In politics, far too many folks reject information they don’t like while seeking out sources that “confirm” things they want to be real — no matter how fictional that information is. This mindset applies to politicians, as well. Often the politicians who pander to what voters want to hear (especially during primaries where “the base” has much more power than during a general election) are the most successful.
Donald Trump is a prime example of what I mean. His entire campaign and “presidency” have essentially been built on nothing more than pandering to the ignorance you see in the comments section of practically every right-wing blog on the Internet. People who believe that:
- Obama isn’t an American.
- Illegal immigrants are mostly criminals.
- A border wall will keep us safer.
- The economy was a “disaster” under Obama.
- Muslims are the enemy.
- America is weak and ruined.
- The media is “out to get” conservatives and conceal the truth.
- The system is “rigged” against them.
The list goes on and on. Republicans who supported Trump believe all of that — even though none of it’s true. So, naturally, when Trump pushed his fear-mongering, telling conservatives that all of their fears are absolutely true and he’s going to take on and fix every concern and problem they’ve ever had, they flocked to him like he was the next coming of George Washington.
Not only was he telling them what they wanted to hear, but he was also playing to their overly-patriotic rhetoric while doing so. The type of mindset that says, “We’re America, we’re the best at everything, and everyone will bend to our will!”
You saw this attitude when he stood on stage and said he was going to take on China and force them to “agree to better deals.” That’s the sort of fake machismo Republicans love to hear. Then, of course, when he said he was going to build his “big, beautiful wall” and force Mexico to pay for it, instantly his supporters would chant, “Build that wall!”
This extends to issues like his big promises on health care. All the times he’s called Obamacare a “disaster,” while pledging that his health care plan would provide better, cheaper health care coverage to more people, he was lying through his teeth. Once we saw the “plan” he backed, it did none of that. The plan was so bad that even several Republicans rejected it.
Lie after lie, conspiracy after conspiracy, Trump’s never-ending stream of fictional b.s. plays right into the hands of those who still enthusiastically declare themselves part of the “Trump train.” Meanwhile, everyone else looks at him and those backing him like gullible fools who don’t understand that he’s nothing more than a con man.
Obviously, this is a massive problem for the United States. As has been said many times before, reality is reality whether or not Trump supporters want to believe in it.
As it stands now, we’re weaker than we’ve been in decades. Our allies don’t trust us, our enemies are acting more emboldened than ever, and we have a “Commander-in-Chief” with a historically low approval rating who “won” despite receiving three million fewer votes than his closest opponent.
While there are many factors that contribute to all of this, Trump’s dishonesty and insistence that his ridiculous conspiracies are true are two of the main catalysts that have put the United States in such a vulnerable position.
Think about it: Why would anyone, even our allies, respect or believe anything Trump says? Just because his supporters are still foolish enough to trust him doesn’t mean the rest of the world is as gullible as they are. When he pushes outrageous conspiracies, especially when they seem linked to desperate attempts to distract people from the on-going investigation into his possible collusion with the Russian government during the 2016 election, why would any of these other countries believe anything he tells them? They’ll humor him, sure, but like most of us who don’t trust anything he says, I’m willing to bet neither do most of these other foreign heads of state.
Especially when Trump’s proven time and time again that he’ll use information someone has told to him in private –even extremely personal information — against them if they ever do anything to upset him.
Folks tend not to be open with, or trust, people who they feel will use private and personal information against them if, at a later date, they feel doing so might be beneficial for them.
I’m sure there’s personal and private information Barack Obama knew about many world leaders, or even members of the GOP, which he could have used to attack them if that were part of his agenda. However, being that stable, normal human beings understand there are certain things you simply don’t do, and information common decency dictates shouldn’t be used against someone, he didn’t divulge it publicly.
That’s called having decorum — something Trump obviously doesn’t possess.
To make matters worse, when he makes these bold, completely unrealistic promises that other nations know he can’t deliver upon, that destroys the credibility of the office of the President of the United States.
Do people really think Vladimir Putin, Bashar al-Assad, Kim Jong Un, and the Chinese president actually respect or fear Trump? His administration is a dumpster fire. He doesn’t even have the political clout to get legislation he wants passed by his own party, and he’s already proven that most of his biggest campaign promises (making Mexico pay for his wall, prosecuting Hillary Clinton, better health care, etc.) were total nonsense.
Sure, tax reform passed, but he had almost nothing to do with that. As we saw with his attempt to repeal Obamacare and avoid the recent government shutdown, congressional lawmakers couldn’t care less about what Trump says or wants. If anything, Trump’s mental instability only makes getting something accomplished much more difficult due to the fact that he has no idea what he’s doing and tends to change his mind based upon whatever the last thing someone said to him was.
Then he wonders why nobody trusts him and very few (if any) leaders are intimidated by him?
Why in the world would China be pressured by Trump’s “tough negotiation talk” when he couldn’t even make Mexico pay for his wall?
It’s insane to think that millions of people actually believe that North Korea fears him when it’s obvious China has no respect for him. Even if China wanted to possibly work with the United States on North Korea, why would they? Donald Trump spent a good part of his campaign mocking and vilifying the Chinese, so why would they help him unless they felt doing so would benefit them in some way? Furthermore, when they know our allies don’t trust him, why would they, a global adversary, and a nation Trump’s often attacked and vilified in dishonest ways, believe they could?
World leaders know how weak, unhinged, and incompetent Trump is. Just because he calls any negative report about him or his administration “FAKE NEWS,” and his supporters go along with that stupidity, doesn’t make these stories about him any less true.
Our allies and enemies alike know that the United States is currently being led by a man who:
- Built most of his campaign on tough talk, lies and campaign promises he’d never be able to deliver upon.
- Lost to his closest opponent by three million real votes.
- Had 54 percent of his own nation’s citizens vote against him.
- Has a historically low approval rating for a brand new administration.
- Isn’t really even liked by a good chunk of his own party.
- Pushes ridiculous conspiracies that aren’t remotely true.
- Is woefully unfit and unqualified for the job he currently has.
- Is so unhinged that he can’t even control himself on social media.
- Is completely ignorant about complex foreign affairs and diplomacy.
- Is currently under investigation by the FBI and U.S. intelligence officials for possibly colluding with the Russian government during the 2016 election.
- Will say anything he feels people want to hear even if he never plans to follow through with anything he says.
- Has an ego that can easily be baited and manipulated.
- Is head of an administration that, by all accounts, is a dysfunctional circus.
- Most people think is going to eventually resign or be removed from office sooner rather than later.
Since Trump lies constantly, and has repeatedly proven that most of what he says is nothing more than him pandering to the ignorant people out there dumb enough to keep believing him, it’s put the United States in an extremely weak position both here at home and internationally.
People either need to trust/fear that you have the ability to back up what you say you’re going to do, or trust/fear that you’re so popular among the citizens of your country that even your lies must be at least shown some level of respect.
Trump is neither. He’s an unpopular “president” with historically low approval ratings who isn’t respected by our allies, or even members of his own party, and isn’t feared by our enemies.
Right now, Donald Trump is nothing but the punchline to a joke that our allies and enemies alike are using to mock the current state of this country.