Friday, May 12, 2017

Trump --Our First Mafia President Shows His True Colors

For those who were eager to know how a Trump presidency would work out and who might fantasized that the golden haired casino owner would be making decisions around a  table Apprentice style. Or board room style,  work with Chuck Schumer and Paul Ryan and apply his business acumen to form partnerships, build coalitions in order to move his transformative "Make America Great Again" agenda through the Congress, we now have the reality of the first 120 days. Based on the last three months we now have a few hints that the reality of a Trump administration is radically different from the TV fueled fantasy that his supporters probably had in mind. Turns out that Trump wants to closely align his administration with Costra Nostra principles. So the question on the table is whether Donald J Trump is our first Mafia President?  There are lots of signs that he well might achieve this historic if dubious historic title. After all something must have rubbed off from his friendship with the true master of intimidating enemies and hoodwinking the authorities, Roy Cohn. It was Cohn after all who used to defend Mafia bosses and must have helped him find the  mobsters to work on his building projects as this article makes clear.

But the connections to the Mafia world goes even deeper than we might first have imagined.  Trump acts like a classic Mafia Capo in his administration because it suits his style of having no interest in the details of government or ideology but just in finding more ways to continue to flatter his insatiable ego and grow his thirst for power for its own sake. To run a non ideological non n strategic administration that depends on the whims of the boss as to whether we bomb Syria today, send warships to North Korea tomorrow, kick 24 million off health care or provide full coverage, is not as easy as it looks.  To do so you have to maintain tight control of your inner circle who have the authority to do your bidding. You need to have some well defined enemies to help you achieve your goals. You need an entire army of bad hombres, Muslims, media elites, fake media to get your team in shape.  As one study of the Costra Nostra has pointed out it is the Capo who for example keeps control of the group by constantly "hyping of a belief that there is an external danger to the group."

As the authors, Franco Di Maria and Giorgio Falgares  explains,

"This way of governing the organization has helped to create the right tension for members to feel not only united, but always alert, ready for attack, to serve the Capo for the good of the group." As Comey and others like SallyYates and a series of other members of the group found out is from the
 the Capo ready to discard his men when they failed to show reliability   (a failure on a psychological level, an inability to keep secret a truth, or even if a boss warned, paranoid, that certain of his men could pose a threat to him or to the entire group..Psychodynamically speaking, we could say it is the fear of the Capo that is the main mechanism of legitimation of the role and of constructing and maintaining consensus, even if all of this is, as mentioned, cleverly concealed by seeming good faith and readiness-to-help. To paraphrase Lewin, we define this modality of expressing leadership “cruelly authoritarian” or “falsely paternal.”

People like Rod Rosenstein, Deputy Attorney General  who was forced to write the appalling memo "justifying"  Comey's  memo have to possess "certain basic personality requirements. They must demonstrate willingness to be indoctrinated into criminality and cruelty, that is, the process of hardening and brutalization that the organization considers essential in transforming members into willing and trusted tools for their own criminal ends." The study goes on to locate the mysterious rage that Trump and his Costra Nostra colleagues share with respect to their victims like Comey who Trump after unceremoniously firing him while he was talking to employees out in Los Angeles and had to read about his execution on  TV is now threatened by the Capo in chief if he tells a story that contradicts the story his boss has just concocted.

"The rage expressed upon victims is the physical outcome of that process of blind devotion and unquestioning obedience to the leader which they feel."  The leader must constantly be praised as somehow extraordinary and who undying loyalty for his great courage and fortitude must constantly be shown in public and private. There must be no hint of disrespect. Alec Baldwin and others in the SNL team or the Oscar award actress Meryl Streep  who dare to disrespect him through satire are "no talent" people worthy of his base's derision and mockery. Trump the beauty queen competition maven is in their eyes at least  the final judge of all things,  including talent.

What is the point of all this energy and devotion to the charismatic leader apart from just staying in power and constantly getting even with your enemies in the Fake Media world who point out all your flaws,  inconsistencies, contradictions, and amorality?  It is the "ability to arouse admiration and consent from groups not only far removed from the criminal world" It is to make their world where authoritarian values rule, where what the leader says today is more important than any other version of reality, a world where crime pays, and morality, human decency and serving others are seen as "phony" insipid even low energy. For finally the real world is less entertaining and less forgiving than the one dreamed up by the Crime boss who even if he has not  won every battle
can force those around him to imagine that is the case.

How does it all end? Stay tuned the ending is likely to be even stranger than the Sopranos and the Godfather but like those two movies expect plenty of victims. The Capo does not go down without a good fight.

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