USA Will Trump keep his promises?

It waits to be seen whether the tycoon will honour the list of incredible pledges made during his campaign

Before winning the presidential election in the United States, Donald Trump achieved the dubious honour of being the subject of a study analysing his supposed stupidity. The book, Assholes: A Theory of Donald Trump, was written by a doctor in philosophy from Harvard University and professor at the University of California, Aaron James.

Doctor James writes that “the asshole is the guy (they are mainly men) who systematically allows himself advantages in social relationships out of an entrenched (and mistaken) sense of entitlement that immunizes him against the complaints of other people.” James suggests that Trump may well have created a new category of asshole and goes on to describe him as a clown, an incorrigible liar and charlatan, as well as “someone who talks without any respect for the truth.” In James' theory, Trump is a showman who does what he does more out of a wish to entertain than to merely mislead. To support his theory, James points to the pledges Trump made during his campaign, from threatening to build a wall on the Mexican border, and to make the Mexicans pay for it, to promising to take Iraq's oil as compensation for war expenses.

However, all of that was before the presidential nominations in November and therefore before US voters chose the magnate to lead the most powerful country on the planet for at least the next four years. Now we are left with deciphering what Trump's policies will actually amount to and to see if he is truly willing to fulfill the long list of incredible pledges he made in meetings and debates all over the country during his campaign. And for the first time and without any precedent, everything suggests that the flamboyant new president of the United States is ready to do everything he said he would, to change the direction of foreign policy, to choose new international partners, to impose severe restrictions on trade, to halt the march of globalisation, to expel a large part of the illegal immigrants in the country, to cut back on services, to boost private education over public schools, and to do away with the agreements on fighting climate change.

Healing division

As for the internal divisions in the country, president Trump puts himself forward as the solution to this social fracture, as the figure who can reconcile all the opposing halves. To reconnect a society that is deeply divided between the haves and the have-nots, between the blue collar workers –who have either lost their jobs during the crisis or lost their spending power– and the white collar workers who make millions from their Wall Street salaries. But also between Americans angered and frightened by the influx of immigrants and the newcomers themselves who struggle to play a greater role in a society that tends to look on them with suspicion and resentment. In short, Donald Trump puts himself forward as the only one capable of reconciling the two opposing sides.

The most ironic thing is that he exploited these divisions during his campaign, which was clearly the hardest and dirtiest in the recent electoral history of the United States. During his bid for president, he showed no qualms about lying, about insulting and brutally discrediting his opponents, first rivals in the Republican party and then later the Democratic party candidate, Hillary Clinton. We will have to see what sort of president he becomes but this, it seems, is what the man is made of.

Donald Trump President of the United States
“I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose voters”

The Divided States of America

When the front cover of Time magazine named Donald Trump person of the year for 2016 it was not necessarily a tribute. The magazine justified its choice saying he “had the greatest influence, for better or worse, on the events of the year.” The president-elect was presented in the context of the Divided States of America, and both the election result and his ultraradical ideas support this idea. Trump lost the popular vote but won in the Electoral College and, therefore, will become the legitimate 45th President of the United States.

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