Dean Clough

January 17, 2024

Portico Darwin: Here Comes More Trump


<3 Minute Read

Don't thank me, thank Republicans.  Or at least those in Iowa.

Because to the surprise of no one, Trump won the Republican caucus in Iowa on Monday and barring a mass awakening, is destined to appear - again - in a presidential election as the Republican candidate. 

It's almost February of 2024, and this frightens me, more than ever, for two reasons.

It's a Cult of Personality
I think apart from all else, I can't bring myself to understand the appeal of Trump today.  To anyone, including the most ignorant, Psycho Woke- and liberal-despising redneck.   

Look at the lying.  The cheating.  The sexism.  The bullying.  Trashing others, often those in his own party, or those he used to praise.  Inciting an insurrection.  Taking top secret files and sharing them, as a way of showing off.  And the 91 felony indictments, in 4 different jurisdictions, related to all of that. 

None of these are the actions of a real American, nor an example we want set for our children.

So rightly, a candidate (let alone president!) doing any of that was gone forever. 

And in the past, I could clearly understand why the opposition chose who they did.  Ronald Reagan.  Bob Dole.  George W. Bush (at least in the 2000 election), John McCain, Mitt Romney, and yes, I could even understand (albeit barely) the Republicans tapping the disgusting Trump in 2016.  And I think Republicans can say the same about Carter, Clinton, and Obama. 

Now?  I am completely baffled.  I get that some (many, even) don't like me, and people like me.  I also know they like that Trump likes them (or lies and says he does), and doesn't dismiss every Republican as a Fox News-brainwashed racist moron.

Fine - but that simply is not a good enough reason to support Trump, knowing what is known now.  Not if you love and understand what America is about.

Especially when it should be obvious to anyone that Nikki Haley (and any reasonable, non-Sarah Palin-type running mate she could choose) would CRUSH Biden/Harris in the upcoming election.  Whereas with Trump, it's going to be far too close for comfort. 

For either party.

But the Republicans are apparently blind to that.  Isn't that a Cult of Personality, and can't that lead to very bad outcomes?

Please don't dismiss my comparison until you visit Munich's NS-Dokumentationszentrum and study the rise of Adolf Hitler, as I have.  The parallels are objectively obvious and the fact that doesn't scare the shit out of more people . . . scares the shit out of me.

It's Enabling Awful Behavior
Also frightening is the real coarsening of our society, one not all that polished to begin with.  That became clear while reading this awful account of what far-right extremism looks like in rural America now.  Gosh, I hope you'll read it, if only as an eye-opener. 

Example:  do you think gay shop owners should be intimidated?  Ever?  By anyone and why?

In the article, something that caught my eye was the image below of the Proud Boys' flag.  If you'll recall, this charming group considers themselves "Trump's Army". 

Is this the banner you want to march under, and the America in which you wish to live? 


Venerate the housewife?  Reinstate the spirit of Western Chauvinism?  And they want to close our borders (to everyone?  Canadians?) when they (or certainly their families) were immigrants themselves?  Yet anti-racism is there, too?

And the idiocy of Minimal Government is obvious:  From where do they think their First and Second Amendment rights come, and what entity guarantees them? 

I think instead of "Law & Order" their banner should read "Rocket Scientists Aren't Us".

And no, Antifa is not the same on the left.  If you believe they they are, please send me evidence and I will publish it here without comment.  Because they have essentially zero influence on the Democratic party.  Indeed, I dream of a day when Trump has as little power over the Republicans as Antifa has over the Dems. 

(The Psycho Woke does have too much influence over Democratic politics, but that's a post from a different day.)

But I get it - many don't like Biden.  I like him, although have said often he's too old and shouldn't be running for a second term.  Yet he's no threat to anything and certainly not "the American way of life."

But can anyone objectively assure me a second Trump presidency isn't a threat to our Republic?  How could it not be, given the above and what we now know?

I honestly can't believe we're going to do this again.  


Fresh from a fairly recent blow-out dinner at SF's badass Rich Table, here is Lara Mohair, heaping on the praise for Monday's The Travel Issue.

Which is a great way to get published here in UNWASHED MASSES.

More is more in the Travel Guides - I like new places and previously reviewed places with links so I can read or refresh my memory.  When one day I go to the Dolomites!  Or maybe back to Rome.  Or to the Andersen Valley! 

So fun.  Thanks for sharing your experience.  And the photos! 

Wow - I am humbled.  Well, almost.

Thank you for reading this newsletter.  


Yes, I know, when confronted with still another Trump cycle:  Calm.  Stoic.  In the moment.  Try this with that - it is f'ing Killer.

And:  What could piss MAGA nation off more (musically, at least) than an album of jazz harp?

About Dean Clough