One Mystery (Possibly) Solved…

None of the theories to date about the reason for Trump’s refusal to release his tax returns have seemed very persuasive, but when I read this reporting by the Washington Post’s David Fahrenthold, I had an “ah ha” moment. 

Apparently, “deadbeat Don” has reported–and presumably deducted– charitable gifts that he didn’t actually make. Multiple charities are telling Fahrenthold that they never received donations that the Trump Foundation listed and claimed on IRS submissions.

One can see how the disclosure of tax returns reporting non-existent donations might be…embarrassing.

Of course, even if the existence of improper deductions does solve one mystery– the reason for Trump’s refusal to share his tax returns–it leaves us with a number of others. Why, for instance, would a man who clearly has no interest in public policy or administration run for public office? Why would a candidate who is totally ignorant of the basics of constitutional government refuse to inform himself about those basics? Why would someone who has never run in a political campaign ignore all advice from people who understand what such campaigns require?

The answers to those and similar questions are probably only obtainable on a psychiatrist’s couch. And ultimately, unless he wins (which, thankfully, is unlikely) the idiosycrasies of a self-obsessed megalomaniac will ultimately be matters of only passing interest.

The more pressing question–the question that keeps me up nights and consumes reasonable Americans, Republicans and Democrats alike–is why would anyone vote for this man?

In any sane universe, Donald Trump is a joke: a tacky, ignorant narcissist who communicates at a third-grade level, lies compulsively (and not very convincingly) and thinks childish insults and ad hominem attacks are debate points.

The reason for some portion of his support is abundantly clear. (Despite walking her comments back, Clinton quite accurately described these voters as belonging in a “basket of deplorables.”) White supremacists, anti-Semites, racists, sexists and xenophobes see him–probably accurately– as one of them. But other people, who don’t appear to fall into those categories and who don’t appear to belong in the basket, also tell pollsters they support him.

I assume some number of die-hard Republicans will vote for the party’s candidate no matter what–although Trump has made it clear that he has no respect for longstanding Republican positions (assuming he even knows what those are). And I suppose there must be some people who are so horrified at the prospect of a woman in the Oval Office that they will opt for any male, no matter how unfit and/or dangerous. But beyond those (hopefully small) categories, I am hard-pressed to understand why any voter would see this repulsive ignoramus as remotely Presidential.

I know I’ll hear from readers who hate Hillary and who will claim that Trump is no worse; however, even they know that is manifest nonsense. Even if you believed every accusation that has been thrown at her (despite the innumerable investigations that have come up empty), there is still no equivalence. Besides, large numbers of critics who detest her have publicly confirmed that they won’t vote for Trump. They’ll vote for third-party candidates or leave the Presidential line blank. Depending on the state the voter lives in, those actions do help Trump, but they aren’t the same as affirmatively supporting him.

I want to know about the people who actually plan to cast a vote for him. Who are they? What am I missing?

Why would anyone who isn’t a White Nationalist vote for an unstable, demonstrably unfit blowhard whose election would quite obviously pose a clear and present danger to the nation and the planet?

Inquiring minds really want to know.