“Trump deserves the oblivion of history, the Trumpists question the future of democracy”

Donald Trump, outside the White House in Washington, January 12.

Chronic. He will emerge from the White House on January 20 dressed as the villain in the last shot of a western that has gone too long: naked, his body tarnished and covered in feathers. Abandoned by part of his government, threatened with a new impeachment procedure, deprived of his press officers, Twitter and Facebook, denounced by his business friends, the ego suffocating at home the beginning of a remorse or the Outline of a self-criticism, Trump ruminates on the ingratitude of the fate that is done to him.

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He has lived through lies, in business and politics, he has lied to others, he lies to himself, and the lie, in the end, jumps in his throat. Trump is leaving the political scene as the victim of the latest of his deceptions, the latest hoax invented to cling to power, this story of “election stolen” by his Democratic opponents – and which will turn into drama.

Summoned there for weeks, with vengeful tweets, then heated to the point this Wednesday, January 6, his supporters storm Congress. He refuses the verdict of the ballot box and the peaceful transfer of power – one of the hallmarks of democracy. “Walk on the Capitol”, he told them, to greet our friends and scold our enemies. Objective: stop, prevent the certification ceremony of the result of the election of November 3, 2020: 81 million votes and 306 voters for Joe Biden; 74 million and 232 for Trump. They “walked”. In a few hours, five deaths.

Bubble of narcissistic fantasies

In a very Trumpian logic, which makes his person the sole object of his concerns, Trump, preparing the ground, had warned and repeated before the election: if I lose, it is because the election will have been rigged (if I win is that she will have been honest).

The intimate psychological springs of the person concerned do not matter. Perhaps he was cynical, hoping that a show of force from his supporters would provoke a political-constitutional crisis and keep him in power for a while? Unable to break out of the bubble of narcissistic fantasies in which he lives and delights in, perhaps he saw himself, sincerely, as the heroic savior of American democracy? The real Trump mystery, the mystery of the Trumpist adventure, is not there.

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He is among the tens of millions of Americans – knowledgeable, intelligent, spanning a broad spectrum of social and professional backgrounds – who believe the election was stolen. Trump deserves the oblivion of history, the Trumpists question the future of democracy. The question concerns all liberal democracies. It is that of the growing mistrust of which our institutions seem to be the object. It touches on why Trump’s huge lie worked – at least for millions of Americans.

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