Will History Repeat Itself?

In 2016, when it was time to elect a new President of the United States, a man named Donald J. Trump entered the race. While he had no political experience, many of the wannabes of America were enthralled with the fact he was included on the Forbes list of the richest individuals in the world. Surely, they said, this wealthy man has the business acumen and smarts to put plans into place that will help those of us who struggle to pay bills and put food on the table.

So they voted him into the office of POTUS.

What many of the voters either did not know about Trump (or didn’t care) was that he gained his riches through some rather nefarious means. Further, his wealthy status tended to be irregular due to a number of failed endeavors.

As it turned out, none of this mattered. All his supporters could see was a “successful businessman” who was going to put money in their pockets as well. (At least that’s what he promised.)

As we now approach the end of Trump’s third year in office, some of us cannot help but ask … has it happened? Has the income of the poor and struggling increased? Have the promised new jobs appeared? Has America become greater?

I’ll let my readers be the judge.

In any event, the year 2020 is almost upon us and by next year’s end, we will be voting to either elect a new POTUS … or keep the one we have.

While many of us have strong resistance to keeping Trump in office, we are also not that enthralled with the several candidates who have expressed a desire to step into the Oval Office. We have our “favorites,” but admit they each have their failings.

Enter Michael Bloomberg. A Billionaire … AND … a Democrat!

Hmmm. It seems the question now becomes … do Riches and Votes have anything in common?

A little history on how Bloomberg made his billions — after 15 years at Salomon Brothers, a Wall Street firm, he was let go with a $10 million severance package. He then used these funds to found Bloomberg, LP, a media and financial data services company, which has made him (at this writing) the 9th richest man in the world on the Forbes list of billionaires.

It’s important to also mention that Bloomberg is a genuine philanthropist (not a self-proclaimed one). In fact, he is a member of The Giving Pledge, whereby billionaires pledge to give away at least half of their wealth. (To date, Bloomberg has given away $8.2 billion, including a $1.8 billion gift in November 2018 to John Hopkins financial aid program. He’s also made significant contributions towards fighting climate change.)

A rather startling fact is that Mr. Bloomberg has pledged he will fully support his own campaign. That is, he will not accept any sort of political donations — nor will he take any presidential salary if elected. He has further declared he is willing to spend “whatever it takes to defeat Donald Trump.”

Please Note: I am not writing this post as an endorsement for Michael Bloomberg. I’m simply curious to know if his wealth is going to influence the voters who believed Trump’s wealth would better their position in life. If so, perhaps we’ll end up with a rich Democrat in the Oval Office.

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P.S. I’m well aware of the distaste that many feel about “the rich” running this country. But this post is not about that. Rather, it’s about what really matters to certain voters. Do they want to keep a “wealthy” man who doesn’t have a clue about running this country to remain in office? Or will they consider a man who not only has riches, but has proven his ability to run a successful company AND hold a political office?

Or must political affiliation always be the ruling factor?

29 thoughts on “Will History Repeat Itself?

  1. Hello Nan. Bloomberg’s money will assist him some but not much. In fact it will hurt him. To get on the debate stage in Dec you have to have so many individual donors and poll at a certain level. Tom Steyer was able to qualify for the last debate because he sank about 50 million of his own money into averts online and in mailers that asked people to just give one dollar. With Bloomberg not taking donations he can not get on the debate stage per the rules. Plus there is the current feeling in the Democratic party about wealth. Again at least Steyer wants to tax the wealthy including himself with a wealth tax, Bloomberg is getting in because him and his cronies are deadly set against them. Have you seen that one billionaire crying on CNBC “because he cares” and the wealth tax will ruin the country? But aside from the money Bloomberg can not win the nomination for three other reasons. First is stop and frisk, a program that unfairly targeted black people in New York city. Until just a few days ago he has refused to apologize for that program that did so much harm to the black community. Second he is starting too late to do the first four contests and seems to be interested in the super Tuesday primaries where a lot of the delegates are selected. However those states have large black populations, and again they wont vote for Bloomberg. Last he has a history of saying very insulting misogynistic things about women. With those three things against him I do not see how he could gain any real traction. He is doing this to pull Warren to the right , yes his ego is as big as tRump’s, but it wont work. The big fear is he will then run as an independent and be a spoiler. Remember he has run as a Republican and an Independent before. Well that is my take on it. Just my thoughts. Hugs

    Liked by 2 people

    • As I indicated in my post, I’m more interested in how the “deplorables” will see him since they thought Trump’s wealth was an asset — not so much whether he’s a viable candidate.

      I do want to add, however — his comments about women are rather “tame” considering some of the things Trump has said (and done) so I’m not sure that would work against him. At least in some crowds.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hello Nan. I guess I was trying to say it wont get to them unless he runs as an independent. If he does that he will be running against tRump and the cult is about his personality for them, his swagger, his being as uncouth as they are, his having sex with porn stars that they wish they could do, and above all his racism. tRump was a low rent TV star for trailer trash. Yes his money was flashy like everything tRump’s staged. Bloomberg wont be able to do that, it is not his personality. So yes he is really rich unlike tRump, yes he will have a plane and maybe a helicopter. But he wont act the thuggish star or mob boss the cult loves so much in their Dear Leader. I doubt Bloomberg’s money will help him at all. Hugs

        Like

      • I think the deplorables weren’t really interested in trump’s wealth or past business deals. I firmly believe it was trump’s racism and his manipulation of the religious right that won it for him. Had nothing to do with wealth or morality. They will see Bloomberg as too moderate and inclusive and not Christian, as I believe he is Jewish?

        Liked by 4 people

        • I rarely discuss politics. My other-half and I are pretty much on opposite sides so for the most part, it’s a verboten topic between us. Even though he doesn’t like or support many of Trump’s actions, he’s does tend to support the Republican way of running things.

          My grown children lean Republican so that too discourages any political discussion. However, for them, it’s more about the (artificial) support Trump gives to Christianity than anything else.

          My point is that I tend to think in the “average” household, the ugliness of Trump’s actions are not the primary reason for their support. Letters in our local newspaper again and again praise Trump for what he’s doing for the economy and point out all the things he’s done to MAGA. Sure, there are a few letters that praise his stand on immigration, but again, most letters are about the economy rather than prejudicial ugliness.

          I will agree with one thing you wrote — if Bloomberg is Jewish, it’s a given he won’t get the support of the Christian Right.

          Liked by 2 people

          • I do see that often in letters to the editor type things…the economy etc.

            But with the very few people I know, that are trump supporters, I hear a subtle underlying stance of racism mostly. It’s not overt.

            Some might say the economy true, but people who say this, generally have 401ks, stock portfolios and are still in the workforce.

            Those that don’t have these type of investments, seem just to echo what others say and give no thought to what they might lose in social security and Medicare benefits and the difficulty their grandchildren may have in obtaining a good job in the future.

            Just seems they all often may say “it’s the economy stupid”, but underneath, I think it’s very often racism.

            Liked by 2 people

          • Hello Nan. You have an important point about the comments about the economy. However what has improved in the economy and for who? Wages have only just started to rise and will not gain much. So no real gain there. The lower incomes are losing food assistance, medicaid, and facing extra requirements for both like having to work and be drug tested. All the prices of goods are increasing faster than incomes. In fact the only indicator that the economy is doing well is the stock market. Yet that only shows how the wealthy are doing, not the average person. It is a shell game and we the people are the marks. So the lower incomes who claim tRump has made a good economy or use that to support tRump have no data to show that. It is all hype from State Propaganda TV. In fact most things I have read show a very real chance of an recession in the next year. That terrifies tRump. Hugs

            Like

            • Scottie, much of what has happened DURING Trump’s reign are very much NOT what he campaigned on. Nevertheless, improving the economy was one of his main promises. And at that time, people loved it!

              However, there’s no argument that since he’s actually been in office he’s made one hellava mess of things — and not just the economy. He’s stirred so many buckets and upset so many carts, it’s difficult to remember them all. And yes … I totally agree with others that he’s brought racism to the forefront.

              But as I’ve tried to point out, my post was not about what has actually happened over the past 30+ months. It’s about how Trump originally came across to voters. He painted a beautiful picture and thousands and thousands fell for it hook, line, and sinker. Primarily because they saw him as a walking, talking example of a SUCCESSFUL businessman — which convinced them he could do the same for them.

              And so I ask the question. If so many could be influenced by Trump’s show of wealth and his repeated promises of MAGA, why wouldn’t these same people be influenced by another VERY rich man — even if he’s from another political party?

              Liked by 1 person

            • Hello Nan. To answer your question, I don’t think so. No I really doubt the MAGA cult could ever accept or vote for anyone from the “enemy party”. They have been indoctrinated for three years that every Democrat is a moral enemy, that anything a Democrat says is fake news, State Propaganda TV has reinforced their tribalism. IMO Bloomberg could shower money on them from above and they would grab it, fight for it, and still hate him as the deep state. They are the cult of their Dear Leader, nothing can be allowed to interfere with that and they wont have any false gods before him. Hugs

              Liked by 2 people

  2. So they voted him into the office of POTUS.

    Please always remember that Trump was put into office (despite his obvious gross unfitness for it) by a minority of the electorate, thanks to the Electoral College. Even that was only made possible by a combination of Russian interference and Jim Crow laws designed to suppress the minority vote in many states with Republican legislatures. None of those factors will be available to help a similarly-unqualified Democrat.

    Most Republicans dismissed Trump’s total lack of relevant experience, knowledge, and temperament and voted for him anyway because, to be blunt, most Republicans are stupid. Again, I don’t think most Democrats would similarly hand-wave aside Bloomberg’s lack of qualification. Also, most Trumpanzees didn’t vote for Trump because they were impressed with his wealth. They voted for him because he promised to inflict suffering on categories of people they hate — gays, racial minorities, Muslims, uppity women, the non-religious, and above all, immigrants. It was and is an entirely hatred-driven movement. Bloomberg will have no appeal to it. There’s no equivalent widespread psychological force on the left, and as far as I know, Bloomberg isn’t running on putting some hated group in their place.

    (I acknowledge my own hatred of religion, but that has always been directed against beliefs and institutions, not against the individual humans under their sway — and in any case I’m not typical of most Democrats in this regard.)

    I don’t see what unfilled need Bloomberg’s candidacy addresses. We already have an old centrist white guy for those voters who want that, and ours has been vice-president for eight years and a senator before that, so he does have relevant experience and is nationally known. I had no clue who Bloomberg was until he started talking about getting into the race, and nothing I’ve heard about him has inspired any interest to find out more. People like him think that being well-known in New York city makes you a national celebrity, but the United States is a lot bigger than the Boston-NY-Washington corridor. (No, I had barely heard of Trump before 2015 either.) I don’t believe most Democrats see great wealth as a qualification for office. I’ve seen no calls for rich liberals like Bill Gates to get into the race. I don’t think Bloomberg will attract significant support or become a major factor in the election.

    Liked by 5 people

    • I share many of your thoughts as regards to what Trump supporters, well, support. I don’t at all deny this segment exists.

      However, what I’ve come across in many discussions related to Trump was … and is … his so-called “business experience.” IOW, a large number of his supporters feel his accumulation of wealth was because he ran a “successful” business. And, they thought, if he could do that — and make heaps of money — he should also be able to run this country. Lack of experience in government notwithstanding.

      It’s not at all uncommon for people who are on the lower end of the “wealth and success” scale to envy and look up to those who have become household names simply because they “have money.”

      Again, I don’t deny there are scores of Republicans who fit perfectly into the picture you paint. However, I think we need to remember that these are the ones we hear and read about. There are millions who never make the news — people who are barely making ends meet. And these are the ones who see Trump as their savior. All because of his “wealth and success.”

      Liked by 2 people

      • However, what I’ve come across in many discussions related to Trump was … and is … his so-called “business experience.” IOW, a large number of his supporters feel his accumulation of wealth was because he ran a “successful” business. And, they thought, if he could do that — and make heaps of money — he should also be able to run this country.

        Well, I don’t want to get into an argument about it, but my honest response to this is that I don’t believe they’re telling the truth about that point in most cases. At most, for a few of them, it might have been something they told themselves to smother any qualms they had about Trump. For a much larger number of them, they simply don’t feel comfortable publicly admitting that they voted for Trump on the basis of hatred and tribalism, so they manufacture other reasons for their choice as a kind of squid-ink. His supposed business skills present an obvious option for that purpose.

        But everything I’ve seen on the right-wing internet — where they’re talking among themselves, not trying to justify themselves in the eyes of non-rightist individuals or the broader society — convinces me that the overwhelming majority of them voted for Trump because they wanted him to hurt people they resent and dislike, and that any other factors were insignificant in the support he received.

        In a lot of “people who are barely making ends meet”, their angst at their situation easily curdles into resentment at other groups they feel have unfairly encroached on their rights, via affirmative action and suchlike, or whom they see as disrespecting the privileged place of their culture and religion, which are the sole sources of pride they have to cling to. This is especially true when they’ve been targeted for years by a vast system of fake right-wing news media systematically chivvying their thinking in that direction. They dream of going back to the 1950s, when the semi-educated, religious, heterosexual white male was king, and all other groups were invisible or subjugated. And they want to see punishment meted out to the groups who rose up against that world and changed it so drastically.

        We can’t appeal to them, because the best we can offer them is the position of one equal element in a pluralistic society, when they believe American society should be a monoculture in which they are dominant. All we can do is out-vote them. Given the situation, Bloomberg is simply an irrelevance.

        Liked by 5 people

        • Well said. I’ve family members who support, hell, LOVE, Trump and without a doubt the reason for this is that they perceive him as a warrior who is crushing those they see as their enemies, i.e. liberals, SJW’s, and libtards. The economy only comes up if they’re talking to people outside the “Trumpian-loop” they dwell in. Needless to say, Thanksgiving is an opportunity for me to hear more of their opinions, and, boy, am I not looking forward to that.

          Liked by 4 people

        • I tend to think this part of your comment goes a long way explaining why we tend to see things somewhat differently — But everything I’ve seen on the right-wing internet …

          YES! The people who “advertise” their opinions and prejudices are exactly what you say they are. But I still contend there are people who we will never meet or hear about that see Trump differently. They see him as a savior, not someone who will stand in their place and denigrate the people they feel are “less than human.”

          One more thing … as I said in my post … I am NOT endorsing Bloomberg. I’m just offering a perspective that some may not have considered as related to his entry into the presidential race.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. For me what counts is the morality of the person..rich or not so rich.
    I see nothing at all moral in trump, but every other past president, except maybe Nixon, had or has some morality and decency.

    Republicans of late seem to lack morality and certainly guts to speak the truth. The only republican that comes to mind as moral, is Romney and John McCain.

    Nothing wrong with being rich if you came by it honestly and you do some good things with your wealth. In fact a rich person could set a good moral example for that, unlike trump.

    The thing that bothers me most about the trump supporters is that they are supporting someone who is truly immoral and they don’t seem to care.

    Liked by 5 people

  4. I was at a lecture not long ago and this study was mentioned. It was called the Anger Games. Basically a study of who and why people voted for trump.
    Actually a liking of authoritarian figures is a high reason. This is a bit long and you have to click “load more” at one point, but for anyone interested, I think you’ll find it enlightening.

    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/323091484_The_Anger_Games_Who_Voted_for_Donald_Trump_in_the_2016_Election_and_Why

    Liked by 2 people

  5. “Or must political affiliation always be the ruling factor?”

    It would nice if it didn’t.

    Hi Nan. Long time no talk! I don’t usually get into politics and both parties have been underwhelming to me. I’m not interested at all in all the conspiracy theories and partisan tactics that both parties engage in. Things have gotten polarized beyond reason, which is why so many don’t vote. But, as far as money goes, yes, it takes hundreds of millions of dollars to fund an election. It also takes billions of dollars to make a difference in the world, so I applaud Bloomberg’s generosity. I don’t know who I’ll vote for in 2020, but whether they’re rich or not, Democrat or Republican, won’t be a factor.

    I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    Like

    • Well, well … what a surprise! Nice to hear from you, Mel. 😀

      Agree with much of your thinking. Politics is getting to be a dirty word nowadays.

      And yes, it’s unfortunate that MONEY plays such a big role in the world today. But I suppose it’s nothing new. It’s just takes MORE of it now.

      Thanks for your good wishes. I hope you and yours enjoy the holiday as well. 🦃

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi, Nan—

    This is a wholly unscientific response to your query about trump supporters, business views, and Bloomberg. In fact, it’s an N of 2 (two examples).

    It comes straight from my hairdresser/ friend’s mouth. He shares my politics and fears for our democracy due to trump and the Republicans’ unwillingness to stand up to him. He has a client who’s very pro-trump, loves to bait him with her views, and returns for his artistry despite his frequently telling her he wants a “divorce” from her. But she said if Bloomberg runs, she’d gladly vote for him instead of trump because he’s such a good businessman, and that’s what the country needs. And my hairdresser said another woman who goes to his salon is also pro-trump and says she’d happily vote for Bloomberg.

    I am not thrilled with Bloomberg’s candidacy for any number of reasons, but he has been excellent on climate change, science and technology in general, and gun control—pouring a great deal of his money into climate change and gun control specifically.

    Like

    • Hello Annie! Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing the story about your hairdresser/friend.

      From your comment, it sounds like I may not have been too far off when I intimated that Bloomberg just might appeal to some Republicans. The “good businessman” seems to be a qualifier for a lot of people. I often wonder, however, how many have recognized this description doesn’t really fit Trump (except in his own mind).

      Anyway, yes, Bloomberg has some things going for him. Not sure it it’s enough or not. Time will tell. 🙂

      Thanks again for stopping by. I hope you’ll become a “regular.”

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m pretty sure it’s not enough. I don’t think the Dems will warm to another old white guy, one who appears to be trying to “buy” the election, will have a tough time garnering African American support because of his stop and frisk advocacy until recent weeks, and was a Republican for years. But I’m quite sure he won’t be a spoiler and run as an independent.

        Liked by 1 person

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