It still doesn’t seem real, so it feels daft even trying to come to terms with it, as if the new President was Spongebob Squarepants.
But now the world has to take Donald Trump and his new rules seriously. Theresa May has to laugh at his jokes and interruptions, and not complain when he grabs her hand, for reasons of trade. This is the way deals are done now, he’ll tell the Germans he’ll put a tariff on Volkswagen cars unless Angela Merkel lets him squeeze her tits.
At least Merkel might offer some opposition, and insist he only grabs the left one, even if it results in a 12 per cent tax on German sausage exports.
But our Prime Minister was determined to look as keen as possible, which makes sense because history shows when a megalomaniac ruler bans an ethnic group to keep supporters at his rallies happy, if you hold his hand and giggle to appease him, everything will probably turn out fine.
Until this week it still seemed like a game, with commentators and politicians assuring us “In time we must hope the new President comes to terms with his responsibilities and acts to unify his nation.”
This strategy of stopping him by hoping he becomes nicer, may already have proved a little optimistic.
It’s a method that hasn’t always enjoyed the success it deserves. In the 1930s, responsible characters probably suggested, “In time we must hope the Ku Klux Klan learn to behave responsibly, as fire can be quite a hazard, especially with inflammable sheets nearby.”
You can understand how Trump has taken the old establishment by surprise, because who’d have guessed he’d do the things he insisted he was going to do. This is what happens when you elect an amateur who doesn’t know the rules.
Instead, the pace is so fast that if he keeps it up, by March he’ll have signed an Executive Order that burqas can only be worn if they’re filled with wasps, and whichever country comes last in Miss World has to have Piers Morgan as their King for a year as punishment, in a palace they have to pay for. Mosques will be demolished unless Islam installs a new prophet who has magical hair and ascends to heaven in a golden lift and smites his enemies by telling them they’re fired.
This would flow from his order that, to stop terrorism, no one is allowed to enter America if they come from any country deemed to be an Islamic terrorist state. The ban extends to people who fled those countries, but I suppose you have to be careful. Because when an Islamic terrorist government threatens to kill someone, a little bit of Islamic terrorism is bound to rub off on them, as Islamic terrorism is contagious, like chicken pox.
It was the same in the 1930s. The Jews that escaped Nazi Germany must all have been a little bit Nazi, as they were from Germany. If Donald Trump had been around he’d have stopped any of them escaping to the West, then we might have put a stop to Hitler.
The argument the Jihadists make is the West sees all Muslims as the enemy. So the best possible way to ensure that nonsense gets no support amongst Muslims is to ban everyone from Muslim countries from entering the country, on account of all Muslims being the enemy.
To be fair Trump has proved himself liberal in some ways, by making exceptions to his ban, such as Saudi Arabia. This must be because it’s a whole 15 years since anyone from that country knocked over any towers, so it makes sense to let them off.
The Saudi government also appears to provide oil and buys billions of dollars’ worth of weapons, so a cynic may suggest that makes a difference as well. This seems reasonable, though Trump ought to make a chart to make it clear how much oil and arms deals is worth how much terrorism.
For example, a million barrels of oil and a contract to buy 12 fighter jets must be worth two explosions in a city centre. For less wealthy countries, a more compact package could be arranged, so a couple of tanks means they can send one madman to wave a knife in a branch of PC World until they’re led away by security.
The important point is Trump is determined to stop the violence being carried out in his country, especially as America is traditionally a tranquil area, apart from a weekly incident involving someone with a blank expression and staring eyes who has spent 19 hours a day playing computer games and for five years has been buying an assortment of machine guns on Amazon and written blogs that start “We must CLEANsE the wOrld With BLOOD!!!! NO one is INNoceNt there MuSt be DEATH!$.” But it wouldn’t be fair to stop them buying flame throwers as that would be an outrageous infringement on their civil liberties.
Even so, this may prove to have been the most heartening week since his election. Because the world has woken up to what Trump is about. The petition to stop him coming to Britain attracted over a million signatures, declaring his visit would be “an embarrassment to the Queen”.
This may be true, although it’s also possible the Queen thinks “Him and Philip should get on like a house on fire, and leave me in peace to watch Cash in the Attic.”
But also vast numbers assembled to express themselves against him, in demonstrations that were bigger, more youthful, joyous, witty and inclusive than anything we have seen for years. This could lead to a huge movement to stop him. Or we could all try queuing up to hold his hand.
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