One of the more curious comparisons that Donald Trump supporters make is to Ronald Reagan. The media called Reagan a racist, sexist demagogue who would blow up the country. The media is giving Trump the same treatment, hence QED. Politico recently debunked the comparison and, with certain exceptions, got the two men right. But, the major difference between Reagan and Trump is how the two men regarded politics as performance art.

Trump, despite the fact that he has some experience as a reality TV star, lacks range. He has only one emotion, whether on the stump or when he is being interviewed by the media, rage. His speeches are also disjointed phrases that boil down concepts to their core components delivered in a stream of consciousness style.

Finally, Trump seems to be all about Donald Trump. He invites his audiences to worship him and in return all good things will come.

Reagan, by contrast, had a broad range. He could do anger (“I’m paying for this microphone!”) But he could also do humor (“There you go again.”) Most importantly, Reagan could impart inspiration (“America is a shining city on a hill.”) He was rarely if ever self-referential. It was never about him; it was about America and her people.

Reagan was often slammed as a “B actor” and to be sure he never achieved the success that some of his peers did in the 1930s and 1940s. In any case, the interruption of World War Two dealt his career and crippling blow from which it never recovered. But Reagan was able to play a variety of roles in his movie, from the goofy best friend, to tragic hero, to a stone cold killer in his last film.

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He knew how to impart a variety of emotions and he knew how to bring an audience along with him.

Reagan had one other difference from Trump. Unlike Trump, Reagan was a gentleman. You would never hear out of his mouth a reference to a female reporter’s menstrual cycle or the size of his manhood. Such utterances would be inconceivable for a man of Reagan’s generation and upbringing.

Reagan also did two things that Trump will never do. He restored America’s economic strength and its sense of wellbeing. He also overthrew the Soviet Union and won the Cold War. For both reasons, Reagan is now considered a world historical figure, undisputedly the greatest president of the 20th Century. Trump will never be better than a national embarrassment.