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Trump d'oeil

Trump House
Donald Trump
Donald Trump
Donald John Trump, Sr., born June 14, 1946, is an American business magnate, investor, television personality, author, and 2016 US Presidential candidate. | Photo: Archives | Donald Trump, Investor, Presidential Candidate, Money, Real Estate, Hair, Personality, Wealth, Cargo,

The Art of the Raw Deal

TROMPE L'OEIL, something that misleads or deceives the senses : illusion, French now being the new politics.

This, of course, may lead many to be curious about another French phenomenon well-known for his imperial exploits.

In this sense, and despite his physical stature, the Donald is by any other measure the new Napoleon; in pursuit of this elusive 21st century edition, let's pick this Bonaparte apart and divine (a word he/they'd surely approve of) and flesh out the anatomy of what comprises this artful renewed 'deal' in the raw.

1. The tongue
If you wish to be a success in the world, promise everything, deliver nothing.

Napoleon, the Corscian Islander

I feel a lot of people listen to what I say.

Donald, the Manhattan Islander

I am sometimes a fox and sometimes a lion. The whole secret of government lies in knowing to be one or the other.

Napoleon, the Corsican Islander

I'm going to be in the lion's den, but I don't do that for a living. [referring to the debates]; Trump will be treated fairly by Fox.

Donald, the Manhattan Islander

2. The hair
In March of 2015 Britain's Duke's of Dorchester auction house catalogued a lock of the Corsican dictator's hair, expecting it to fetch at least four hundred Pounds; perhaps tellingly, hair from a horse which was involved in the Battle of Waterloo was also listed at the same expected price at auction. It's (irresistibly) worth noting (in Pounds, as well, ahem) that both specimens were the subject of a jest by anonymous sources having to do with their provenance being from the effective posterior of each's anatomy.

Speaking of comparatives apropos the animal kingdom's panoply, it seems that a type of caterpillar known as the flannel moth bears a striking resemblance to what species may grace? our Manhattan islander's cabeza, particularly in its attributed 'most venomous in North America' status; while rare, it is uncertain just how much each might fetch in an auction setting. One must assume, however, that bids would only be entertained by 'winners' per se.

3. The body and its coverings
Both islanders, it has been established, attended military schools in their youth, the Manhattanite New York Military Academy, NYMA and the Corsican Ecole Militaire in Paris. While the New Yorker enjoyed student deferments from service, the Corsican was perhaps the greatest combatant leader since Alexander. Perhaps a seeming great disparity, however, when one considers their similar sleep habits -- both men often retiring late, rising early to send orders to anxiously awaiting inferiors, there is much in common to their leadership styles. For example, the Corsican'sThe officers of Napoleon have 'reported that even in a battlefield after long hours, Napoleon had the amazing ability to energize himself within half an hour.' And, as for 'the bedhead-defying billionaire real estate mogul he scrapes by on only three to four hours a night, but says it gives him a competitive edge.'

4. The spouse
The Corsican's Josephine was a European beauty, becoming Empress of France by marriage; the Manhattanite's wife at present is also European; both men divorced their initial spouses, remaining on good terms nothwithstanding. Both women in question, especially Josephine, have been notable for their keen awareness of wealth and status.

5. The failures
While the Corsican islander's are well-known -- including exile twice as a prisoner of his conquerors and a loss at Waterloo during a miraculous comeback to power, those of the Manhattan islander are less remembered, albeit, owing to his recent 'comeback' into politics, they are rather similar in their spectacular quality. For instance, Trump's mortgage company folded within six months, his timing (the beginning of the Great Recession) and poor leadership choice (a rookie broker with no relevant experience) proving awful. The four corporate bankruptcies are rather well known now, but the fact that they involved the casino business brings to paramount comparability with Bonaparte's often daring, seemingly foolhardy gambles in the also risky battlefield. Perhaps most notably similar is the bold, even reckless posture of both men when it comes to the Middle East: Trump advocating for a 'take their oil' strategy as to several oil-rich nations, Bonaparte for his invasion of Egypt, the former losing foreign affairs credibility, if any preceded it, the latter losing his fleet to the British whilst imitating his idol, Alexander. Neither ploy eventuated as 'great', albeit the Corsican yielded archaeology some amazing breakthroughs, the Manhattanite reaffirming, unintentionally, that no man is an island.

Perhaps of greatest magnitude, Trump may have lost Atlantic City, New Jersey -- he insists by choice -- Bonaparte trumps him many times over in having sold for a song what is now a full third of the North American continent via the Louisiana Purchase. Neither demonstrated a deal which might be called artful for the seller.

So, then, we have seen these two rather iconic characters, their conquests -- often, of self, and may now perhaps are able to draw some conclusions about their apparent skill (or lack thereof) in creating their respective trompe l'oeil techniques. One is proffered here for your consideration.

Conclusion: Enough history existing as to both autocratic men it may be said that both have been opportunistically gifted, albeit with sizable flaws, leaving America with two very telling heritages -- The Manhattanite's brand emblazoned upon various heavily mortgaged properties, The Corsican, the occasion since Jefferson was in the White House to raise a glass of eponymous brandy in celebration of Napoleonic failure. In both cases, raw hubris and raw land left each with a raw deal.

The American populace as jury is still out on what sort of deal Trump's 'art' may bring it -- Square, New... or Raw.

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Updated Apr 22, 2017 5:29 AM EDT | More details

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