The President Is a Megalomaniacal Fantasist

That Donald Trump is a fantastical liar who simply asserts that any inconvenient fact he doesn't like isn't true and substitutes what he wants to be true as reality is not breaking news. That arrogant, contemptible, toxic behavior was evident even long before he was president — and the power of the office he now holds has only exacerbated an already corrosive personality defect.

The longer he is in office, the worse it seems to get, which was fully apparent during a remarkable (not in a good way) interview with the Washington Post's Philip Rucker and Josh Dawsey. The complete transcript, aside from Trump's repeated off-the-record comments, has been published with annotations by the Post, noting where Trump is wrong, outright lying, or simply defying belief with his wretched nonsense.

The whole thing is worth your time to read in its entirety, but I will just highlight two passages that exemplify how deeply unfit Trump is to be president owning to his being an intransigent megalomaniacal fantasist. (Which, of course, is just one of many reasons he is unfit to be president.)

One. Asked why he is skeptical of his administration's own climate change report, Trump offers a typically rambling and nonsensical response, which opens with this incredible line: "One of the problems that a lot of people like myself — we have very high levels of intelligence, but we're not necessarily such believers."

The Post's annotation there reads: "Few Trump quotes have epitomized him like this one. He has been skeptical of U.S. intelligence, the judiciary, the legal system, climate change, and many other institutions and other sources of expertise." That about sums it up.

Two. In the middle of a long exchange on the economy, during which Trump blames the Fed for what looks like an imminent recession and then claims he's not blaming the Fed, he asserts: "So I'm doing deals, and I'm not being accommodated by the Fed. I'm not happy with the Fed. They're making a mistake because I have a gut, and my gut tells me more sometimes than anybody else's brain can ever tell me."

The infallibility of the presidential "gut" was, of course, a claim made by George W. Bush, too. That's no coincidence. It's the last refuge of Republican presidents who are obliged to face the uncomfortable fact that conservative policies simply do not work the way their architects claim that they do.

It is also the first refuge of dangerously arrogant men who refuse to be wrong, refuse to learn, refuse to adjust.

Their "guts" tell them that they're right, despite all evidence to the contrary.

And we suffer the results of their abject wrongness, which they refuse to acknowledge.

Something to consider the next time, say, a lady who has gotten shit wrong and apologized meaningfully for those mistakes runs for president. Everyone gets it wrong. There's no value in demonizing the people who admit it and lionizing the people who won't.

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