Promises, promises again and again


Sigh. So tired. Of the phoniness. And the weak-kneed defense. Of the silent enabling. It’s all so deflating to hear the feckless rhetoric. It’s all promises, promises again and again.

Yes, this is another political post. Believe me, I’m as tired of them as you are, but silence equals assent and I refuse to be piled into that already-too-large group.

What’s got me up in arms this time? Well, that’s me carefully crafting a turn of a phrase. It’s about the President’s latest breaking of a promise. Just the latest, because there are so many. Again and again.

The most recent one is about guns. He made multiple statements to parents and child survivors of Marjory Stoneman. He repeated this promise to lawmakers, pointing out how they were all chicken but he was brave.

And then he had a visit from the NRA and he turned all KFC.

So, the new White House proposal to respond to the latest mass shooting? No expanded (or “universal”, Mr. Trump’s own term) background checks. No raising of the minimum age to purchase even just Ar-15 type weapons.

(“The NRA is opposed to it and I’m a fan of the NRA. No bigger fan. I’m a big fan of the NRA. These are great people. Great patriots. They love our country but that doesn’t mean we have to agree on everything,” Trump said. “It doesn’t make sense that I have to wait till I’m 21 to get a handgun but I can get this.” – Mr. Trump’s own words)

And then he had a visit from the NRA and, yeah, apparently we do have to agree on everything.

It’s just another in a series of promises made and not followed through on.

DACA – “I would agree to that,” Trump replied. “We’re going to come out with DACA and then we can start immediately on phase two, which would be comprehensive immigration reform.”

“I will say when this group comes back hopefully with an agreement, this group and others come back with an agreement, I’m signing it. I will be signing it,” – Mr. Trump’s own words.

They came back with an agreement and, in the now infamous “s–thole countries” meeting, Trump refused to sign it.

Affordable Care Act – Repeal “Obamacare” and replace it with something much better. As in,
“I am going to take care of everybody … Everybody’s going to be taken care of much better than they’re taken care of now.” – Mr. Trump’s own words.

No repeal. No better or cheaper healthcare. The removal of the individual mandate, which means premiums will actually rise more. And more people unable to afford to be covered.

Drain the swamp –  “I am proposing a package of ethics reforms to make our government honest once again.” – Mr. Trump’s own words.

Instead, spending on lobbying in Washington totaled almost $1.7 billion in the first half of the year, the highest since 2012.

Or, in another example:

A week after his inauguration, Trump signed an executive order that bars former lobbyists, lawyers and others from participating in any matter they worked on for private clients within two years of going to work for the government.

But records reviewed by The Associated Press show Trump’s top lawyer, White House counsel Don McGahn, has issued at least 37 ethics waivers to key administration officials at the White House and executive branch agencies.

And, in a final coffin nail, this comment:

“I don’t think that anything’s really changed,” said Brian Wild, a longtime Republican lobbyist. “If anything, the lobbying business is booming right now.”


On the plus side, we should be grateful on some promises not fulfilled. “Raining fire and fury” on North Korea was a good promise not to keep. “Day One” tearing up NAFTA was also a smart use of falsehood. These examples of unfulfilled promises probably help keep us safer.

I don’t care to go further into the ever-increasing list of promises made and not fulfilled by Mr. Trump. It’s enough to know they’re still piling up out there.

Deja vu all over again?

The song remains the same: promise people what they want to hear and then just wait long enough until they forget it. Or distract them with circus antics until they get upset about something else. By the way, I point out this happened “across the pond” a while back…

Outside of Mr. Trump’s personal lack of grace, it’s a familiar tune. Which means, despite all the bluster and ill manners, he’s exactly the same as those political caricatures he loves to insult. Were he capable of any sort of self-awareness, he would already have created a demeaning nickname for himself.

In the meantime, I expect we will continue to hear this same pattern: promises, promises…again and again.

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