Why the embassassment over Trump doesn't translate to lack of support

Discussion in 'Politics' started by JoeNation, Jul 3, 2020.

  1. JoeNation

    JoeNation Patron Saint of Idiots

    I have no damn idea. Cult? Lack of critical thinking? Nihilists? Hate? All of the above? You tell me.
  2. JoeNation

    JoeNation Patron Saint of Idiots

    For instance, Trump claims that the pandemic is "handled" and seems to be moving on even as the US is spiraling towards what health officials say could be 100,000 new cases a day or more if we don't do something across the country immediately.

    The brain wonders what exactly would cause anyone to ever support this incompetent delusional A-hole. Loyalty goes so far, but a commitment to the Jim Jones of presidents is an entirely different matter.

    "Jim Jones was persuasive, paranoid, and power-hungry. He thrived on attention, adoration, and adulation. He had a complicated relationship with his father, groomed his children to take over the family business, plotted against his enemies, held grudges, and cheated on his wife. He was equal parts bully and charmer. Sound familiar?"

    The Legacy of Jim Jones and the Cult of Donald Trump
    Susie Meister

    Nov 19, 2018

    “In his prime, Dad dripped charisma…he engaged and charmed and enthralled.” — son of Jim Jones

    This is not how most of us think of Jim Jones, leader of the Peoples Temple. Rather, we consider him at his worst: the megalomaniacal leader of a doomed cult. Yet this is how his son Stephan describes him, and helps explain why hundreds of people followed him to the Jonestown commune and ultimately their deaths on November 18, 1978.

    Forty years after the Jonestown tragedy it remains a devastating reminder of the dark side of devotion. Hundreds of people died by consuming cyanide-laced Flavor-Aid, receiving an injection — many against their will — or, as in the case of Jim Jones, gunshot. But the Flavor-Aid wasn’t the only toxic mix on the compound. Jim Jones’s paranoia and narcissism, control over his followers, and their attraction to his ideology set the stage for the tragedy.

    The extraordinary loss and unusual circumstances at Jonestown can make it seem anomalous. But the massacre is evidence of the ways people can be manipulated when their vulnerabilities, biases, and fears are exploited.

    Jim Jones was persuasive, paranoid, and power-hungry. He thrived on attention, adoration, and adulation. He had a complicated relationship with his father, groomed his children to take over the family business, plotted against his enemies, held grudges, and cheated on his wife. He was equal parts bully and charmer. Sound familiar?

    If you are among the majority of Americans displeased with the Trump administration, you might see similarities between Jim Jones and the President. For the “resisters,” Trump’s inflammatory rhetoric, reactionary policies, and racist dog-whistles go beyond typical partisan divide. And the unwavering devotion of his base can mirror a cult mentality.

    Ideologically speaking, President Trump and Jim Jones have little in common. Jim Jones preached the virtues of socialism, pacifism, and racial egalitarianism. He adopted children from various ethnicities to create a “rainbow family.” He inspired hope amongst his followers for global harmony, benevolence, and peace. Ultimately, however, he used isolation, authoritarianism, and violence to control them.

    Almost no one survived the Jonestown massacre, but among them was Jim Jones’s son Stephan, who was away from the commune that day at a basketball game. While he escaped death, he lost everything, and was left to grapple with the legacy of his dad and the Peoples Temple.

    “I see so many parallels [between Donald Trump and Jim Jones], it’s ridiculous” Stephan Jones told me. He believes that, like his father, President Trump is a narcissist and relies on similar manipulation tactics. Mr Jones said, “My dad would meet someone, quickly read what you feared most and what you wanted most, and convince you that he was the one to save you from one and give you the other.”

    Since there was no social media forty years ago, we can only speculate what Jim Jones might have done with a larger audience and a Twitter account. We do know Trump uses the outlet to belittle, mock, and bully his adversaries. Mr. Jones said this was also a favorite maneuver of his father. “Donald Trump and my dad are excellent bullies. When all else fails, they’re going to shut you up any way they have. If you disagree with them, you’re against them, and if you’re against them, you’re the enemy…and [they believe] anything they have to do to you is justified.”

    While most people refer to Peoples Temple as a cult, Jim Jones admitted he was ” The Jonestown community had a shared ideology that was more political than spiritual. Mr. Jones said his father used spirituality as a tool to attract and control members, but “behind the scenes, there was very little of what I would call spiritual.” Likewise, President Trump has a fervent following amongst conservative Christians despite living a life far outside the parameters of their “family values” platform.

    Some believe the isolation of the White House agitates President Trump and see him growing increasingly erratic, paranoid, and controlling. He prefers campaign-style rallies with his supporters over the day-to-day work of the executive branch. And many see his base growing increasingly emboldened, inspired by his angry speeches, and willing to act on his violent rhetoric.

    Likewise, Stephan Jones claims his father became increasingly erratic, paranoid, and controlling, and his undoing came, in part, due to the isolation of the compound. Living in Jonestown meant there were no new people to recruit. Without the high from wooing new followers, Jim Jones grew more reliant on drugs. But according to Stephan, Jim Jones’s “number one drug was adulation.”

    Perhaps Trump is like any other President, with enemies, resistors, and over-the-top supporters. But Stephan Jones believes the similarities between his father and Donald Trump should be enough to convince concerned people to speak up. Mr. Jones said, “I feel like Jonestown and even Hitler’s Germany could not have happened had, early on, people found their voice.”
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2020
  3. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Well-Known Member

    I just returned from flying cross country for a long overdue visit with mom. All precautions were in place... Multiple masks... A dozen rubber gloves and two bottle of hand sanitizer. I hope those were enough precautions..... Anyway, I noticed one thing that was of interest to me and perhaps relates to this post. I went through four airports in various parts of the country. In each airport I was taken with the number of young people I saw that were wearing Trump shirts, hats and Trump masks.... And we aren't talking redneck Bubba's here. These were bright college aged youngsters that appeared happy, vibrant and prepared to meet their futures head-on. It gave me some hope inside that not everyone is on the warpath in our nation. That said, once I took notice I did not see a single person wearing anything that represented Biden, Black Lives Matter or any other leftish sort of group. Sitting in my office reading the posts here at PL, I had been internally convinced that progressivism was the future whether I liked it or not. Seems there are more traditional leaning youngsters out and about than I had believed were out there..... Aren't you glad I am back with all this cheerful news?
  4. GeneWright

    GeneWright Active Member

    Glad you had a nice trip! Sounds like you handled it really safely.

    2 questions:

    1. What state was the airport in? I'm curious what the political climate of the area generally is like.

    2. What traditional values do you think the young people you saw are holding?

    I think it's inevitable that progressivism is coming, historically it always does, but the question is how quickly it will move.
  5. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Well-Known Member

    I went through Georgia and Texas on the way there and Oklahoma and North Carolina on the way back.... Traditional values?? Well, being able to buy the kid a new baseball glove when the bills are paid. Being able to fill their gas tank without breaking the bank. Being responsible to the environment but not at the level of putting the human race on a lower rung than responsible environmental concerns. Just enjoying an average life free of the radical changes that the extremists (minority) are attempting to force feed to the rest of us.... In general, just being normal happy young adults.
  6. JoeNation

    JoeNation Patron Saint of Idiots

    Trump had a 38% approval rating right now and no amount of anecdotal individual observations will alter that going forward.
  7. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Well-Known Member

    I'll hand you that. Folks are a bit miffed with the man. However saying that I also believe that most folks are like me and are absolutely terrified of what the opposition offers. We have enough common sense to recognize that a democratic leadership will tear our personal and family economics to shreds. And at the end of the day, that does matter to Mister and Misses Joe Average.
  8. GeneWright

    GeneWright Active Member

    Did you feel like you were torn to shreds under Obama? I feel like that went pretty well.

    I'm not at all excited about Biden as a candidate, but a return to Obama era policies would be a step in the right direction long-term
  9. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Well-Known Member

    Not at all. However his ACA has cost me untold thousands...... That aside, Obama was not the extremist that the left is today. Obama did have a vested interest in the economy. And I do believe his ACA was an honest attempt to regulate affordable health care though in hindsight it has been an absolute travesty. The democratic party of 2020 is far, far more extreme that Obama's democratic party. There is an air of a "take no prisoners" mentality that is very scary to this old boy. Change is fine. However change must be measured to avoid chaos.
  10. JoeNation

    JoeNation Patron Saint of Idiots

    I am not excited by anyone running for office these days and haven't been in some time. I more look for the people that terrify me and try to vote for the other guy.
  11. JoeNation

    JoeNation Patron Saint of Idiots

    Business Insider headlines for example:

    • European diplomats and foreign policy experts say that a Joe Biden presidency would restore the United States' strained alliances with Europe.
    • European diplomats believe Joe Biden will repair the damage done by Trump to America's broken alliance with Europe
    • Donald Trump's presidency has put relations between the US and its closest allies under severe stress.
    • The president's attacks on international institutions and his dislike for multilateral action have tested longstanding alliances.
    • One senior UK diplomat told Business Insider that they believed a Biden presidency would bring an end to "the venal corruption" of the Trump era.
    FryDaddyJr likes this.
  12. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Well-Known Member

    And absolutely none of that speaks to my pocketbook.
  13. FryDaddyJr

    FryDaddyJr Active Member

  14. GeneWright

    GeneWright Active Member

    Maybe so, but Biden is easily the most conservative person they could run with. He's the compromise to Republicans tired of Trump. It doesn't make me happy, but the leadership must find it to be a strategic move.

    As for leftist extremism, I'll give you that I personally feel more radicalized than I did 4 years ago. There's been a major schism in the country that seemed to appear around the time the tea party gained popularity. Trump's abusive style of leadership may have been the nail in the coffin on creating a more radical left.

    To be honest, I don't feel like anything the "far left" of the U.S. wants is truly radical. It's all just policies that we've seen work all over the world that for some reason we are yet to enact. I feel more like I'm being gaslit into believing I'm radical. Many of us have not changed views on our policies in the past 4 years either, we just may seem more radical because we're being forced to fight harder for them.
  15. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Well-Known Member

    I believe this comment is on the mark. I don't care for the tough guy talk that comes from our nations highest office and I have been conservative since I was politically aware. This does make sense.

    I have a bit of a different perspective here. I would bet your statement would be more accurate if you had said policies that worked throughout the free world..... My time in the Army was as a nuclear missile specialist and I had a top secret surety clearance. With that I was privy to some of what makes the not-free world tick and frankly, some of it still scares me to death to this day and that was thirty years ago. There is nothing more that some world leaders would like to see than for America to become weaker. So while we tie up our own hands with environmental and other regulations, those that aspire to conquer us patiently await their prime opportunity. You see, Russia, China, North Korea and others don't view the world as you or I do. If destroying nature is necessary to build more tanks or missiles, that is not of any consequence to them. And they don't have a timeline in mind at all. These regimes are perfectly comfortable waiting for us to open the door and usher them in. In the minds of the worlds dictators, at present we are destroying ourselves from within. And that suits their agendas just fine.
    toughcoins likes this.
  16. JoeNation

    JoeNation Patron Saint of Idiots

    "Don't think money does everything or you are going to end up doing everything for money."

    - Voltaire, Age of Enlightenment leader
    Mopar Dude likes this.
  17. Mopar Dude

    Mopar Dude Well-Known Member

    I was more tuned in to the great author, John Lennon when he said money can't buy me love..... I do get it. And it sure is much easier debating more esoteric issues when you have a little bit of it in your wallet.
  18. JoeNation

    JoeNation Patron Saint of Idiots

    I will never knock someone for achieving financial security. It is everyone's right to earn a living and be as successful or as unsuccessful as they choose. When you get to the extremes of both positions, you get those who can never have enough money to feel secure and at the other end, you have people that never want to put any effort into their own financial security. I am happily in the middle were I don't need a ton of money to feel secure nor do I want to live hand-to-mouth my entire life.

    It is worth noting that the people at either end of the extreme cannot fathom the people at the other end of the spectrum. They seem to have no tolerance for the other's existence as if it is an affront to everything they hold dear. I see value in both life choices but I am too darn cowardly to ever try to achieve either extreme myself. One would be too much effort with too little real need for reward and the other would be too little effort with too much need when all is said and done.

    Focusing exclusively on money or leisure is a life out of balance in my opinion. If life is anything, it is balance. The extremes are just there to show the rest of us the possible.
    Mopar Dude likes this.
  19. toughcoins

    toughcoins Well-Known Member

    Why the embarrassment over Trump doesn't translate to lack of support . . .

    . . . Because the embarrassment over liberal beliefs trumps even the embarrassment over Trump.
    Mopar Dude likes this.
  20. JoeNation

    JoeNation Patron Saint of Idiots

    Which liberal beliefs? Specifically?

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