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Trump’s petulant, immature tweets are now America’s notes to the world. Those who’ve compared them to President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “fireside chats” as a vehicle to by-pass the media filter to reach “the people” forget that FDR’s chats were warm and kind-hearted, educational and uplifting, and required an attention span longer than a gnat.

Trump Debases Presidency

Trump Debases Presidency—Joseph Palermo

When angered, Trump’s tweets are just insults and blasts of vindictiveness aimed at his perceived enemies — John Lewis, Lindsey Graham, John McCain, Meryl Streep, Charles Schumer. They start with a put-down targeting his opponent as “weak” or “sad” or “over-rated,” followed by a diktat about what they “should be” doing instead.

Every angry Trump tweet is a new embarrassment for the nation; a disgrace, undignified, coming from someone with an authoritarian tin-pot mentality and a fragile ego.

Every angry tweet is a new embarrassment for the nation; a disgrace, undignified, coming from someone with an authoritarian tin-pot mentality and a fragile ego. Every minute Trump is in office he debases it, turns it into a joke, reduces its stature. Trump and the cabal around him are at war with the American people. They’re not so much “leading” the nation, but assaulting it with purposeful vindictive chaos.

During World War Two, U.S. soldiers killed Nazis. Ike Eisenhower, the last truly “conservative” Republican president, brought his soldiers to see the death camps to remind them “what they were fighting against.” Sam Fuller and other soldiers of the “Big Red One” 1st U.S. Infantry Division forced the German civilian residents of Falkenau to see what was going on right under their noses at a nearby death camp, dress the naked, skeletal corpses of the victims, and bury the dead. Today we have a “president” and his top henchman, Stephen K. Bannon, who are greatly admired by neo-Nazis.

New York Senator Charles Schumer, who is Jewish, understood the magnitude of the moment while holding a press conference with people unjustly singled out because of their religion and victimized by Trump’s Muslim ban. He became teary eyed and his voice cracked. And here’s how the President of the United States responded:

“Nancy Pelosi and Fake Tears Chuck Schumer held a rally at the steps of The Supreme Court and mic did not work (a mess) — just like the Dem party!”

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He subsequently spoke about it and wondered aloud who was Schumer’s “acting coach.” So today public figures cannot even show genuine human emotion without being mocked and ridiculed by the man-baby in the White House.

These Trump guys aren’t only thuggish and immature; they’re also stupid. For example, saber rattling against Iran makes no sense if Trump really wants to strengthen U.S. ties with Russia. Shia Iran has the most to lose with the rise of ISIS and has been fighting alongside Russia against ISIS in Syria, and even indirectly alongside the United States in Mosul. Maybe Putin will step in to be the adult in the room.

Bannon, Stephen Miller, Michael Flynn, Sean Spicer and Trump himself appear to be, deep down, scared little boys — scared of Muslims, “leftists,” women, gays. Their vindictiveness and bellicosity is an attempt to mask this underlying fear. They’re now in charge of the biggest military force ever assembled and can’t wait to play with their new toys. They’re licking their chops to use it against their perceived enemies, who they see everywhere around them.

Even “We the People” are the “opposition.” Their views of protesters and dissent as being “paid” agitators and “illegitimate,” a cast spewed forth constantly from Breitbart, are chilling enough. But when this is combined with the “alternative facts” and Orwellian propaganda we’ve seen over the past two and a half weeks from this government, the only logical conclusion is that these are sick men who are in the White House, and the Washington Democrats are probably not up to the task to take them on. The world will soon find out just how crazy these people are. All they need is a proper pretext for war, a Reichstag feuer, and this country will never be the same.

The good news is that millions of people are resisting and a lot of previously apolitical people seem to have woken up and are getting involved. Yet these formerly apolitical souls are also likely candidates to check out again after the long slog of protest gets too arduous.

This crisis, like the Civil War, cuts to the core of who we are as a people. Do we want to be perceived in the world as nativists, racists, bullies, and misogynists? Or do we reach down deep into our past and retrieve for guidance those fleeting moments when this nation was at its best?

joseph palermo

Joseph A Palermo