Face of the day

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, United States, July 18, 2015. REUTERS/Jim Young   - RTX1KTWT

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, United States, July 18, 2015. REUTERS/Jim Young – RTX1KTWT

On the conservative alternative to Facebook, The Tea Party community, I read the following letter by Brad Thor. It is very well written and makes some valid points about today’s face of the day, Donald Trump.It has given me some serious reservations about my previous admiration of him.

Dear friends:

I have taken a stance, which I know is unpopular with some of you, and which I feel I owe it to you to fully explain.

Throughout history, charismatic figures have appeared at critical moments in time. Some of these figures have advanced their nations. Some have set them back. Only with the benefit of hindsight is mankind able to make the final judgment.

I have long been a fan of the saying – History doesn’t repeat, but it does rhyme. In other words, history leaves clues; lessons that we can all benefit from.

We are stewards of our Republic and as such, our greatest responsibility is not to ourselves, or any political party, but to the next generation of Americans. We must work tirelessly to see to it that they inherit a freer, stronger, safer, more prosperous nation than was handed to us.

To truly fulfill that obligation we must be selfless, and above all, we must be informed. We must understand the mechanics of politics, economics, and the framework that has allowed the United States to be the greatest nation in the history of the world.

As an American, my greatest allegiance is to liberty. As long as there is liberty, no task is insurmountable, no challenge too overwhelming. As long as there is liberty, anything is possible.

The true north of my compass has been, and always will be, liberty. I owe it to those who have come before me and those who will come after. I will act to safeguard liberty no matter what personal price I may be forced to bear.

Liberty is my litmus test. I weigh all actions of my government and those who seek office, against it. The ledger of freedom is incorruptible; its pages open for anyone to examine, and most importantly – to learn from.

At great personal and professional expense, I have grown more vocal over the years about the need to reduce the size of government and place in office fellow citizens guided strictly by the Founding documents.


…And so I come to my explanation. When I apply my litmus test of liberty to Donald Trump, he fails – completely.

In fact, he has not only failed to ever stand for liberty, he has repeatedly worked to undermine it. From supporting an assault weapons ban, the seizure of private property via eminent domain, the restructuring of libel laws, and socialized medicine (just to name a few) – throughout his entire adult life, Donald Trump has repeatedly championed the power of the state.

Regardless of what he says now, Donald Trump has a history. That history is the clearest indication of how he would govern as president. No matter how badly Americans want to “blow up” Washington, they absolutely must consider who, and what, arises from the embers of that destruction.

After voters drop that atom bomb, what happens next?

Herein lies my greatest concern. What will become of liberty under a Trump administration? Will it grow? Will it recede? Will it vanish altogether?

Our Founders realized that the normal course of history is despotism – the control of the many by the few. That is why the Founding documents sought to constrain government. They also counted on Americans to choose wisely those whom we sought to install in office. Too often we have failed in selecting the best among us.

Donald Trump is not the best among us, nor is Hillary Clinton. They are both incredibly flawed human beings whom we should be equally ashamed of.

Neither would advance the cause of freedom. Both would take us – not to that shining city on a hill of which President Reagan spoke – but into the murky valley below. Never have I seen America faced with having two such poor choices for president.

With the lessons of history as my guide, I see in Donald Trump the character flaws that are the hallmarks of despotism. In Hillary Clinton, I also see multiple character flaws, but I see them as belonging not to a potential despot, but rather to a conniving, self-serving, progressive politician who believes in lining her own pockets and enlarging/increasing the state and its power.

The two are reprehensible – but completely different. One threatens to further enlarge the state, the other, potentially (a la Napoleon), to become it.

Growing up, a wonderful nun repeatedly told me that kindness could only be expected from the strong. When Donald Trump mocked the disability of New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski – he showed himself to be not only weak, but also lacking in compassion.

Trump’s position that he is a Christian, but has never asked for forgiveness – coupled with his incessant bragging – not only further shows that he is weak, but that he also lacks humility.

Strength, compassion, and humility are necessary in any leader – but especially so in the person who would occupy the highest and most powerful office in the world. Just look at what the absence of those qualities has done over the last seven years.

My greatest concern about Donald Trump, though, isn’t a trait he lacks, but a dangerous one he possesses – in spades. Authoritarianism.

Confident people do not bully and demean others. That is the realm of the weak and insecure. Confident people also do not threaten others, especially not their fellow citizens.

Donald Trump has told us to just wait and see what he does to Jeff Bezos once he gets into the White House. He has told us the American military will do whatever he tells them to do no matter what their reservations. He has promised to prevent American companies from moving outside the United States, regardless of what they believe is best for their businesses.

In other words, Donald Trump has clearly told all of us that he will use the power of the presidency to force people to bend to his will. This is not liberty.

In fact, Donald Trump has never even spoken about liberty. Neither has he spoken about the Constitution and the Founding documents. This is an absolute first in the history of the United States.

Instead, Donald Trump talks about hiring the “best people” and making the “best deals.” This, though, isn’t what made America great, and it certainly isn’t what will return America to its prominence.

The blueprint for America’s success is the ideas of the Framers – limited, Constitutional governance – an area in which Donald Trump is criminally ignorant.

Let me be clear that I don’t want to vote for Hillary Clinton. I also don’t want to vote for Donald Trump. My preference is to write-in or vote third party. I think they are both terrible for our future.

But between a big government progressive and a potential despot – every American must ask themselves where liberty has the greatest chance to survive over the next four years.

As a Constitutional conservative, I take solace in, and guidance from the words of Alexander Hamilton, who in the election of 1800 said, “If we must have an enemy at the head of government, let it be one whom we can oppose, and for whom we are not responsible.”

I value all of you as friends, readers, and fellow patriots. There is much at stake for our Republic. Be informed, be selfless, and vote your conscience. I will not hold your decisions against you.

None of us knows the future. But I ask that all of us look to the past. Only by doing so can we safeguard liberty and chart the most well-reasoned course forward.

-Tea Party Community ( Brad Thor )



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  • Positan

    Genuine, thinking, rationalising American patriots seem now pretty thin on the ground.

    • Boondecker

      I note that but wonder why these sorts of “thinking” people don’t run for top office themselves.

      Of course, the reasons why they don’t (or don’t last or do well when they do) are fairly varied but it’s still safe to state personality-led politicians is what the vast majority of people prefer, primarily because the people want to relate to their leaders. By contrast, thinkers generally speaking tend not to be that relatable or popular.

  • Crowgirl

    Paul Ryan is getting on board:

    I’m in the camp of not believing he will be able to all the things he says anyway. I’m expecting a toning down of the inflammatory talk from this point on.

    • Isherman

      Agreed, the toning down has arguably started, along with the flip-flopping and backtracking. I get the appeal of a political anti-hero as it were, but that in and of itself doesn’t automatically translate to mean Trump is the right guy for that role or indeed the presidency. Problem is, neither is Clinton. IMO of course.

    • Dan

      I am with you there. An overriding factor ia that Trump is an expert marketer. He knows what it takes to win a deal. We have already seen him soften his Mexican wall and blocking of muslims.

      He is a populist and knows that pupulism is a powerful tool to win the presidency but can populism carry on in an executive capacity?

      The problem is that noone really knows how good or evil both candidates are until one gets elected. By then it is too late.

      Interesting times.

      • SaggyNaggy

        Oh it’s such an interesting intellectual question, isn’t it? Never mind the real people, millions of them, that will be affected by this big orange oompaloompa should he, God forbid, win the Presidency!

        Honestly, you people are unbelievable! Trump basically reneged on some of his supposed core policy, and you’re all “he’s a populist, he’s doing deals”. Come on! Wake up! The man is utterly full of garbage.

        “Interesting times”. Yeah go on, take another sip of that gin and tonic.

  • Mike

    A despot can be controlled by congress. Hillary can not.

  • duve

    All this talk about liberty is simply idealism. There must be a framework of authority under which individual liberties can flourish. Is there more or less individual liberty in Muslim countries than the United States? Does liberty involve the freedom to impose beliefs that restrict others, as Sharia law does? So isn’t it reasonable that to ensure liberty remains in a country, it may be necessary to exclude influences that may detract from that liberty? Absolute liberty is simply anarchy.

    • Andy

      The US Constitution is designed to prevent the tyranny of the masses over the few, and the tyranny of the few over the masses.
      It is not just a free for all.

      Margaret Thatcher said (I think) that “Europe was founded on history, and the US was founded on a philosophy”

      The US is unique in the world in the way it defines the relationship between the state and the individual, and the rights within.

  • Ghost

    Very well and written and opinionated article, if only we have a few more like this. I am not a all in Trump supporter, which doesn’t mean much form the other side of the world anyway, however, given the candidates that have floated to the top of the political pond, I think he is the better (not best) fit for the Constitutionalist Republic as it is today, in fact given Clinton or Sanders are the only other two options,, even with all the Trump dislike, why wouldn’t you.

    edit: I get a lot of giggles out of winding up out and out Trump haters, there seems to be a level of “going full retard” on all the rhetoric around the discussion, even from supposedly smart people that should be able to filter out the media spin, for that alone this election cycle is one of the better. And one of the questions if he gets elected, could be possible do worse for America than the last 7 year effort?

    • Raibert

      When you think about some previous US Presidents, for example Nixon and Ford, Trump isn’t too bad. However I still find it very interesting the degree of comment over this selection by those no way entitled to partake in it, would they be making similar comments about a Russian presidential candidate? I think not.

  • localnews

    America are destined to be sunk by their welfare spending. The communism that they spent generations fighting around the world has come through their back door and will destroy their country. That is the threat to their liberty.
    The president is not a dictator he is under the constraints of congress and the law so it is silly to write like he is. America should elect someone who gives them a chance of an economically stable future. One of the two candidates is far more likely to be raising the debt ceiling again than the other.

  • cows4me

    Lets face it the USA is in a mess, the people are so over the political elite and now fear the government rather than the government fearing the people. The present progressive regime has given power to the bureaucrats and made tens of millions beholding to the state, it’s a mess. Yes Trump is no wallflower and has had over the years many dealings with the Mafia, he’s no saint. How is the best way to fight self interest and corruption ? Does not the CIA employ hackers to test computer security, are not poachers employed as game keepers. Sometimes the best person for the job has major flaws but it’s these flaws that are the talents that are needed. Going on Brad Thor’s logic the only suitable candidate would be someone like mother Teresa. The US is mired in the mud, pigs love mud.

  • SaggyNaggy

    It’s not difficult to recognize that Donald Trump is supremely unfit to be President of the United States. One just has to pay attention to what he actually says. He wants to raise the minimum wage, he refuses to touch entitlement reform, he has no idea what being “pro-life” actually means, and now he has stated that he wishes to do writedowns on the national debt and print money to cover the rest! This sort of statement makes him unfit either way. If he is serious, he will turn America into Venezuela or Greece, and if he is not, then for simply demagoguing on the question he is too big a fool and charlatan to be allowed anywhere near the Oval Office.

    Hillary Clinton will be a terrible President, maybe the worst America has had thus far. But at least at the end of her four years there will be an America left to speak of. I have no such confidence with regard to Trump.

    • OneTrack

      Except it might be called Mexistan by then.

      • SaggyNaggy

        See, this is where reality and the Trumple’s Temple cult part ways. There’s actually not that many illegals coming over the border, at least not sufficient to account for the large growth in the Hispanic demographic of the United States. If America is getting more “Mexican”, it’s because the legal Hispanics who are already here are breeding at a higher rate.

        I’m all for securing the borders, but the problem, statistically, isn’t as big as one might suppose, and no wall is going to solve the problem of the illegals already here. I’m all for instant deportation without mercy, but people could have got that by voting for Cruz.

        • OneTrack

          I never, and a lot of Americans obviously didn’t either, believe that Cruz was going to do anything about immigration. He just jumped on the bandwagon Trump started. And a lot of Americans do believe that there has been, and continues to be, too much immigration. And when you have massive protests by mexicans when Trump just tries to give a speech, then there is a gut feeling kicking in that maybe things have got out of hand. The kids with the big signs “Make America Mexico Again” probably spelt it out all too clearly.

          • SaggyNaggy

            “He just jumped on the bandwagon Trump started.”

            More Trumpentologist crap. Ted Cruz has been a Senator since 2012, and as the Senator of a border state has been outspoken about this issue since then, at a time when Trump was donating money to Harry Reid and other pro-amnesty Democrats. In fact, he was speaking about securing the borders at around the same time Trump was meeting with pro-amnesty Hispanic groups and telling them “you’ve convinced me”.

            See? Reality. It’s a cool place to live! You should try it, rather than listening to the Orange Hypnotoad.

          • OneTrack

            Was that when he was handing out the teddy bears?

            You sound a little bit butt hurt that your guy lost. Sorry, the voters have spoken and they didn’t believe Cruz either. Time to get over it and live with the reality that Trump is still in the race and Cruz isn’t.

          • SaggyNaggy

            Ah, so instead of trying to rebut me, you now want to treat it like it’s some sort of game. “Trump may be completely full of crap, but we still won, and you still lost!” Yes, the voters have spoken. More fool them. They will get what they want, and they will get it good and hard. Yes I am butthurt. I am always sad to see truth, facts, and good candidates get overridden by lies and demagoguery. In New Zealand you think you have that luxury of treating this like sport, but you don’t. If Trump devalues the US dollar and implements autarky, there will be a massive global depression. That’s bad for everyone.

            I will never get over the fact that people had an obvious and competent conservative candidate, and they voted for a demagoguing Democrat instead. I am disgusted that the two main parties in the United States have put forward a New York “liberal” as their nominee. We will live with the horror of that poor choice for generations. Anyone who would support Trump because he wins rather than because he has sound policy is as shallow as a puddle. Have fun laying waste to the American Republic and all it stands for!

          • Mike

            Here’s the thing about the USA… the president while powerful is limited by both the constitution and the congress.

            The system is designed to prevent the president from having total control, and has tools in place to remove him if he oversteps those bounds.

            Trump isn’t the best man for the job, but in this race he is the best of the worst…. much like every election really.

  • Doug

    To be honest, with the choice being Hillary or Donald, I think my option would be emigration…
    That being said, I don’t buy into the whole Donald would become a despot, turn the USA into into an authoritarian state thing. To me that is just scaremongering, if that is possible when he is President, there would be nothing stopping them now either, and that just isn’t going to happen.