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Donald Trump: a conservative caricature

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Opinion Zone,Christian Tappe

Donald Trump is charismatic.  I’ll give him that.  But his spiel is getting old already, as he’s become a sort of foil to a campaigning Barack Obama…and not in a good way.

Where Obama ran on a platform of indefinable, at best, and unrealistic, at worst, hope and change, Trump has been ratcheting up the rhetoric in a similar, yet wildly different, way.

He was a leading voice of the birther movement, going as far as to take credit for Obama finally releasing his birth certificate.  And now he wants Obama’s college transcripts released in order to prove that Obama was a poor student, which is simply pettiness.

Last night, we got a glimpse of The Donald’s “foreign policy” views.  And they are, um, lacking.  At an event at one of his Las Vegas casinos, Trump vowed not defend the people of South Korea or the Libyan rebels (and presumably other nations in similar situations)…unless they paid.

Now, I’m not much for interventionism, so I can sympathize with an unwillingness to pump more troops and more resources and more cash into places like Libya.  But Trump suggesting that the United States military should become, in essence, a highly-trained band of mercenaries?  No thanks.

As he so eloquently put it: “I'm not interested in protecting none of them unless they pay.”

There’s a strong case to be made for tightening the reins on foreign military operations, but not paying America for protection isn’t one of the reasons (or is it "none of them?").

Donald Trump clearly loves America.  And, why shouldn’t he?  It’s made him rich and powerful, and, in a sense, it’s even given him his current platform.  And while he’s rightfully wary of politicians, calling them “stupid, stupid people,” and “blood-suckers,” well, instituting a system of fees in order to gain America’s protection is probably just as stupid and blood-sucking.

It’s tempting to get behind Trump.  He’s a powerful figure with a conservative stance, but it’s a really just a grotesque caricature of the conservative position.  He takes the principles of a free market and a strong, conscientious military and bastardizes and combines them.

There’s a lot to be said for an earnest, straight-talking guy who doesn’t bend to the whims of politicians and the current, depraved political climate, but that only goes so far.  You have to have the ideas and principles to back it up.

And just like Obama has been unable to back up his promise of change through hope, Trump seems unable to support his free-wheelin’, straight-shootin’, money-getting’ ‘Merican persona with, you know, actual ideas and principles that aren’t terrible.

Donald Trump is the poster boy for the stereotypical avaricious, war-hawk conservative.  And as a conservative, I’m not going to shell out any coin to have him represent me.  

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