By Andrew Lidden Pate, Jr.
It’s obvious. The President does not see the world as do most Americans. Even his most ardent admirers seem willingly to grant this point. His view of how things operate, especially politically, is not that of the typical man on the street, nor of the typical woman in the office or in the kitchen, and certainly it is very different from that of most of our best educated citizens.
It almost goes without saying, but it must be emphasized: Donald Trump views reality with the eyes of the high-rolling billionaire businessman/Reality TV celebrity he is, who was born and raised in New York City. To him, every issue, every task is a deal, the art of which he believes he has mastered. To date, he has thrived on enough of his deals to keep his head above water and escape from any perils or failures he has experienced along his way. Indeed, he has succeeded sufficiently well to get himself elected to the top political office in the land (some believe the top in the entire world).
Such is Donald Trump's strength, which few humans can match and concerning which many are envious.
Donald Trump has mastered the art of the Hard Sell, which is about as American as anyone can get. If you can convince other people that what you are selling is worth their buying, you have succeeded. It’s “the American way.”
The Hard Sell, as is widely known, is based on deception, or deceit, call it what you will. The defects in the product are either hidden or lied about. The positives in the product are magnified, exaggerated, that is, to whatever degree necessary to make the sell. But because this is the way the sell is made there is no reason to believe the deal illegal or wrong in Donald Trump's way of thinking. It is what it is.
And those who think it is otherwise, or that the deal should be something it is not, they simply are wrong. They are “fake,” and their “anti-deal” verbiage is wasteful and hurtful.
Protocol, legalities, lessons from history, graduate level education, factual data —for Donald Trump these are secondary and useful only if and when they can assist the Hard Sell. Once this is understood, clarity comes to both Trump’s uniqueness and his strangeness, meaning "foreign" to most Americans. In fact, most Americans have had radically different upbringings and only casual exposure, if any, to Trump’s world.
So, Donald Trump is himself a stranger to most of us. He’s never worried about how to live paycheck-to-paycheck. He has only rarely been exposed to the Judaeo-Christian values of unselfish service and openness to others. He does not really care what past presidents did or failed to do. He loves the trappings of success, the $1,000 suits, the $500.00 shoes, the $100 ties, golfing with his buddies, and having Melania and his children at his side, visible proof of his most successful Big Deal.
But Donald J. Trump loves these "perks" for a solitary reason: He is obsessed with selling his product, which is himself.
There has never before been a president like him.