|I THINK WE’RE ALL BOZOS ON THIS BUS 5 Aug. 2016||| Print ||
I THINK WE’RE ALL BOZOS ON THIS BUS
5 Aug. 2016
Dear Friends and Patriots,
A long time ago there was a comedic group called Firesign Theater. Firesign Theater put out a series of long-playing albums (that’s records on vinyl for you digit-heads) that were part fantasy, part social satire, and part wild imaginings of some truly twisted minds. To call the albums bizarre is to give them only partial credit. For those of us who were sort of young at the time, they were completely delightful exercises in mental anarchy. I was in the Navy at the time and my friends and I used to memorize and quote entire routines from the Firesign Theater albums. When we were together and bouncing lines off each other with shipmates present who hadn’t been properly indoctrinated the effect was much like speaking in tongues. Unless you’d heard a Firesign Theater album a few times the effect was probably unsettling. Think of a bunch of young guys spouting nonsense at each other, laughing like hyenas, and obviously understanding each and every phrase. Yeah, it was a strange time.
I’m not sure those albums are available anywhere today, which is a great pity. But . . . I do have a book that was released in the late ‘70s; a transcription of all the Firesign Theater albums. I count myself fortunate because recalling and re-reading those skits helps me today. Sometimes they serve as a frame of reference for current events most of you might consider completely irrational; beyond the pale of sanity.
The title of this article is also the title of the fourth Firesign Theater album. The skit by that name centers around the conversations of a group of people who are all dressed up and on a bus headed for a clown convention. I won’t start quoting here because it’s only tangential to the actual subject at hand. Suffice it to say events of the past week or so have dredged the entire album out of the recesses of my mind. Call me strange, if you wish.
This past week I’ve felt as if I were a clown on the Bozo bus. The conversations I’ve heard emanating from my TV are downright bizarre. The utterances of the presidential candidates have become inane and possibly insane babble. Are we all Bozos on this bus, or have we somehow stepped through a worm hole together and are now occupying a parallel universe?
Let’s get to a point or two. I don’t want this to turn into a comedy skit or more insane babble.
As a member of my county Republican Executive Committee I swore an oath that I would support the party’s candidates, and no other. To me that means I’m bound by oath to support Donald Trump. I admit it – the guy is making it very, very difficult.
I was listening to Trump talking to George Stephanopoulis, where he responded to the Khan family’s comments at the Democratic Party convention. It was a little startling. Here’s my take-away . . .
- Trump exhibits mental instability. He seems to be seriously afflicted with some kind of ADD.
- Trump was rambling, almost incoherently.
- Trump exhibited megalomania and narcissism almost to the same extent Barack Obama often does.
- Trump doesn’t seem to have anyone around him who advises him. He needs someone who can tell him “NO!” and be heard. That person doesn’t seem to exist.
- Trump doesn’t know when he’s already won. Even when he owns the high road he opens his mouth and drags whatever situation is at hand back to the gutter. Is this the mark of a smart man or one who’s used to always getting his way and having the last word?
Donald Trump’s personality flaws bode ill for the future. We used to think a half-dead three-legged goat could beat Hillary, but if The Donald doesn’t shape up, we’re wrong. He has an enemy, and that enemy’s name is Donald James Trump. When the talking heads complain that he can’t get out of his own way they make an excellent point. Is he better than Hillary? In some ways he is, but in other ways he’s no better at all. Someone needs to take his smart phone away from him to keep him from Tweeting. Someone needs to manage how and when he responds to anything.
How can we feel confident in turning America over to someone who has such little self-discipline? Will I vote for him? Yes, I will. I feel I have no choice. But, the prospect of a Trump presidency scares me. I’m scared of the absolute unknown. I know Hillary is a crook and a progressive ideologue. I know what she’ll do. I don’t have a single clue of anything Donald Trump may or may not do. He’s the biggest political wild card in our nation’s deck.
Many may wonder why Donald Trump behaves the way he does. I can think of three scenarios that could explain him. One of them might even be right. Time will tell, or maybe not. If he keeps going the way he is, he’ll lose the election handily and it won’t matter. But, just in case it does, here are the three scenarios. Take your pick. I think I already know what’s up with him, but I throw in two other thoughts because I know others believe them.
Scenario 1 – Trump The Stalking Horse. This notion was floated very early on in his campaign. The idea is he’s really in the race to guarantee Hillary Clinton gets elected. Based on the wildly provocative behavior of Mr. Trump, this notion isn’t as far out as some might want to think. Do I believe it? No. But, I still hear the thought expressed by some very worried Republicans. They just don’t say it very loudly.
Scenario 2 – What you are seeing is the result of a well-thought out strategy, with well-practiced tactics. The idea is Mr. Trump knows exactly what he’s doing, knows his audience, understands that keeping everyone (especially the media) in an uproar will eventually create an enthusiasm in the undecided voters because he believes they want a spontaneous and unpredictable president instead of yet another representative of a failed status quo. Do I believe this notion? No. Undecided voters are undecided because they’re looking for the safest bet. Trump owned casinos. He understands the kind of people who sit on fences instead of betting the farm. I see no sign of an overarching strategy. I see no actual tactics pursued. Do you?
Scenario 3 – Donald Trump is a classic example of a silver spoon-raised political dilettante. He was raised in privilege, despite his protestations to the contrary. He never worked with his hands and has only a passing interest in the lives of average Americans. He’s never known true hardship. I suspect his idea of hardship is when the menu of his evening meal gets altered because the grocery store failed to deliver enough caviar to feed him and all his guests. He has lived for decades surrounded by sycophants, whose main interest every day is keeping “The Donald” in a good mood. His typical reaction to criticism indicates a startling level of immaturity. His desire for revenge, no matter how slight, may indicate narcissism. His continuous grandiose boasting identifies a megalomaniac. Such people do exist in the highest reaches of politics and society. As a fat cat businessman he runs in the company of many who are similar to one degree or another. If he succeeds in politics and becomes our President he can find people like him as heads of other nations. He’ll find the Castro brothers, Robert Mugabe, Vladimir Putin, and Nicolas Maduro to be kindred spirits. This is what I truly believe of Donald Trump. He has the personality of hundreds of tin-pot dictators, kings, and princes that have populated the world throughout history. It’s not his fault. It just is.
So, I’m of the mind to believe I’ll cast my vote for a man who would find today’s Cuba, Zimbabwe, Russia, or Venezuela to his liking. Is it any wonder he’s constantly made positive remarks about Vladimir Putin? He recognizes Putin as a kindred spirit. The big difference between Trump and the others cited may be significant, though, and is worth pondering upon. Donald Trump has been rich and powerful since he was a very young man. He came by his status by inheritance and inherited contacts. The others came by their power and riches by clawing their way up. Who knows if Trump even craves power and riches? His life has always been that way to one degree or another. It’s difficult to say what that fact implies in the future.
Because of the choices I’m faced with, I have only one that appears rational to me. I can’t vote Green because I’m just not that reactionary. I can’t vote Libertarian Party because I don’t think they can succeed in governing if they should succeed in getting elected. I can’t vote for Hillary, for reasons we all know. That only leaves Trump.
Trump owned casinos. Countless people went to those casinos and wagered. Some wagered entire paychecks. America is now Trump’s casino. He wants us to bet our farms on him. He wants to convince us he’s where the smart money will go. If he’s wrong, Hillary wins. If he’s right, everything about America’s future becomes an open question. But, I’m thinking today that he’s not right. Because of his own inability to listen to good advice and establish a coherent campaign strategy and tactics to accomplish the goals of that strategy, I fear his campaign is doomed.
Can Republicans stand three straight losses? Can we stand losing to a candidate who would be easily beaten by a half-dead three legged goat? Can Republicans adapt to the notion that we’re all just a bunch of Bozos riding the Trump bus to a convention of clowns? Can’t someone do something to end the madness and restore some sanity to this circus?