HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » Editorials & Other Articles (Forum) » "There's nothing "delusio...

Sat Jun 12, 2021, 12:57 PM

"There's nothing "delusional" about Donald Trump's conspiracy theories. They are working"

Last edited Sat Jun 12, 2021, 02:21 PM - Edit history (2)

"There's nothing "delusional" about Donald Trump's conspiracy theories. They are working:
Trump's conspiracy theories aren't delusional, they are aspirational — and so far, they are working for him"
PUBLISHED JUNE 4, 2021 12:57PM (EDT)

Delusion." "Off the chart bonkers." "Insane." "Objectively nuts." These are some of the terms that pundits — both on the left and on the right — are using to describe Donald Trump's reported belief that he will be "reinstated" as president in August, a belief that is tied to the growing enthusiasm in QAnon circles for a Myanmar-style coup d'état. It's a comforting story: that Trump is a doddering fool who is lost in a pathetic fantasy. After all, there is no process to "reinstate" a former president. Moreover, the people who Trump is clearly getting this idea from are total kooks like his former lawyer Sidney Powell and pillow salesman Mike Lindell. And Trump himself is the "inject bleach" guy, no one's model for rigorous empirical thinking.

As I note in today's Standing Room Only newsletter, Trump loves the "will no one rid me of this troublesome priest?" style of giving orders, where he just puts a wish out into the world and hopes other people will pick up what he's putting down. As his former lawyer Michael Cohen famously noted in his testimony before the House before he went to prison for crimes committed on Trump's behalf, "He doesn't give you questions, he doesn't give you orders. He speaks in a code." It's a strategy that shields Trump from consequences while his self-directed minions, like Cohen or Giuliani or the Capitol rioters, take the fall. It also means less work for Trump.
One of the most common misconceptions about conspiracy theories is that they are sincere expressions of belief. Sometimes that's true, but just as often, conspiracy theories are better understood functionally, not literally. They are tools that conspiracy theorists use to further their larger goals. It's irrelevant whether Trump "believes" that he could have kept power by stopping the electoral vote count on January 6 or that he'll be reinstated in August. What matters is how he uses these conspiracy theories, to promote the ideological belief that a multi-racial democracy is bad, that a white conservative minority deserves to rule over the majority, and that any means necessary to make that happen are on the table.
This particular conspiracy theory has a twofold function. The first and most obvious is to keep pushing the Republican party towards fascism. But of course, they're already going there, so probably didn't need more of a push from Trump. The second, and perhaps more important to Trump himself, is that the conspiracy theory keeps him at the center of this story. As Axios founder Jim VandeHei said on MSNBC Friday morning, Trump is "frustrated" and "having a hard time getting through" because "people are no longer obsessed with what Donald Trump has to say."
A link to this article appeared in General Discussion a few days ago, but I thought the points chosen here from the article are important to reiterate to prevent GOP from going fascist and ending democracy as we know it in the US.

As for Trump:
These 4 reasons explain Trump's actions in general and his gaslighting about reinstatement in particular:
1. Attention addict-- can't stand being out of the spotlight-- Twitter ban really threw him for a loop. Outrageous statements bring media attention. Rallies coming soon.

2. Throws out any crazy idea, to see if it somehow might help him. Examples: bleach for Covid, wanted states to find votes, encouraged insurrection. Probably secretly hoping some treasonous military will attempt a coup to bring him back to the White House in August.

3. Follower of Norman Vincent Peale's "The Power of Positive Thinking." Really believes in this stuff. Leads to dangerous magical thinking and inability to accept or learn from losses.

4. Potential coming indictments can be politicized and excused by his followers, if he is the "real" President being hounded by enemies

7 replies, 1236 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 7 replies Author Time Post
Reply "There's nothing "delusional" about Donald Trump's conspiracy theories. They are working" (Original post)
andym Jun 2021 OP
elleng Jun 2021 #1
brush Jun 2021 #2
andym Jun 2021 #3
brush Jun 2021 #5
andym Jun 2021 #6
brush Jun 2021 #7
MFM008 Jun 2021 #4

Response to andym (Original post)

Sat Jun 12, 2021, 01:08 PM

1. ;-(

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to andym (Original post)

Sat Jun 12, 2021, 01:43 PM

2. It's not working. This is disinformation. He was supposed to be back...

in the WH in April. Why spread this stuff?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to brush (Reply #2)

Sat Jun 12, 2021, 02:14 PM

3. Read the article! It's working on his followers (75% of GOP think election was stolen)

It's Orwellian, and the ONLY way to fight it is to shine light on it. Just like cancer Ignoring it won't make it go away, but only make it worse until it's excised. It has to be called out for what it is: blatant manipulation, and Trump needs to be known as a gaslighting, lying manipulator-by everyone who is not a rabid follower of his. BTW, just like doomsday religions that continue unabated, the failure of an event to occur (like the end of the world, or the reinstatement) is excused and new goal posts will be set.

The history of authoritarian takeovers in countries with some form of democratic government, suggests it only takes a minority of the population to overthrow the system: Nazi Germany in the 30's being the prime example.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to andym (Reply #3)

Sat Jun 12, 2021, 05:52 PM

5. And us confirming it's working is going to change them from...

believing the big lie? No. That demographic is set in their beliefs. To say it's working is late. It's already worked.

IMO our efforts are best spent working on the Biden agenda, pitching in to defeat vote suppression measures, register our voters, AND LABEL THE GOP THE INSURRECTIONIST PARTY from now until Nov. '22...24/7. Just as they put the socialist and defund the police label on us in 2020.

We can't change the megats but we are not without weapons we can out register them now that covid is on the wane and we can go out and canvass, unlike in 2020.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to brush (Reply #5)

Sat Jun 12, 2021, 09:09 PM

6. There is a also a group of non-partisan + apolitical folks who need to be made aware of the GOP lies

Last edited Sun Jun 13, 2021, 10:21 AM - Edit history (2)

That is the target group which includes low information citizens-- although they may not help, they need to know that they should never vote for fascist enablers. To do that they need to know what's happening, to the extent possible. They are not a majority, but they need to help. As for the MAGA's-- I agree they are a lost cause, but they will need to be deprogrammed eventually.

Labeling the GOP the "insurrectionist party" as you suggest is a great idea-- but it needs to be done on social media as well as in person-- that's why making it known that Trump and his GOP allies are lying, gaslighters who trick people into supporting them is SO important.

As for cavasassing for Biden's agenda-- I agree that is important to act on and of course that will help. Probably it's useful to get on social media and push for it in your social network now as well as canvassing (which is more useful at election time) and registering voters-- at the same it's important to let people know what will happen if the GOP is allowed to translate their overarching state legislative power (almost 2:1) back into greater federal power: voting rights for Democratic leaning citizens may be severely diminished.

If the GOP gains back federal power, watch out-- all the best policies in the world won't stand in their destructive path to neo-fascism.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to andym (Reply #6)

Sat Jun 12, 2021, 11:11 PM

7. I agree. Democracy is at stake. Social media is key as well...

to spread the insurrectionist party label, then canvass close to the election. We are far from beaten.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to andym (Original post)

Sat Jun 12, 2021, 05:46 PM

4. We stepped in

In November to stop him
We will have to do it again
And again.
They may try and rig the vote but they can't do it in every state everywhere and the clock is ticking on him in so many ways

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread