Donald Trump’s last chance

It is a thing I still hear occasionally, but thankfully not as much these days: “Say what you like about Donald Trump, but he is a master of …,” fill in the blank. I can still remember shouting with derision at my car radio in 2016, tuned to BBC Radio 4, at a forgettable pundit with a cut glass accent telling me, “Say what you like about Donald Trump, but he is a brilliant businessman.”

Once and for all: Donald Trump is not a brilliant anything. He is bad at everything he does. He is an incompetent, a liar, a phony, a thief, a stumblebum, a fool. Donald Trump is a talent-free moron. He is possibly one of the worst real estate developers in the history of New York City, his actual chosen career. He started out with 400 million dollars of tax free money dribbled out to him from his father and he lost it all. Then he went bankrupt six times and found himself a billion dollars in debt.

The only reason Donald Trump has any money at all is because thieves in Russia saw him as a useful idiot for money laundering and a lot of stupid people believed his mind-blowingly implausible self-promotion. Despite cheating virtually everyone who ever did business with him he still managed to lose money. That’s how appalling his “business skills” are.

But because he’s a racist, and because he was famous and fools love famous, pompous, white men over six feet tall who appear to be rich and declare themselves great, a lot of very stupid people voted for him and he became president of the United States. He lucked into it. It’s just that simple. It was going to happen sooner or later. After all, somebody always wins the lottery, right?

Donald Trump’s astonishing good luck has just run out. And the really amazing thing about all of this is he was just handed another lucky break that could have saved him. But because he is an idiot he didn’t know how to take advantage of it. And it was an amazingly lucky break, too. So much so that had anyone other than Donald Trump been in his shoes, with enough savvy to understand what was really going on, recognizing the opportunity they had just been handed, they might have concluded that there really is a God.

I’m referring to the coronavirus outbreak. Think about it yourself. It’s early in an election year. A wildly unpopular president is about to go up against a Democratic candidate with a very good chance of unseating him. Along comes the coronavirus. That was the point when Donald Trump could have stepped up to the plate and really become President. He could have said something like, “Politics is politics, but this is life and death. Together, Republicans and Democrats, rich and poor, people of all backgrounds and races and religious beliefs, we can and we will get through this. I can’t promise you it will be easy. But I can promise you I will be here for every one of you every step of the way.” Then he could have rolled up his sleeves and got on with it. He could have ignored his critics. He could have poured resources into the effort. And so on. What an opportunity!

Instead, Donald Trump decided to double down on his little man pettiness. He became even more peevish, hateful, divisive and dishonest. He tried blaming the Democrats. He lied about the coronavirus. He disputed hard statistics without evidence. He minimized the danger. He showed off his ignorance about the death rate from flu, even though his own grandfather died from the flu. Then he went and played golf.

This is a man, who very well may walk out of the presidency and into a jail cell in as little as ten months time, blowing the opportunity to save both his presidency and himself from ignominious defeat. But because he squandered this opportunity, because coronavirus is no respecter of persons, because MAGA hat wearing idiots and their loved ones are going to die, I believe Donald Trump is going to lose in November. And the really amazing thing to me is, the one thing that is going to cost him the presidency is the one thing that could have saved him. And it’s going to happen for one reason and one reason only: because he’s stupid.

So please don’t tell me what Donald Trump is good at. He isn’t good at anything. And that, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, is finally very good news for us.

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