AuthorTopic: The Key for Democrats: Expose Trump as Weak, Not Strong  (Read 478 times)

Offline knarf

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The Key for Democrats: Expose Trump as Weak, Not Strong
« on: July 27, 2016, 06:15:13 AM »
Trump’s fatally thin skin is what really disqualifies him, a former presidential speechwriter argues. Hillary should campaign against that.

 American presidents get insulted and abused and lied about more than anyone on earth. They don’t have the options of thin-skinned dictators who jail dissidents and close newspapers. They have to take the attacks and do their jobs, or they can’t function. Worse, if they overreact and try to get even, they become downright dangerous.

That is why it would be so reckless to elect Donald Trump president. Nothing is more dangerous than a weak man with power, and Trump is weak. Very weak. He can’t take the pain of arguments and evidence that contradict his self-image.

If Trump can’t control himself when he gets bad press on a charity event, what would he do if a U.S. fighter pilot were downed in a skirmish with the Chinese? Would he escalate to prove he is a winner—putting more lives at risk to save his self-image?

Presidents need to take the heat and stay cool. I saw this while serving in the Clinton White House, first as a spokesman for Al Gore and later as a speechwriter for the president. Bill Clinton was attacked continuously throughout his presidency. Some attacks were false, some were true, but all demanded the ability to take a hit and keep working.

Trump’s self-description can’t be changed by the facts because it’s not driven by the facts; it’s driven by his emotional needs. It is how he needs to see himself and how he needs you to see him. But no one is as brilliant and triumphant as Trump claims he is. So what happens to the facts that don’t fit his story, the things he leaves out when he’s telling us what a winner he is? They become his shadow—the insulting labels such as “stupid,” “pathetic” and “loser” that he denies in himself and projects onto others.

    This is the key to understanding Trump: he is driven by a relentless, belligerent defense of his self-image.

People who have done the hard work of self-awareness can accept their weaknesses. If their self-image collides with reality, they revise their self-image. If Trump’s self-image collides with reality, he revises reality. There is a big gap between who he is and who he wants to be, and when anyone says or does anything that makes him dimly aware of the difference, he hits them with a hot blast of abuse. This is the key to understanding Trump: He is driven by a relentless, belligerent defense of his self-image.

This is why he made racist attacks against Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel for his actions in the lawsuit on Trump University.

That’s why Trump attacked the media over their questions on his charity to Veterans Groups—calling one reporter “a sleaze,” another “a loser” and complaining, “You make me look very bad.”

That’s why when he went to Capitol Hill to build party unity, he couldn’t stop himself from attacking Republican senators who didn’t support him, calling one a loser and telling another he would lose.

That’s why he gets angry with calls to release his tax returns—because (one assumes) they would show he doesn’t make as much money as his self-image demands. (Comedian Anthony Jeselnik, who participated in a roast of Trump in 2011, said Trump told the roasters, “Make fun of my kids, do whatever you want. Just don’t say that I don’t have that much money.”)

Trump’s self-image runs his life. If he becomes president, it will run our country.

I’m not saying Trump is dangerous because he has a self-image. Everyone has a self-image. We all have parts of ourselves we want to put forward and parts we want to hide. In that sense, we’re all pretty much alike. Trump is dangerous because he’s more extreme than we are—and in five ways: how grandiose his self-image is, how much he twists reality to fit it, how furious he becomes when it’s threatened, how much scrutiny his self-image takes in the media, and how many tools he has to promote his self-image and punish the people who threaten it.

The element that could change dramatically in the next year, and the one that ultimately determines how dangerous he is, is the last one—the tools he has to promote his self-image and punish people who threaten it.

Right now, Trump’s main tools for defending his self-image are threats and insults. So he’s been busy insulting the media, senators, judges, a pope, a Latina governor, and others. And in February, he tweeted out this threat:

    I hear the Rickets family, who own the Chicago Cubs, are secretly spending $'s against me. They better be careful, they have a lot to hide!

    — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 22, 2016

He’s also said, "If I become president, oh, do they [the New York Times and The Washington Post] have problems. They're going to have such problems. And one of the things I'm going to do … if I win … is I'm going to open up our libel laws so when they write purposely negative and horrible and false articles, we can sue them and win lots of money.”

Trump would not, as president, have the power to change libel laws, but this statement shows how eager he is to use the powers of the presidency to strike at his critics. Imagine if he had the tools of the CIA, FBI, IRS, the Justice Department, the U.S. military—and the nuclear codes—to promote his grandiose sense of self. President Trump would be able, almost entirely on his own—because there are no real checks and balances when it comes to pushing the button—order a nuclear strike. That makes his proximity to the presidency a global emergency.

    Trump’s supporters all think he’s strong, so opponents should expose him as weak. They just have to change the way voters see his tantrums.

One strategy for stopping Trump is to fire up the Democratic base, appeal to those in the middle, and try to win on turnout. But letting Trump have his current supporters is risky. If opponents don’t find a way to cut into Trump’s appeal among those who like him, they’re vulnerable to late-breaking events that could put him over the top.

Trump’s supporters all think he’s strong, so opponents should expose him as weak. They just have to change the way voters see his tantrums.

If the view of Trump as a thin-skinned guy who can’t take a punch becomes a dominant part of the campaign narrative, then his show of strength becomes a sign of weakness—and that weakness is not only exposed; it can be exploited. When Trump turns abusive, he’s sending an inadvertent signal that he’s getting hit where it hurts. His opponents should thank him for the abuse, take his guidance, and keep hitting him in the same spot. The point is not to cause him pain— it’s to expose him as a guy who isn’t tough enough to be president.

The more attention is focused on his tirades, the more Trump’s pattern will become clear: He has a grandiose sense of self; he gets furious with those who challenge him, and if he gains the powers of the presidency, he will use them to confirm his self-image and punish those who attack it. This is the profile of a man who is not fit for duty. It is the face of a tyrant. The question is whether the country sees it before the election, or after he wins it.

http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2016/07/2016-democrats-key-massaging-donald-trump-weak-214103
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Offline Eddie

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Re: The Key for Democrats: Expose Trump as Weak, Not Strong
« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2016, 07:02:12 AM »
   Trump’s supporters all think he’s strong, so opponents should expose him as weak. They just have to change the way voters see his tantrums.


I say, Clinton vs. Trump.....Celebrity Death Match!

Let the more sociopathic sociopath win!
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Offline JRM

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Re: The Key for Democrats: Expose Trump as Weak, Not Strong
« Reply #2 on: July 27, 2016, 07:30:11 AM »
How is it even possible that Donald Trump both won the nomination of the Republican Party and became a legitimate "threat" to the Democratic nominee?

When Trump first got into the race, everyone I knew (and late night tv comedians) thought "Yay! He's such a total goofball schmuck that he'll either be pure entertainment or will in one way or another help the Democrat nominee into office."  Now folks are worried that if we risk supporting a better candidate than Hillary through some sort of a mass rebellion within the Democratic Convention (which has already begun, it seems) this could result in Trump as president!  That would be like having Bozo the Clown as president.  It would be like everyone dropped some weird, newfangled form of bad acid which turns brains to goofymush.  I just can't imagine President Trump as ... well, as a possible, actual reality.   Its easier for me to imagine the Blue Man Group as president.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_Man_Group
My "avatar" graphic is Japanese calligraphy (shodō) forming the word shoshin, meaning "beginner's mind". --  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shoshin -- It is with shoshin that I am now and always "meeting my breath" for the first time. Try it!

Offline K-Dog

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Re: The Key for Democrats: Expose Trump as Weak, Not Strong
« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2016, 07:58:02 AM »
Trump’s fatally thin skin is what really disqualifies him, a former presidential speechwriter argues. Hillary should campaign against that.

I doubt people can be convinced that Trump has a thin skin.  His slum-lord father raised him to have a thick skin I'm sure, and his tantrums are all show.  As long as he has his minions a few insults will only make his day.

Quote
If Trump can’t control himself when he gets bad press on a charity event, what would he do if a U.S. fighter pilot were downed in a skirmish with the Chinese? Would he escalate to prove he is a winner—putting more lives at risk to save his self-image?

Of course he would and that is why Joe Six Pack may vote him in because that is exactly what Joe would do.

Quote
The more attention is focused on his tirades, the more Trump’s pattern will become clear: He has a grandiose sense of self; he gets furious with those who challenge him, and if he gains the powers of the presidency, he will use them to confirm his self-image and punish those who attack it. This is the profile of a man who is not fit for duty. It is the face of a tyrant. The question is whether the country sees it before the election, or after he wins it.

My response here is tell it to someone who cares.  Trump voters are not going to put an 'X' on their ballots for Trump or not because of self image considerations.  I doubt they know what a self image is.  To Trump voters a 'self-image' would be the same thing as a 'selfie'.  A pic taken with a stick or clicked at a mirror and I doubt they can spell 'grandiose' without using a spell checker or by looking it up.

It is easy to forget but other people do not think the same way we do.  What is a concern for some is ignored or dismissed by others completely.  Trying to convince people Trump is weak is like trying to convince people we will run out of oil or that our environment will be destroyed unless we stop burning fossil fuels.  Good luck with that.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2016, 08:00:45 AM by K-Dog »
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Offline JRM

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Re: The Key for Democrats: Expose Trump as Weak, Not Strong
« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2016, 03:40:18 PM »
It is easy to forget but other people do not think the same way we do.  What is a concern for some is ignored or dismissed by others completely.  Trying to convince people Trump is weak is like trying to convince people we will run out of oil or that our environment will be destroyed unless we stop burning fossil fuels.  Good luck with that.

Yeah, the disproportionate number of functionally illiterate voters do seem to be on the Trump side of the isle, for sure.  Now if only the Democratic side would wake up to the fact that Hillary isn't the very Queen of Goodness and Justice and Democracy .... >sigh<  Dumb, gullible people are everywhere. >sigh<
My "avatar" graphic is Japanese calligraphy (shodō) forming the word shoshin, meaning "beginner's mind". --  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shoshin -- It is with shoshin that I am now and always "meeting my breath" for the first time. Try it!

 

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