The Oval Office Effect

Oval Office at the Clinton Center

Some, mindlessly optimistic, have predicted that when Trump parks his butt in the President’s chair, he will be overawed by the magnitude of the office, and grow up. That would be very nice. But it won’t happen.

The alternative is that Trump will become the poster child for Lord Acton’s observation that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

We are, however, informed on good authority that this proposition is inaccurate. See Why Power Corrupts: New research digs deeper into the social science behind why power brings out the best in some people and the worst in others.

In sum, power doesn’t corrupt the incorruptible; what it does is magnify, give greater scope to, the innate personality of the newly powerful person.

In Trump we have a new President with deeply ingrained narcissistic personality disorder. When attacked, he fights back with whatever weapons he has.

As surely as God made little green apples, when he is attacked while his butt is planted in the big chair in the oval office, he will order his henchmen to take illegal actions against his attackers.

Said henchmen will either obey orders, or they will disobey.

Once to Every Man and Nation
James Russsell Lowell, December 11, 1845

Once to every man and nation, comes the moment to decide,
In the strife of truth with falsehood, for the good or evil side;
Some great cause, some great decision, offering each the bloom or blight,
And the choice goes by forever, ’twixt that darkness and that light.

Then to side with truth is noble, when we share her wretched crust,
Ere her cause bring fame and profit, and ’tis prosperous to be just;
Then it is the brave man chooses while the coward stands aside,
Till the multitude make virtue of the faith they had denied.

By the light of burning martyrs, Christ, Thy bleeding feet we track,
Toiling up new Calv’ries ever with the cross that turns not back;
New occasions teach new duties, time makes ancient good uncouth,
They must upward still and onward, who would keep abreast of truth.

Though the cause of evil prosper, yet the truth alone is strong;
Though her portion be the scaffold, and upon the throne be wrong;
Yet that scaffold sways the future, and behind the dim unknown,
Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above His own.