currently, there are conservatives who snicker over his brutish treatment of opponents (e.g., calling Megyn Kelly a bimbo, labeling Ted Cruz a “p###y”), but what if that ire was directed squarely at you and yours? Right now, Trump and his supporters are aligned in a common quest: to get him into the White House. But how does the dynamic change when a portion of his base finds fault with his actions or one of his positions? You’re either on The Donald’s good side, or you’re not. Those who aren’t might as well be cannon fodder.

Why does this matter? While designing our system of checks and balances, the Founders realized there would always be one over-arching check to power: you and me. If things ever decayed to the point that the structural systems designed by the Founders were compromised, they knew that a runaway branch of the Federal government could always be checked by We the People. As we’ve seen under Obama, the difficulty enters in when the balance is shifted severely to one branch and that branch is governed by an egomaniac who views the public as his servant instead of himself as the public’s servant.

Every campaign has at least one moment when the polished mask slips and the candidate inadvertently releases more information about their character or their plans than they intended. Trump had a Joe-the-Plumber moment a week ago on Fox News. Speaking about how the race will change once more candidates withdraw, Donald said, “Now we’re down to not very many people. And, once you get to a certain level, it changes. I will be changing very rapidly. I’m very capable of changing to anything I want to change to.” This is not the statement of a staunch defender of principle. This is the honest admission of a Machiavellian pragmatist.

Ask yourself what would happen if Trump’s brand of Machiavellian pragmatism were to slip behind the wheel at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue? If Donald were handed the keys to the IRS, DEA, FBI, FDA, and CIA, can there be any doubt that he would use them for his own ends? Obama used them to advance the radical anti-colonial dreams of his father by deliberately weakening the foundations of America in order to achieve a measure of so-called social justice. Trump doesn’t care about radical political philosophy or socio-political change. He cares about winning and will do what it takes to be successful. The crucial question is, what happens when Trump’s best interests diverge from America’s best interests? Would he be willing to subjugate his own goals (i.e., lose) for the good of the nation? Or would he use all of the power of the executive branch to enact his will and punish his detractors?

Haven’t we had enough arrogant, vindictive thuggishness from the White House over the past eight years? Many have railed for two terms about Obama’s strong-arm tactics, his open contempt for the rule of law, and his refusal to work with those with whom he disagrees, yet instead of seeking to replace President Obama with a principled conservative who will stand on an unshakable moral foundation, a good majority of the base is swooning over someone who conducts himself much like the man he’s seeking to replace. Trump’s supple pragmatism and menial bullying testify to his Alinski-esque tendencies.

The truly great presidents in American history have been able to combine strong leadership with humility. Not the bowing-to-dictators type of humility, but an understanding that the president is only one individual in a long line of public servants, entrusted with the well-being and freedom of a vast number of people. It’s not about him, it’s about us. A worthy president is willing to suffer a personal setback for the good of the nation. Anyone who seeks to lead this great nation should be well familiar with sacrifice. I’m not sure that Donald has ever conceived of a world which isn’t about him.

If the campaign is any indicator, a Trump presidency would be a circus. Circuses can be fun in small doses, but no one wants to live in a circus. And no one should trust the security and prosperity of their household to a clown.

We need a leader with knowledge, courage, humility, unshakable moral principles, diplomatic subtlety, and a proper respect for the office and the people who placed him there.

We need a leader who isn’t Donald Trump.

Luke Hamilton
Luke Hamilton is a classically-trained, Shakespearean actor from Eugene, Oregon who happens to be a liberty-loving, right-wing, Christian constitutionalist.  He spends his time astride the Illinois-Wisconsin border, leading bands of liberty-starved citizens from the progressive gulags of Illinois to [relative] freedom on the other side of the Cheese Curtain.  Hamilton is the creative mind/voice behind Pillar & Cloud Productions and owes all to his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, whose strength is perfected in his weakness.

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