POLITICAL COMMENTARY

Trump Is The Mule

He controls minds

Artwork by Futurilla licensed under CC BY 2.0.

The Foundation Trilogy, penned by Isaac Asimov, is one of the classics of science fiction. In it, the Galactic Empire is doomed to failure, and Hari Seldon, a scientist, devises a plan to shorten the resulting period of savagery.

A First Foundation is established to maintain the physical sciences and technology. A Second Foundation, concerned with the science of the mind, is established in secret to keep the first “on plan.”

All is well until the Mule appears. Using his powers of emotional control, bestowed by his mutation, he disrupts the “The Seldon Plan,” threatening progress towards a restorative Second Empire.

A few short sentences cannot summarize hundreds of pages of writing but may convey a bit of the essence. To wit, an avaricious personality with an exceptional talent for exerting emotional control disrupts progress.

Similar to Asimov’s portrayal of a galactic empire, American democracy is descending into chaos. Additionally, the time-tested apparatus for righting the American ship when it lists to the right or left has been compromised. While the contributing factors are many, Donald Trump is the unexpected catalyst for much of the change.

New York State extends well beyond the most populous city in the USA. The 21st Congressional District, covering the mountainous and sparsely-populated Adirondack region, is geographically nearby, but politically as distant as the moon is from the earth.

Elise Stefanik

Elise Stefanik is the deep-red 21st District’s representative. She was elected as a moderate, but since meeting Mr. Trump, has jettisoned all connection to reason. One cannot help but wonder how a presumably intelligent Harvard graduate has abandoned all links to facts and evidence and become a proponent of baseless claims about the theft of the 2020 election.

“I will work with anyone, regardless of their party affiliation, to get it done,” Ms. Stefanik had said soon after being elected. “Republicans, Democrats, independents, even Green Party — if you have a good idea, I’m willing to work with you to get the job done.”

But Ms. Stefanik has taken a hearty gulp of the Trump Kool-aid, and currently parrots every word of The Donald. He has exerted emotional control over a once rational person.

She has been rewarded with the Chair of the House Republican Conference and massive donations.

J. D. Vance

In October 2016, referring to Trump, Mr. Vance wrote, “My god what an idiot.” Mr. Vance also called Trump “noxious” and “reprehensible,” and likened him to “cultural heroin.”

“In March, the two men held an hourlong meeting brokered by Vance’s friend and former boss Peter Thiel.” Suddenly, Mr. Vance was no longer a critic, but an ardent supporter. Mr. Trump used his Mule-like power to convert the Ohio hillbilly-who-would-be-Senator.

“I’m not just a flip-flopper. I’m a flip-flop-flipper on Trump,” said Mr. Vance.

How can this be possible? How can people who have previously demonstrated intelligence and discretion suddenly forget their criticisms and fall in line with the Trump supplicants? Can it be that Mr. Trump has a mutant power to control the emotions of others? Is Trump the Mule?

No.

There is no magic. There is no supernatural power. There is only a clear explanation that chumming up to Trump carries with it the promise of money and power. Trump’s army of sycophants gains prominent new members when they realize that all they need do is follow the master without question. Power and position will be theirs.

Ms. Stefanik, Mr. Vance, and many others have become aware that they need only conquer their repugnance and abandon any semblance of morality to achieve what they know they deserve. And it is quite probable that they’ve convinced themselves that their deal with the Devil is for the greater good.

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