The Tragic Trump Symphony

The Tragic Trump Symphony

While my mind ponders on Trump, I am also trying to learn to play the piano.  It occurs to me that Trump’s moods and actions can be encompassed in a Symphony.  This symphony has three movements:  election, pre mid-term, and pre-reelection race.  We strongly hope that we do not have to write a second symphony.   

But there will be encores.  Rather than Hillary sulking in the woods, or Obama giving his successor room to act, Trump will defend his legacy with the wealth and Heritage Institute of the Koch Brothers and their conservative lawyers.

The first Movement will be called the Conspiracy Movement.  The second, featuring the extravagant tax cut for the extravagantly wealthy, will be called the Extravagant Movement.  The hoped for final movement will be called the Destruction Movement, since it will destroy our government norms and Constitution, yet still be a lame duck.

While the first movement seemed like a harmony of promises and hope for miracles, Trump was just stringing us along.  In honor of the strings, it will be in the simple key of D.  At least 101 Russian themes will be included.

The third Destructive Movement will be all disharmonious, featuring the most sharps, five, or key of C sharp.  This is also equivalent to the most flats, five, or key of D-flat.  Rs will see the sharps as great highlights, but Ds will see all of this as falling flat.  These use all of the black keys, as in Jazz.  So the theme will be Jazz, featuring total innovation and being instantaneous, as Trump has been conducting himself, but yet doubling down in repetition.  The movement will start with a dissonant seventh chord, but instead of resolving, it will end with a greatly diminished seventh chord.  Every consonant major chord struck will be augmented for dissonance.   There will be no resolving chords at the end, just a great cacophony.  No one participating in this orchestra will have any future left to them.  Several, will end up drumming on their prison bars.

Members of the orchestra will be temporarily replaced every time that they hit a wrong note, or are not willing to depart from the score, as directed.  Their replacements will just be acting to know the instrument to which they are assigned.  Lack of qualifications is the main qualification.  It does help if you haven’t played since the Reagan or Nixon orchestras, thus making America Great Again.

We have few ideas of what Trump’s musical tastes are, others than taking advice from Kanye West, and golfing with Ted Nugent, who was wearing pants very disrespectful of the American flag.  Trump’s playlists are all top secret, as are his grades, his taxes, his bank loans, his weight, his health, his affairs, and his true golf handicap, without kicking balls in from the rough.

The recurrent theme dealing with refugees will be saddened to a minor seventh chord, and never resolved.

The counterpoint of the re-election movement so far has 16 declared instruments, but divided into a faction of one replaying the Obama Symphony “Hope”, and the other faction of 15 youngsters copy-catting the song “A Whole New World” in it.  From the Disney movie Aladdin in 1992, the lyrics are:  “A Whole New World, A new fantastic point of view, No one to tell us “no”, Or where to go, Or say we’re only dreaming”.  Except all Republicans.

I have skipped the second or pre-midterm Movement, with its surprise ending, of great triumph of the minority keys, representing women, people of color, and LGBTQ.  We hope this continues through the Presidential election.  While this brought down the House, it made the Senate worse by one vote.  A Democratic takeover of the Senate still looks unlikely.

I now realize that the titling of the Symphony has to be a title of the era.  This is something that I should leave for the great political historians, and also from the viewpoint of its future development.  In the really worst case, it would have to be a trilogy or ring, with The Rise of Trump, The Despot, and The Fall of Trump being the unpoetic descriptions should he continue on for a second or lifelong term, as he openly wishes for.  Or, the third symphony could be The Dynasty of Trump.  Trump is already telling us that there is something wrong with the vote count when Republicans lose, but Trump has the Military and Law Enforcement as backers.  My wife suggests the title:  “The Last Symphony”.

Operas, which I am more familiar with, are mostly tragedies, as are Shakespeare’s plays.  I attribute this to the audiences of past ages suffering through lives of tragedy with no medical care, polluted water, air, and open sewage, wars, monarchies, and great social iniquities.  So this will also be a tragedy.  We are seeing the PBS series Les Miserables now.  The Symphony’s title couldn’t be something grand like Beethoven’s: Third, Eroica (Heroic); the Fifth, the Fate Symphony; the Sixth, The Pastoral; or the Ninth, the Choral, with the Ode to Joy.  On the other hand, Leonard Bernstein’s second is called The Age of Anxiety.  Borodin’s second is the Symphony of Heroes.

The first title that popped into my head was The Art of the Con.  The second suggestion would be one about Crooks, or Petrorule, or the Mob.  A better title following the Obama era would be The Loss of Hope, or The Lost Hope.  Or, I could name it one of the types of -ocracy that I had listed, like The Trump Plutocratic Symphony, like Beethoven’s Heroic Symphony.  I could say that time will tell, but it has already told us the outcome.

Maybe I should rename the first Movement The Divided Campaigns, accounting for the Democratic split between Clinton and Sanders, and the split between Trump and the standard Republicans.  The Democratic split looks like it is now part of the party.  In the Republicans, independence has disappeared.

With the second Movement, while Tchaikovsky in The Nutcracker had the dances from different countries in his ballet, I thought of a list of all of the Ambassadorships that Trump has sold to unqualified and conflicted campaign or inauguration contributors.  I would have to settle for one from each continent.  Also, as in Gilbert and Sullivan’s “Modern Major General”, I could include a list of the industrial lobbyists or incompetent Fox News commentators to whom Trump has given regulatory commissions.

I hadn’t realized how much has to go into a symphony, without even composing any notes yet.  I should start with composing Trump’s theme, after reviewing Darth Vader’s theme.  Trump does, after all, choke up his critics.  The musical theme playing in my mind comes from the Phantom of the Opera.

About Dennis SILVERMAN

I am a retired Professor of Physics and Astronomy at U C Irvine. For a decade I have been active in learning about energy and the environment, and in lecturing and attending classes at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at UC Irvine.
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