Monday, December 5, 2016

Getting Played

Have you ever gotten played?  
To “get played” means to be dissed or insulted… or tricked into doing something that you might not have otherwise done. It can happen in love relationships... and in politics.
If you are one of  the more than 60 million Americans who voted for Donald Trump you are being played right now!
The trickster is Donald Trump... who has already broken most of his campaign pledges since becoming the President-elect.  In fact, what he is saying now, compared to what he said during the campaign will make your head spin… and, yes, make you feel “played” .
For example, if you were one of the rabid Trump supporters yelling “Lock her up!.. Lock her up!” at those rallies. Well, it is not going to happen. “Crooked Hillary” as Trump described her is not going anywhere. Any authority that Trump claimed to have to lock her up was imaginary… in his head. Trump could have told you that BEFORE the election, but, either he did not know or chose not to.
If you voted for Trump because you wanted that Border Wall built to stop Mexicans from coming into the country. You also got played. That wall is looking more like a fence now. In an interview with CBS’s 60 Minutes on November 13th, Trump said (quote): “… there could be some fencing”.
If you hate Obamacare and voted for Donald Trump because he said he would get rid of it, you got played. Trump now says he likes certain parts of it.
If you are a Trump voter and your thing is homophobia… some bad news. On the campaign trail Trump said that he would appoint justices who would overrule the Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage. But, you too got played. In that 60 Minutes interview last month Trump said (quote): “It is irrelevant. It was already settled. It is law. It was settled in the Supreme Court. I mean it is done… and I am fine with that.”
    But, it gets more complicated and more sinister: sometimes when it appears that you are NOT getting played by Trump, you ARE getting played by Trump. Let’s examine what REALLY happened last week at that Trump publicity stunt at the Carrier factory in Indiana. Carrier is a multi-billion dollar company that makes air conditioners. The single largest customer of its parent company, United Technologies, is the Pentagon. Carrier had planned on closing two Indiana factories, sending more than 2,000 jobs to Mexico. During the campaign Trump played tough guy and said he would punish the company with tariffs if they went ahead with the move. But, in the end, Trump played “nice guy” and gave Carrier 7 million dollars in economic incentives over ten years for keeping just 800 jobs in Indiana… the other 1,300 jobs are STILL headed to Mexico (with NO penalty to Carrier Corp).
The Donald basked himself in glory, taking full credit for his HUUUGE success. But, even Sarah Palin knew that voters were getting played… realizing that other businesses would now to threaten to leave the country in order to receive similar breaks, effectively motivating industries to blackmail the government. She called it “crony capitalism”
Bernie Sanders said the deal was all smoke-and-mirrors… with taxpayers footing the bill for those so called “economic incentives” offered to Carrier.
So, let’s summarize the play here: Donald Trump helped secured millions of dollars in state tax breaks for a massive corporation that will STILL send more than a thousand other Indiana jobs to Mexico. Meanwhile, United Technologies Corp., the Carrier parent company, earned $5 billion dollars in after-tax profits last year. That’s right… $5 billion dollars in profits!
You think you did NOT get played… think again!
    I suspect that many Trump supporters do not care about Trump’s positions on the issues. What they care most about is venting their anger, bigotry and hatred. Trump is counting on holding on to his supporters by feeding that hatred… and not, necessarily, improving their lives.
    In six months or maybe in a year, there will be a lot of Trump supporters across the country, and here in Delaware County who feel good--- having vented a lot of anger and gained a lot of what they might consider to be “white pride” or “white respect”. Indeed, many of them will feel better about themselves psychologically. But with no job prospects, no money and no health insurance, they might FINALLY begin to realize that they have been played by the Donald.
But, listen we have ALL been played… some folks realize it now, other folks will realize it later.   
Donald Trump has unleashed a dangerous beast in this country that will need to be fed.
And, as that old expression goes: “Once you let the toothpaste out of the tube, you cannot put it back in.”

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