Hand it to Trump

For the last year or two, I have been known to make use of these virtual pages to protest political developments, deviants and disaster. There’s much to protest about at the moment. Although, perhaps, if you are a Trump loving Brexiteer, you might think I doth protest too much. But regardless, I do protest. I’m not, however, a protester. I have never actually attended a protest march, gathering, sit in, commune or other type of mass event that actually requires my physical presence. In part it’s because I’m lazy. It’s also often better to watch on television. But mostly it is because there’s never really been a protest that I felt particularly attracted to. Nothing that I felt morally or personally attached to.

The first mass protests that I remember were the coal miner strikes in the 80s. Seemed like they were getting a bit of a raw deal. But I lived in London, not South Wales or Yorkshire. We had gas central heating, not an open fire. And crucially, I was eleven years old and my weekly pocket money would just about get me to Wembley and back, not to Orgreave. To be honest, I also didn’t think much of Arthur Scargill. Which is unsurprising. I was at the time attending a well-to-do private school that weeded out reds at selection and was as likely as not to forego Guy, and put a Scargill mannequin on the fire for November 5th.

My first real opportunity to join a protest came in 1990. The Poll Tax was proving to be unpopular, particularly with those who hadn’t previously been required to contribute to the public purse. In principal, the tax seemed a fair enough method of revenue collection to me. But it was truly found wanting in its execution. However, I had moved to the London Borough of Wandsworth prior to the introduction of the Poll Tax, and remained there for the duration, on paper at least. Wandsworth, famously at the time, set a rate of precisely £0 for the Poll Tax. Yay for me and my fellow Wandsworthians. But I’d look a bit silly stood in Trafalgar Square with a placard stating ‘No More Poll Tax!’ when I (legally) paid no Poll Tax to start with. I could have attended on principle I suppose. Meh.

In 2003 we had the anti-war protests when Bush Jr and Blair decided the time was ripe for an invasion of Iraq. The problem here was that I wasn’t entirely anti-war. Not that I was particularly pro-war. I just felt that I was observing history happening in the present tense. History cannot be stopped. Besides, if they’d asked me for a plan of action it would have worked out so much better. Get Saddam and sons. Do something nasty to Chemical Ali. Put Comical Ali on SNL. Quick check for dodgy weapons. Don’t kill loads of women and kids. Everyone home by Christmas. Alas, the powers that be dropped points three, five and six in favour of attempt to govern for an indefinite number of years and get the oil. Didn’t work out well.

In 2011 there were some informal protests across the UK which did hold some appeal, as there was a mass giveaway of top of the range flat screen televisions, Nike trainers and bottles of booze. Alas, shortly afterwards, there was a mass giveaway of lengthy prison sentences too. My non-participation was, in hindsight, probably a good thing. I would almost certainly have been caught. I simply cannot go into a Currys without having a really good long browse across their entire range of electrical products and would have absolutely insisted on testing a variety of tellys before making my final choice. The stores CCTV would have a recording of me from every possible angle.

However, we might soon have a protest that I can really get my teeth into. Trump has been invited to London to see the Queen. The visit does currently seem to be a little up in the air. Rumour has it that Trump, as thin skinned as ever, is worried that his appearance will be greeted with massive protests. I rather think he’s right. And assuming I don’t have to go to work that day, or have anything particularly better to do, I may well be one of them. Admittedly, I’d be protesting the decision to invite him every bit as much as I’d be protesting his odious presidency. But it’s a protest where my turnout would genuinely count. When a man’s feelings are hurt as easily as Donald’s, then every boo counts.

I hope that any protests are imaginitively organised. Perhaps we should enrol Danny Boyle to choreograph something special for Donald. Nothing too witty, mind you. Anything intelligent will go completely over the chaps head. We need something that he understands and that hits home. An alternative Mexican wave, done to the style of their football fans would be a good idea. Firstly, he hates Mexicans. Secondly, he will definitely understand the word ‘puto’. In much the same way as the normal traveller would look up words such as hello, please, thank you and goodbye in the native tongue of their chosen destination, you can bet the Donald looks up the translation for whore, golden showers and – probably – Trump.

An alternative would be for everyone to hold up placards in the theme of ‘Covfefe’. Everyone just makes up their own word. I rather fancy ‘Ungfava Bing’. It has a ring to it that I like. Then we simply go home, turn on Twitter and wait for the inevitable tirade of Trump tweets, hopefully using the trendy, new vocab he learned en route during his coach trip. But my personal favourite would be for everyone attending to wear those ridiculously massive sponge hands and wave at him. Hit him where it hurts most. Hang a few banners, ‘This Is Big Hand Country’. Sing songs with the word hands in the chorus. Make him cry.

This is, of course, all assuming that he is still president when the time for visiting the UK arrives. I almost hope it all happens. It would make for a great day photography wise. The photo above, by the by, was taken by me, of an image in a shop window in Malaga. I think it’s actually quite flattering. I doubt Donald would agree.


12 thoughts on “Hand it to Trump

  1. ricardomontoya says:

    Needles to say, I finished writting a commen on how I love this article. Saying that I too would have loved to have been there at Kent State, protested the Texas poll tax, joined those to anti-war protester singing, “I dont want to make war not more”. Of course I was nowhere to be seen! It would have been a great reply but alas it went poof for some reason. Love the picture above too!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I wish someone would protest policy, rather than endlessly protesting Trump himself. What precisely is it you’d have him do differently? (And no Russian nonsense; that’s been going on for over a year and there’s zero evidence he had anything to do with the Russians and the election.) I realize he’s crude and offensive. But so was LBJ.

    Meanwhile, Bush Jr and Blair led us into the biggest blunder the West has perhaps ever made. Where are the protests of that?


    Kim G
    Redding, CA
    Where it’s too hot to protest.


    • Hi Kim,

      This post was about the act of protest – past opportunities to protest and future protest plans. It really wasn’t so much about detailed rights and wrongs of anyone.

      To be fair, I’ve commented on the policies of Trump previously. His character too. He’s not simply crude and offensive, although he is both those. We seem to disagree on whether the character of a person is relevant to his ability to hold the office of president. With each passing day, I feel my position on this issue is given greater credence.

      The Russian nonsense is very clearly anything but nonsense. I think it is pretty clear that the Russians meddled in the electoral process – it’s not a controversial statement to make. At the very best, Trump made himself Putin’s plaything through impulsive ignorance through using, shock horror, fake news. Actual fake news. At worst? We’ll see. I’m reasonably convinced that the story has legs.

      I’m very surprised that you’re putting any faith in the ‘zero evidence’ argument though, not least because there clearly is evidence available that is detrimental to Trump. It was a well over a year between the meeting of Clinton’s semen and Monica’s dress and the subsequent meeting of aforementioned dress and Starr. It was longer still before key evidence made it’s way into the Nixon investigation. Other presidents have been fortunate that evidence worthy of impeachment arose only after their deaths. It’s an ongoing investigation. The ‘no evidence’ argument isn’t really a valid means of declaring innocence.

      As for Bush and Blair. There were protests! Huge protests! London saw some of the biggest protests the capital has ever seen. If you like, they were so huge they were yuuuuge!

      But anyway. Trump is clearly making it up as he goes along. He made extravagant promises that were clearly, to any reasonable person, undeliverable. He repeatedly contradicts himself. He lies. No ifs and buts about that last one. How do you feel about his policy in the Middle East? I know that was important to you. It seems to me that he’s very much gone against his word. How about his policy towards North Korea? Are you happy?

      How about his pledge to drain the swamp? My assertion was that he’d jump straight in the swamp and roll about as happy as any other swamp dweller. Did I get that wrong? I don’t think I did. He promised to bring back jobs, didn’t he? It seems to me that he’s producing a very mixed bag there – although we’re early days. We’d both agree that the markets don’t work as they should. Not least because I’ve learned a fair bit on free markets from you! But I don’t ever remember you advocating protectionism. I could go on here. Healthcare. The wall. Freedom of the press. Etc etc.

      Clinton might not have been the ideal alternative. But every passing day makes her look a preferable alternative. She is, at the very least, mentally balanced and an adult.

      But anyway, hope all is well at your end. Still in CDMX?


      • Hola Gary,

        Thanks for the long response. As to the substance, I’ll only say this. There is evidence that the Russians meddled in the election, if only that RT got involved heavily. But there’s zero evidence Trump had anything to do with it. You’d think that by now there’d be a little more than allegations, but that seems to be what we have. Yeah, Flynn did some things he shouldn’t have. But Trump fired him immediately. And Mannafort, who also had some shady dealings, was also fired. So yes, some Russian involvement, but not with Trump. By the way, the NY Times at one point published a diagram showing the links between Trump surrogates and Russia. One of the so-called links was Roger Stone having some Twitter conversation with a Russian. The other was Sessions meeting Sislyak at a Hertiage Foundation event. I laughed my head off about these so-called “links.” If that’s all they have to go on, it’s pretty thin stuff indeed.

        As for the other things, give them time. I’m not happy about Syria. In particular I don’t believe these so-called gas attacks were done by Assad. He had no reason to do them (he was winning the war), and the UN certified that all his stocks of chemical weapons were gone a few years ago. Further he knew he’d get it from the USA if he did use chemical weapons. So I think it was best a false flag attack, worst a total fabrication done by the “moderate rebels.” (I don’t believe in “moderate rebels” either. ) All that said, I don’t think the USA should be in Syria AT ALL. And I’m disappointed that Trump is there.

        However, even though I voted for Obama twice, I was disappointed by him many times. In fact in 2008 I thought H Clinton would have done much better. But I now think she’s mentally unstable, too corrupt, and probably too old and tired to be president.

        In any case, we are stuck with Trump. It’d be nice if the Dems (and the press) could focus on moving the ball forward rather than obstructing him every single step of the way. There are many things to be done, and endlessly investigating the Russia thing (which even CNN off-screen admits is a “nothingburger”) is not helping anyone, even the Democrats.


        Kim G


        • This is an emotive subject! A short quip can turn into something of an essay before you know it!

          That Trump repeated RT ‘news’ and made it part of his campaign, as is clearly the case, makes Trump a pawn in the Putin plot. As I said, his best mitigation is that he was impulsive and ignorant. Not the finest qualities to take into a presidency, I would have said. He also failed to fire Flynn at the first opportunity. That happened when his position became untenable. Indeed, there is good reason to believe that Trump should not have appointed Flynn in the first place. There’s Mannafort too. And others. Anyway, does Trump necessarily even need to be involved before his campaign is implicated, and therefore Trump implicated through negligence?

          There will be plenty of journalists grasping at straws in the hope of making a story, which is wrong. But also part and parcel of journalism, I guess. But you’re hoping that none of them draw a straw with Trump hanging on the end of it. I’m not convinced that won’t happen. It may even happen in the absence of any evidence, because of Trump’s own actions within any investigation.

          Syria is murky. But Assad had stalled at the time. He is still stalled. He is still in something of a predicament. He needed, and still needs, something to help him start pushing forward again. And it seems to me that the only ones who think, or at least state, he wasn’t responsible for the chemical attacks are Trump, the Russians and Facebook’s conspiracy theorist community. There’s a pretty wide range of respectable, international persons and organisations that are pretty sure it was Assad. I couldn’t state as fact that Assad was responsible. But he is certainly the most likely culprit. And why not give it a go? On one hand, Trump had ‘promised’ not to get involved. On the other, if he did, he probably gets greater Russian support.

          There are moderate rebels. There are some that are anything but. I couldn’t pick which are which either. I think I’ll stick to my current job, in fact.

          Whether we’re stuck with Trump for the full four years remains to be seen. I think it’s the most likely outcome, yet it is far from certain. You do realise that the remainder of his term will almost certainly be much like the first five months? And whilst others will contribute, Trump will undoubtedly be more responsible that any other individual person for that continuity. He is his own worst enemy. And if those last three sentences are in any way valid, then Trump is by his very nature unfit for the office he holds.

          But it all makes for very good television.


          Liked by 1 person

        • As an irrelevant aside, you would have enjoyed yesterdays photowalk. Blue skies, warm sun, the pretty little harbour at Lymington and 40 to 50 Ferraris lined up for inspection at the yearly Italia Festival.

          Liked by 1 person

        • “There are many things to be done, and endlessly investigating the Russia thing (which even CNN off-screen admits is a “nothingburger”) is not helping anyone”

          And then came Jr’s emails. You can remove the punditry, gossip and even the obvious implications. You’re still left with a situation which, with previous facts taken into account, most definitely merits the most thorough of investigations. You’re still left with a situation where the administration is full of people, including the president himself, who have not been forthcoming with the truth on a very repetitive basis. You’re left with one of the most senior people in the administration who has at the very least attempted to collude with a foreign government, or agent thereof, in order to affect a US election.

          You should be very concerned.


  3. ricardomontoya says:

    The subject matter can get emotional if one gets away from what you actually blogged. I felt that it was more like poking fun at ourselves with regards to political/social matters. It should have remained on the light-hearted vein of mea culpa for perhaps not be more actively involved. But there is always some that take issue with whatever the subject might take it way too personally. Sad!


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