[Marxism] Trump Flies Into the Cuckoo’s Nests

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Oct 10 08:34:57 MDT 2019

NY Times Op-Ed, Oct. 10, 2019
Trump Flies Into the Cuckoo’s Nests
By Gail Collins

Two ways to judge anything Donald Trump does these days: A) Is it a good 
idea? And B) Is it further evidence he’s going nuts?

Think about Turkey. Over the weekend, Turkish President Recep Tayyip 
Erdogan was preparing to attack our old Kurdish allies in northern 
Syria. The White House announced late Sunday night that it was O.K. with 
the whole deal and was pulling out the small American military 
contingent that’s been fighting alongside the Kurds.

Nobody seemed to have run this by Defense Secretary Mark (Finally 
Confirmed!) Esper, who sent out a tweet Monday morning opposing the 
Turkish operation. Which was later deleted.

“If Turkey does anything that I, in my great and unmatched wisdom, 
consider to be off limits I will totally destroy and obliterate the 
economy of Turkey,” Trump reassured the nation.

Well, we’ve always known he suffers from delusions of grandeur. (“There 
are those that think I’m a very stable genius.”) And although the way 
the administration handled the whole Turkey thing was wildly inept, 
we’ve known for a long time there’s no ept in this White House.

But here’s the other part: Donald Trump is in the middle of a super 
impeachment crisis, and he’s surviving in office only through Senate 
Republicans’ support. And he chose this time to create a foreign affairs 
uproar guaranteed to outrage and offend the Republican senators.

“Pray for our Kurdish allies who have been shamelessly abandoned by the 
Trump Administration. This move ensures the emergence of ISIS,” tweeted 
Lindsey Graham.

This from a fervid supporter. If Graham were, say, a miniature poodle, 
he’d be the one trotting along, carrying the master’s socks in his mouth.

The president’s sudden decision to give a shout-out to the Turkish 
government came after a phone call with Erdogan. By now there have been 
so many phone-related disasters you’d think the family would have taken 
away his communication devices. But Trump believes he’s always very 
careful and conscious that tons of people are listening in. “My 
knowledge — I know all about it,” he told reporters at a press 
conference last week.

The gathering degenerated into a yelling meltdown, during which our 
president declared that House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam 
Schiff “had some kind of a mental breakdown.”

Nobody muttered “takes one to know one.”

Most of the Republicans are just sort of curled up under their beds, 
quivering. Lately, the squad of across-the-board Trump defenders has 
dwindled down to people like Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida. 
Perhaps you remember Gaetz having argued that violence in America was 
not due to guns but to “illegal aliens.” This time he said that the 
impeachment process was “a kangaroo court and chairman Schiff is acting 
like a malicious Captain Kangaroo.”

Well, you take whoever you can get and Trump does not currently have a 
lot of universally enthusiastic troops. Representative Liz Cheney of 
Wyoming called the American pullout from Syria a “catastrophic mistake.” 
Any daughter of Dick Cheney is going to be a person who can overlook a 
whole lot. When you lose her, you’re really down to … Matt Gaetz.

All this is going on while the White House is refusing to let Congress 
have access to administration officials who have information on the 
whistle-blower charges. Which, as of course you remember, stem from the 
time the man who believes he knows all about being careful on phone 
calls tried to get the Ukraine president to come up with some dirt on 
the foreign business dealings of Joe Biden’s son.

The man who later demanded that China investigate Hunter Biden’s 
business dealings there. Even China found that loony, a high standard 
for a country that can’t even manage to have a reasonable relationship 
with basketball teams.

And, of course, the president whose daughter and son-in-law have both 
been working for the White House while raking in tens of millions of 
dollars from their business dealings. Some came from the clothing Ivanka 
manufactured in places like … China.

Why would he bring up children making money abroad? This isn’t just a 
guy who makes stupid decisions. It’s a guy who’s off his rocker. Whose 
great pal is Rudy Giuliani, the talking head whose TV appearances can 
terrify toddlers. I’m not saying Trump is the only unbalanced person in 
this story. Just that he’s the only one who controls our nuclear weapons.

In a happier time Americans went about their lives, complaining about 
Washington, then sort of shrugging and moving on to a discussion of the 
World Series. Or medieval history. Or goat yoga. Whatever. Now we aren’t 
even free to change the subject. We’re looking at the pileup and 
wondering whether the next thing will usher in the Big Crackup.

So there’s the president of the United States. Trying to get around the 
current controversy by rebranding the Turkish invasion “a bad idea.” 
Stonewalling Congress on the whistle-blower crisis. Which includes a 
report that one White House official who listened to Trump’s phone call 
with Ukraine’s president described it as — yes! — “crazy.”

What a coincidence.

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