Playing Trump on the House-Of-Cards

Opinion is solely the author’s


I had a funny thought. If Donald Trump and Gary Hart met up with Neil Diamond and Sam Spade to play cards, Trump would insist on playing Clubs. Would he lead with his golf club, night club, yacht club, or his billy club?

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Donald Trump has certainly stirred up the nation. Love him or hate him, you have to give him that, and then you have to wonder why. His apparent lack of understanding is actually well understood by many who don’t Get It (what the feds are doing). A lot of people think our government is rigged and now only works for those who grease the wheels. They see the great divide getting wider with Congress leading the charge.

They may be right. For the first time in history, most Senators and Congressmen are millionaires. That says a lot about what this sitting batch of politicians have been up to since getting elected. The problem is, there really isn’t a better candidate than Donald Trump. It’s sad that in a nation as smart as ours, we wind up with him leading the Four Stooges into this summer’s conventions.

Ted Cruz isn’t going to fix what’s broke. Neither is Hillary Clinton. Other issues aside, there isn’t a shadow of difference between them when it comes to the top one percent’s overarching influence. John Kasich is probably the most electable republican in November, but the meek no longer survives in the Party of Lincoln.

Bernie Sanders is like the funny grandfather who loves to tell you all the things your parents did wrong. That’s why, I think, he has the nation’s youth on his side. He also has, by far, more individual contributors than Hillary Clinton. No matter how much money each person gives, they still only get one vote in return. Hillary’s PAC supporters remind me of Captain Gulliver being tied down by 100 Lilliputians. I think Bernie is a better candidate than Hillary, but the problem with any democratic President is that we gain nothing but four more years of gridlock.

The only thing on the republican-held Senate and House agendas will be stopping the clock for yet another four years. In the past decade, Congress has passed numerous laws that benefit few but affect millions as if the consumer doesn’t matter. Our laws are now written, not by congressmen, but by lobbyists for congressmen. Trump is the only one who wants to change that. The others just want to be contestants on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire. And that, regardless of anything else Trump declares, decrees, boasts, belittles or bungles, is what’s going to get him elected.

I just don’t want to hire a nerd to fix my plumbing. We tried that in Michigan.

At the federal level, there is not enough support for the impoverished city of Flint; everyone is too busy campaigning. On the state level, there is not enough urgency or empathy, and way too much politics – still! This is a House-Of-Cards that has already fallen.

Governor Snyder’s business acumen in governmental issues does not infuse a lot of confidence to elect a billionaire businessman to the White House. Not in Michigan, anyway, where we see everyone just dragging their feet and pointing fingers, and nothing getting done.

Flint is a killer example of cronyism. Literally, in the case of Legionnaire Disease, and long-term in the case of thousands of children under the age of six, who drank government-issued lead poison. It was totally preventable if those appointed to manage the city had followed established safety guidelines. Then, when their snafu surfaced, it was covered up for almost a year while Lansing, the EPA, the MDEQ and Flint’s Emergency Manager(s) played the blame game. While people were dying!

Is this what we are to expect on a national level if The Businessman is running the country?

Flint wasn’t the first mole to get whacked, and it won’t be the last. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of American cities large and small that are operating water supply systems with 50, 70, 100-year-old lead-leaching pipes. If the next President wants to build a jobs program that will reach across the nation, as well as across the aisle, then upgrading the nation’s potable water system would be a healthy place to start. Roads and bridges are important, too, and the rails and docks are in even greater need of modernization. Then there is the aging and overburdened electrical grid that all of us depend on almost as much as oxygen.

There’s lots to do. We just need to elect people who want to aspire to things besides becoming millionaires. Or hiring apprentices. It’s a pity we don’t have a None of the Above option on the bottom of each ballot.

Playing Trump in November will certainly bring down the House-Of-Cards that is today’s Capital Hill. And, who knows? Without all of the special interest lobbyists setting congressional agendas, a political career might become noble again.

But I still need to hear more substance from Trump before I can vote for him. Washington is a lot closer to Lansing than it appears on the map.


Read On!





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    • Kelly Bixby on May 4, 2016 at 11:16 am
    • Reply

    Hey, Phil. Nicely written article. I’d weigh-in with an opinion, but I can only manage one taboo topic of discussion. I’ve got my eyes wide open, though, and I appreciate learning your point of view.

    1. Thanks, Kelly. Now that Trump has “closed the art of the deal” let’s see if he talks and acts more sensibility. Stay tuned!

    • jmccarthyeds on April 29, 2016 at 7:29 pm
    • Reply

    I wonder if a change in congress representation might change it to working for those who vote them in. You’d think the strategy of “complete” opposition to the executive branch would receive the consequence of being voted out.

    Who ever our next president is, a good start would be an option who does not trample on civil rights of our citizens, does not enflame racism, and does not use base fear tactics to garner votes. Such actions speaks to how they will “serve” Americans and the world. Of the 5 remaining candidates there are 2 or 3 who can get over that bar.

    1. I don’t feel any of the candidates remaining are fit for the job. Until we get Big Bucks out of politics it is never going to change. Bernie Sanders raising enough money from the masses to challenge Hillary Clinton’s super PACs tells me it is possible to do, but its probably too late for 2016.
      We should electronic voting. Its stupid in 2016 that we can’t vote over the computer.

    • Barbara Pattee on April 29, 2016 at 10:50 am
    • Reply

    I heard someone say that if the “None of the Above Option” wins, we would drop those candidates and get a whole new list of candidates. If only . . .

    1. If we had electronic voting, we could do that. Hold a second ballot day 31 days later if None Of The Above wins.

    • Lee Helms on April 23, 2016 at 1:11 pm
    • Reply

    Good article, Phil! I like your characterization of Bernie as a “funny grandfather,” but I see a possibility that a Sanders administration might not be gridlocked. If Bernie’s coattails bring in Democrats to replace Republicans in enough districts, control of Congress might be flipped to the Democrats.

    When people feel that life is going the wrong way, there are two possible reactions: despair or revolt. Bernie seems to be inspiring a bit of revolt.

  1. I also posted this on Facebook and Twitter

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