Thursday, August 4, 2016

Chapter 17: I read Donald Trump's mind!

Man...give me a second to catch my breath!  What a trip to see into the mind of a major politician so completely!  I'm telepathic but I generally can't go to the center of someone's head if I'm more than a few feet away. This is a first.  I found a way to enhance my personal signal by reflecting it off the San Gabriel Mountains (on the pleasant side of which I live) and sort of hacked my way from there into the regional system (telepaths use frequencies bounced off other dimensions).  From the regional base I could access any network and get as close to people as I watch them on TV as if I were breathing into their ears.

I got that close to Trump this morning; it was like shining a light around a dark room.  His libidinal makeup was plain to see but I'm not going to write about that because it's not germane to public interest.  What is germane is Trump's flight-or-fight response to life, which is well developed.  Trump lives at all times in a self-generated jungle where predators lurk.  The goal of the predators is to eat Trump's created self. He fears that he does not exist, that he's just another cipher, just another guy trudging around trying to understand a big chaotic world that doesn't care about him.  He fights back to build substance, identity and strength for himself.  This substance comes only from encountering others through psychological struggle or combat, not in conversation.  Conversation annoys him because it considers concepts removed from immediate need or bias, in terms of their own logic, not desired outcome.  He finds no selfhood in that.  Without selfhood no one will love him because no one will see him.

Trump's concept of selfhood is wrapped up in the need to win.  Trump wins when he takes the substance from other people and adds it to his substance, so that others must seek Trump instead of seeking themselves.  Trump proclaims that he has more substance of anyone.  People are attracted to his victories, giving more substance to him, thus Trump's psychological heft and balance depend on his winning.

I saw into Trump's working mind, into the mechanisms.  He has a highly efficient, experienced and knowledgeable section of his "reptilian" brain, extending in a curious overlap into his cortex (the putative seat of higher learning that contemporary physiognomists have decreed the only "conscious" part of the brain) which informs him on politics.  I term this component of Trump's mind the Political Wizard because it reminds me of an electronic brain-helping gadget you might pick up at Best Buy.  Trump's most outrageous statements- about immigrants, women, the disabled, all people who criticize him- are processed first by the Political Wizard, which calculates their electoral fallout using algorithms that, quite frankly, have not been studied by the opposition because the opposition thinks only it is smart.   The snooty non-analytical response to Trump has been noted by the Political Wizard, which has reacted using certain algorithms with great success, defeating a host of well-established party favorites for the nomination and maintaining a delicate neck-and-neck ranking with Clinton after the conventions.

Though I'm not the person to explicate the algorithms in Trump's Political Wizard, I am able to outline their approach:

Step 1. 

The Political Wizard (PW) scans everything political that is happening in Trump's world at a given moment.  Among the PW's goals in these scans are lists of positions that undecided voters have been waiting for years to hear.  The PW creates position statements to target these groups, in this way garnering vast numbers of votes.  Trump's PW did this with the Mexican border wall idea and the insults to Mexican people.  Those positions brought him so many votes that he could easily survive the negative votes they also ensured.  The calculation, proven to be accurate, had been made in his PW before he spoke. I was a victim of one of Trump's PW's gambits: Apropos of nothing, Trump attacked the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq and singled out Hillary Clinton's vote in favor of the invasion. There is no way Jeb Bush, Cruz, Rubio or any other primary candidate defeated by Trump would have mentioned the Iraq invasion or Clinton's vote; there's a gentleman's agreement to avoid the subject, which Mitt Romney and President Obama kept last time.  Trump, then, is not a gentleman.  Should we thank him for that?  Last week he accused President Obama and Clinton of creating ISIS, which would have been more true if he had included W. Bush, and more compelling if Trump had included more of the history, which is that President Bush and later President Obama and by extension Hillary Clinton backed- and continued to back against strong opposition- Nouri al-Maliki as Iraqi Prime Minister (2006-2014) whose massacres of Sunnis shaped ISIS.  No other candidate or partisan than Trump, and no member of the press will ask Clinton about the Iraq invasion.  Only Trump will. I felt I had been victimized by Trump's PW, forced to appreciate Trump and his mental machine, although his other foreign policy ideas- likewise generated in his PW- dampened my enthusiasm.  What a sad mess our democracy is if we have to wait for crucial issues to rise like popping bubbles through Donald Trump's position machine or we won't see them at all.

Step 2.  Trump's "conscious" mind briefly reviews position statement recommendations from the PW, perhaps changing a few for stylistic purposes.  Then he makes the statements to the public and waits for polls to see if his PW was right.

Step 3. After Trump delivers a new batch of PW approved statements, he faces a period of anxiety.  He knows right away who was offended by a statement, and when they speak out Trump's PW advises him to attack back using fantasies and lies, off the cuff ad hominem insults, anything.  The PW advises Trump to keep the pot boiling as the overriding goal, not to engender love or affection.  Trump's PW follows Machiavelli, who said, "It is better to be feared than loved."  

Step 4: The polls have come in and the PW, itself anxious, waits to see if its computations were correct.  So far the polls have vindicated Trump's PW, and the PW has been encouraged to do its thing again. [See update below]

The time of this writing is a particularly anxious one for the PW and Trump, who just finished another self-defeating round of insulting people he needs.  For reasons that no one without knowledge of the algorithms involved can guess, this time Trump has gone after people close to him in the Republican Party who were already in his corner.  For instance, Trump's Political Wizard advised him not to endorse Senator Paul Ryan for re-election, a man who has given Trump much respectability in the Republican party.  Why would the PW advise that?  Maybe to prove to some part of Trump's base that he will never join the establishment?  Only Trump's PW knows the algorithm involved.  The next polls could be make-or-break for Trump and his PW.

In this area, of winning and losing, lie Trump's deepest fears.  Rooting around his head I found a nascent bundle of terror in a scraggly ganglion plugged into the PW.  This ganglion appears to be a designated processing center in an extensive neural network I call the "disappointed father motivating system."  The ganglia's job is to mistrust the PW's ability not to disappoint Trump's father.  It "judges" PW recommendations in terms of a duality of outcomes, both mythic:

1. Trump's father is proud of him for making something of himself, just as he, the father was self-made.

2. Trump's father is ashamed of the utter fuck-up and waste of time his son turned out to be.

The joy of the first outcome opposed by the abject misery and humiliation of the second makes the "disappointed father" one of the most central of Trump's motivating systems.

After the GOP convention Trump was up 7 points over Clinton.  This was reversed after Clinton's "convention bump," and she is now several points ahead.  The race is fluid and all interpretation seems contingent on the next polls.  When they come in, they will show whether Trump's PW was right yet again.  If not, Trump could flame out in Shakespearean fashion.

Update, 8/10: The polls came in showing a major drop for Trump, who is now 6-17 points below Clinton in key states, while before the conventions there was a 3 point difference.  This is too much loss to explain as Clinton's "convention bump."  Trump's Political Wizard has miscalculated and misled him, unless there's more smarts in there than anyone knows.  We'll find out soon enough.

Update, 11/9/18: We found out.

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