HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » I Listened to All Six Tru...

Fri Oct 12, 2018, 09:00 AM

I Listened to All Six Trump Rallies in October. You Should, Too [View all]


Letter from Trump’s Washington
I Listened to All Six Trump Rallies in October. You Should, Too
It’s not a reality show. It’s real.
By Susan B. Glasser
5:00 A.M.
I’m still watching the President’s rallies, because his words—radical, dangerous, and often untrue—are still the best way to understand him.


The biggest difference between Trump and any other American President, however, is not the bragging. It’s the cult of personality he has built around himself and which he insists upon at his rallies. Political leaders are called onstage to praise the President in terms that would make a feudal courtier blush, and they’re not empty words. These are the kinds of tributes I have heard in places like Uzbekistan, but never before in America. “Is he not the best President we have ever had?” the Mississippi senator Cindy Hyde-Smith enthused. (Trump then praised her for voting “with me one hundred per cent of the time.”) In Erie on Wednesday, a Republican congressman, Michael Kelly, gave the most sycophantic speech of the ones I listened to this month. Trump, he yelled to the crowd, is “the strongest President we have seen in our lifetime.” Addressing Trump, he said, “You are the best! You are the best!” Trump did not need to leave his “luxurious” life behind for the indignities of political combat, but he did. “I am so grateful,” Kelly concluded, “that an American citizen came out of nowhere to take the reins and reform and retake this nation.”

No wonder his followers think this way. In Trump’s telling at these rallies, he is the hero of every story. All ideas, big or small, flow through him now that he is President. He personally ordered the Ambassador in Israel to renovate a building for the new American Embassy there using “beautiful Jerusalem stone.” (Never mind that all buildings in the city are required to be faced with it.) He had “the greatest idea” to get veterans better medical care by allowing them to go to private doctors, confounding the experts who told him, “Sir, we’ve been working on this for forty-four years,” and couldn’t fix the problem. Same with an N.F.L. dispute with Canada. “Nobody could get it done,” Trump said. “I did it in two minutes.”

Then there are the stunners that we already know Trump thinks are true. But listen to them for almost seven hours in an election season, and remember, this is the President; maybe we shouldn’t just screen this out, or pretend it doesn’t matter. Every single rally included multiple attacks on the media and “fake news.” In Mississippi, the press bashing began seconds into the speech; in Pennsylvania, it took seven minutes; in Minnesota, ten. Deadbeat allies, rapacious foreigners ripping us off, and murderous gang members from MS-13 also figured in every one of the speeches.


Much of the coverage of these events tends to be theatre criticism, or news stories about a single inflammatory line or two, rating Trump’s performance or puzzling over the appeal to his followers. But what the President of the United States is actually saying is extraordinary, regardless of whether the television cameras are carrying it live. It’s not just the whoppers or the particular outrage riffs that do get covered, either. It’s the hate, and the sense of actual menace that the President is trying to convey to his supporters. Democrats aren’t just wrong in the manner of traditional partisan differences; they are scary, bad, evil, radical, dangerous. Trump and Trump alone stands between his audiences and disaster.

I listen because I think we are making a mistake by dismissing him, by pretending the words of the most powerful man in the world are meaningless. They do have consequences. They are many, and they are worrisome. In what he says to the world, the President is, as Ed Luce wrote in the Financial Times this week, “creating the space to do things which were recently unthinkable.” It’s not a reality show; it’s real.


60 replies, 6502 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 60 replies Author Time Post
Reply I Listened to All Six Trump Rallies in October. You Should, Too [View all]
babylonsister Oct 2018 OP
malaise Oct 2018 #1
pangaia Oct 2018 #17
malaise Oct 2018 #32
pansypoo53219 Oct 2018 #43
malaise Oct 2018 #44
Hortensis Oct 2018 #2
Merlot Oct 2018 #8
Hortensis Oct 2018 #9
Merlot Oct 2018 #10
Hortensis Oct 2018 #47
BigmanPigman Oct 2018 #34
Hortensis Oct 2018 #48
BigmanPigman Oct 2018 #57
Hortensis Oct 2018 #59
pangaia Oct 2018 #33
Haggis for Breakfast Oct 2018 #38
Hortensis Oct 2018 #53
riversedge Oct 2018 #52
EleanorR Oct 2018 #3
Hortensis Oct 2018 #7
pangaia Oct 2018 #20
Hortensis Oct 2018 #27
smirkymonkey Oct 2018 #4
bdamomma Oct 2018 #5
Skidmore Oct 2018 #6
Cosmocat Oct 2018 #12
pangaia Oct 2018 #21
SCantiGOP Oct 2018 #11
Haggis for Breakfast Oct 2018 #39
hot2na Oct 2018 #13
certainot Oct 2018 #29
irisblue Oct 2018 #14
gratuitous Oct 2018 #15
pangaia Oct 2018 #22
Guy Whitey Corngood Oct 2018 #56
malthaussen Oct 2018 #16
violetpastille Oct 2018 #18
iluvtennis Oct 2018 #19
Hekate Oct 2018 #23
Enoki33 Oct 2018 #24
gordianot Oct 2018 #26
Haggis for Breakfast Oct 2018 #40
Lonestarblue Oct 2018 #51
JohnnyRingo Oct 2018 #25
Bernardo de La Paz Oct 2018 #28
TeamPooka Oct 2018 #30
mia Oct 2018 #31
Turin_C3PO Oct 2018 #35
Haggis for Breakfast Oct 2018 #41
Turin_C3PO Oct 2018 #58
Haggis for Breakfast Oct 2018 #60
Crunchy Frog Oct 2018 #36
Bob Loblaw Oct 2018 #37
Doitnow Oct 2018 #42
watoos Oct 2018 #45
GoCubsGo Oct 2018 #46
Martin Eden Oct 2018 #49
Uncle Joe Oct 2018 #50
FakeNoose Oct 2018 #54
BootinUp Oct 2018 #55