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Sundin column: The Real Donald Trump

Hal Sundin
As I See It

The aftermath of the 2020 National Election has revealed Donald Trump as even more of a threat to American Democracy than many of us had realized. It clearly demonstrated him to be a psychopathic spoiled brat, who never should have been elected to the office of President of the United States.

Instead of performing the duties of that office, he has devoted all of his attention to denying the outcome of the election and attempting reverse it — plus his usual lies and tweets — and golf.

Trump’s 306-232 victory over Hillary Clinton was, in his words a “landslide,” but victory by Joe Biden by the same margin in 2020 was not, and in Trump’s distorted vision was “rigged.”

In spite of election result certifications, recounts and court rejections of all of Trump’s and his lackey, Rudy Giuliani’s efforts, the 2020 election was the most secure in our country’s history — in anticipation of the likelihood of a challenge from Trump if he lost.

The Democratic majority in the House of Representatives should impeach Trump for the “high crime” of violating his presidential oath to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States” with his attempt to invalidate certified results of the election.

The Senate Republicans would then be forced to declare whether their allegiance is to the Republican Party, or to the United States of America. The latter choice would not allow Trump to “hold and enjoy any Office of honor,” which would be well deserved.

President Trump has also committed the high crime of subjecting Americans to more than 12 million cases and over a quarter of a million deaths due to his grossly incompetent mismanagement of the Covid-19 pandemic.

First he told us we had nothing to worry about, it would be gone by April. Then, when it was breaking out all over the country, he dumped it on the states, leaving them to compete with each other for medical supplies, driving up their cost. He ignored the advice from doctors, deriding their call for masking and calling them “idiots,” and claiming that it would just go away.

And now that it has come roaring back, he has chosen to ignore it, directing all of his attention to conning people into voting for him. His inaction has tanked the economy, costing 10 million people their jobs, and increasing the national debt by several billion dollars.

Trump’s foreign policy is also a disaster. He has alienated all of the western European nations by trashing NATO, berating their leaders, pulling out of the Iran nuclear deal, the Paris climate change agreement and the WHO, thoroughly gutting their faith in American leadership.

The only country he has pleased is Russia, because of his slavish admiration of Vladimir Putin.

Donald Trump is an inveterate liar. But what is truly disturbing is how he has been able to win over so many Americans to accept his lies as truth. He has followed Adolph Hitler’s playbook by which he took over the Weimar Republic in 1933: if you tell big lies loudly enough and often enough, people will believe them, especially if you play on and amplify their fears and hatreds. With Hitler it was the Western Powers and the Jews; with Trump it’s the liberals, African and Hispanic Americans, and all immigrants.

Back in the 1930s, when you went to the movies you got a cartoon, a newsreel and a short comedy all in addition to the main feature. I can remember seeing the wildly cheering crowds around Hitler. The yelling crowds at the Trump rallies were a frightening carbon copy of the adulation of Hitler.

There is also a financial reason for Trump’s desperate attempt to remain in office. The (in his words) “great businessman and deal maker” has some overwhelming debts coming due — $300 million in personal loans and $900 million in real estate debt — from which he is protected while he is the President.

Presidential constraint is the most essential ingredient for the proper functioning of our political system. Trust is the glue of a successful free society. Fear is the currency of the autocrat. Trump was the perfect example of a true autocrat. Technology is his friend; science is his enemy.

America’s best traditions have been under attack from our own president. Democracy cannot survive in a swamp of mutual dislike. I hope we have learned a lesson; we will see what the future brings.

“As I See It” appears on occasion in the Post Independent and at postindependent.com. Hal Sundin lives in Glenwood Springs and is a retired environmental and structural engineer. Contact him at [email protected]

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