Donald Trump’s willingness to promote unverifiable theories and his impulsiveness make him unqualified for another term as president, Kenneth Zagacki, a professor of communication at North Carolina State University, and Richard Cherwitz, a communication professor emeritus at The University of Texas at Austin, writes in a new column in the Des Moines Register.
They note that claims of voter fraud during the 2020 election could not be verified in any meaningful way that could have altered the election.
“Trump’s defense and belief help explain why he traffics in bizarre ‘deep state’ conspiracies rejected by most rational people. The belief in conspiracies reveals, for Trump and his supporters, the actual threats to America that only he can defeat,” they write. “When faced with compelling evidence that overturns their beliefs, great democratic leaders admit what they believed to be true was wrong. The flawed character traits motivating Trump’s defense — that he believed the election was stolen — prevent him from ever admitting to being wrong.”
Every major government entity and figure including Trump’s own attorney general and lawyers could find any shred of evidence to independently corroborate the claims made by his campaign attorneys and surrogates.
Even so, Trump continued and continues to claim the last election was stolen from him.
Subversive Activities Undergird Donald Trump Paranoia
However, the institutions that would have served as backstops in a sane world managed to discredit themselves during Trump’s tenure due to blind hatred of their boss.
As the Durham Report showed, leaders within the security state of the FBI, CIA, NSC, etc., actively worked to subvert Trump based on unverified innuendo and false information provided by a Russian whom the Bureau had monitored on suspicion of being a spy. Trump’s own CIA Director Gina Haspel ignored presidential directives to declassify everything related to Crossfire Hurricane, the Russian collusion investigation, likely because she could have been implicated due to her prior post as CIA station chief in London.
DHS Chief of Staff Miles Taylor anonymously submitted a 2018 op-ed to The New York Times talking about a “resistance” within the Trump administration to the then president.
Then you had the fact the Intelligence Community spied on Trump’s first National Security Adviser Mike Flynn, and leaked his illicit lobby activities on behalf of Turkey to the press.
Such behaviors, no doubt, made Trump paranoid and perpetuated his belief that the federal bureaucracy was out to get him and that he was president in name only.
Trump defenders note that a hockey stick that emerged on election night in which he led when America went to bed and awoke to Joe Biden winning in all key contests.
These subversive activities undercut the credibility of the federal agencies whose job was to ensure the election was undertaken fairly and properly. Such fear and paranoia that was based on easily documented episodes amid the stress of the pandemic provides one explanation for Trump’s refusal to give up along with that of his followers.
Does German Political Philosopher Explain Trump?
The professors contend that 20th-century German political philosopher Eric Voegelin, who theorized that modern Fascist and Communist movements were a revival of an ancient religious philosophy called Gnosticism, fits Trump’s behavior.
Gnostics believed they had hidden knowledge and that the real world was only perceptible to an elite because everything else was an illusion.
“Trump’s defense and the belief upon which it rests reveal many of the dysfunctional character traits identified by Voegelin. As such, they also promote a corrupted view of time and history as processes that only Trump believes he can fathom and control. Hence Trump’s claims to ‘make America great again’ and ‘Save America’ by any means necessary, including overturning elections,” Zagacki and Cherwitz write. “Moreover, Trump’s belief and defense embrace degraded views of persons like him, with their paranoid, aggrieved, and insular worldviews (for him, seen as something heroic). And they denounce anyone who challenges him as cowardly, disloyal, and untrustworthy.”
The problem goes way beyond Trump, thanks to the fact the rules-based order that existed prior to this century that governed how our political system operated has been completely debased. Objective rules have been replaced by tribalism and subjectivity that make any sort of national consensus about how things should run all but impossible.
About the Author
John Rossomando is a defense and counterterrorism analyst and served as Senior Analyst for Counterterrorism at The Investigative Project on Terrorism for eight years. His work has been featured in numerous publications such as The American Thinker, The National Interest, National Review Online, Daily Wire, Red Alert Politics, CNSNews.com, The Daily Caller, Human Events, Newsmax, The American Spectator, TownHall.com, and Crisis Magazine. He also served as senior managing editor of The Bulletin, a 100,000-circulation daily newspaper in Philadelphia, and received the Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors first-place award for his reporting. He writes opinion columns with a conservative perspective.
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