[Column] One word about Trump
There is a growing feeling in the American media, in Congress, throughout the U.S. that this can’t go on.
As if you were in an airliner over the ocean and you get that terrible feeling that there is something wrong with the pilot—that they’re not OK.
President Donald Trump’s war with the media is escalating. He not only frontally attacks the “fake news” media, but also insults journalists personally. And now many are asking, with a look of quiet panic in their eyes and voice, “What is going on? This is not normal.”
I am making a prediction, my friends.
Right. This can’t go on. It will end. Trump will not serve his full four-year term.
The reaction is unanimous. No way. Trump is a “pathological narcissist” that will never resign because he will never accept he is a “loser.” And he will not be impeached or declared incapacitated by a Republican Congress.
The New York Times published on June 29 a list of the “337 people, places and things Trump has insulted on Twitter” since he announced his candidacy on June 16, 2015. If you were to download them, the insults take up 26 five-column pages, in small type.
Now, if one also takes the trouble to read all 26 pages—and these are not all of Trump’s insults, just those on Twitter—how can one not feel there is something wrong here. This is not normal.
Of course, millions of words have been written and spoken criticizing and attacking Trump.
But back to my prediction. Of these millions of words, I will focus on one.
There have been 14 presidents in my lifetime, and I don’t recall anyone ever using the word “disgusting” to describe any of them.
Let’s take a close look at two of Trump’s insults.
When Trump wanted to hit back at TV newswoman Megyn Kelly after she asked him tough questions in a 2015 presidential TV debate, Trump wasn’t satisfied with the usual criticism of journalists: that they are unprofessional, that they got their facts wrong, that they are biased.
He chose to say she had asked hard questions because she was menstruating while moderating the debate and had “blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever.”
Think about that. This was disgusting.
Six months into his presidency, Trump did it again.
This time against another TV newswoman, Mika Brzezinski. Responding to her attacks, Trump said she had showed up at his New Year’s party at Mar-a-Lago “bleeding badly from a face-lift.”
Again, think about that. That was false, as was his Kelly insult. And it, too, was disgusting.
Now, what does this have to do with Trump resigning?
If you want to really understand a person, if you want to define him or her, one must try to understand, of all the important things in his or her life, in the deepest part of his or her Being, what is the most important?
The previous 13 presidents, I believe, once they became president, the most important thing in their lives was to use their great power to do good, not to do damage to their country and to the world. Of course, some did, some didn’t.
We know, of course, that some of those presidents, perhaps all, at one point or another, said hard things—some nasty and personal insults, some used foul language—against journalists they disliked, and other critics. Listen to the Nixon tapes.
But I am sure they said these things believing that they—their dark side—would not be exposed to the public, certainly not while they were in office.
After six months in office, we know that Trump is different.
He tweets his insults to the world in the early morning hours. He insults at public events, at press conferences, often without being asked. He wants, he needs, everyone to hear his insults.
Yes, some conservatives and Republicans believe that Trump has “done good things.” They are especially pleased by his appointment of a conservative to the Supreme Court.
But many in Congress and in his own administration and staff, have been hoping, praying, that he will stop his obsessive war with the media. That he stops his insults. But he hasn’t.
The recent disgusting insult at Mika Brzezinski came at the worst possible time, undermining his efforts to get his own party in Congress to replace Obamacare: nothing more important to the Republicans. And one would think, nothing more important to him.
But what is most important to Trump?
Charles Krauthammer, recognized and admired as “the dean of conservative columnists,” is one who has described Trump as a “pathological narcissist,” and he should know, he was a successful psychiatrist before becoming a newspaper and magazine columnist.
If you are a pathological narcissist, what is most important to you?
That’s why I think that at some point, Trump will find the presidency tiresome, boring.
Four years is a long time. Very long, too long, I think, for a pathological narcissist.
Yes, my friends are right. Not impossible, but not likely that he will be impeached or declared incapacitated.
My prediction is that at some point, he will get up one morning, and instead of sending out still another insult, he will think: I’ve had enough. Time to leave.
—A.W. Maldonado is a former reporter and columnist at the San Juan Star, executive editor of El Mundo, and editor and publisher of El Reportero.