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Exile on Main Street
Author: Raine    Date: 06/10/2021 13:07:11

There was once an Emporer (and dictator) that was exiled to the coast of a beautiful swath of water.

That person was Napolean.
Elba meant exile for Napoleon, but it was no prison. Napoleon specifically chose it because it had good weather and defenses, and he took up residence in a villa with harbor views built by the Medicis in the 1700s. He had another summer residence, too. Both buildings were outfitted with lavish furnishings and designed for parties and visitors, including his official babysitter, a British officer named Neil Campbell who watched his comings and goings.

Though Napoleon’s wife, Josephine, didn’t join him on the island, his mistress, the Polish countess Marie Walewska, did. Her brief visit was purposely shrouded in secrecy, but islanders soon learned of it. They eagerly followed the movements and excesses of the miniature court Napoleon built on the island. Soon, however, they realized they were expected to pay for those expenses through taxes, and became more suspicious of the exiled emperor.

Campbell followed Napoleon’s growing lack of interest in the fate of the islanders, and soon learned that Napoleon feared insolvency, especially when the money promised to him under the treaty did not materialize. But he didn’t realize the Emperor of Elba had begun to make plans to leave the island.

Napoleon claimed he was a “dead man” and that his time of greatness had passed. But in reality, he was biding his time. Ruling Elba gave him an excuse to build a military force: an army of 2,000, a 600-man Imperial Guard, and a small navy. Napoleon’s frequent communications with France and his continual stream of visitors concerned the British. But until February 26, 1815, they didn’t realize how dangerous those communications had been.
He escaped the Island, returned to France, and for 100 days had a second rule.

In the year 2021, a would-be dictator is living his days in a similar, albeit alternative, reality. This one however is not yet in the middle of a second ruling but is nonetheless about as dangerous as Bonaparte was.
Tossed from the White House, banished from Facebook and Twitter, Trump has never seemed more distant from public consciousness. But while he can’t broadcast out, those same platforms offer a surprisingly intimate glimpse into his new life, thanks to the prolific posting of the club’s guests. At every moment of his day, Trump is bathed in adulation. When he enters the dining room, people stand and applaud. When he returns from golf, he’s met with squeals and selfie requests. When he leaves Mar-a-Lago, he often encounters flag-waving throngs organized by Willy Guardiola, a former professional harmonica player and anti-abortion activist who runs weekly pro-Trump rallies in Palm Beach. “Give me four hours and I can pull together 500 people,” Guardiola says. Trump recently invited the self-proclaimed “biggest Trump supporter in the country” for a private consultation at his club.

In this gilded Biosphere, Trump encounters no one who isn’t vocally gratified by his presence. When he speaks extemporaneously, so many guests post footage that you can watch the same weird scene unfold from multiple vantage points, like the Japanese film Rashomon. Trump seems so comfortable, the journalist and Instagram sleuth Ashley Feinberg has noted, that he’s taken to wearing the same outfit for days on end. Blue slacks, white golf shirt, and red MAGA cap are to the former president what the black Mao suit is to his old frenemy Kim Jong Un. Club members say his new lifestyle agrees with him. “Presidents when they finish always look so much older,” says Thomas Peterffy, the billionaire founder of Interactive Brokers LLC, who lives three doors down from Mar-a-Lago. “Not true for Trump.”
It's pathetic, and slovely -- but it really is dangerous to promote the 'Big Lie'. If he is allowed to return to the national stage, one can only hope that Bedminster becomes a place for his second exile. sorta like St Helena.
So Napoleon, cut off from the world he had shaped for so long, settled into a life that would be nothing but tedious when compared to the achievements of his life. All he could do was relive them for his memoirs, which have helped define his legacy and reputation ever since. Napoleon’s health began to fail in 1817, limiting what he could do with his days even further.
Exile is the only thing worthy for TFG.



7 comments (Latest Comment: 06/10/2021 22:38:10 by Raine)
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