We have seen the future, and it sucks.

What Trump’s North Korea Tweets Mean and Don’t Mean

3rd January 2018

Read it.

French is a NeverTrumper who is waking up — he’s starting to understand Trump’s process, although he is still working from a mindset that expects Trump to be a normal politician/President. Unlike the Usual Suspects, he realizes that Trump’s tweets are not an indication of actual policies but rather of attitudes; unfortunately, he still mistakes them for ‘bluster’ and doesn’t realize that bluster is actually a useful tool in the Trump toolbox.

North Korea is a case in point. French realizes that Trump has no intention of starting a nuclear war with North Korea, but still misses the point about ‘bluster’ tweets.

Thus, the main effects of Trump’s tweets are to stoke the online outrage machine, impair his credibility, and to unsettle a certain number of well-meaning Americans. They’re not unsettled enough to take to the streets, obviously, but they’re unsettled nonetheless. This is a problem, not a crisis, but it’s a problem entirely of Trump’s making. Mr. President, put down that phone.

Trump’s tweets aren’t just off-the-cuff impulsive actions. They are there for a reason.

(1) Stoking the ‘online outrage machine’ is how Trump dominates the news cycle and jerks the chain of the Lamestream Media so that they can’t pursue their own agenda but have to chase his. French doesn’t yet get that.

(2) They don’t ‘impair his credibility’ because he has no credibility and never had any credibility with the people who would think that, and Trump doesn’t care about their opinions anyway. French doesn’t get that, either.

(3) In this case, they bring home to Kim that this administration, unlike that of Obama/Bush/Clinton/Bush, isn’t going to kiss his ass in the name of peace and diplomacy, and so Kim had better get ready to deal. Kim realizes this, too, which is why the opening of communications with South Korea is so significant. French misses this entirely.

So French is waking up to what Trump’s tweet-tool isn’t, but still doesn’t grasp what it is; we still have a ways to go, but this represents progress. I’m hoping that French is the first sign that the NR-nik NeverTrump mental logjam is starting to work its way loose.

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