Wednesday, September 05, 2018

Wrong And Weak

Steve M. is characteristically cynical and correct when he says, in the wake of revelations from "Fear: Trump in the White House," "Trumpers will see (Bob) Woodward himself as a saboteur." Trump "will skate," he recognizes, even though he reportedly labeled Attorney General Jeff Sessions as "mentally retarded" and a "dumb southerner."

But he writes also

more confirmation that Trump is nasty, ill-informed, reckless, and dishonest. Terrible policy changes are prevented by aides who secretly remove papers from his desk. The president's aides and lawyers think he's a simpleton and a congenital liar. It's not a pretty picture.

Similarly, Rob Reiner tweets

We’re in the midst of a Constitutional crisis. Our government is rudderless. The President of the United States is ignorant and mentally unstable and  Republicans in Congress are cowards. Let’s pray the Ship of State doesn’t run aground before Nov.6.

Certainly, congressional Republicans are cowards. However, this is no "constitutional crisis," nor is our government (as Reiner probably would acknowledge in another context) is not rudderless but dedicated to extreme right-wing policy.

Additionally, Trump's support will remain at a decent level even if voters understand- as they already do- that Trump is ignorant, nasty, ill-informed, reckless, and dishonest.   (Most people, including some who charge it, don't know what constitutes "mentally unstable.")

What voters would not tolerate is if they realize that the President is... well, allow him to explain:

It's not that his "Administration has done more in less than two years" etc., etc., etc. The nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court isn't popular, nor is the Corporate Tax Scam the President signed.

It is instead "I'm tough as hell on people & if I weren't, nothing would get done" with the accompanying- and reinforcing- "I question everybody & everything." 

Woodward quotes Defense Secretary James Mattis, after hearing from the President on Korea, as contending Trump "had the understanding of a fifth- or sixth- grader."   Trump allegedly told attorney Rudy Giuliani "Rudy, you're a baby. I've never seen a worse defense of me in my life. They took your diaper off right there. You're like a little baby that needed to be changed. When are you going to be a man?"

Chief of Staff John Kelly reportedly stated "We're in Crazytown. I don't even know why any of us are here. This is the worst job I've ever had."

Mattis already known to be at odds with the President on policy. Kelly says Trump is the mayor of Crazytown. Trump is being represented in the media by a little baby. Trump believes the Attorney General of the United States of America is a "traitor."

They are still employed at the White House, and will be tomorrow, because Donald Trump is the antithesis of his image.

Trump said of Kim Jong-un "At a very young age, he was able to assume power. A lot of people, I'm sure, tried to take that power away, whether it was his uncle or anybody else. And he was able to do it." Following his news conference with Vladimir Putin, Trump praised Putin, remarking "I thought President Putin was very, very strong." He has called the USA "a very powerful company" before correcting himself with "We're a very strong, very strong country."

"When people are insecure," a savvy Bill Clinton once warned, "they'd rather have somebody who's strong and wrong than someone who's weak and right." Donald Trump recognizes insecure voters when he sees them.

Republicans were fond of accusing President Obama of conducting an "apology tour." Two years after slapping Obama's party in mid-term elections, the country decided in 2016 that it was finally done with the Party of Apology. Paradoxically, it expressed its frustration by electing what Bill Maher has identified as "a whiny, little bitch." It's a good characterization, but through all his whines fed by a phony sense of victimization, Donald Trump emphasizes that he's not little, but big; not soft, but tough. It's a con even Joseph Goebbels would have been impressed with.

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