On the evening of March 15, I finally got a chance to see the Chicago production of Hamilton. It was everything that I hoped that it would be, but of course, there is much more to say about this extraordinary production. So, I aim to say it here and now.
I have been thinking a lot about Donald Trump and the lives and other things that may or may not matter to him. After much deliberation, I think I have divined a certain set of criteria with which we may determine which lives and things do and do not matter.
Today, Monday, January 30, 2017, has seen yet more insanity perpetrated on the country by the Trump administration, which continues to be determined to prove itself the worst thing to have ever happened to American politics.
Since Donald Trump’s inauguration as president, the following has occurred in the United States of America: Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington had to file a complaint “to notify the new president that he was officially in violation of his lease for the Trump International Hotel down the street from the White House. The lease that one of Trump’s company’s, Trump Old Post Office LLC, signed with the government states that no ‘elected official’ of the U.S. government can share in the lease or derive benefit from it.” Trump heard a sermon from Robert Jeffress, a Trumpkin pastor who tried to invoke God to…
Donald Trump is now the president of the United States, and on his very first day, with his very first speech, he has managed to redraw the picture of America to which we are used. Before Trump, we were accustomed to an America that engaged the world with confidence and strength. An America willing to trade with the world, understanding that trade is not a zero-sum game. An America that not only honored its alliances, but ensured that its allies would never have any reason to doubt American resolve. An America with problems–because no nation is without problems–but one that…
And yes, I mean every word in the title of this blog post. Here is why.
When my father was a very little boy–I don’t remember how little, but I believe that his age was in the single digits–his parents decided to host some friends at their home in Tehran. My paternal grandfather, took the opportunity, during the gathering, to tell all of his friends about his very clever eldest son, and invited his friends to ask my father questions to test his intelligence and knowledge. They did so, and my father showed himself to be unusually bright for his age in answering the questions posed to him.
The putative next president of the United States has been trying recently to seem more approachable, more warm, more friendly, more of a kind-of-person-you-and-I-would-want-to-have-a-beer-with kind of politician. Presumably, achieving all of this would cause the rest of us to want to give her the keys to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. But when one looks beyond the charm offensive, one continues to find little charm, and much that is offensive.
There is no limit to what one can write about Donald Trump’s deficiencies. His time in the spotlight has made it clear that he is an awful human-resembling-thing, whose presidential run is more about himself and not at all about serving the country. Every day, it seems, Trump does something to confirm the impression that as a president, he would be out of his depth, and as a candidate, his strategy is to bring out the worst in the country he claims to want to lead–apparently, even Trump knows that his best chance of winning is to appeal to our…
I am something of a history buff (or at least, I try my best to be), so when someone gets history wrong, I tend to get . . . oh, how to phrase this? . . . annoyed. To be sure, honest mistakes are sometimes made when discussing history, and your humble servant makes those mistakes as well (too often, for your humble servant’s own tastes). But while the occasional error is understandable, when history is deliberately misread for political purposes, then the civilized response to such a misreading is–and ought to be–outrage.