Friday, July 22, 2016

GOP Convention Day 4: Trump's speech

Well, it's finally over.   I must say that the final day and Trump's acceptance speech was not a disaster.   Nor was it very different from the usual final day of a political convention.    The speakers turned their attention to praising the nominee.   There was the usual video lauding what he has accomplished (changing the skyline of New York City).   His daughter Ivanka gave an over-long, polished, paen to her father.   There was no big show-biz entrance, as had been hinted.   He just walked out on the stage, looking almost hesitant rather than resolute and confident.

Then he read from the teleprompter, in measured cadences and shouted tones, his way-too-long acceptance speech, clocking in at about an hour and 15 minutes.  [Later said to be the longest of any candidate's acceptance since the 1970s, at least.] It was interrupted many, many times by applause, enthusiastic at first, then less so as it dragged on.   Here's my assessment.

It was a demagogue, rabble-rousing rant, based on lie after lie and distortion after distortion.  His themes were:   Law and Order, Make America Great Again, secure our borders, stop illegal immigration.  He promised to lay out his plan for making America Great Again.    And then, like a typical State of the Union presidential speech, he mentioned every problem that he thinks is wrong with our country -- and then blamed every bit of it on Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, promised to fix it all . . . and to fix it all very quickly.

But his "plans" included no specifics about what he would do or how he would do it.   Never once mentioned working with Congress to achieve these ends.   It was just "we're going to . . . [fill in the blank.] 

The discouraging thing was seeing those gullible people in the audience lapping it up and getting up to cheer.   As the evening wore on and his speech went past the one hour mark, more and more of them were looking tired and ready to go home.   Then the balloons came down and the cheering revved up again.

If I were naive and gullible and believed all his lies and empty promises, I suppose I might be seduced into wanting to vote for him.    But all these nice-sounding slogans and promises are just not the Donald Trump that we've seen over the past year and that we've heard and read about.   I'm afraid what we saw was an unprincipled demagogue who, once again, told the people what they wanted to hear without any plan or knowledge how to do it.  It's all just smoke and mirrors, lies and distortions.  We know that, because he's told us that's what he does.


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