National Politics

The Donald Goes To The Oklahoma State Fair

Image of Picasso's Guernica

I don’t get all the love here for The Donald.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump spoke to a huge, mostly adoring crowd Friday at the Oklahoma State Fair, and a state poll shows potential GOP voters here clearly favor him over his rivals.

We should probably assume that the state is going to go clearly Republican in the 2016 election, but besides Trump’s “build-a-wall” mentality when it comes to the Mexican border, I don’t see much for Oklahoma Republicans to like in his candidacy given their own special brand of conservatism.

The blunt-speaking Trump is no social conservative, for example, or right-wing religious fundamentalist, and he’s already talking about raising taxes on the rich if he’s elected. Don't Republicans here hate ALL taxes?

Still, there they were Friday night, the conservatives, running all over themselves trying get a photograph with him, trying to see him in person as if they haven’t seen enough of him through the years on The Celebrity Apprentice. News 9 covered the spectacle live.

Make no mistake that Trump does have a certain populist appeal on a few issues and can deliver an entertaining speech, but he still doesn’t seem like he would be an appealing candidate for Okies or Texans for that matter. Perhaps, he’s simply the Republican du jour right now.

Trump’s stump speech, which I endured for as long as I could watch it on television Friday, seems to pretty much center on how the United States is getting taken for a ride by every other country in the world and that he’ll make the country great again.

The City Upon A Hill rhetoric has always been a simplistic trope of global politics uttered by Republicans and Democrats alike, but Trump takes it to a new level. Trump even criticized Germany for currently taking advantage of us somehow in his Friday speech as if our military bases around the world haven’t been also dictated by our own aggressive defense posture. Last I checked, the U.S. was clearly aligned with most western European countries, including Germany, and it should remain that way.

Do we really want someone like Trump overseeing our international policy?

I guess Trump taps into the displaced anger of Oklahoma voters who have clearly voted against their economic interests in recent years and joined with the corporate media here in a seven-year President Barack Obama-hate fest, but let’s be clear that the billionaire Trump has very little in common with the vast majority of Okies.

Trump lives a life of tremendous privilege unlike most ordinary Oklahomans. He has nothing to be angry about. His anger, of course, is only play-acting, much like the acting he did on the television show he formerly hosted. I’m sure he’s getting a kick out of all the attention he’s receiving, and I even find myself laughing in agreement sometimes at Trump’s faux outrage against the media. I like a good joke just like anyone else, but I hope even Trump recognizes the danger in his polemic vision of the U.S. and the rest of the world.