Why are so many people surprised by President Donald Trump’s abysmal lack of leadership during this Covid-19 crisis?
Even some of his worshippers are souring on his utter lack of coherent leadership.
No one should be surprised. Not at all. If they’d paid attention during the past three years, they would know by now that Trump’s mishandling of the virus crisis was just another page – the bleakest page – torn from his ragged playbook.
From the get-go, anything Trump did not like, did not agree with or that proved him wrong he merely dismissed with a snort and a sneer as fake news. After 20,000-plus lies, he is still lying. His inauguration ceremony drew the biggest crowds in history. His trillion-dollar-plus tax cut was going to help the little guy the most. Intelligence agencies, spurred on by vicious Democrats, spied on him, invented the Russia collusion story and caused innocent chums to be charged with cooked-up crimes and Trump’s impeachment. When it was revealed that Russia was paying the Taliban to kill American troops in Afghanistan, Trump scoffed: fake news. Later, he said, the issue did not cross his desk in an intelligence briefing. How would he know? He is notorious for not reading those briefings, for not reading anything.
From the very start, Trump has played denial ostrich, concocting lies and dismissing all facts, science and other pesky information as fake. Then, whistling Dixie, he skips on to his own deluded version of reality. When he’s caught in his own trap, he distracts attention and blames anybody and anything – Obama, Hillary, China, left-wing radicals, anarchists, the weather. Anything at all.
When the virus appeared, Trump opened his tattered playbook. The virus, he promised, will disappear, like a miracle. When warm April arrives, the virus will die. Maybe injecting bleach will stop the infection? But wait, there’s more! What about hydroxychloroquine? Oh yeah, that’ll do the job. Order before midnight, folks! Very often, after bragging and/or telling a lie, Trump asks, “Can you believe it?” The answer is no.
And what’s this mask nonsense? Masks are for sissies and alarmists who think the virus is just a hoax. As the death toll rose by thousands upon thousands, Trump’s obsessive focus was to re-open businesses. Those deaths are almost all caused by the plain old flu bug or by old age. The Democrats and the media are playing up death to win the next election. Schools better re-open – or there’ll be hell to pay. And enough testing! Testing causes more infections; if we stop testing, the virus will vanish.
As Trump sinks in the polls, as he digs his hole deeper, a flailing panic is setting in, causing him to become even more unstable, more paranoid, even more narcissistic.
“I alone can fix it!” he has often crowed. But can he fix himself, even with the help of his hand-picked fixer, Attorney General William Barr?
Like Humpty Dumpty who fell off his wall, Trump is broken, and all of his horses and all of his men can’t put Trumpty together again. Meantime, before the defeat he senses with quivering dread, he is already predicting a rigged election. He ought to know; he’s doing it by sabotaging the Postal Service. Remember how it was voting fraud that gave Hillary Clinton three million more popular votes? Hey, why have an election at all? Call it off. Aw shucks, just let King Donald reign for four more years.
So, again, why be surprised? For the last three-and-a-half years, it’s always been about Himself and his Gigantic Ego, about him keeping power in his just-pretend presidency, about the pomp and pageantry befitting a king. What is so ironic, perhaps so “fitting,” is he did it all to himself, and boomerang justice just might soon hit him right over the head.
How the mighty fall. Many kings throughout history have ended up as blustering, sputtering has-beens wringing their hands during self-pity trips in the wee lonely hours.
Time to pay attention: Make America Sane Again.
Author: Dennis Dalman
Dalman was born and raised in South St. Cloud, graduated from St. Cloud Tech High School, then graduated from St. Cloud State University with a degree in English (emphasis on American and British literature) and mass communications (emphasis on print journalism). He studied in London, England for a year (1980-81) where he concentrated on British literature, political science, the history of Great Britain and wrote a book-length study of the British writer V.S. Naipaul. Dalman has been a reporter and weekly columnist for more than 30 years and worked for 16 of those years for the Alexandria Echo Press.