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State of American History, Civics, and Politics

“The Trump Presidency Is Over:” Peter Wehner Is Wrong and Living in an Alternate Reality

Who Is the Un-Lincoln Dividing America Today? (Library of Congress)

All the way back on March 13, 2020, Peter Wehner wrote an article: “The Trump Presidency Is Over: It has taken a good deal longer than it should have, but Americans have now seen the con man behind the curtain” (Atlantic). His opposition can be traced back to his op-ed piece Why I Will Never Vote for Donald Trump (The New York Times, January 14, 2016, print). He expressed many highly critical assessments of the shortcomings of the prospective candidate. He was particularly concerned in the event there was a national catastrophe during the presidency of such an obviously inadequate person for the job and such a reprehensible person in life.

He followed that op-ed piece with an interview on July 14, 2016, on C-Span where he raised many of the same concerns. Of course, by this time, the discussion was less theoretical as least concerning the nomination.

His next foray was with Atlantic.

Trump Is Not Well: Accepting the reality about the president’s disordered personality is important—even essential. September 9, 2019

At the top of my list: Talk to psychologists and psychiatrists about the state of Trump’s mental health, since I considered that to be the most important thing when it came to understanding him. It was Trump’s Rosetta stone.

These comments reveal the continual shortcoming by the media – treating him as if he were an adult. For some unknown reason, even the people who mock him for his childish behavior have yet to grasp the reality that portions of his brain still are at the level of an immature child.

Jennifer Senior just wrote about him: “whose pathologies only permit an infantile vision of the world he longs for, not the world as it truly is” (The New York Times, May 11, 2020, print).

Maureen Dowd’s take is similar: “We can vividly see in this crisis how close to the surface Trump’s id is and how easily he cleaves to delusions’ (The New York Times, March 6, 2020, print).

Tom Nichols on Morning Joe compared him to children playing hide and seek: if I can’t see you, then you can’t see me. He is child-like with his magical thinking.

No he isn’t child-like, he is a child. He is an immature child of impulse and id, lashing out in temper tantrums with tweets, law suits, and hissy fits, and living in an imaginary created in his mind. I still hope one day to hear someone on a talk show or read in a newspaper or magazine that there is a need to consult child psychologists and child psychiatrists. What will it take?

“He’s deteriorating in plain sight,” one Republican strategist who is in frequent contact with the White House told Business Insider on Friday. Asked why the president was obsessed with Alabama instead of the states that would actually be affected by the storm, the strategist said, “You should ask a psychiatrist about that; I’m not sure I’m qualified to comment.”

How long can a person deteriorate? He was deteriorating last fall. Now he is deteriorating this spring. Meanwhile he is proceeding full speed ahead on multiple fronts to fulfill his agenda. He even as ramped up his attacks on Time Magazine’s Person of Year. He is isn’t content simply to muzzle Fauci; now he and Fox have launched a full-scale assault against him.

Many Americans haven’t yet come to terms with the fact that we elected as president a man who is deeply damaged, an emotional misfit. But it would be helpful if they did.

This idea is classic denial. Wehner can’t come to grips with the fact that Trumpicans do not now and never will see him as Wehner does. Wehner persists in thinking there will come a time when the truth will be seen. In March, his wishful thinking was in full bloom.

 The Trump Presidency Is Over: It has taken a good deal longer than it should have, but Americans have now seen the con man behind the curtain” (Atlantic, March 13, 2020)

It took until the second half of Trump’s first term, but the crisis has arrived in the form of the coronavirus pandemic, and it’s hard to name a president who has been as overwhelmed by a crisis as the coronavirus has overwhelmed Donald Trump.

For Wehner, his worst fears about the immature child President had come true. There was a national emergency requiring exemplary adult leadership if America was to prevail. Instead we had the world’s worst manager at the helm of the ship of state and have prevailed only in the imaginary world of the immature child’s mind.

 Day after day after day he brazenly denied reality, in an effort to blunt the economic and political harm he faced. But Trump is in the process of discovering that he can’t spin or tweet his way out of a pandemic. There is no one who can do to the coronavirus what Attorney General William Barr did to the Mueller report: lie about it and get away with it.

Wehner is positive that this time it will be different. This time all the usual tricks won’t work. You can’t con a virus. Now the people will see the con man behind the curtain. WRONG! WRONG! WRONG! He can spin and tweet his way out of a pandemic at least to Trumpicans. Keep in mind, that Trumpicans have not and are not dying in droves from Corvid-19 so as far as they are concerned, it is not a medical emergency but an economic one.

 The nation is recognizing this, treating him as a bystander…

 Donald Trump is shrinking before our eyes.

 Wehner really believes this. Or at least he did back in March. The deteriorating person is now shrinking as well. Soon he will vanish to nothing just like the number of coronavirus deaths will drop to zero as of May 15. Wehner probably knows better now than to believe what he wrote only two months ago.

The coronavirus is quite likely to be the Trump presidency’s inflection point, when everything changed, when the bluster and ignorance and shallowness of America’s 45th president became undeniable, an empirical reality, as indisputable as the laws of science or a mathematical equation.

 It has taken a good deal longer than it should have, but Americans have now seen the con man behind the curtain. The president, enraged for having been unmasked, will become more desperate, more embittered, more unhinged. He knows nothing will be the same. His administration may stagger on, but it will be only a hollow shell. The Trump presidency is over.

 Wehner wants to believe this so badly he is in danger of living in his own alternate reality. In the real world, this depiction isn’t even close to being true. Even as Wehner is forced to admit that the real world is not the one he wants it be, he continues to hope that one day it will change. So he tries again with another article.

 The President Is Unraveling: The country is witnessing the steady, uninterrupted intellectual and psychological decomposition of Donald Trump (Atlantic, May 5, 2020)

We are witnessing the steady, uninterrupted intellectual and psychological decomposition of an American president. It’s something the Trump White House cannot hide—indeed, it doesn’t even try to hide it anymore. There is not even the slightest hint of normalcy.

Talk about wishful thinking. Little Donny Wannee was like this back in 2016 when Wehner started writing. He was like this in 2019. He was like this in March. He is like this in May. At what point does the media recognize that the supposed deterioration, the shrinking before our eyes, and the steady decomposition is just more of the same. Sure he may have a bad day. Little Donny Disinfectant anyone? But that is temporary. Then it is back to normal, his normal.

 We will see more extreme appeals to the fringe base of Trump’s party, including right-wing militias.

Yes, and it will work too but that’s another blog.

 What this means is that Americans are facing not just a conventional presidential election in 2020 but also, and most important, a referendum on reality and epistemology. Donald Trump is asking us to enter even further into his house of mirrors. He is asking us to live within a lie, to live within his lie, for four more years. The duty of citizenship in America today is to refuse to live within that lie.

Exactly…in Wehner’s world. But that is not the world of Trumpicans nor will it ever be. They think their Lord and Savior, the Chosen One, Blessed Be his Name, is fighting to save the Real Americans and to prevent the politically-correct Socialists from taking over completely next year. It is the Wehners and the mainstream media who are having trouble facing the Trumpican truth.

Measuring His Performance: The Target Dates

April 2011: Birtherism – reveal Hawaii findings on Obama soon: STILL WAITING
October 2016: sue all his women accusers after the campaign: STILL WAITING
May 15 2020: Coronavirus deaths drop to zero: TOMORROW!!!!!
May 25 2020: Celebrate the victory over the coronavirus: in 11 days!!!!!!!
June 2020: Back to Normal
July 2020: We’re rockin’ now
July 4 2020 Supreme Court rules Republican President is above the law; American experiment ends short of 250th anniversary
Fall 2020: Deep State Indicted
Fall 2020: Deep State proves China responsible for coronavirus
January 20 2021: Nancy Pelosi becomes President
January 20 2021: Arrested by New York, spends night at Rikers