Friday, October 15, 2021
Oct. 15, 2021

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Press Talk: He’s a stick in the eye

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When I was a kid and scraped a knee or cut a finger, I knew what was coming next. Mom or Dad would say, “Well, it’s better than a stick in the eye.”

The lesson, of course, was simple. You think you’ve got it bad, but it could be much worse.

That’s why I look back today at those awkward and painful days with Clark County Councilors David Madore and Tom Mielke — and their sidekick, jack-of-all-clowns Don Benton — as the good ol’ days.

Back in those days most of us thought we had it bad. Real bad. I spent a lot of time commenting on it in this column. Hey, I would have rather been playing bocce ball, but the columns had to be written. There was just too much painful, stupid stuff to be exposed.

The point I’m trying to make here is their reign of terror, their buffoonery back then, seems like a scraped knee compared with the stick in the eye we’re all getting today. Oh, and who is delivering that sharp object? As if I had to spell it out.

T-R-U-M-P.

Our president.

Now before you go all “Just another liberal news guy” on me, those who read this column know I’m an equal opportunity headbanger. Ask my uber-liberal buddy, former state Rep. Jim Moeller, who’s running for county council.

Plus, when Trump was elected I quickly wrote a column saying I didn’t feel Trump would be as good as some thought he might be, but I certainly didn’t think Trump would be as bad as some thought.

Unfortunately, I’m here today to tell you I was wrong. He’s been a disaster.

(Hey, I recently had a Vancouver elected type ask me if I ever felt I was wrong. There’s your answer. But I digress.)

Trump actually has done some things I agree with. His hard pushing on North Korea has led to opening talks to see if something can be done with that rogue country. And … and… and … Sorry. Did I say some “things?” I was wrong again. Just that one thing.

Sadly, for the most part, Trump has simply been a goofy reality TV character who knows he’ll get ratings if he keeps upping the goofiness.

For brevity’s sake, let’s home in on two of his issues:

  • The guy is unhinged. Now that might be a smidgen too strong. But if he doesn’t scare you, you’re either ignoring what’s going on or you’re bordering on delusional. Listen to him talk for only a few minutes and it will be quite difficult for you to come to any other conclusion. He rants. He has trouble stringing meaningful sentences together. And he’s the king of giving out nicknames. Is this what we really want in a president? (Hey, I’ll plead guilty to the M&M Boys nickname for Madore and Mielke, but that’s softball stuff.) Trump is a bad actor in an enormously important role.
  • He’s morally bankrupt. I was talking to an attorney type the other day who’s a big Trump supporter. He’s a very bright guy who has the ability to overlook this huge flaw in Trump. I think my friend sees the morality issue but he’s able to dismiss it by simply saying it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter? Really? This is an extremely parochial view on what we should be looking for in a president.

Trump is at ease in making fun of ethnic groups, mocking a disabled reporter, labeling anything he disagrees with as fake news and, well, the list goes on and on and on. Just a few days ago — after denying he knew anything about a $130,000 hush money payment to a porn star — the facts were closing in on him, so he admitted it. Stop lying, Mr. President! It’s unbecoming.

And what about how Trump goes through his top people? It’s like the rest of us go through underwear. He’s simply winging it when he tries to put his team together. They can’t do the job. He said he’d drain the swamp — a great campaign shtick — but he’s replacing lizards with snakes. When you’re morally bankrupt, you can’t see enormous character flaws in others because it’s normal to you.

Now, I’m not one of these guys banging on the desk and calling for his impeachment … yet. And, frankly, assuming we can survive, we should be forced to endure him for another three years. Sort of like purgatory for those who voted for this character.

But for the next three years I will be dreaming of those past halcyon days, when the M&M Boys and the swamp they created were nothing but a scraped knee.

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