Trump no longer shocks, he's just awful

I believe that the continuing day-to-day shocked and astonished analyses are becoming so consistent that their usefulness is questionable other than as a record. The record is important, of course, but the daily white, male, Trump World nonsense should no longer shock, and the strained attempts at analysis are beside the point. When we have the President of the United States tweeting defensively (there is no chaos!) or aggressively (lowest rated Oscars ever), every day, prompting continuing astonishment from the media and when we have scandalous stories (porn star payoffs and lawsuits, resignations and firings, as well as regulatory and judicial outrages) that would have doomed politicians of the past, it is tempting to interpret it all as complex. It is not. There is one problem and only one Constitutional solution: If Donald Trump is allowed to finish his term in office, his pernicious effect will be permanent. As unlikely as it may be, impeachment is still our best hope and our most productive and positive goal. To a world increasingly aware of the rudderless nature of the this ship of state, the impeachment of President Trump would signal the American people’s rescue of their democracy (“One Republican is speaking out about Trump’s alleged hush money payment: Mark Sanford,” March 7).

Consider this week’s tariff announcement which was, apparently, an improvisation. President Trump’s abrupt “decision” on steel and aluminum tariffs was offhand, simple, and easy. For him, global and local shock waves are a delight. Let’s stop being shocked.

I am inured to the central delusion in any attempt to articulate an analysis of “what’s going on.” When we seek answers to questions about “what he really thinks” or “the president’s policy” or “the administration’s plan,” we are in la la land. The best metaphor for Mr. Trump’s presidency is a pin ball. We are mistaken to ascribe motivations to him other than self-interest. All of the economic predictions and astonished reactions from right and left are smoke when it comes to the real problem here. The common good is an alien concept to Donald Trump, as it clearly is to his children and to all the rest of the greedy, fear-mongering enablers around him.

Will the future readers of history see anything about public service? No. If we are lucky, they will read the story of how a disastrous presidency occurred and was terminated by an energetic and outraged electorate and representatives who impeached and removed him from power. If we are not, they will read the story of the permanent degradation of our institutions and culture, and our children will want to grow up and grow rich lying and cheating just like Donald Trump.

Joshua L. Shoemaker, Towson

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