Good Riddance to the Sickness that Is Trump

January 20, 2021


Just about anyone who has lived a while on this earth  can remember a time in their life when reality seemed so overwhelming and  out of control, when events seemed to be  spinning at such a speed and attacking from so many angles  that it was all you could do to hold on to your sanity by filtering lots of it out or just not letting some of it in. 

At such times  things are pushed away to be dealt with at a later date when it is possible to take it in.  Then, after a while, you look back and wonder:  were things really that crazy ? Did that really happen?  How did I survive ? 

One such moment came to me today when, contemplating the end of Trump, I  suddenly remembered the infamous April 23, 2020 press “bleach” briefing — and also what came after it. To recap: After hearing of a study that found that disinfectants and bleach can kill Covid  when it lingered on certain kinds of surfaces, President Trump used his Trump brain to publicly  ponder the possibility of injecting  bleach and disinfectant into the human body to address Covid 19.  

What the President of the United States said was this: “And then I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that, by injection inside or almost a cleaning, because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs, so it’d be interesting to check that, so that you’re going to have to use medical doctors with, but it sounds interesting to me. “

Like much  of America, I watched helplessly as Trump once again spoke with both enormous confidence and astonishing ignorance about a subject of which he knew absolutely nothing.     By this point in his presidency, Trump episodes of talking out of his ass were legion: he had pontificated imbecilicly about Frederick Douglass, Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, the Civil War, you name it.

But the bleach injection idiocy,  partly due to Sarah Cooper’s hilarious spoofs on the moment,partly due to increasing disgust at Trump’s frivolousness in the wake of a deadly pandemic and partly due to the fact that this time he was talking about something that could potentially kill someone   proved a much bigger and more embarrassing story than did Trump’s earlier idiocies. 

Trump understood this and, as is his want, he fought back with his usual weapons: lies and repetition and more lies and repetition. The talk about injecting the bleach, Trump insisted straight-faced  the next day, was sarcasm. He was asking reporters a question sarcastically, he said, “just to see their reaction.”  That the incident  was caught on video made no difference to Trump, who later repeated the line about sarcasm in one of his debates with Joe Biden.  

Like the rest of an increasingly exhausted and demoralized America, I didn’t give either statement another thought. 

Until today, that is.   Until today when I considered the fact that in the past four years  it had become perfectly normal that the President of the United States could do things like  

a) muse publicly about injecting disinfectant into the human body to cure a deadly virus ravishing the nation he was obstensibly governing 

b) lie about the musing and claim he was being sarcastic 

c) find sarcasm (even a lie about sarcasm) an appropriate mode of communication while addressing the nation about the deadly virus ravishing the nation.  

I had not really thought about all that – not the full and abject horror and danger such a reality  merits — until today when I began to realize what a ceaseless psychic assault the Trump presidency has been.   And I suppose I could begin to fully realize this  only because it finally ends tomorrow.  

You know you are living in an age of absolute spiritual and civic degeneracy when incidents that are absolutely crazy and  deeply repulsive  are barely noticed and scarcely remembered a few months  or even days later.  And for the past four years such things have happened on a daily basis.  

Such a world is exceedingly if insidiously perilous.

I have no illusions about Joe Biden and the Democratic Party.  I know who he is and what they are.  That said, I know that from tomorrow at noon  things will be better, if only because we will not have a sociopath in the White House nor a man who believes that every situation and relationship at every moment should be viewed as a transaction.   Because of those facts alone, four years from now, on the day before the next inauguration, I do not expect to be asking myself in horror: were things really that crazy ?  Did that really happen ?  How did we survive ?  

4 Responses to “Good Riddance to the Sickness that Is Trump”

  1. Sean I Ahern Says:

    We seem to swing from one “sickness” to another. Biden’s appointment of Neera Tanden suggests to me that there will be no soft landing for the American Empire. Biden’s opposition to medicare for all signals a business as usual approach to the suffering of the poor and working class Americans. The military/industrial/congressional complex that Eisenhower warned about are also relieved by the Biden/Harris victory. I just hope that the so called progressives don’t just disappear into the fold as happened after Obama’s victory. There has to be from day one a very clear call to press for peace, justice and economic relief. But of course I too say “Good Riddance” and wish that he and his crooked daughter and son in law spend some time behind bars.

    • patrickwalsh Says:

      I share many if not all of your reservations and fears, Sean. I would only add that I hope that “progressives” ( whatever that terms means in the U S of A) shed the Mao-like Woke idiocy under which solidarity is simply impossible. But we both know that had Trump been re-elected — as he came quite close to achieving — this nation would have sank into something horrific rather than just deeply troubled. It any case, it will be a very, very rocky road ahead. I appreciate your thoughts. Hoping all is well with you and yours.

  2. David C. Berliner Says:

    your blogs are most welcome–wish you would do more.

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