Why do so many of my fellow citizens like and support Donald Trump? I have worked on this puzzle off and on for the last seven years.
The little I get from MAGA friends is indirect, by inference. That’s because we want to remain friends, and we have agreed to make discussion of Trumpian politics taboo.
But I read articles and listen to Trump supporters on TV. When my Trump pieces are published in The Spy, I save dissenting comments to a Word log that I continue to build – anything that will add another piece to the puzzle.
As an engineer, I have a propensity for analysis, and I know that to understand any difficult problem, especially one involving human views, I must be as objective as I can be. With that in mind, in this piece I take the position of trying to see Trump through the eyes of a MAGA person.
I decided to present my analysis in the form of a top ten list of reasons to like Donald Trump. Note that this list is a compilation of inputs, not all held by every supporter. As with most top-whatever lists, the order will be from least to most important. The order is rather arbitrary, my thinking at this moment. That is, except for Reason #1, which all my data says is deserving of that exalted position. Try to restrain yourself and not skip ahead.
Okay, here goes.
Reason #10 – His physical appearance is attractive. He is tall, large, white, and, though a little overweight, appears physically fit for his age. He is not skinny or obese. He is always well-groomed. He looks good in well-tailored suits. He looks “presidential”, especially beside other world leaders.
Reason #9 – He was good at foreign policy. It was America First, and he called out our NATO partners for not contributing their fair share. He knew how to control authoritarian leaders through a combination of flattery and fear. He admires Vladimir Putin because (a) he is a powerful leader and (b) he helped the right American candidate win in 2016.
Reason #8 – He is an astute communicator. He understands the symbolism of our flag and the Bible. He was quick to grasp the power of Twitter in talking directly to his audience, bypassing the filter of liberal media. Overall, his writing is succinct and not atrocious. It’s never hard to get his meaning. His speech is easy to understand; he doesn’t mumble, slur or stutter.
Reason #7 – He is good for business and our economy. He worked diligently for America. He lowered our personal taxes and excessive taxes on corporations. He was not given enough time to prove that the “trickle down” economics of Reagan and Bush Sr can actually work. He was trying to drain the DC swamp.
Reason #6 – He defends American values and conservative principles. He is a patriot. He wants to return us to a time when America was respected, when certain types of people were less vocal, disruptive, and knew their place. He defends our borders from illegal intruders. He is good at exposing conspiracies against the US (vaccines, deep state rigging of our elections, big pharma, climate change, green energy, and witch-hunters). He agrees with Bobby Kennedy Jr who exposed Dr. Fauci as one who pushed the covid hoax for his own enrichment.
Reason #5 – He is tough, a strongman, an alpha-male with a certain charisma. He is not too nice (think Jimmy Carter). He is a street fighter. If you hit him, he will hit back twice as hard. He knows how to stick it to wokey liberals who play identity politics. He knows how to demean his political opponents by giving them memorable nicknames. Let a criticism go unanswered? Nope. Admit he’s wrong? Never.
Reason #4 – He is sincere. What liberals call lies, he truly believes are not lies. He is not faking it when he says things that seem to have no basis of fact or evidential support. In his mind, these things are true, and I believe that in most cases he is at least partly right. You can trust that he won’t discard you as long as you stay loyal to him.
Reason #3 – He is resolute. He exudes strength of purpose and self-confidence. He is committed to what he believes in. He is not a flip-flopper. He does not equivocate.
Reason #2. He is useful. He works tirelessly to promote long-term conservative principles. He won’t allow liberals to take my guns away. He is pro-life. He appointed dedicated conservative judges. Though he may have a few personal flaws (no one is perfect), the ends justify the means. He is not a liberal, a progressive, or a Democrat.
Reason #1 – He tells me what I want to hear. “Covid will be over by Easter, like a miracle,” and “If re-elected I will end the Ukraine war in 24 hours” are examples.
To explain Reason #1, I am morphing from MAGA avatar back to me. There are two human qualities at work here. The first is that people don’t want to hear bad news, so a potential leader who bears bad tidings will have a hard time getting elected in a democratic society. Al Gore’s “inconvenient truth” of climate change was a good example. The second is “confirmation bias”. People want to believe that which reinforces what they already hold. Thus, MAGA folks are predisposed to believe what Donald trump expounds.
Couple these qualities in a political system where folks are forced to choose (in practical terms) between two less-than-perfect (I’m being kind) candidates, and it helps me understand why so many of my fellow citizens prefer Donald Trump.
Bob Moores retired from Black & Decker/DeWalt in 1999 after 36 years. He was the Director of Cordless Product Development at the time. He holds a mechanical engineering degree from Johns Hopkins University