OPINION ---------------Why's it so hard for us to say out loud that Trump has lost his mind?
Why's it so hard for us to say out loud that Trump has lost his mind?
Phil Quin 05:00, Sep 02 2019
OPINION: Why is it so hard for us to say out loud the blazingly obvious about the president of the United States: that he has utterly lost his mind. If Donald Trump were appointed the principal of your local secondary school tomorrow, you'd have pulled your kids out by Wednesday and he'd be gone by Friday. If he was mayor of your town, you'd pretend to live somewhere else. If he was a dog, you'd be making whispered phone calls to your vet.
I mean, I used to think Ronald Reagan and George W Bush were intellectually sub-par – but, by God, they're Mensa material compared to this guy. Meanwhile, his immediate past predecessor, Barack Obama, is as intellectually far ahead of Trump as it's possible to be while still belonging to the same species.
Let's review just the past few weeks, during which Trump seems to have crammed more abject lunacy than his 44 predecessors managed over the combined 250 years prior.
Sure, there have been terrible presidents before – corrupt, cruel and boorish ones; mendacious, vain, ignorant ones; racists, misogynists, and warmongers; incompetents and dilettantes – but only Trump embodies each and every one of those qualities with such unbridled ferocity. He disgraced the Oval Office by ever setting foot in there; he has been disgracing himself, and anyone that supports him, every day since.
The cray-cray is in high escalation of late, but I won't re-traumatise you with too much detail. Here are the lowlights: his bizarre pitch to purchase Greenland , which he both dismissed as a joke and took seriously enough to cancel his visit to Denmark over; his offer to pardon any federal official who illegally procures land upon which to build his stupid wall; his gormless, self-destructive trade war; his claim that Melania had struck up a warm friendship with Kim Jong Un ( they've never met ); and his proposal to tackle hurricanes with nuclear weapons .
But the policies he's implementing are no less insane. Just last week, Trump announced he was rolling back Obama-era regulations on methane leaks that will result in the equivalent in climate damage of eight million additional vehicles on the road.
That's the whole of New Zealand's climate change agenda negated multiple times over in one fell swoop.
He did so not because the industry demanded it – in fact, most oil and gas giants had come to accept the regulations – but because he will do anything within his powers to claw back the legacy of Obama.
For no reason other than racially tinged and stupendous personal and political jealousy. America and the world are paying a heavy price for Trump's multifarious psychopathologies.
Neuropsychiatrists are bound by ethics not to bandy about terms like "rapidly advancing dementia" when it comes to the nuclear button guy, but I'm not.
Trump's cognitive decline is palpable and accelerating. Try this exercise if you don't believe me. Tee up YouTube with clips from 10 years ago, then two years ago, then today, and play them in order. It's like watching a guy get drunk at a party.
His most coherent moment over the past week came when he took to the G7 stage in France to propose one of his family's hideous resorts for the next get-together . Even if the proposal to host the G7 (or G8 if they let his boss Putin tag along) at a Trump property is a transparently vile abuse of office, it must reassure his loved ones that, even in his dotage, he remains capable of enthusiastically talking up hotel amenities.
Why do I turn with such little generosity to the subject of Donald Trump every few months? Easy target? Maybe.
But this is a profoundly consequential political moment that demands our attention – especially as we confront the prospect of his re-election next November. Trump represents a clear and present threat to the liberal democratic consensus and alliances that helped deliver peace and security for most of the latter part of the 20th century.
Actually, let me clarify that: if knowing what they know now about his policies and behaviour, the American people see fit to give Trump another term, those norms and alliances will have been struck dead by their hands, not his.
It takes one idiot to make a fool of himself every day he defaces the Oval Office. It takes tens of millions to elevate him there.