As it turns out, it’s not that hard to ruin a nation.  Here’s Donald Trump’s recipe:

  1. Keep repeating lies so often, with conviction and purpose, as if they are truths, until people start forgetting what the truth looks like. Until enough people assume you must be right, otherwise why would you be so confident? And they’d better get on board with you because no one else seems to have your same confidence. Whip your audiences into a frenzy without ever saying anything of substance.
  2. Attack, attack, attack. Keep going after people who would otherwise ignore you and take the high road until you pull them down into the swamp with you. Once there, they will never be a match for your gutter language and bullying rhetoric. How could they be? You’ve spent a lifetime mastering this skill. And then move on to institutions, the institutions that past leaders have worked with and revered, that have helped make America what it is. Attack them until they’re shredded. Save your best shots for the Free Press. Every would-be dictator knows you have to destroy the press.
  3. Exhaust the country with drama. Wear people out until they have no more energy to stand up for what is decent and right. Exhausted people are easy to conquer — all they want to do is take a nap and escape.
  4. In appointing people to head up agencies, choose people who hate those agencies and want to dismantle them. Then you can destroy the country from the inside.
  5. Take away sacred places — the swaths of natural beauty that for generations have been protected from the greed of industry. People get nourishment from undisturbed nature — from land that whispers with history. Their souls find respite and peace in those places. Take those places away from them. Let them know in no uncertain terms that you own this country, that you own them — their souls, their futures — and that nothing is out of reach for you. Let them try and stop you; you already wore them down, you already made it clear you’re above the law. They haven’t stopped you yet…


  1. Dean Robert Campbell says:

    RIGHT ON, PATTI. Ive had it with this man. Hes a goddamn walking national disaster. Also, you could have added, have people swear to vote for you, just like HITLER did. by placing their hands over their hearts. But even HITLER, never MOCKED the invalid. If Trump could, hed ship us both off to a labor camp, and or have us disappear. Kiss the Republican party goodbye. Time to create a centerist party. LOVE TO YOU. DC

    • deborah caplan says:

      Mr. Campbell agree w nearly all of your statement – except Hitler may not have mocked the invalid – just gassed them is all – I sure hope parallels w trump and Hitler never go any further- definitely agree he is a national disaster

  2. Rodney Wilson says:

    And like Vladimir Lenin, Trump relies on destabilizing his opposition by regularly sewing chaos. That’s his entire Twitter strategy.

  3. deborah caplan says:

    Oh and I really appreciate Patti Davis’ thoughtful writing –

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