There’s Only One Way to Beat Donald Trump for Good
We still haven’t learned much when it comes to Donald Trump. We keep making all the same mistakes. He’s not going away unless we do the unthinkable: Treat him like he doesn’t matter.
That would be hard, because the truth is nobody really wants Trump to go away — not even liberals. Americans are deeply angry right now. Half of us need someone to hate. The other half needs a hero who can hate on their behalf. Trump does both.
Donald Trump knows how indispensable he is. He’s a political novelty. So he intends to keep fuming over the election results. He’ll remain a looming presence in our lives. He’ll spend the next four years threatening a 2024 presidential run, even if he doesn’t actually plan on it. He might or might not get someone to ghostwrite a comeback book for him. He’ll continue holding rallies and calling into TV shows.
Here’s what you have to understand:
Trump will Do Whatever He Can to Stay Relevant.
The guy has hundreds of millions in outstanding debt. He faces all kinds of legal cases at the state and the federal level. Foreign powers most likely have all kinds of dirt on him.
He’s in serious trouble, and he knows it.
Furthermore, Donald Trump has no real skills other than generating attention and manipulating mass perception. He’s extremely good at that, and he’s managed to turn worse situations to his advantage.
Trump can’t afford to go away quietly.
Trump has Survived by Being a Grifter.
A con artist doesn’t simply stop being a con artist because some people wise up. They simply change their game.
Trump has survived multiple bankruptcies and other financial disasters, all by figuring out new ways to deceive people. That’s what he does.
Now he’s got millions of die-hard supporters, people who straight up believe the election was stolen from him — and that he’s the rightful president. It’s probably the best situation he’s ever been in. You can count on him using that base for everything it’s worth.
Trump Branded a Political Ideology.
Donald Trump is more than a politician. He’s an influencer and the personality behind an entire movement.
Here it is in a nutshell:
It’s the belief that established politicians are all inherently corrupt, and can never do anything good for the country. It’s more than that, though. Trumpism holds that the best thing you can do is be as nasty and belligerent as possible. It’s about owning liberals. It’s about saying the first angry thought that comes into your head.
Anger is honesty.
It’s about applauding the violence and agitation on your side, and condemning it on the other side.
It’s about human rights and free speech for your loyal supporters, the “real Americans,” and hatred toward everyone else. There’s no room for compromise or personal responsibility. You’re always right, and you don’t have to listen to anyone else.
That’s Trumpism, and you can see why it appeals to so many Americans. It lets them do whatever they want. It lets them disregard the rights and safety of anyone they please.
Trumpism is all about pure, unfiltered entitlement.
Trump Gives People Someone to Worship.
God and Jesus were never enough for many Americans. Most of them are like Trump. They use the Bible as a prop.
They use religion as an excuse to persecute. All the while, they maintain they’re the ones being attacked. In Trump country, Christmas is always under assault. So is Thanksgiving. So is prayer in school.
Everyone under Trump thinks they’re a martyr.
They need a martyr to lead them. Trump gives them that. He presents himself as someone constantly under fire, whether it’s by the fake news media or left-wing Antifa socialists.
Americans have a tendency to worship power above all else. Trump is all about power.
Trump Is a Master Conductor of Anger.
If we’ve learned anything from the last four years, it’s that millions of Americans feel desperate and angry beyond reason. They’re jobless and hopeless. They feel left behind.
They’re furious at everyone, including themselves.
They have more anger than they know what to do with. Somewhere deep down, they know the corporate gods responsible for outsourcing their jobs and killing their healthcare will never be held accountable. They cling to the fantasy that one day they’ll be as rich as the titans that stepped on them and screwed them over without mercy.
Trump is one of those rich, powerful elites who screwed them over. He built his empire off bad real estate deals. He got rich off immigrant labor and tax fraud. He spent a lifetime cheating the system.
Somehow, Trump does a magic trick. He escapes responsibility by telling all the angry Americans what to do with their anger. He gives them a purpose. He sees them. He hears them. He pays attention to them, like nobody ever has. He gives them targets.
He gives them enemies.
Trump Excels at Owning Liberals.
The other thing we should’ve learned over the last four years is that millions of Americans don’t care about anything other than owning liberals. They live to outrage us with their lack of compassion. They love watching us react to their big guns and gas-guzzling trucks.
They enjoy tailgating people on the highway.
Having a president who constantly insults liberals while exalting aggression is the best thing that ever happened to them. They get a real kick at how angry people act over Trump. They grin watching Trump get under people’s skin in ways they never could.
They learn from him.
Trump Only Has One Weakness
Donald Trump is immune to guilt and shame. Trying to make him or his supporters feel bad doesn’t work.It only empowers them.
Trump has one vulnerability. Look at how he reacts when stadiums don’t fill up in his honor. Watch his face when someone gently mocks him, in a way that makes him feel unimportant.
It truly bothers him.
Becoming irrelevant terrifies and infuriates Trump. If you want to ruffle him, treat him like everyone else — no better, no worse. You can’t worship him. You can’t loathe him, either. He gets off on both.
The Way to Stop Trump is to Stop Reacting.
We can’t just ignore Trump. The man is dangerous. He taps into all of the worst trends in conservative ideology.
He’s a supreme manipulator.
Even out of office, Trump can continue to do real damage to our institutions. He can keep exerting influence over politicians and tanking any hope at getting the country back on track.
He’ll do it by being extremely entertaining, in a bad way.
That’s why have to stop overreacting to him. We have to stop playing into the traps he sets on social media. We also have to stop rage tweeting about every single story CNN runs about him.
Trump does shocking things. He breaks the law. He does it on purpose, and he uses liberal outrage against us. He knows it short circuits our ability to outsmart him. He uses it to ignite his own base.
We need to hold him accountable, but we have to stop letting everyone know just how much he infuriates us. We have to stop letting him own us.
Treat Trump like a Normal, Boring Politician.
We keep talking about the mistake of normalizing Trump and his politics. Well, they’ve become normal anyway.
Trump is an abnormal politician. He’s made the abnormal mainstream. He thrives on it. So maybe the abnormal response is the way to go. Treat him normal, even if he isn’t.
Pretend like he’s boring and uninteresting. Maybe he’ll finally go away.
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