KING OF THE BUGS?

January 2018

 Stable Genius.

Definition: Someone who is very, very good with horses.

If you've checked the Internet lately, you know that I'm far from the first one to maliciously misinterpret mr. trump's words in an equine direction.  No doubt about it, the president's outlandish statements often deserve a ton of horse laughs. Unfortunately, this is far from a laughing matter, horse or otherwise. So, let's quit horsing around, and talk turkey.

Talk Turkey.

Definition: To talk honestly, bluntly and directly.

   donald trump acts NUTS. Is he NUTS? I can't say: I'm not trained as a psychiatrist or psychologist, nor am I a Stable Genius. I'm just saying that, if I had seen him when I was a kid, I know I would have labeled him as NUTS.  People who we kids thought were nuts acted NUTTY: they said really weird things, and the things they said and did had no relation to reality. We didn't want to be around them because we were never sure what they might do, and we were never sure if what they said was true or false, or if they knew the difference. Even though some of the strange and ridiculous things they said were funny, they weren't the kind of "funny" that would give one much confidence is that person's stability or ability to function normally. I don't think we ever thought of any NUTTY person as a good candidate for future President of the United States.

   Yet, here we have president donald trump, helped into office by a lot of former kids who once wouldn't have dreamed of electing a NUTTY person to what should be one of the most important and influential positions in the world. What happened? Although my confidence in the intelligence of the American Public has been going steadily downhill for a number of years, it still seems incredible to me that nearly half the voting public could have opted for him. Anyone who followed even a little of the presidential primaries had to know that - socially, at least - there is something seriously wrong with the man.

    There are some who keep insisting that all this complaining about trump is a partisan thing, that the people who don't like him just don't like his style, and that he's really "not that bad." I wish that was true. Style points are important for anyone dealing with world problems, but we've had presidents before who were pretty inept, and probably not really qualified for the position. However, we've never had a president who : (1) lies about things both great and small, when the lie is clearly evident, and when it seems there can be no advantage to him to lie; (2) repeatedly claims that he is the best at everything, and knows more about every subject than anyone else does - and does this without a smile, smirk, or any indication that he really doesn't believe it; and (3) repeatedly claims that the entire world loves and respects him, when in fact he has made himself - and the United States - the subject of innumerable jokes, and has made the world fear he could do something disastrous at any moment.

   trump has been described as narcissistic - having "an inflated sense of one's own importance, a deep need for excessive attention and admiration, troubled relationships, and a lack of empathy for others" (Mayo Clinic definition) - which, clearly, he is. He is also a buffoon and a bully. Unfortunately, we're not dealing with a toothless bully,  but someone capable of extreme, unreasoning retaliation for real or imagined hurts. I'm worried. The World is worried. Why aren't the politicians worried - those who continue to try to use him for their causes, when they must know by now that he can't be "used?"

 *   *   *

  Listening to trump sometimes makes me think of the bizarre, dysfunctional government portrayed in  the movie "Dr. Strangelove." More often, I think of Lucy, in the "Peanuts" cartoon. I remember Lucy "teaching" her little brother, Linus, about the "queen of the bugs."  As I recall, she described how the "queen" ruled over all the bugs, and they all had to do exactly what she wanted. When Linus pointed out that the "bug" they were looking at was actually a piece of fuzz, Lucy didn't miss a beat. Very interesting, she said, and went on to ponder about how a piece of fuzz became queen of the bugs.

    Another time, Lucy declared that - in her whole life - she had never made a mistake. To her credit, she felt the need to confess that she once thought she had made a mistake, but she had been wrong.

   We can laugh at Lucy because the crazy things she said were unbelievably funny, because she was just a know-it-all kid, and, oh yes, she's a CARTOON. What if Charles Schulz had let her grow up - or if she had magically transformed into a real human adult - and she still said the same things? She would sound like a real NUT, right? Would we vote for someone who still thought a piece of fuzz could rule anyone or anything? What if she went farther over the edge, and really came to believe that she was Queen of the Bugs - that she ruled over all the other "bugs," and that they all had to do exactly what she wanted?

   That would be a nightmare, wouldn't it?


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