David Williams’ defense of Donald Trump (op-ed Sept. 29) is peculiar. He concedes Trump is a BS-er but seems OK with that. He seems to think Trump’s lying is overblown, although the lying is well-documented, much of it on video replay.
Williams credits Trump for “reforming regulatory excesses” notwithstanding that much of the “reforms” most benefited Trump’s fat cat donors rather than the average person. Among Trump’s “reforms” were rollbacks on environmental protections. His first Environmental Protection Agency head, Scott Pruitt, was so egregiously corrupt and contrary to environmental safeguards that even Trump had to fire him. Other disgraced Trump department and agency appointments have fallen by the wayside in numbers that far outstrip any previous administration.
Williams credits Trump with aiding the economy when, in fact, Barack Obama put in place the favorable economic winds that Trump just sailed on. The national GDP increased more under Obama than it has under Trump. Trump’s 2017 tax cut for the rich did next to nothing for economic growth. Republicans running for election in 2018 did not even mention it in their campaigns. More than a few of them did not want Trump campaigning for them. The mid-term election resulted in the largest Democratic resurgence since the New Deal.
Williams’ kudos to Trump regarding the military are equally misplaced. To begin, his accusation that Obama enacted deep spending cuts that “severely damaged” the national defense is as false as any of Trump’s falsehoods. Multiple sources have confirmed that Obama’s military budgets were similar to Trump’s. From the fact-checking website www.snopes.com comes the following: “The military wasn’t ‘depleted’ under Obama. The military never ran out of ammunition or went ‘years’ without funding, as Trump claimed. The budget for national defense during Obama’s term of office totaled nearly $6 trillion.” Obama sought to adjust military spending to changing defense needs. Trump has tried to foist spending on the Pentagon that it did not want or call for.
Williams entirely sidesteps the damage Trump has inflicted on the national character. He has exacerbated political divisions and has never tried to find accommodations with Democrats. His debased personal character and self-absorption have accelerated a decline in the public trust of government. Trump has cannibalized the Republican Party into a personality cult with no thought for the party’s former principles.
Williams’ praise of Trump’s America First foreign policy ignores the deep disregard our allies have for America since Trump took over. His erratic decisions, his abandonment of our Kurdish supporters in Syria, his embrace and kowtowing to dictators, and his feckless trade war with China have not benefited America in the least.
Trump never really wanted to be president. He only wanted to burnish his flagging business interests by running for the office. That he won has been the country’s great and continuing misfortune. The harm he has done to the national interests and character are incalculable. It can only be hoped that the country will have finally learned that placing an ignoble incompetent in the highest office is a mistake the country and the world that looks at it in disbelief can (ill) afford again.
Williams’ professed faith in a reformed Trump in a second term is bizarre and absurd. The untruthful BS-er the country has endured for the past four years will not reform. He is as incapable of reforming as he is of putting anything above his personal interests.