Make America buy again — the unholy quest of Donald Trump


We’ve been thinking about Donald Trump all wrong.

Trump isn’t trying to make America great again. He’s trying to make America buy again.

Trump’s brain has been engineered to do nothing but sell. He has a goal in mind for the American people, an end point to which he wants to bring us. This is the foundation of selling. His goal is to get us to mindlessly purchase his services as president again.

Good salespeople use their looks to help promote the impression that they’re successful and confident.

Trump may be very old, but he takes great care to look as good as possible. He wears his hair long to cover up the bald evidence of his age, and offer the public the impression of youthful vigor and exuberance. Of sexual attraction and potency.

He puts on makeup virtually every day, to let us know he’s fit and has the energy to solve our problems. Without the orange face paint, Trump is just another pasty-looking, grossly overweight senior citizen.

His over-the-top lifestyle is also a powerful selling point for him. If you vote for Trump, you too can experience the temporary satisfaction of joining in his success.

Another important Trump tactic is to sell us a golden-glowed image of what America used to be — and could be again. It doesn’t matter if things weren’t that wonderful in the past for millions who didn’t have white skin.

The other tool in Trump’s sales kit is to denigrate the product we are currently using. Trump does that with his daily blasts about how awful America is under the leadership of Joe Biden, amplified by Fox.

He’s done a great job of convincing millions of Americans that we are living in a terrible time, when, in fact the economy is humming, we have almost full employment, stock portfolios are way up, and corporations are investing in the economy by building new factories.

A big part of the sales process is to seduce the customer, to engage them in a conversation that has only one outcome — a temporary union of the customer and the salesperson in a mutual feeling of bliss. The salesperson tries to put in the mind of the customer the illusion that he or she has the best product, the only product, which will help the customer achieve their imagined goal.

Salespeople generally communicate that they offer the only path the customer can take to get what they want.

Trump is presenting himself as the one person who can give us the immediate, illusory satisfaction of achieving our desires. He’s quite good at what he does.

Trump may be the most successful salesman in the country’s history. For example, he’s sold millions of right-wing Christian nationalists on the idea that he is the heaven-sent savior of America while simultaneously insulting everybody who doesn’t support him, taking swipes at virtually every ethnic and religious minority, and acting like a boorish sexual creep at every opportunity.

A lot of salespeople don’t want to admit this, but they often secretly harbor contempt for the customers who buy from them. The thinking goes, “They bought it — they’re so stupid.”

This contempt may originate in the way a salesperson often thinks of the customer — as an “it,” an object, who must be manipulated in order to help the salesperson achieve what they want. Trump is excellent at this. He sees Americans as 5-year-old children who just want to get a lollipop at the bank.

Trump’s selling methods represent the triumph of style over substance. A 2024 win for him would be the defining proof that we are not a serious people. 

In contrast, President Biden doesn’t wear make-up. His hair is visibly thinning. He’s very religious, which you might think would appeal to Christians, but doesn’t at all. He believes that the nation has a collective identity and a mission that’s bigger than any one person or interest group, and that we can — and must — work together to deal with our manifold issues.

Biden is honest and decent. He’s authentic. He cares about the American people. Trump probably thinks Biden is a chump.

Biden, on the other hand, is someone who looks at people with an “I-Thou” perspective, according to philosopher Martin Buber’s thinking on how we should treat other people.

Does America want someone who treats people like they’re fellow souls on the journey through life, with aspirations, hopes and struggles that need to be overcome? Or as objects to be manipulated?

We should be extremely worried that America may choose to be conned again, by a hollow man with not an ounce of soul behind the hair.




Trump, America, selling tactics, Biden, authenticity, politics, analysis, presidential election, manipulation, salesmanship, contrast, American values, leadership, strategy