Trump’s brash profligacy panders to MAGA fantasies of sex, money, crime, and evasion

Lying, predation and mob loyalty are in – join the cult con, grab “whatever you deserve.”

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Image Credit: Mark Peterson/Redux

Who doesn’t dream of acting out sex and power fantasies, cocksure one’s obscurity, bankroll or contacts will stave off accountability? What thwarted person of limited means and modest aspirations doesn’t yearn to break the rules, then brag about it after escaping punishment? Haven’t we all a selfish part that, like a tantrum-throwing five year old, demands total “freedom.” Awash with sleazy trial details, we know the libertine life of the world’s rich and famous, if dumbest user – iniquity driven by ego, money and free time. 

Sure, frolic with playgirls on the make, set up mistresses (more than two I suspect), and then, when injurious to your public image, buy them off. It’s standard fare of late to abstain from judging Trump for sexual appetites with consenting adults, instead focusing on crimes or jaw-dropping culpability of mindless cover-up farces. What “genius” concocts an illegal, complicated payoff conspiracy with numerous witnesses?

And yet, sleaze piled on sleaze, rife with bad actions and bad faith, hardly shake Trump numbers? When current criminal convictions, with more to come, don’t move the needle, obviously Trumpers approve of whatever outrages he enacts. Likewise, we await downsides from the appalling NYC rightwing party charade/parade that poisons not just law and order but any D.A.’s audacity when indicting a cult messiah. 

If not law, wither our safety?

How do GOP lackeys expect to safely travel to NY (or offices) absent law enforcers against low-lifes eager to mug or strike or murder them? The dumbest senator in history, Alabama’s Tuberville, slanderously impugned a jury of U.S. citizens as imposters – reflecting bizarro MAGA prejudices against demonic “outsiders” who hadn’t yet even convicted Trump. As with the Trump cult, to disagree (or indict) is to challenge this primitive “Americanism” – exposed in full loony tunes by promising pardons for convicted Jan. 6 rioters So much for handcuffing lawlessness – replaced by the dog-eat-dog world of Trumpist opportunism. 

If not the operational legal system, what’s the default – justice by dice? Chance lottery? Might is right? Brown shirt revenge? How do alleged “lawmakers” reconcile this madcap defiance of law with the rules that got them elected – or the moral/political legitimacy of their own Congressional legislation? What deflects the full street violence of gang-driven, third-world countries? If not our working judicial system, then what? If not consensual morality tied to law, however compromised the enforcement, then what? 

Like any celebrity mob boss seeking office, Trump is trusting that enough needy, magic-thinking voters will join his fantasy club of rule-breaking, insider fat cats who go through life battering others. Behold juvenile Trumpers addicted to delusions of grandeur – suspending both critical thinking and their own life interests. Do they not ignore how money and power matter: count the pathetic Jan. 6 criminal rioters in jail because they lack the tricky lawyers able to counter immoral Trump stunts. 

An addictive, self-feeding cult cycle

Wishful thinking and delusional projection trigger how millions of aggrieved Trumpers (when not taking opiates, church going or massaging their guns) offset perceived hardscrabble lives. Both smart and stupid, Trump is the master Pied Piper who plays on mass neediness. That’s why even wildly incriminating trial exposures barely dent Trump’s draw as their villain/hustler/escape artist. I heard one moronic Trumper extol his “heart of gold” since he doesn’t do politics for money (!). Another said, while opposing dictators, she’d accept Trump for the job. Consider the staying power when the emotionally-impoverished identify, however unconsciously, with a nervy celebrity who does what they’d never try – before, during, or after church. And for male Trumpers, how titillating to have sex kittens on call, or sneakily cheat deserving jerks, then just like the boss brag about invincibility. Think of all the movie ticket prices Trumpers save by internalizing the master’s knack of bedding bosomy babes (willing, paid or not), throwing around limitlessbucks and pulling off cover-ups. Evasion only seasons juicy “locker room” braggadocio for those afraid of traffic cops.

And yet, whatever the bizarre MAGA appeal to the dark side, the NY trial proves beyond a reasonable doubt how many laws over many months a desperate Trump knowingly violated. Elections will tell us whether what Trump told Cohen is true: “men will think [my playing around] cool and women will hate me.” Who doubts Trump’s provable election interference fraud a million times worse than non-existent 2020 fraud lies? Crude Trump hypocrisy only triggers the equally hypocritical MAGA cult, unable to credit true election fraud by laughably pushing the Big Lie ploy. A flag incident now indicts Justice Alito and wife. 

But let’s not dismiss current (suspect) polling that favors Trump – for that at least demonstrates the fascist scorn of leadership afflicting nearly half the electorate. So much for denying thousands of MAGA lies, highly persuasive indictments (many without Trump defenses) and record-breaking double impeachments. Farcically, MAGA turns Trump, the self-defeating outlaw who does whatever he wants whenever he wants, into victim when what he does is create victims. Can anyone match the self-humiliation Trump brings on himself or outlaw advisers who deny Michael Cohen’s dive-bombing career at their peril? Packed with more cynicism than good sense, MAGA wannabes distort government as a corrupt cesspool – which they ironically want to control and thus demolish so the “free market” escapes oversight. Right, every MAGA has a heart of gold – so they can seize more attention and power, then more gold (dodging jail at every turn). 

Can this fascist lurch be dispelled?

Look at the titanic gap in perspectives. Apparently, enough American voters think that “high inflation” (in decline despite earlier Trump blunders) is more important than historically low employment. Or that infrastructure jobs, paying real wages, are as fake as the phony moon landing. Or that the abortion ban fanatics think that women deserve fewer rights than men – and with more danger from forced births. What wild-eyed American yo-yos really deem Putin not such a bad guy – and that Ukraine (or the next target) merits devastation? Clearly, the evangelical crowd thinks Israel’s Gaza destruction follows God’s dictates, for they need Jewish conversion to play a role in their phantom apocalypse – a staged, heavenly pilgrims’ progress. Fat chance.

Though Trump could not imagine the mind-boggling leverage he’d eventually sustain, his rise speaks directly to the force of unrequited and unfulfilled dreams incited by savvy hustlers and compounded by media hocus-pocus.  Those who can’t separate their infantile fantasies from consensual reality will then believe anything, even that Trump will save them from the evil socialist demons who seek their oblivion. No need: denying reality and truth (if not accepted law and social contracts) produce its own kind of self-generating oblivion. Group narcissism is no more sustainable than self-defeating narcissistic personality disorders that when empowered do indeed produce existential disorder – for a while. 

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For over a decade, Robert S. Becker's independent, rebel-rousing essays on politics and culture analyze overall trends, history, implications, messaging and frameworks. He has been published widely, aside from Nation of Change and RSN, with extensive credits from OpEdNews (as senior editor), Alternet, Salon, Truthdig, Smirking Chimp, Dandelion Salad, Beyond Chron, and the SF Chronicle. Educated at Rutgers College, N.J. (B.A. English) and U.C. Berkeley (Ph.D. English), Becker left university teaching (Northwestern, then U. Chicago) for business, founding SOTA Industries, a top American high end audio company he ran from '80 to '92. From '92-02, he was an anti-gravel mining activist while doing marketing, business and writing consulting. Since then, he seeks out insight, even wit in the shadows, without ideology or righteousness across the current mayhem of American politics.

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