OK, angry, neglected, left-behind, resentful, aggrieved, non-passport-owning rural and suburban white people of all socio-economic groups – we get the message. I thought the UK’s Brexit vote was at least mildly funny, delivering a well-deserved kick up the backside to Eurocrat-visionaries obsessed with their idiotic ‘project’, and producing howls of anguish among the trendy Guardianistas. But Donald Trump? Whoa. You should have said something.
Among the mountains of demographic data that mysteriously no polling or forecasting had detected up to 24 hours ago, one statistic that sticks out is about Evangelical Christians. Over 80% of them voted for the philandering, casino-developing, utterly Godless New Yorker. Of course, his attitude to women – and Hillary’s being one – would have helped him among those who believe in the divinely ordained God-Men-Women/Children chain of command. These people also see Noah’s Ark, the parting of the Red Sea and the resurrection as literal, inerrant accounts, so there must be some overlap with the 86% who support a 100-cubit tall wall along the Mexican border. Still… 81%?
We will now find out the answer to the question that not long ago was a joke: how can someone with Trump’s narcissistic condition hold high office? People like this often don’t analyze or reflect, can’t hear anything that doesn’t match their internal fantasy-reality, can’t do compromise or give-and-take, and will act or speak irrationally when questioned or thwarted. Political leadership requires a totally different sort of screwed-up personality.
Presumably, there will be enough heavyweights in suits and uniforms in and around the White House to steer him and if necessary pin him down. Provided they are constantly assured that they are important and superior, narcissists are happy and pretty oblivious about what others are really thinking or doing. So if his staff keep Prez Trump busy with vanity-boosting activities and engagements, they might be able to look after the tedious small stuff like ‘policy’ and ‘strategy’ and ‘details’.
Otherwise, it mostly looks scary. In our part of the world, a trade bust-up with China would have a seriously negative impact on Hong Kong (although my inner-malevolence wonders if some ‘negative impacts’ might be quite appealing). But maybe there are limits to how much havoc Trump can wreak. If he seriously attempted to implement deranged ideas, the resulting mess would attract a barrage of criticism and denigration. As a narcissist, he would ultimately have only one course of action: kick the Oval Office chairs over, storm out and blame everyone else for everything, leaving the US in the hands of a normal, safe and comforting mouth-frothing nut.