“A Beautiful Mind” is a movie about Nobel-Prize winner John Nash. He had delusions and was placed in a mental hospital by his wife. The movie plays somewhat loose with the facts as should be expected. Nash’s schizophrenia didn’t truly develop until the 1960s, after he had graduated from Princeton and married Alicia Nash. Apparently the visual delusions were made up for the film in order to capture the spirit of his real psychosis. The real Nash heard voices that mocked and argued with him constantly.
At times, Nash thought the voices were coming from aliens or angels. At the height of his madness, Nash believed that aliens were sending him encrypted messages through the New York Times and that any man wearing a red necktie was a member of a secret international communist organization. He feared that the government was working with extraterrestrials to destroy his reputation.
While there is not an exact one-to-one correspondence between Nash and MAGAs (or QAnons, there are lessons to be learned. Specifically there are three mental necessities that seem to lacking or in short supply in the thinking of MAGAs. They complicate the chances of the MAGAs ever abandoning their alternate reality for the real world no matter what “evidence” is presented. These are:
1. the ability to connect the dots
2. the ability to think things through
3. the ability to cope when confronted with the real world.
Actually they are very good with the last one – they simply shut it out.
CONNECTING THE DOTS
In the movie, Nash is superb as connecting the dots. The image shown here is from a scene where Nash is not operating in a state-of-art spy center as he hallucinates. Instead he is in a dilapidated run-down shack or barn. He is diligently clipping newspaper articles and photographs and connecting them with string. Periodically he “mails” proofs of the conspiracies he has uncovered to his recruiter. These real mailings are intercepted by his friends who save them until a climactic moment in the movie.
Previously I have written about the limitations of the mental necessities of our immature child loser President. He can only connect two dots. For him that is the ultimate achievement. That’s the way he was born. No surgery, no drug treatment, no analysis can remedy that shortcoming. For anything beyond two dots, he has to outsource that level of thinking.
Sean Hannity was a key person in that process. He has a superb ability to connect the dots even when there was no connection. Think of Seth Rich. It’s not easy to construct an alternate reality but, Hannity did it. Night after he proclaimed that he had unraveled the mystery and connected the dots of the Fake News Russia hoax. He did so until the lawsuit of the Rich family shut him up.
Even so, the technique survived. A critical component of the true MAGA mind is the belief that someone has connected the dots and made sense of the world. They gravitate towards the QAnons, the Steve Bannons, and, of course, Foxhub itself. They know that they can rely on these dot-connectors to present to them an explanation for what is going on. Disconnecting them from those dots is not going to be easy (see below).
THINK THINGS THROUGH
We have had numerous examples on the failure of MAGAs to think things through.
Think of the MAGA denunciations of gas prices over $5/gallon as if they never would come down. Think it through.
Think of the urgent need to shoot down all the Chinese balloons over the United States even if they turned out to be high school science projects. This “shoot first” policy is a perfect test case of the dangers of having a fully armed population where everyone can take the law into their own hands by shooting first and asking questions later. Think it through.
Think of the not-yet-indicted loser president exclaiming after the redacted portion of the Fulton County special grand jury report was released:
Thank you to the Special Grand Jury in the Great State of Georgia for your Patriotism & Courage. Total exoneration. The USA is very proud of you!!!
He must think Bill Barr is still the Attorney General and he had just squashed the Mueller Report. And with his “perfect phone call” we witness a replay of his first impeachment.
Here we have a redacted report that eliminates the names of the targets who will be indicted and he is claiming total exoneration! What will he say when the full report is released. Think it through.
In addition, he demonstrates no awareness, interest, or concern for the people who have been identified as targets, who now may be accused of perjury besides the election issues, and who may be indicted… and then transform into Michael Cohen! Think it through.
Finally, think of the MAGA House committees chomping at the bit to launch a series of investigations.
Think of the House committee investigating the politicization of the Department of Justice. Now it turns out the DOJ was politicized but it was by Donald Trump.
Think of the House committee investigating corruption due to foreign money. Now it turns out that Saudi Arabia is the key to the corruption and Trump and his son-in-law are the ones who need to be investigated.
One presumes that House Democrats will hold MAGA feet to the fire on these items.
One hopes that the appropriate Senate committees will launch their own investigations into the real politicization and corruption which had occurred.
THE REAL WORLD
MAGAs have had to cope with disappointments in the real world before.
1. Seth Rich did not turn out to be the key to the Russia hoax.
2. The August 14, 2021, date for the restoration of the rightful President to the White House as predicted by Pillow Head and Séance Sydney has come and gone.
3. The Inspector General report that was going to expose the Russia hoax turned out to be a nothingburger that confirmed the investigation was legitimate.
MAGA thinking has not changed.
1. The House Select Committee report with the testimony from all those Republicans did not move the needle.
2. COVID is still a hoax and the vaccines should be investigated and/or banned presumably for polio, measles, and other diseases.
3. The election still was stolen.
In January, a recount was held in Lycoming, PA. MAGAs pressured the hand re-recount of 60,000 votes. The results were a net change for the incumbent who had won the county with 69.97% of the vote. He gained 8 votes bring the total to 69.98%. It had no effect. Instead he reaction was “We’re not done” (NYT 1/16/23). The County Director of Elections Forrest Lehmann despaired that an encounter with facts would not change their minds. Since the recount, the department has received “a series of crazy requests. They are insane,” Lehmann said sounding a lot like a Foxhub broadcaster.
Speaking of Foxhub, the emails and texts of the Foxhub personalities on what they wee actually saying when the camera was not on have just been released. Or at least some of them have. Do you think MAGAs will finally see the light and say “Gosh. I have been wrong this whole time. Joe Biden really won the election.”
Cope by denial. At one point the idea of having the three night Foxhub performers jointly say that Joe Biden really won might have made a difference. It’s too late now.
Recently, a reporter interviewed some people at a MAGA event. The two people claimed that Donald Trump was still the President in 2023. The interviewer was somewhat surprised by that answer but continued in true reporter stance maintaining his cool. The two people insisted Donald Trump was the President. In response to a question about the military, they paused because they had not thought things through. Then they rationalized that there had to be two militaries, a good military which reported to Trump and a bad military which reported to Biden. This question was asked prior to Biden’s trip to Ukraine.
Questions not asked (or asked and not shown) were:
1. If Donald Trump is the President now, then why does he claim the election was stolen?
2. If Donald Trump is the President now, then how can he run for a third term under the constitution?
We have just had proof that that stolen election will be on the ballot in 2024. In Michigan, the Democrats swept all the statewide elections in 2022 and even flipped the state legislature. This means Michigan will be a battleground state in 2024 strictly based on the actual vote. So how did the Republicans respond to this defeat in the real world? Two election-deniers battled each other for the leadership position in the Republican Party. The vote-counting was delayed due to the use of paper ballots and hand-counting! What have they learned from 2022? Nothing except to urge the Party of Republicans.
In an interview with Sean Hannity, the now announced candidate Nikki Haley said:
We have lost the seven out of eight popular votes for president. It is time that we get a Republican in there that can lead and that can win a general election.
At that point Hannity should have taken her to task. Republicans lost five of six elections from 1992 to 2008 but MAGAs won the popular vote in 2016 and 2020.
One may anticipate that 2020 will be on the ballot again, that candidates will be asked if the election was stolen, and if Biden is the legitimate president. They will be put on the spot in the primaries and the winner will be put on the spot in the general election. I have not seen polls yet for 2024 comparing a candidate who thinks the election was stolen with one who does not. Republican candidates will be obligated to claim the election was stolen. Eventually someone will ask Nikki Haley about her “oversight.” The minds of MAGA will not be changed not even by the disclosed Foxhub emails. But they will become more a more a laughingstock to Team Normal as they stick with the insane craziness and the candidates who support it.