Feb 28, 2018: A Particularly Bizarre Day in Trumptopia

I was not going to post for a few days to let a number of issues develop, but there were so many odd political occurrences yesterday I wanted to give it a little attention, so I’m sharing a tweet from Sam Stein, politics editor for the Daily Beast, just to give you a taste of the day (I added a few words in blue for clarity).

Stein captured Trump’s day thus:   Between calling his AG Jeff Sessions “DISGRACEFUL;”  Agreeing to a liberal fantasy of gun reform in a televised bi-partisan meeting in the White House; losing his comms director Hope Hicks; watching his son-in-law Jared Kushner chewed up by devastating news reports; and seeing Special Counsel Mueller hone in on his attempts to fire Sessions;  it’s just your average day in Trumpland.”

I’d say Stein is employing understatement. Even for Trump this was a bit much.  All of these occurrences will give rise to more and more stories which  undoubtedly will compete for attention with new or renewed “breaking news” to the point of our bewilderment and/or just tuning out altogether with our excuse being you can’t believe anybody.  For me the worst thing Trump has done is to turn the already murky world of political reality into a blinding sleet storm.

Amidst the mental muck I will try to focus on what happens with the gun reform issue.  Most likely not much.  Recall how Trump had a similar meeting about DACA on a Tuesday in January wherein he appeared open and even eager to make a deal, but by Thursday he reversed his position, obviously influenced by his base and advisers.  The “Tuesday Trump” or the “Thursday Trump”  has become a byword for a Trump-about-face, I think coined by Republican Senator Lindsay Graham.

So we’ve seen the “Tuesday Trump” on gun reform and now we have to wait and see what the “Thursday Trump” has to say.  Most likely he will pull back from every positive thing he said about gun reform that the NRA doesn’t like.  It might boil down to bump  stocks being passed, as the NRA doesn’t seem to mind that.

I’ll get back to you.


P. S. – Trump says or does so many odd things that we tire of pointing them out, but that only makes his craziness our reality.  Trump must fundamentally be a coward, as he is always indicating how brave he is, like the other day when he asserted that unlike that “cowardly” security guard he would have run into that school even if he didn’t have a gun.  Who else would pat himself on the back for something he has only fantasized?

That is the sort of thing that truly the brave, like a Medal of Honor recipient, would never, ever say about himself, the kind of thing only someone with a lot of self-doubt would say.  And then what does he do?   Yesterday he puffs himself up more by teasing some of the Congress people about being afraid of the NRA, when he has been completely cowed by them until his “brave” words yesterday which he has plenty of time to take back.

One might say he lacks the courage of his convictions, but then he has no convictions, only a fantasy of himself.

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The Trumped Up Presidency

I was going to write a post on the impact of the Trumped up presidency, but got side tracked thinking about the word, name, itself, so that other post will have to wait for a day or two or three.  I am struck by the definition of trump up: “to concoct especially with intent to deceive : fabricate, invent.”

 

What a perfect description of the empty essence of the current president.  I have thought so for some time, but can’t recall anyone zeroing in on the perfect fit as I am about to do.  Hillary Clinton did make a tangential remark at a debate referring to his “Trumped up trickle down theory of economics,” but that was a misguided attempt to be clever with little impact.

 

That aside, let’s look at another version of the word: trumpery. While today it refers to material objects of little or no value, back in the mid-15th century it meant deceit or fraud or worthless nonsense.  That sense is now obsolete, but the Trump phenomenon may wind up prompting its rejuvenation.

 

We might also add:  to trump:  as in bridge where one suit is all powerful over the other three, which certainly suits Trumped-Up’s vision of presidential powers in relationship to congress, the judiciary and the press.

 

For the Donald to have such a suitable name reminds me of what Carl Jung, Freud’s most well known “student”, called “synchronicity”, which means coincidental acts that seem too coincidental to be mere coincidence, eerily so.  We are being led by the shallowest of fabricating fools as if the”the force” has declared we deserve to be , and provided that name as our clue.

 

So, when in the future I refer to President Trumped-Up or the Trumped-Up presidency, know that I’m not trying to be cute or clever.  Simply concise.