Many years ago I taught at a prep school in Tampa and I encountered some younger versions of Trump -- the golden boys and girls whose parents' wealth had led them to believe they were better than everyone else (the losers) and worthy of whatever they wanted. I've seen the pout when they don't get their way, the sulk when someone else has the spotlight, the self-satisfied smile when they bully someone into giving in.
These kids grow up secure in the knowledge that Daddy's money can buy them out of the drug bust, the hit and run, the rape charge, the cheating scandal, the pregnancy, the draft -- Money talks is the lesson learned.
I recall one eighth grader's answer, when I was asking the class what sort of future they envisioned for themselves: "Climbing to the top of the ladder, stepping on others and pushing them aside," was Robert's response. And I'm pretty sure he was serious -- he wasn't a kid with a sense of humor.
Mr. Trump's four bankruptcies -- no, the bankruptcies of four of his companies -- were, according to him, just good business decisions. Never mind the investors who lost millions -- he was able to walk away from a bad deal -- stepping on others and pushing them aside.
After Thursday's debate, I had a vision of a President Trump on the world stage. Forget diplomacy -- he would be the quintessential Ugly American -- loud, rude, determined to have things his way . . . or else. All those conservatives who were sighing over tough-guy Putin a while back have found their new hero.
And the GOP base applauds, flinging their collective panties at this boor who declares that he doesn't have time for political correctness. They sigh orgasmically even as he pushes out his lower lip and
threatens hints that if he doesn't get the nomination, he'll run as an independent.
What does this say about the GOP? Nothing good, in my opinion. Trump's trumpet either drowns out the other voices (I'm thinking particularly of Kasich, who actually sounded like a compassionate conservative. Remember them?) Or the others try to compete with him in rudeness.
And the crowd goes wild.