A lot of people have been comparing Donald Trump to Barry Goldwater because they are both “anti-establishment” candidates who still have popular support. But that’s about where the comparison ends.
Barry Goldwater, like Ron Paul, stood by fixed convictions that made him very unpopular with establishment GOP players. He wasn’t able to be manipulated. In their minds, he wasn’t a “team player.” So even when he won the nomination, because the people liked his honesty and smarts, the establishment GOP made sure Goldwater lost the election. They would rather have a Democrat in office than lose control of their party.
A similar situation is brewing with Trump, but there is a significant difference. Trump is popular because he is a superficially wealthy, big-talking narcissist who acts like complicated problems are simple and anyone who disagrees with him is an envious steaming pile of idiot droppings. The mainstream GOP voter really likes that. Because the mainstream GOP voter is tired of compromise and angry about the way things are without knowing what to do about it.
Trump seems to be the solution. He’s angry like the average GOP voter is angry. But he is fabulously wealthy and successful. He’s a jerk and the establishment doesn’t like him, so he must be the right man to “change things” in Washington.
But Goldwater had principles. He had feasible policy initiatives. He was rational. He had a track record of integrity. Trump? Not so much. I have no idea what Trump actually believes. Neither do most of his supporters. They don’t even know what he has believed, much less what he would believe once he was in office (God forbid). They just like that the establishment doesn’t like him. That’s all. And as I’ve said so many times before, being repugnant to the establishment is just not enough to be president.
We don’t need to know only what Trump is not. We need to know what he is. I guess, in Pelosi style, we’ll have to elect him to figure out what kind of a disaster he would be as president. Good luck with that.