Perfectly Foolish

Donald J. Trump at CPAC 2017. Photo by Michael Vadon

It’s trivial, on the surface: who uses “perfect” to describe a conversation? A teenaged girl, perhaps, while attempting to describe for friends her phone discussion with a romantic prospect. Certainly not an adult, who recognizes the multitude of possibilities available to a discussion. A conversation that has specific goals might be described as progressing “perfectly” if each and every goal was clearly met, but “perfect conversation” is an unwieldy and irrational construction.

That’s the surface. There are two likely explanations for it; neither is flattering. First, the President’s intellect may be stunted to a degree that his word choices are those of a fifth grade student. Second, he may be displaying significant contempt for the people he claims to represent.

Much humor has been derived from Trump’s limited vocabulary and penchant for repetition, of which his “perfect conversation” is merely the latest example. His history of business failings and irregular confusion (such as his apparent inability to recognize his former advisor Sebastian Gorka) add weight to the notion that he is mentally challenged. If this is the case, it bodes very poorly for his continued position as a key decision maker for the United States.

Even many of those who love watching Democrats and “the liberals” become upset would be rightfully concerned if the President lacked the basic ability to distinguish dangerous from safe actions or speak in complete sentences.

Rather than accept that as a possibility they gravitate toward the other option: his statements and mannerisms are an act, something designed to throw his adversaries off their guard. If that is the case, there’s something else they’re ignoring.

Trump does not use this phraseology exclusively when dealing with the press. It’s a part of his linguistic habits. He speaks like this at rallies and conventions as well.

At these events, any adversarial press is fairly restricted. Overwhelmingly, he’s talking to his fan base. Thus, if he is not intellectually impaired, he is treating his supporters as if they are – providing speeches designed to be understandable to people of very little education and learning. They are cheering him for doing so.

A regular complaint from both sides of the political aisle is the “dumbing down of America” – our shift away from the embrace of reason and science. The designated “other side” is accused of being either unwilling to think for themselves or simply stupid, typically as a way of bolstering the self-image of the partisan faithful. This is an active attempt to normalize stupidity, and it is working.

The latest example of its success comes in the form of a complaint about the whistleblower. The person responsible for the complaint is likely a CIA analyst temporarily assigned to the White House. It should be a matter of faith that any such person is very well versed in the law, having been tasked with enforcing it. Also, that the person is capable of performing jobs like the writing of paperwork, which is typically a large part of the day for high-level government functionaries. It should be a matter of suspicion were there any discrepancies in the complaint, given that the person writing it was not under a severe time pressure to produce it.

Instead there are conspiracy theories generated about how a lawyer must have secretly written it, because all workers in the White House are assumed to have the same level of fundamental incompetence displayed by the President and his immediate staff.

The fish of government isn’t rotting from the head down for the Republican faithful, but it’s certainly becoming an idiot. That should not be embraced. It diminishes us all as a nation and as human beings.

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About AlienMotives 1991 Articles
Ex-Navy Reactor Operator turned bookseller. Father of an amazing girl and husband to an amazing wife. Tired of willful political blindness, but never tired of politics. Hopeful for the future.