Thursday, September 7, 2017

Trump's Big CON: Lacking Honesty, Empathy, and Ability, He Is Simply Not Presidential Material, CONt.

UPDATE II:  "[B]roadcast and cable producers know — and Trump knows deeply — that most Americans don’t really care that much about what they insist they care about. A few headlines will get most through the morning. Twitter and Facebook keep the curious plied with updates, and by day’s end, who really wants to plunge into tax reform?

It is true, nonetheless, that when Trump needs time to fidget with something that actually matters, he tosses a dead fish into the Dasani tank and waits for the media herdlings to begin their march toward the trough.

Temporarily spared the spotlight, Trump fluffs the thatched nest atop his head and invites his brain to hatch some very bad ideas. Thus, we seem to be on the brink of a nuclear confrontation with North Korea. Remember when we used to worry about Trump having his finger on the nuclear launch button? Square that. When the other antagonist is North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un, the nightmare can’t be dismissed as the twisted hankie of the persistently worried.

Never have two less qualified 'leaders' been so endowed with such devastating power without the requisite impulse control upon which living civilizations depend. Not to mention that these two nuke hecklers are unmercifully coifed to resemble cartoon characters so that we, the soberly sane, are left to ponder our face-melting demise as a clown showdown between two renegade circus performers. . .

In July, Trump was typically eloquent in describing his approach to thwarting disaster:

“We’ll handle North Korea. We’ll be able to handle North Korea. It will be handled. We handle everything.”

Whew, that.

As further insult to reason, this isn’t even a conflict over something at least historically rational, such as the now nearly charming contest between communism and Americanism. No battle of wits, the U.S.-North Korea stare-down is more accurately a battle of nitwits who seem to think threatening nuclear holocaust and mutual destruction is a contest to see who has bigger hands.

No one would suggest that Trump is responsible for all the nail biting these past few months or that Kim’s missile and nuclear tests aren’t deadly serious. But Trump surely has exacerbated matters with his “fire and fury” rhetoric. The goading language of ultimatum, more than a bluffing tactic, is an inflammatory agent such that the possible moves inexorably toward the inevitable. U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, the president’s toughest-talking Cabinet member, recently said: 'We have kicked the can down the road long enough. There is no more road left.'

Perhaps Kim might argue the same. Meanwhile, a can-kicking strategy (i.e., containment and diplomacy) seems a not-irrational substitute for mutual annihilation. Have we reached a point of no return? Will the president of the United States fire Kim, or will he invent some new distraction (staffers: Watch your backs) while he becomes a stealth, wartime leader?"

Read the Washington Post, Have we reached a point of no return?

UPDATE:  "Trump kicked off September by threatening a trade war with China and South Korea and pushing to deport young people at a time when businesses are struggling to find enough workers to fill all the available jobs. . .

So far in Trump's presidency, his threats on trade just turned out to be hot air. He said he would pull out of the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico. Instead, his administration is renegotiating it. He talked repeatedly of putting tariffs on steel and aluminum imports this summer, but it was repeatedly put off and Trump now says it's behind several other major items on his agenda. The China rhetoric may turn out to be more of the same, but businesses are on edge amid news this weekend that Trump had instructed his senior staff to draft the documents that would end the U.S.-South Korean trade deal. . .

The U.S.-Korea trade deal was negotiated under both President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama. It has bipartisan support because it's not just about economics, it's about containing North Korea and China's influence in Asia. If Trump cancels the deal now, it sends a message to South Korea to deepen its relationship with China. It also plays into North Korea's hands by causing a rift between South Korea and the United States. . .

Trump has been touting how well the economy is doing lately. Unemployment is at a 16-year low, the stock market is soaring, and growth hit 3 percent in period between April and June. In a very encouraging sign, even business investment was finally picking up a bit. But Trump is putting that momentum in jeopardy by angering business leaders yet again.

Read the Washington Post, What Trump is doing with DACA and trade could backfire badly.

"President Trump in three very different settings over the past few days reminded us how unsuited he is for the job. Increasingly, his presidency is defined by blatant lies, an empathy deficit and a frightful lack of ability to navigate through dire international crises. Each has been on display. . .

One is left, still, agog at Trump’s dishonesty, narcissism and inability to project the calmness and discipline we expect from a president. Those who thought he’d grow in office or who perpetually think he’s “pivoting” or “becoming presidential” have engaged in dangerous delusion. One wonders how long we can muddle on with a president this unsuitable without provoking a constitutional or international calamity."

Read the Washington Post, Something is seriously off about this president.

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