What if Donald Trump is just playing the American public for his own gain?
Update: August 16, 2016 Michael Moore posts on why he thinks #WhatsHisName is trying to lose. http://michaelmoore.com/TrumpSabotage/
This isn’t an original thought. I’ve recently read some blog posts that talk about parts of it. But I believe it a powerful enough concept and something deserving of further thought and investigation that it was worth sharing in my own words.
What do we know about him?
- He is incredibly narcissistic.
- He knows the power of media.
- Massive media coverage (positive or negative) is good for his “brand”.
- He has no soul. (OK, perhaps a bit of conjecture). But he certainly has no normal social boundaries. He likes to make damaging or dangerous comments for personal gain.
- He doesn’t like to lose or to appear weak.
What if, and I’m serious, he has simply crafted a strategy to use the US Presidential race as a tool to increase his brand and make himself more money?
There are lots of signals that this might be true.
- He continues to make increasingly wild or outrageous statements that garner massive, in-depth (and tiresome) media coverage.
- These statements risk damaging his potential support from mainstream voters which reduces his chances of getting elected as President.
- Many of these statements have little or no foundation in the truth. However, when confronted with proof that they are untrue he doesn’t recant but pushes his opinion forward even harder.
- He is polarizing i.e. he adopts ludicrous but popular (with particular niches) positions on topics that generate massive demonstrations of support and equally massive protestations that he is loony. All are high quality fodder for trash media.
- The potential that he might run as an independent if he lost the Republican primary race was so strong that the Republican party required him to sign a pledge that he would not run against them if he lost. However, legal opinions have been put forward that the pledge has no binding effects and he could run if he wanted to.
So, if this is true, how will we know? IMHO, by what he does next.
If The Donald really wants to be elected and with the lead in the Republican race he holds now, he’ll start to back off his wild prognostications and positions in order to become more palatable to the general electorate. Without them, he cannot win the Presidency.
However, if he continues to ramp up his rhetoric, the likely outcome is that he will become unpalatable to the general populace and, as a result, will lose the Republican nomination.
If he is truly in this game for himself, he’ll immediately (or perhaps after much public deliberation and speculation which will be covered in breathless tones and via in-depth analysis by all the media outlets) decide “he loves America so much” that he MUST run as an independent.
He knows that he can’t possibly win from this starting position but will milk the opportunity to be the first “credible” independent candidate for President so hard it will physically hurt us. The media channels will eat this up and will give him massive airtime. If he can get 89 minutes of coverage now compared with 30 seconds spent on Bernie Sanders from prime time news in one show this week alone, what will the media siren song of him running on a long shot ticket do for him?
Bottom line speculations:
- Trump is playing it as a (sick) game. Sick because it weakens his country and almost everything he says the stands for.
- He doesn’t want to win the Presidency, just stay in the public eye as long as possible.
- He needs to extricate himself from the game with honor by having some outside influence take away his ability to win but that will let him lose with honor.
- Losing the Republican nomination, running as a third party candidate and staying in the game as long as possible fulfills all his goals.
His worst nightmare? Winning the Republication nomination. The role of President would be WAY too confining for The Donald. As long as he can play “I coulda been a contenda”, he wins.
Now, I’m conflicted. I would hate to see Donald Trump as the Republican candidate for President. However, I would also hate to see that one individual was able to so totally play the American public via the American electoral system that he created wealth for himself while destroying the opportunity for rational discussion of positive approaches to solving the major problems facing the USA.
Time will tell which one I’ll hate more.
Update: Feb 3, 2016. Salon Magazine printed an article claiming they have the backstory on Trump planning his run for President as a marketing ploy starting in 2013. We will have to wait and see if their allegations can be proven true.