Observing the Donald J. Trump show since election day I am most struck by this: We have not elected another president. We have elected a king. Every other American president has adjusted his life to this uniquely powerful position. With Trump, our government and we the people are doing most of the adjusting, and at this point who knows how many more adjustments we will have to make.
Take King’s Don’s global business empire. Because he can’t be forced to, he certainly won’t divest his businesses nor show his tax statements, so we’ll just have to keep guessing what conflicts of interest he has. An ongoing distraction, but probably just one of many. Get used to it.
And the rest of the world must as well. For example, Trump makes an off hand comment or tweet vilifying NAFTA, and the Mexican peso goes down. Or the Japanese Prime Minister visits his majesty at the tower and is probably surprised to find Princess Ivanka, who has her own business interests in Japan and no security clearance, joining them to chat. Diplomatic protocols schmotocols.
In addition to protocols, Trump has ignored previous U. S. foreign policy positions, such as the one China policy (which recognizes big China as China, not little island Taiwan, which still thinks it’s the real China). King Don has stated everything with big China is negotiable, including it being the only China. This is likely but one foreign policy that the king will likely reconfigure in an offhand manner, while the rest of the world tries to figure out what he just tweeted.
Judging from the reaction of the heads of countries like China and Germany, they already realize the tweets of our boy king don’t mean much, which is a relief, as odd as it may be.
The label “King Don” occurred to me watching our soon to be No 1 Guy interviewing supplicants at Trump Tower seeking positions in the new administration. I heard this described often as “going by to kiss the ring.” Meanwhile New York City has been forking out about $750,000 per day in security and traffic control, and still will because King Don’s queen is staying put until their young son, the Barron, finishes out the school year. Also, the king seems partial to sleeping in Trump Tower, so New Yorkers: Get used to the detours and budget crunch. The king is concerned about his comfort, not yours.
I think his royal majesty will largely reshape presidential life in whatever way that suits him. For example, the White House might become more of a stopover between Trump Tower and Mira Lago than a final destination.
After all he can make royal proclamations (and slap back at critics) from anywhere a cell phone can be recharged. Why get stuck in Washington with its often lousy weather, when VP Mike Pence and Chief of Staff Reince Priebus can take care of most of what Trump wants from congress, whatever that may be.
Also, his majesty’s royal court, his cabinet, are strong and capable (for the most part). Though many have never worked in government, most undoubtedly know more about his or her area of governance than King Don knows or would ever want to know.
Oh, I forgot. His majesty has said he’d be putting his prodigious energy so fully into his job as president that he wouldn’t have time to go golfing or take vacations like other presidents who obviously were slackers in comparison. So, maybe I’m completely wrong and he will stick to the national governing body like a tick.
I’m not sure which scenario I’d prefer.
P. S. – Barron’s remaining at his private school in Manhattan might work well for him, and Queen Mel, but others at the school aren’t so happy. See this piece.