Posts Tagged ‘The Godfather’

Fellow blogger and friend-of-the-site VRK asked me in the comments section about whether I had any predictions for the 2016 election, and I thought I’d answer with some stream-of-consciousness bullet points.

  • Like everyone, I am amazed by the Trump candidacy. Not that he entered the campaign of course, but that he is still going strong after saying so many incendiary things. That his poll numbers go up, not down, in the wake of each statement, is a testament to the power of his candidacy and his backbone. Liberal media commentators who dismissed him, or laughed at him, or both, have sobered up in a big way as Trump’s popularity grows ever larger no matter how divisive and controversial he is perceived to be.

Billionaire businessman Donald Trump’s support is rocketing even higher in the aftermath of his proposal to ban Muslims from entering the US, a new poll released on Monday found. <Yahoo Finance, link>

  • Trump claims to be appealing to the “silent majority”, and I think he is doing just that.  A huge portion of the American population has had enough of the political correctness that has made us vulnerable to, for example, Islamic Jihad. Americans are about done with the kind of Liberal insanity passing for tolerance that got 14 holiday party attendees in San Bernadino gunned down by two Islamic terrorists who were able to move freely in and out of the United States despite concrete indications that they had become radicalized. It’s gotten so bad that the head of the Department of Homeland Security is more concerned about being politically correct than in protecting the homeland, and Trump is giving voice to the average citizen’s anger and frustration over it.

Fearing a civil liberties backlash and “bad public relations” for the Obama administration, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson refused in early 2014 to end the secret U.S. policy that prohibited immigration officials from reviewing the social media messages of all foreign citizens applying for U.S. visas, according to a former senior department official. <Yahoo News, link>

  • I can’t understand how tonight’s Republican debate will have so many competitors at this stage in the campaign. Has this happened before? I don’t recall that it has. Who has made this decision, and what is their motivation? It certainly makes it difficult for the front-runners to appear presidential, and I think it’s terrible for Republicans.

Final debate lineup

  • I am thrilled with the demise of the Jeb Bush candidacy. He is not a war-time guy at all — like his father, he’s a middling mush ball, who is also in favor of open borders. In other words, not the man for the job in a world on fire. Rush Limbaugh reportedly said that Jeb and Hillary should run on one ticket, there being not much difference in their policy positions. This is funny, and true in many respects. Some say Bush will win the nomination if he can hang in there while the establishment Republicans try to squash Trump and Cruz, and I say keep dreaming, Liberals, and keep dreaming RINOs. You may want fake-Republican Jeb Bush, but the party appears to want a true Conservative.
  • Speaking of our current need for “war-time” leaders, I am reminded of the movie The Godfather once again (I recently wrote an essay pondering whether Trump is too much like Sonny Corleone, link). In the movie, the Godfather unexpectedly fires his loyal and long-time consigliere Tom Hagan (played by Robert Duvall). Hagan is not only disappointed, he is emotionally wounded by this slight after so many years of loyal service. But the Godfather explains to Tom that the family is under attack and that he therefore needs a “war time” consigliere, and that Tom is not that guy. Tom barely protests because he knows it is true: he is genteel and soft, and no longer right for the job.
Winyan Soo Hoo

We need a war-time consigliere, and Tom is not it…

  • Jeb Bush is Tom Hagan

Hagan and Bush

  • The “Crazy” things Trump has said are nothing compared to the things Hillary Clinton has actually done. Her conspiracy to operate outside the purview of government oversight (including installing and using a private email server, exposing top secret American intelligence, and then obstructing justice by erasing such servers when subpoenaed by Congressional Committees) is just one act that disqualifies her from becoming president; in recent days we learned that she appears to have let Americans die in Benghazi rather than have a rapid-force be deployed to save them (emphasis added below).

…the email from Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta’s chief of staff shows that special operations teams within a few hours flight from Benghazi were preparing to deploy as early as 7 PM Washington time on the night of the attacks, well within the time needed to get to Benghazi before the deadly mortar strike that killed U.S. Navy Seals Glen Doherty and Ty Woods.

Panetta aide Jeremy Bash emailed Mrs. Clinton’s top aides at 7:09 PM, to let them know that quick reaction forces, then stationed in Europe, were “spinning up as we speak” to deploy to Benghazi.

“Assuming Principals agree to deploy these elements, we will ask State to secure the approval from host nation,” Bash wrote. Please advise how you wish to convey that approval to us.”

In the redacted version of his testimony that was ultimately released by the House Armed Services Committee, General Ham said the main reason he didn’t go balls to the wall to get forces to Benghazi was simple. “We were never asked,” he said. <the Daily Caller, link>

  • The Liberal double standard is on full display, as always: when Barack Hussein Obama ran in 2007, he was only a short time into his first term as U.S. Senator, and before that he was never much more than a community organizer. He was, and is, the least qualified man to serve as president I have seen in my lifetime. But Liberals were not troubled by his atrocious lack of experience. Regarding the current field of Republican front-runners? This is what United Press International ran recently:

In terms of experience, none brings extraordinary or even entry-level qualifications to serve as the nation’s chief executive. <UPI, link>

  • I like Ted Cruz, and I like Marco Rubio, though in the latter’s case he went wobbly on the Mexican border issue. In an age of Islamic jihad here in the homeland, any candidate who is not for building a wall is not up to the job of defending the nation.
  • I liked Ben Carson early on, but can’t understand what is going on with his campaign. There is something odd about the man, although versus Hillary Clinton, he would be a vastly superior president. Then again, so would any man, woman, or child in the country other than Hillary Clinton, a selfish, craven person whose track record is one of the most shameful of any politician in the world today.
  • Chris Christie hugged Barack Obama. End of story.
  • I like Fiorina a lot and find her to be well spoken, informed, smart, and tough. I find myself wishing she were higher in the polling than she is of late.
  • I sense that there are two politicians, one from each party, that are not currently in the race but are lurking…lurking…lurking. Creeping while the front-runners are sleeping….


  • These two men are likely to be embraced by core elements of their respective political parties: Democrats actually despise Hillary Clinton, but are afraid of her; a Biden candidacy is something I believe many of them pray for every day. Meanwhile, the Republican establishment is desperate for a moderate who “looks the part” to rise up, and it is not going to be Tom Hagan. I think there is some truth to the notion that Romney stands ready to be “drafted”, as does Biden if Hillary stumbles.
  • And so my prediction is that Hillary will grind on and win the nomination unless she is indicted for any number of crimes, and that Trump will remain the frontrunner through New Hampshire, but then be pushed aside by all of the forces arrayed against him, including from inside his own party. At that point, it will probably be Cruz in the lead, with Romney still lurking.
  • As for Romney, I think he would have made an excellent president, but I also know that he was not tough on Barack Hussein Obama when he should have been, and I cannot forgive him for this mistake. Mr. Obama is the most destructive president our nation has ever had, and that Romney got soft down the stretch in 2012 is a great tragedy for us all.

I don’t want to go through that again — let’s resolve in the primaries to pick a Republican that will not shrink from a fight.

On that score, I like Trump, and I like Cruz.

It’s war time in America, and we had all better act like it.


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I have been on my own roller-coaster of reactions to the Trump candidacy, as The Donald (his NYC nickname for many years) gyrates and gesticulates with characteristic bombast.

Like many people, I have found his outspoken and off-script comments to be a breath of fresh air after suffering through several decades of presidents and presidential candidates who tailor(ed) their every syllable to be in alignment with whatever their pollster-gurus were/are advising them.

But also like many people, I have been put off by many of his incendiary comments, particularly his personal attacks on various people (including many fellow Republicans) who provoked him in one way or another.

As his knee-jerk retaliations continue to pile up, it occurred to me that Donald Trump may be in danger of being too much like Sonny Corleone from the Godfather.

Sonny and Donald

If you don’t remember the movie and this particular character (played brilliantly by James Caan), let me refresh your memory and my point will become quite obvious.

The Godfather, played by Marlon Brando, had three sons, and each one had a particular personality that informed the narrative arc in the movie: Michael (Al Pacino) was the favorite son and had a blend of smarts, naiveté, and earnest loyalty; Fredo (John Cazale) was the runt and had an obvious array of vulnerabilities; and Sonny (James Caan) was the hothead who was powerful and impulsive.

Sonny’s Downfall, or why a short fuse can lead to ruin

What worries me about Donald Trump’s tendency to fly into a rage of retaliation at the slightest provocation is that enemies (of which the world is chock full) can too easily gain the upper hand with such people, and Sonny’s fate in the movie is perhaps the most classic fictional depiction of this idea in action.

Sonny and Donald 2

The synopsis is this (spoiler alert, though if you have never seen the Godfather, then something is wrong with you!!): members of a rival crime family plot to kill Sonny by staging a provocation — Sonny’s sister’s husband slaps her around to the point where she calls him in tears and anguish — that lures Sonny (in a rage) into his car and through a toll booth, at which he is machine-gunned to death.

The plot worked because every ounce of Sonny’s reaction and behavior was predictable: his rage, his immediate recourse (get in the car to speed to the rescue), and his route, and he delivered himself easily into the hands of his enemies.

Sonny's car at the toll booth

The list of Trump’s knee-jerk (and then escalating) retaliations is long and the style and content of them reveal a loss of control that reminds me of Sonny to some degree.

Senator John McCain referred to Trump’s supporters as “crazies”, and so Trump quickly declared that McCain is “not a war hero” and then later called him a “dummy” as the “feud” escalated. Similarly, Trump’s “feud” with Megyn Kelly of Fox News began with a string of insults that gained, not lost, steam.

Sonny and Donald 3

Seeing Trump allowing himself to get hooked on these “feuds” is disheartening, to say the least. People fault Trump for taking controversial political views, such as building a wall along the southern border, but it is his demeanor in these petty spats with all manner of people that make me feel his is unfit for the office of the presidency.

Then again, Barack Obama has so sullied the office of the presidency there can be no further damage done to it.

In any event, Mr. Trump, listen to me now and believe me later: be less like Sonny Corleone and more like Michael, and you just might win the nomination and then the presidency. Check out this bit of news after Thanksgiving — the guy’s a contender for sure (Daily Caller, link):

Thanksgiving news about Trump

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