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Dear Donald

A Comedian but Not a Statesman

Trump smiled his way through the election process, when he wasn't snarling

Dear Donald, 

I am a humble Brit. I followed the 2016 presidential election with great interest because the whole process is far more exciting than a British parliamentary election. Here, we have two parties as well. But, you have a popularity contest with a candidate often thrust upon the party by the voters. Here, the parties themselves choose their leaders who then run. You vote for an individual to be the president but in the United Kingdom, we vote locally and the party who gets the most seats wins the right to form the government. We have a far less personal race and a far less entertaining process. It does have the effect of preventing such a wildcard candidacy, however, because a party leader is determined by the parties themselves and not by the public. Although the process of electing a leader can be heavily influenced by the public opinion, we do not, ultimately, get to choose our leader in the same way America does. It makes the race far more entertaining and exciting to watch, in multiple ways.

Your debates are fascinating and Donald Trump, you may have found a man to master the process. The people who like him, love him. And the people who hate him, struggled to get behind the alternative. The debates probably did Mrs. Clinton, an accomplished Secretary of State in the Obama White House, more harm than good. She was composed, spoke very well and understood the issues at hand. But she's not very like-able, despite her competence and her intelligence. She's a public servant of the highest order but her opponent was a showman who could have given P.T Barnum a run for his money. 

But when the election process was over, shouldn't it have become real? Rather than a fictional president to challenge the late Francis Underwood? Kicking off his administration with a row about crowd sizes at the inauguration was an ominous start and then the war on the press remains a distasteful sideshow attraction. The reaction to the pipe bombs was unpresidential and the response to the Synagogue shooting was undignified. His parties' impending defeat in the midterm elections will be a disappointment to history's worst president, but it won't affect the man himself. 

The man himself is in it for the comedy. He has a strong base of supporters who want to hear from him and to quote those great American lyricists Fall Out Boy, he doesn't care what you think—as long as it's about him! He is forever written into the American history. He's no Patrick Bateman, but he's going to leave his mark.  He will be remembered for the comedy, the jokes he has told and has had told about him and the moments of sheer incompetence. Let's hope he makes it to 2020 to run again so the voters have the option to vote him out, rather than having the option taken out of their hands. Whatever happens, this is going to be remembered as a sad time in America's history, when there was no such thing as American leadership on the global stage. This is what Trump's supporters voted for when they elected him and something for them to consider when 2020 comes around. Is it acceptable to not criticise the killing of a journalist because you have personal interests in the country responsible for the killing? Is it acceptable to actively try and damage long standing relationships with friendly nations for the sake of "America first?" 

All the time a man represents himself, he cannot represent a people. And he certainly cannot represent a block of people like Americans, certainly not in a positive manner. Thanks for the laughs, Donald, but don't be too concerned about showing up for future ex-president events. You don't deserve to be in the company of greatness when you have none yourself.