The Republican National Convention is finally over. For many it’s none too soon, for others the fear-mongering RNC will be just a “fond” memory.
I tuned in when Donald Trump Jr.’s girlfriend, Kimberly Guilfoyle, was speaking. Actually she was more “yelling” than speaking. (Conservative New York Times columnist, David Brooks wrote, “This convention is targeted to one voter, Donald Trump, to make his lonely soul feel affirmed.”)
It’s hard to visualize, but Kimberly was once married to Gavin Newsom and thought of herself as the next Jackie Kennedy. (I don’t ever recall elegant Jackie maniacally screaming from a podium.)
In 2016 the Republican platform was 54 pages. This year’s “no platform” is W.T.W. (Whatever Trump Wants, which appears to be getting crowned King.)
A dozen campaign RNC events were broadcast from the White House, though they’re possible violations of the Hatch Act. Then again, illegal practices has never stopped the Trump administration before.
On Tuesday, the “star” of night was Melania. On Saturday Melania revealed photos of the recent remodel of the Rose Garden, including uprooting a dozen beautiful crab apple trees planted by Jackie Kennedy in 1962.
This caused a massive backlash on Twitter. The White House responded by saying the trees will be re-planted elsewhere on the grounds, but provided no details. (Duh.) One of the tweets read, “Melania modeled the Rose Garden after the Trump family, cold and empty.” (And this ends the Better Homes and Gardens segment of today’s column.)
Though her speeches often remind me of a hostage video, Melania’s talk from the Rose Garden was well received. (Especially when compared to Kimberly’s screed.) Melania suggested her husband deserves a second term because “the country relies on his honesty.” I immediately imagined viewers all across America laughing hysterically or spitting out their coffee.
Melania said proudly, “You always know what he’s thinking.” (Yes, himself.) The First Lady also said Trump is “an authentic person.” On the other hand, Dr. Lance Dodes, a retired professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, sees Trump as “an authentic sociopath.”
Describing Trump to a T, Dr. Dodes writes, “Sociopaths lack normal human empathy for others and a normal human conscience. Cheating, conning, lying, stealing, threatening are all done with no remorse.” (And this ends the American Journal of Psychiatry segment of today’s column.)
This brings me to three “luminaries” who missed the RNC. (In addition to George W. Bush and Mitt Romney.) The first is former federal judge Maryanne Barry, Trump’s older sister.
In clinical psychologist Mary Trump’s recent Donald Trump biography (Too Much and Not Enough) her aunt Maryanne Barry was highly critical of Donald. In Mary’s secret tape recordings from 2018 and 2019, we hear Barry refers to her brother as “cruel, unprepared, a liar, a phony and has no principles.”
Barry also questions how religious people can not care about the poor kids in cages separated from their families at the border. (I suppose, given the post office scandal I could say Barry’s RNC invitation got lost in the mail.)
Another no-show was Steven Bannon, former Trump chief White House adviser. Reportedly worth $55 million, he’s out on $5 million bail after being charged with wire fraud and money laundering in a scheme that allegedly bilked hundreds of thousands of donors to a Go Fund Me page that raised $25 million to build a border wall.
Trump says he was never in favor of the fund and yet Don Jr. enthusiastically described the seemingly scam project as “private enterprise at its finest.” On the Internet there’s actually a video of Bannon fund raising but joking they were going to buy a yacht with the money. (Ironic that Bannon was arrested in part by Postal Service inspectors on a $28 million “super yacht” owned by an exiled Chinese billionaire.)
I saved the worst for last, Jerry Falwell Jr., the son of the late right-wing evangelist Jerry Falwell and president of the Christian Liberty University his father founded in 1971. (Sr. was famous for claiming 9/11 was God’s revenge for American immorality with homosexuality at the top of the list.)
After a photo of Jr. smiling with his pants unzipped, his arm around the waist of his wife’s pregnant assistant and a drink in his hand, he took an “indefinite leave of absence.” But when a sex scandal surfaced involving his wife and a pool boy where allegedly Jr. is described as “a cuckold who enjoyed watching,” the leave of absence turned into resignation. (Reportedly to the delight of Liberty students.)
The now disgraced Falwell was instrumental in rallying the evangelical community behind Trump. Most seem just fine with: kids in cages, Trump with porn stars, his backing murderous dictators Putin, Kim-Jong-un, Turkey’s Erdogan and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince. But maybe some will have a “come to Jesus” over Falwell Jr. being a “cuck.” (Which rhymes with…yuck.)
Not discussed at the RNC was Trump’s disastrous handling of Covid, so please Google: “Barack Obama had warned of a flu pandemic back in 2014 (though Donald Trump denies it)
Jack is at email@example.com.