Trump's Shameful Inaugural Speech

Donald Trump never ceases to disgust me. That's my personal view, which I'm entitled to, and I'm sticking to it. No unity shtick here.

Conservative columnist David Brooks, in the New York Times, gets the first part of his column today right:

“We’ve never had a major national leader as professionally unprepared, intellectually ill informed, morally compromised and temperamentally unfit as the man taking the oath on Friday. So let’s not lessen the shock factor that should reverberate across this extraordinary moment.”

Brooks blows the rest of column with his statement that we have no need to fear "the rise of fascism, a new authoritarian age" with Trump.

From Niall O'Dowd at Irish Central News: Trump's inaugural speech was everything but a Sieg Heil. [More....]

Trump’ speech was straight off the campaign trail, but extra disturbing in the use of one phrase --America First, the 1930s fascist slogan.

Whoever gave him that America First slogan knew well what he was doing. It is just short of Sieg Heil in its symbolic inference. The alt-right are on the march, we could hear their footsteps on Pennsylvania Avenue today.

His speech today was vindictive and low-class, just like him. It was also a disgrace. The ADL had asked him months ago not to use the anti-semitic phrase "America First." He didn't care. (Maybe his equally inexperienced son-in-law, who thinks he can bring peace to the middle east, thought it was okay.)

As John Cassidy in the New Yorker writes today:

Around the world, there is still astonishment that such an inexperienced, volatile, and disruptive figure could become America’s President. Indeed, Trump’s elevation has raised foundational questions not just about the future of democracy in this country but about the entire American-led global order that has been in place since the end of the Second World War.

Impulsive behavior is one thing. The worrying thing about Trump is that his impulsiveness is combined with authoritarian instincts and, according to some accounts, an unhealthy interest in populist dictators. According to a 1990 profile of Trump in Vanity Fair, his former wife Ivana said that he kept a book of Hitler’s collected speeches by his bedside. Last weekend, when a reporter from Germany’s Bild magazine asked him, in reference to his Scottish-German heritage, whether there is anything “typically German” about him, Trump didn’t object to the absurdity of the question. Instead, he replied, “I like order and strength.”

There were some funny (as in ridiculous) moments: GW Bush getting into a fight with his rain poncho. Kelly Ann Conway's hideous dress and hat -- more here; the look on Michelle Obama's face when Melania Trump handed her a box from Tiffany's (funniest tweet about what it probably contained: a hand-scrawled note saying "Help, Take Me With You."

And from Benjamin Wallace at the New Yorker:

During the ceremony, it was difficult not to notice the man’s oddities: the ludicrously long power tie; the way he leaned in to kiss his wife and missed her entirely; the jerky, impulsive bro-slap he gave to Mike Pence’s shoulder. During the benediction, the Energy Secretary-designate, Rick Perry, blew chewing-gum bubbles while his eyes were closed in prayer.

While it's too bad Ralph Lauren's company didn't refuse to dress Melania, at least they sent her an uninspiring powder blue frock that was a time-warp from the 60's, making her look like she was trying to channel Jackie Onassis. The top of the dress made her look like she was wrapped in a sheet. Fashion Fail. (Ralph Lauren retired in 2015. I doubt he designed it. The New CEO, who grew up in a small town in Sweden, "is widely credited with vastly expanding H&M’s cheap chic fashion business and then rescuing Old Navy.") Only the bizarre Conway outfit from the days of Napolean and King George was uglier.

My opinion: Donald Trump is an affront to America. He is a traitor to American values. He should be impeached. Tonight if possible. If for no other reason than he makes tens of millions of Americans, including me, feel ashamed.

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