From The Book of Sin, a work in progress.
I love Dante’s list of fraudsters – panderers, seducers, flatterers, sorcerers, astrologers, false prophets, corrupt politicians, hypocrites, thieves, fraudulent advisers, evil counsellors, falsifiers, alchemists, counterfeiters, perjurers, and impostors. Each could merit a chapter of its own, providing I could awkwardly negotiate my way through the one on evil counsellors, and as ever the corrupt politicians would need extra space.
Yesterday Isis bombed Brussels, the death toll this time being thirty-one including two of the suicide bombers with up to two hundred and thirty people reported injured. Trump immediately pounced on the atrocity to fuel his hate filled campaign trail rhetoric, calling for the reintroduction of waterboarding and rather chillingly for ‘much worse…’ abandoning us to our own dark imaginings, filling the gaps with nightmarish visions of Gestapoesque proportions given The Donald’s twisted and evil psyche.
But does Trump really belong in the domain of corrupt politicians, a place where the guilty are immersed in a lake of boiling pitch, representing the sticky fingers and dark secrets of their dubious deals?
I’m not sure – not because I’ve done an abrupt about turn and suddenly decided that The Donald is above judgement and that his integrity is without question, but because of the very real question – is he actually a politician?
To me he’s a savvy and ruthless market trader who’s spotted a vacuum in terms of world leadership and in that void has erected a soap box from which to sell his dubious and sleazy wares.
But perhaps more scary than this despotic walnut whip haired fuck is the fact that a great many people actually support him. As we’ve already seen, they like him because “he doesn’t dress like a politician, he doesn’t act like a politician,” in this America already fluffed into an ecstatic fervour by George Double-Yuh fifteen years ago, an America that feels most alive and potent when manning the walls of the Alamo in the war against terror.
And Trumpster Cogburn, his fat fingers buried to the knuckles in organised crime, litigation and more than a few Eastern European women, is leading the charge with the cry, “fill your hand, you son of a bitch!” and the promise to ‘make America great again’ without actually referencing a time when America was er… ever great, whatever great means. (in the UK it’s generally meant subjugating brown people, exploiting all their resources, partitioning their homeland and leaving the bastards to fight it out among themselves). Trump’s team meanwhile have painstakingly constructed this fetid Trojan Horse of a false idol in the notion that The Donald is a man who ‘tells it like it is’ without regard for convention or political correctness, appealing to a mob tumescent at the idea of a good ol’ boy taking the reigns, twirling six shooters and spitting tobacco phlegm at filthy Mexicans, alimony hungry whores and suicide-vest clad sand niggers.
It’s an act of utter PR genius if you think about it – to take someone as morally bankrupt as The Donald and sell him on the basis that he may be a lot of things but at least he’s not…
Then again it’s worth remembering that we live in a world where Adolf Hitler was Time Magazine’s Person of the Year in 1938, as was Joseph Stalin in 1939 and 1942, followed by Nikita Khrushchev in 1957 and Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979…