Friday, June 30, 2017

President Snowflake


Jennifer Granholm, the former governor of Michigan, called President Trump a "snowflake" on CNN, after Mr. Trump frothed fretfully about Mika of "Morning Joe" bleeding from her face (or from wherever) when Mika visited  Mara Largo.
Mr. Trump may have been confusing her with Meghan Kelly, but no matter: It was the Tweet which was important. 

Mr. Trump apparently sees bleeding women frequently, and is much impressed by the sight.
Trump's woman problem--Pia Guerra

But I digress. 

"Snowflake" has been a word much discussed lately.

Of course, it's really a compound word: "Snow," which is white, delicate, easily destroyed and many find beautiful and "Flake" which is commonly used to describe someone of little substance, a zanny person, someone not attached to reality.
Jennifer Granholm

There has been some discussion of the use of the word in the book and movie "Fight Club" in which twenty something men, who feel, if not castrated, at least domesticated, in their sterile offices, where they sit in front of computers and machines and they resort to fist fighting in parking lots after drinking at bars. This makes them feel alive and virile.  They are roused by a member of the club who says they are not "snowflakes" by which he means they realize they are not special--each snowflake is supposed to be unique--and they are durable, not delicate like snowflakes. They live in opposition to the delicate, neutered life they lead at work and  at home.

"Snowflake" was used to deride people who embraced slavery in the 1860's--presumably because snowflakes are white and cover the earth. So it was the white aspect of snowflakes which was being derided. White as snow. Pure as the driven snow. Make the country white. 

All this feeds into the description of Trump as a snowflake: celebrated for his whiteness, attached to people like Kris Kobach who feel whiteness is under attack and needs to be rescued, and snowflakes are delicate, apt to dissolve into a puddle, and flaky, as in irrational, distracted, as in a walking non sequitur. 
Yes, the Donald is a flake. A snowflake. 
And you're special, too

The Tweet which prompted Governor Granholm's remark was classic Trump. Mika was not just bleeding, she was low IQ, and afflicted by low ratings.
Trump's cabinet meeting--Pia Geurra

There has been much discussion about Mr. Trump's own IQ, which, apparently in his case, is a measurement which has entered into the realm of mythology. Presumably, at some point he sat down with a Number Two pencil as an adolescent and took some sort of "IQ" test, the way every child of his cohort did in America and the results must have scarred him in some way.  
His own IQ test scores are as buried in the same misty past as that birth certificate for Barack Obama.  
All these bits of information buried in the pre cyberspace past. 
Reminds me of going to the Department of Motor Vehicles to get my  nifty new driver's license, which is now part of a federal security system: I needed my Social Security card, and I was very proud to have preserved this relic, laminated in my wallet all these years. I got it went I was 14 and it survived over 5 decades in various wallets because I had thought to laminate it. 
But when I arrived, the clerk said laminated cards were unacceptable. 
"But if I hadn't laminated it, it would have been dust by now," I protested.
"I'm just the messenger here," she said, in a voice which sounded like an automaton. "I don't make the rules."
But my point is, some of these things, like IQ test scores and birth certificates are dust in the wind, really. And yet, to some people, like Kris Kobach of Kansas, they matter a lot. They are the most important things about us. 
Our leader--Pia Guerra

For Trump, it's his IQ.

There are, of course, many types of intelligence, we all appreciate now. Mr. Trump has some sort of intelligence which allows him to look for what people--some people--will respond to and to tap into that. At that his intelligence quotient must be very high.

But in terms of being able to collect a set of "facts" or statistics or reports of studies and to assemble these under general headings to support conclusions, he demonstrably scores very low in that type of intelligence.
His talents are more like Ronald Reagan. Nobody ever accused Ronald Reagan of being able to analyze an issue or to organize a coherent argument, but boy could he deliver the message once his script was written. 
Thing is, he was smart enough to let other people write his lines for him.
Can you imagine Reagan with a Tweet machine? 
Well, he could hardly be any worse than Trump.
No Snowflake Her

There are two excellent books about intelligence: "The Intelligence of Birds" and "Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are?" Read these, and you realize how very narrow a stripe the standard IQ test of the 1950's and 1960's were. They were a sort of infant science. So, Mr. Trump, don't feel too badly about how you did on those tests. It was a long time ago, and those tests were made by failed psychologists with low ratings. 

As for the low ratings of "Morning Joe," well, that's like the "failing New York Times." Failure is in the eye of the beholder and neither succeeds in Mr. Trump's eyes.

Then again, this is the man who lined up his cabinet members around a gleaming conference table and demanded each come forth with some adulatory attestations to his wonderfulness, his eminence, his most holy highness and highest excellency. 

Personally, I'm looking forward to the next Tweet. 

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