At Least the Plutocrats Are Getting Their Just Deserts

Today’s guest blogger is Jeffrey Sachs. In Trump’s Insane Trade War, Professor Sachs writes,

Maybe Donald Trump really is the Manchurian Candidate, a stooge of some foreign potentate. Much more likely, Trump is just mentally unstable and narcissistic. Whichever it is, Trump is rapidly destroying American global leadership, alliances, and interests. Wednesday’s announcement of new tariffs on steel and aluminum exports from Canada, Mexico, and the European Union is the latest bizarre and self-destructive move. ,,,

Trump’s so-called policies are not really policies. Trade wars are on, off, on hold, on again, within the span of days. Summits are on, canceled, or maybe on. Foreign companies are sanctioned today and rescued the next. He says one day he would like to see overseas troops called home soon, and tells them to stay the next. Global agreements and rules are ripped to shreds. Trump’s garbled syntax and disorganized thoughts are impossible to follow.

The US has probably never before had a delusional President, one who speaks gibberish, insults those around him including his closest associates, and baffles the world. By instinct, we strive to make sense of Trump’s nonsense, implicitly assuming some hidden strategy. There is none. …

Trump creates chaos for no reason other than his own flagrant inability to follow rules or respect the interests of others. His is a psychopath’s trade war. The result will be to undermine the long-term role of the dollar; ratchet up the public debt; and undermine the current expansion through a spiral of protectionist measures and rising uncertainties for business. ,,,

The real answer to Trump’s trade (and other) policies is the 25th Amendment. Trump is unwell and unfit to be President. He is a growing threat to the nation and the world.

Aardvark’s Addition

Then there was the scene last week where he said Kim wrote a very nice letter, but he had not read it.

OK, plutocrats, how’s that Faustian bargain workin’ out for ya?



“What’s the Method in Trump’s Madness?”


E.J. Dionne asks the question, but does not answer it in any definitive or persuasive way. Reminds me of the headlines I always read in Popular Photographer when I was a wee lad. They were forever asking questions like, Is the New Canon AAA the Best Camera Ever? They never answered the question.

Later on, as a litigitator, Aardvark always acted on the working assumption that his adversaries were acting in their own rational best interest, and tried to reverse engineer their strategy based on that working hypothesis. Sometimes that worked, but sometimes it was a lost cause: no rational thinking explained your adversary’s actions and positions.

Like Aardvark, Jennifer Rubin, who used to swoon over Romney, has just bloody well given up:

The supposition among pundits, elected officials and political insiders is that Trump, like his argument over the inaugural crowd size, “lies” to make himself feel better. His staff salutes, repeats his lies and then gets bashed. What if, however, he thoroughly, “honestly” believes his crazy, unsubstantiated claims? When he denies saying something, what if he honestly does not, cannot recall statements that now come back to haunt him?

He seemed awfully sincere about his reprehensible birther conspiracy theories until it became inconvenient to say so. Before reverting to sycophantic form after his primary defeat, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), incensed about Trump’s assertion that Cruz’s father participated in the JFK assassination, called Trump a “pathological liar.” He said, “He doesn’t know the difference between truth and lies. He lies practically every word that comes out of his mouth. And he had a pattern that I think is straight out of a psychology textbook. His response is to accuse everybody else of lying.”

Today, Dionne and many others are asking whether the great 5 Million Illegal Voters lie is part of a rational (though evil) scheme to further restrict voting rights. It certainly could be. But if that was your goal, wouldn’t you tell a more plausible lie? Wouldn’t a rational person grasp that a lie this big would be likely to undercut, not support, your wicked scheme to restrict voting rights? And if that is the case, what plausible hypothesis is left other than that he really believes his alternative reality?

Ms. Rubin says she isn’t yet—emphasizing “yet”—canning for the invocation of Section 4 of the 25th Amendment (the part of the Constitution that could let the country get rid of a loonytunes President.)

Keith Olbermann, however, has had enough and says it’s time for The Donald to resign on grounds of insanity.