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7.21.2016

john meacham on charlie rose

I really liked this interview on Charlie Rose with John Meacham about his cover story "Gut Check" in Time about Donald Trump.

Meacham articulated more coherently than anyone I've heard previously just what a wild card Trump really is.  From interviewing Trump, Meacham gleaned that Trump makes, and intends as president to make, decisions from his gut.  "When you're voting for Trump, you're voting for his gut.  And he doesn't mind that that's the way the issue is framed,"  Meacham says.  For example, in his interview with Meacham, Trump denies any need to "understand issues inside and out; that he's fundamentally an intuitive player."

Coupled with his thin skin and vindictive temperament, Meacham and Rose conclude, given the weighty decisions a president makes on a daily basis, that Trump poses a terrifying candidate.  

Perhaps they state this outright, or perhaps it's implied, but they seem to clearly be saying that electing Trump could lead to nuclear war.  

Meacham claims to be non-partisan and simply dispassionately presenting a powerful case against Trump.  And he points out that the "populist" argument in favor of Trump is that "if credential expertise is so great, why are we in the shape we are right now?", or as Rose frames it, "I'm willing to roll the dice because I'm that dissatisfied" (with the establishment).

They both also point out that Trump's temperament is different on and off the camera.

I really don't know what to think.  I like the idea of electing a wild card over wonkish Hilary.  And I wonder if this speculation about nuclear was is catastrophizing.  

And somehow, too, I think that all of this election is a charade, that what's going to happen in this country is going to happen (the 'deep state' will see to that!) and that it's going to be a fucking nightmare.

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