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The rise of the cult leader

I wrote this blog post around a year ago for my old blog site, to be honest I am not fully happy with the title as it is possibly a bit too confrontational. While I have never been a fan of Mr Trump I have a lot of American friends who think he is doing a great job, personally I struggle with this as I cannot see beyond the slurs and insults, to me he presents as a bully but I can see the attraction especially when a lot of his policy decisions align with your faith and world view, have a read see what you think

It’s a strange thing, fascinating and perplexing, that people can identify with and align to people who on the surface they have no affiliation or empathy with whatsoever yet this is something that is becoming increasing prevalent in todays weird political landscape.

How does man born into privilege, how cynically dodged serving his country in the military, who lives a gilt edged luxurious life, a bully, a serial adulterer find favour among so many people who’s lives are in complete contrast to his own.  

Watching the excellent Ed Ball’s documentary on Trump’s America so many people prepared to follow with a religious zeal a man who seems to have nothing in common with them at all.

A man who seems to channel all the charm of the bully Biff from back to the future has managed to get into the zeitgeist of so many underprivileged working class American people.

I don’t see Trump as a businessman rather an exceptional salesman and illusionist extraordinaire.  He has pulled the greatest trick ever in convincing a large percentage of the American people to listen to what I say and not see what I do.

We see a steam of lies fed to his base that is not just lapped up but swallowed whole, while at the same time attacking others for false news, it is a slight of hand that is as brilliant as it is audacious and yet there he is getting away with it in broad daylight.

Whether the southern redneck community, the evangelical Bible belt or the veterans the trump train shows no sign of losing speed. It’s a tried and tested model, Trump is extremely good at tapping into the moment, and he is an excellent speaker who can whip up a crowd into frenzy.  

The other thing that plays into Trumps hands is he is no diplomat, he is quite happy to go low, trading insults and slurs, one thing he learned from his father is how to fight dirty and you don’t have top look too closely to see how this has played out throughout his rise in New York.

Is he a good businessman?, I would argue a string of failed companies would say no but he is a fighter and survivor, He has the power and guile to bounce back repeatedly and although there has been a lot of mud in his past he is very good at not letting it stick, a bit like the tacky golden and glass façades of his abstentious hotels and resorts Trump presents a slick and slippery face that belies the nasty within.

Like a lot of dangerous men it would be disingenuous to underplay his intelligence, he is a very calculated and devious individual who should not be underrated. What is worrying is he is building up a strong base of fanatics who despite what is in front of their eyes will hang on every word he says, Trump in going after the disfranchised, the ignored and marginalised has played a blinder and the fact is he can do no wrong in their eyes. He has built a base that follows blindly and can justify anything he does, one thing I have noticed when speaking to his devotees is their willingness to defend any action he takes.

This took a comical turn in his meeting with Putin when he said Putin had told him he did not meddle in the American election (despite the huge evidence the intelligence community has collected)   Trump retorted that he had no reason not to believe Putin in what was as bad a capitulation to an hostile nation I have ever witnessed.

Then something strange happened, the Trump devotees started defending the indefensible agreeing that this was a masterstroke of diplomacy that would bring everlasting peace and waxing lyrical about Trumps statesman like behaviour.

Of course no one else saw it like that, to most commentators it was at best a example of Trump’s naivety and  false belief that he could control Putin and at worse a act of treason against the good ole US of A.

In an unusual act of contrition and common sense and perhaps realising the enormity of the mistake Trump backtracked claiming he had mis-spoke and had meant to say that he had no reason to believe Putin. This sort of pulled the rug from under his supporters who had hailed him a genius for saying the opposite. But in a world were truth has become sosubjective as to no longer be true they just all flipped their opinion with no shame whatsoever.

It is that blind loyalty and devotion to Trump that makes me fear not only for America but also the Uk as well, we sawsimilar traits in the Jeremy Corbyn Momentum movement and the devotion to a brexit deal that is obviously not in the UK’s interest, the option of experts is now shunned as people await the words of their new messiahs where Mr Corbyn, Mr Johnson or Mr Dyson.

The sad thing about Cult leaders is that it is us the people that give them their power, we need to pull back the curtain and see the smoke and mirrors for what they are, weigh up the arguments and once again back the policies not the personalities. I fear we will not do this and we are one step away from the first X Factor dictator or worse.

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