Wednesday, July 18, 2018

How Trump Thinks. My Theory.

 Auguste Rodin:  Thinker

It's impossible for me not to try to understand Donald Trump's mind.  I think it's impossible for a lot of other people, too.  And so I have spent some time making up theories about how he sees the presidency, how he sees the elections and how he sees the press.

These theories do not rule out his narcissism, his megalomania, his unpredictability or his very thin skin, but one, in particular, tends to explain his behavior well. (Let me know what you think.)

Here's the gist of that theory:

Trump's thinking is rigid and concrete and linked to the cult of personality.  He sees the presidency as a dictatorship, and the elections as a way of picking the personal characteristics, beliefs and values of the winning candidate for the nation as a whole,   from that point onward. 

When Trump was declared the winner in November 2016, he interpreted the meaning of this as follows:

Everything he believes is now what America believes.  Because he was already known to hate the European Union when he won, Americans showed that they want a president who hates the European Union, and because he was already known to love Putin* when he won, Americans showed that they want a president who loves Putin. 

Trump doesn't have to learn anything more.  It could even be against the will of the people who wanted what Trump already was.

This theory explains why Trump is so angry with any media criticism and why he equates that media criticism with being an enemy of the country.  The country has  chosen him as the dictator, he and the country are now the same, and to criticize him indeed IS to criticize the country.  Besides, people elected his values, opinions and actions.

The theory also explains why Trump could not anticipate the severe kind of criticism he received after the meeting with Vladimir Putin.  He is now the personification of the country, and any criticism is treasonable, or at least fake news.

Last, but not least, the theory explains Trump's obsession with the 2016 elections.  Now, any president would dislike doubts about his (or, perhaps one day in a thousand years, her) legitimacy, but given Trump's thought patterns, those doubts present an incredible threat to him.  If he didn't win fair and square, then all of what he is was rejected.

* Now why he loves Putin is a different question.  It could be that Putin has something on Trump, or it could be that Trump simply worships warlords and dictators.