If we’ve learned anything from the government shutdown, it’s that Donald Trump is not in fact the legendary “dealmaker” he boasted about on the campaign trail. In fact, the last 12 months have proven, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Donald Trump couldn’t “negotiate” his way out of a wet paper bag. Everyone who knows the history of Trump the businessman could have told you that going in. His business “career” is a standing joke. 98% myth, 1% exaggeration, and (maybe) 1% reality. Almost nothing he did in business worked out. Just look it up. He’s been sued innumerable times, he’s driven multiple ventures straight off a cliff into bankruptcy and according to some folks, he would actually be worth more today had he simply put his inheritance in a balanced index fund and never touched it.
So it comes as no surprise that he’s been an abject failure when it comes to negotiating anything and the fact that he’s a political neophyte only makes the situation that much worse. But the real problem here is probably this: he’s not very smart. The people around him (like say, Stephen Miller) know that, so they manipulate him. Steve Bannon did it until circumstances (read: Charlottesville) conspired to make his presence at 1600 Penn. untenable and his generals have done it to from time to time when they thought it was necessary.
Because Trump has no actual principles and because he’s generally ignorant, his views are malleable – and not in a good way. Instead of allowing his stance on issues to evolve according to what sane people tell him, he listens to the people within the administration who effectively use his own campaign rhetoric against him by making him believe that if he deviates from bombastic jingoism, he’ll be seen as weak by his base.
Trump the ignorant narcissist, left to his own devices, can actually be reasoned with simply because he doesn’t care enough about anyone other than himself to think too hard about anything. But once people like Stephen Miller (and the good folks at Fox) get in his ear, the whole thing falls apart. If you’re on the outside looking in (like say, if you’re a Chuck Schumer or, on the GOP side, a Lindsey Graham) you’re left wondering what the fuck happened between the last time you talked to him and what he subsequently says and tweets.
So that brings us to the following video which finds Chuck Schumer trying his best to tell America what’s actually going on here. Ultimately, he calls Trump a piece of Jell-O.
And before you roll your eyes at that, do note that what Schumer is saying is completely consistent with what Lindsey Graham said this week and what multiple other GOP lawmakers have said over the past year. Namely this: it is impossible to negotiate with Trump because he is a simpleton who is being manipulated by people who are fucking crazy.
Again, that is an undeniably accurate assessment. It fits precisely with what virtually everyone has said about the Trump White House since he was inaugurated.
Meanwhile, just to give you an idea of how far Fox and the White House are willing to go in terms of distorting reality, listen to Hogan Gidley literally describe Donald Trump as “a real-life Superman”: