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Wednesday, November 09, 2016

"We are all Trumpistas, We are all Clintonians"?

Well, Trump did not exactly echo Jefferson's first inaugural about Federalists and Republicans -- but his victory speech was unexpectedly conciliatory, containing the following two sentences:

“Hillary has worked very long and very hard over a very long time, and we owe her a debt of gratitude for her service. I mean that sincerely.”

These are odd words coming from a candidate who called for Clinton's imprisonment and led crowds in chanting "Lock her up!" at campaign rallies. That profession of sincerity can, therefore, be taken with a pound of salt

But it might be that Trump's lack of any inner core principles, a trait that is either Machiavellian or just pathologically narcissistic, could be a saving grace of his presidency. If his willingness to say anything to win immediate applause at the moment causes him to forget his campaign rhetoric about mass deportations, imprisoning political opponents, and prosecuting newspapers that criticize him, then more power to his pathology. His campaign rallies are over: Those crowds of the "poorly educated" that Trump said he loved have now dispersed. The praise he seems to crave, therefore, must come from the people who pay attention to governing in between elections -- more politically attentive folks who generally disapprove of putsches and witch hunts.

I realize that taking comfort in Trump's utter lack of any inner convictions sounds like a forlorn hope. But it is my current cold comfort as I sit in Shanghai in dismay.

Posted by Rick Hills on November 9, 2016 at 07:55 AM | Permalink


"That profession of sincerity can, therefore, be taken with a pound of salt."

I know someone else who had both a both a "public and a private position" on issues...

Posted by: anymouse | Nov 10, 2016 11:12:11 AM

This is literally the most uplifting/hopeful post I have seen today. Thanks!

Posted by: Joey | Nov 9, 2016 11:35:10 PM

The "service" line at the end of the day very well might be honest, since ultimately, he won. And, to the extent her being the opposition helped (not saying Sanders would have been an ideal alternative here), she was of service.

Posted by: Joe | Nov 9, 2016 12:09:28 PM

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