I've written my share (and more, probably) of critical posts about The Donald - I don't think he's Presidential timber, and most of what he spouts as policy is pretty awful.
Now and then, though, I get some weird flashes that suggest he might actually .... do some good as President.
How, you ask? Good question. There's a lot we don't know about Trump but one thing that seems fairly clear now is that he's a joker. His obfuscation, his seemingly off-the-cuff pronouncements, his sure sense (whether calculated or not) of enraging his opponents and/or playing to his base; his flip-flopping -- all these are part and parcel of the persona. His style of baiting-by-utterance is really pretty common in certain circles.
Second, we know (or think) that he sees himself more as a hard-headed and pragmatic businessman, than as a dogmatic politician. After all, he once embraced (some) liberal causes in the past. He is playing along with the Republican Party (in a way, they're the guys that brought him to the dance), including even charmers like Mitch McConnell. He needs them. How long can he, will he, tolerate some of their ridiculous extravagances of political regressiveness before seeing through them ? Is he not just playing along with them, but playing them too? By October this year, when, after all their 60+ years of fighting health care at every turn, and after so much wasted time voting to repeal Obamacare more times than we can count, they report they still don't have their alternative ready, what will Trump do?
So, for those who want a faint ray of optimism, dream on: Trump, once inaugurated, quickly steps into a phone booth and emerges, no longer as Mr. Smegma, but as Mr. Pragma. He backs away from his fiery populist rhetoric and gets to work on businesslike problem-solving, pushing back against the reactionaries in "his" party, insisting on accomplishments that will bring some of the improvements he has promised. In so doing, he breaks the confrontational, superpartisan deadlock of the current Republican leadership. That would indeed be an accomplishment, for all of us, and even for the Republican Party, which might thereby be saved from its otherwise inevitable atrophy and irrelevance.
Admittedly, it's unlikely. Extremely unlikely. And yet ... his personality lends it a very remote glimmer of possibility.
There's an interesting corollary too: If the above-outlined scenario ever occurred, Trump would need allies somewhere. It's a good argument that the Democrats' tactic should be not to combat Trump at every turn, not to become ever more left-radical, but instead to see if the tender lamb of compromise can be brought back into the chamber without being slaughtered.