Dan Mooney guest col: Trump has handled anger eloquently
The Republican primaries are not over. Even though Donald Trump lost big in Wisconsin, he didn’t loose his base. With extreme negative emotional intensity and more to come, this 2016 presidential campaign is unprecedented and remains steeped in political vitriol.
While all American presidential campaigns are characterized by a complex of feelings, both positive and negative, most now agree the obvious and unprecedented anger characteristic of this contest is a substantial cause of support for Donald Trump.
Driving this anger is the malaise that has crippled the Republican Party, the liberal progressive onslaught, which is now onerously impregnated within American thought and behavior, and the seemingly impenetrable, deeply imbedded, destructive and self serving power bonds that characterize the Washington D.C., political culture. Most important, however, is our own sub-assertive acquiescence to the political abuses we know exists on all sides, firmly fixed in America’s “free stuff” mentality.
Unfortunately, without massive electoral action, we are powerless to prevent or correct these devastating anomalies even though we have been aware of the creeping nature of a possible politico-cultural “break-point-change” for many years. Yet, at the same time, because of its obviousity, we have remained strangely unaware of its swarming undercurrent. Even without break-point-change, under “traditional” circumstances, we would not have allowed such a progression of events to continue.
However, a correction appears to be at hand. A candidate and leader has emerged to whom we may transfer sufficient power to overcome this impending American politico-cultural cataclysm. Just as the “Ides of March” represented a monumental turning point in Roman history, Donald Trump represents a similar and hopefully colossal turning point in American history.
The dynamic that makes it easier to understand the Donald Trump phenomenon revolves around the observation we can’t feel anger unless we’ve been hurt, are being hurt now or expect to be hurt in the future. It’s important to note anger always follows hurt just as the three remaining negative feeling states always follow anger in sequence: anxiety (fear), guilt and grief.
Thus, the outward expression of our hurt is anger. Donald Trump, with his extraordinary wizardry, has, with a few mishaps along the way, like Wisconsin, managed this anger eloquently.
With the possible exception of conditioning and innate causes, feelings are actuated by what we think. As the intensity of our feelings increases, our ability to act rationally decreases. In short, in the presence of both negative and positive feelings, we think and do dumb things. In a fit of anger, we can say and do things we later wish we would not have said or done.
Together, the liberal progressive onslaught and the incompetence of the Republican party have amassed a giant and nefarious power group known as the “establishment.” Those who support Donald Trump have expressed legitimate hurt and are now outwardly directing their anger at this ugly and obscure Washington society without break-point-change will overwhelm and destroy our traditional values as we know them.
There are two possible approaches to this analysis, nervously, are not mutually exclusive. First, we have a large population of citizens who support Trump, because they have been hurt and are angry, may not be functioning at their highest intellectual level. Anger prepares our human physiological nature to attack. This motive is usually reined in by our adult mental capacity to formulate consequences. Are Trump supporters acting as adults?
Second, should his supporters outnumber and outvote the opposition, Donald Trump, a non-establishment candidate (he has own establishment), could be our next president despite his obvious and predictable shortcomings. Do the obvious risks outweigh the obvious benefits when considering the probability this scenario may hopefully come close to the devastation of the ineffective and incompetent Republican party as we know it?
Now, with millions of Americans thinking, acting and voting with festering hurt and anger, can we expect the electorate to transform anger-based motives into prudent and reasonable citizen action? The answer is, yes! The seat and justification for our original anger is the rational thought that we have been betrayed by the liberal political liars and impotent conservative politicians that we put into office. Our anger is simply the driving force that moves us forward in pursuit of our rational constitutional rights allowing us to do what we should have done many years ago.
Dan Mooney, a 40-year Carson City resident, may be reached at Nevada4@aol.com.