Out of the Blue: How far will loyalty to ‘Prima Donald’ stretch? (opinion)
Out of the Blue
Americans who voted for Donald J. Trump solely in hopes he’d make good on his lofty ambitions to shake things up in Washington got a peek at a blueprint of this shock-and-awe tactic in the form of a budget overview last week.
We won’t know how these vague plans will be executed once they’re wrung through the rigors of government, but even as mere theoreticals, they manifest the ever-widening gap between DJT’s love of rapturous rally language and the realities of his proposals.
As you’ve likely read, the three biggest beneficiaries of Donald’s financial plan are defense industries, homeland security, and veterans affairs, all of which saw dramatic increases in funding in DJT’s budget.
On the losing end, state and labor programs have been truncated significantly, with smaller agencies like the National Endowment of the Arts and several anti-poverty programs being excised totally.
This was tough news for liberal blues to sift through, unsurprisingly, but I have to give it to the Worst Supporting Actor Razzie Winner (Ghosts Can’t Do It (1990)) — he’s certainly following through on his campaign promises.
Here’s the rub, though: While this ferocious rhetoric from DJT electrifies his base, pro-Trump citizens are likely going to be first in line to be negatively affected by these budgetary switcheroos.
Let’s take, for example, southern Ohio. Trump won decisively there, and outside of major cities, that state was firmly and singularly behind his campaign. And DJT’s relentless repetition about getting rid of regulations and stopping governmental strongholds of Ohio’s farmers and workers were regularly met with waves of applause.
But even a cursory investigation into what reducing EPA-related programs in that part of the world actually means reveals one of many hypocrisies Donald will have severe difficulty untying. The New York Times printed a story on the 17th about a former nurse from the area who voted for Trump who relies on a subsidy from an organization called The Highland County Community Action Organization to help pay her heating bills in the winter. That entity goes bye-bye under Trump’s budget.
This woman is one of millions who stand to get steamrolled by these new policies. The issue, from where I sit, is that many folks heard bullet-points that stirred them up, but didn’t bother to read the fine print.
If anything, this was one of Hillary Clinton’s most lovable albatrosses during her campaign: on every issue, every tactic, every plan, HRC had a totally thorough and ridiculously unsexy policy memo that didn’t just dictate what these ideas were, but how they’d get funded and what their basic administrations would be comprised of.
As somebody who cares about boring stuff like that, I was inspired by her thoroughness, but to many voters her intelligent descriptions of imperative issues sounded like Charlie Brown’s teacher — wah wah wah wah.
DJT had better tweets, more easily-cited takedown phrases. Sure, the guy has no clue about how to make good on anything, but his synopses were (say it like he would) terrific.
This is the point that keeps me nervous: How far will loyalty to the Donald stretch? Liberal folks are currently having nightmarish visions of an post-apocalyptic education system and global temperature increases that will make Tahoe a balmy tropical oasis, but Trump supporters seem willing to see just how bad things really get before they’d consider changing their tune on how much confidence they have in Prima Donald.
I’m a product of the North American university system, so I recognize the value of trial and error — even on a macro scale — but even if things only become 1% as hideous as they could under this budget of DJT’s, it’s important for us as earthlings to be concerned.
Thankfully, this is where Trump’s slash-and-burn budget becomes smoke and mirrors. Executive Actions are all fine and good, but DJT’s ambitions will all but certainly be stymied by a government that considers his ideas too drastic.
Look at this pair of dum-dum Muslim bans of his that were clearly discriminatory and offensive — Trump got to be a big deal during their respective news cycles, but he didn’t even have to wait a week before both of them were chopped down.
A similar smackdown will come when the ink-on-paper of Trump’s budget reaches Congress. DJT might find minor victories in its implementation, but this thing’s getting watered down.
Hopefully our elected officials will feel the same way astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson did after he saw the proposed budget: “We all want to Make America Great Again. But that won’t happen until we first Make America Smart Again. The fastest way to Make America Stupid: Cut funds to programs that support education.”
Mike Restaino is a writer and filmmaker based out of Incline Village. He is also a founding member of the North Tahoe Democrats. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.