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Helpful Hints From Frank Vyan Walton, writing in the Daily Kos; US Senator John Sherman (of James Buchanan): “The Constitution provides for every accidental contingency in the executive– except a vacancy in the mind of the president.”

2019-01-22

Reminds me of something John Sherman (U.S. Senator) said about James Buchanan: “The Constitution provides for every accidental contingency in the executive — except a vacancy in the mind of the president.”  Sound like anyone we know?

The following extended quotations from an article in Daily Kos yesterday by Frank Vyan Walton:

In his new article, “Personal values and support for Donald Trump during the 2016 US presidential primary,” published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences, psychologist Ryne Sherman explains “a prototypical Trump supporter” as someone with “little interest in supporting social welfare programs,” “a strong desire for power,” “a strong desire to make money,” various “concerns about personal and financial safety” and a “preference for strictly adhering to social conventions (i.e., order, structure, and following the chain of command).”

 

Trump’s Republican and conservative supporters share the following attributes:

  1. They are more likely to be authoritarians and to embrace other extreme right-wing ideologies.
  2. They are racially resentful and hostile to nonwhites. This attitude is especially pronounced towards African-Americans.
  3. They exhibit forms of toxic behavior associated with “collective narcissism.”
  4. They believe that white people are the real victims of racism in America.
  5. They are political bullies who engage in social dominance behavior against individuals and groups they view as Other (nonwhites and immigrants, Muslims, gays and lesbians) or their political enemies (liberals and progressives).
  6. They hold sexist and misogynistic views.
  7. Trump’s most extreme and enthusiastic supporters in the “alt-right” feature the “dark triad” of personality traits: narcissism, a propensity for violence, and a Machiavellian longing to manipulate others.
  8. They have little regard for America’s democratic norms and institutions and believe that winning at costs is all that matters — even if that means siding with a foreign power such as Russia to elect Donald Trump
  9. They live in regions of the United States where people are more likely to be unhappy, miserable and physically unwell and to suffer from the “deaths of despair.”
  10. They are attracted to Trump’s threats of violence and his other antisocial behavior.
  11. They are anti-intellectual, disdainful of higher education and hostile towards experts.
  12. They possess a deep fear of death and social obsolescence which compels them towards “strong leaders,” guns, superficial expressions of patriotism and Christian fundamentalism
  13. They are extremely gullible and thus vulnerable to disinformation and other lies, as disseminated through the right-wing media.
  14. They seek simple answers to complex problems and are quick to reject new and inconvenient information.
  15. Either directly or indirectly, they want to hurt others whom they consider “un-American” or outside their tribe and community.

The dark truth of this shutdown has been revealed by a “senior Trump official” in his own words in a Daily Caller op-ed, where he revealed that the shutdown isn’t an incidental byproduct of Trump’s wall fight—it’s part of a larger goal of hollowing out the government in order to shrink and hobble the “Deep State.”

As one of the senior officials working without a paycheck, a few words of advice for the president’s next move at shuttered government agencies: lock the doors, sell the furniture, and cut them down.  Federal employees are starting to feel the strain of the shutdown. I am one of them. But for the sake of our nation, I hope it lasts a very long time, till the government is changed and can never return to its previous form.

The lapse in appropriations is more than a battle over a wall. It is an opportunity to strip wasteful government agencies for good.

[…]

Saboteurs peddling opinion as research, tasking their staff on pet projects or pitching wasteful grants to their friends. Most of my career colleagues actively work against the president’s agenda. This means I typically spend about 15 percent of my time on the president’s agenda and 85 percent of my time trying to stop sabotage, and we have no power to get rid of them. Until the shutdown.

[…]

But President Trump can end this abuse. Senior officials can reprioritize during an extended shutdown, focus on valuable results and weed out the saboteurs. We do not want most employees to return, because we are working better without them. Sure, we empathize with families making tough financial decisions, like mine, and just like private citizens who have to find other work and bring competitive value every day, while paying more than a third of their salary in federal taxes.

President Trump has created more jobs in the private sector than the furloughed federal workforce. Now that we are shut down, not only are we identifying and eliminating much of the sabotage and waste, but we are finally working on the president’s agenda.

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