Is He Just Stoopid, Or What?
Whether it is being done deliberately, or on the basis of stupidity and bad advice is unclear. His series of gaffes that have undermined America’s future in various ways could also be the result of ignorance or a type of early dementia known as M.C.I. (Mild Cognitive Impairment). What he is doing is not what one would expect from a leader who was completely rational. But whatever the cause, his statements and actions are bad for the nation. It is almost as if he was working to aid America’s adversaries and lower America’s standing in the world. His actions have certainly not made Trump a beloved figure globally.
Withdrawing from the Paris Accord is his latest move that makes no sense. There was nothing in the agreement that forced America to do anything that would hurt its economy. It was an accord with voluntary actions by the participating countries. Each nation could choose the way it would go about lowering its output of greenhouse gases. But by demonizing the Accord and taking America out of it, he is committing the nation to old and outmoded technology while ceding the future and innovative renewable energy technology to the Chinese and Europeans. A number of U.S. cities and states will try to keep within the boundaries of the Paris Accord or even surpass its goals, but that will not compensate for the damage Trump has done to America’s image and reputation. And any energy saving technology developed by U.S. companies is unlikely to be purchased by nations who have remained in the Paris Accord, as they feel America has betrayed them and is endangering the planet.
His destruction of the Transpacific Partnership (TPP) was another move not beneficial for the United States. Obama had negotiated a trade agreement that encompassed about 40 percent of the world’s population including Southeast Asia and excluding China. This would have given American businesses a leg up on the Chinese in the nations participating. Trump’s veto of the TPP basically opened the door to Chinese industry and invited them in to all of these countries. Not a very smart move.
His determination to keep out immigrants and build a wall along our southern border is also a sign of deranged thinking. With the nation’s birth rate shrinking and fewer workers to support Social Security and Medicare, America requires an infusion of young workers to maintain our economy and sustain the social welfare programs for retirees. Computer savvy immigrants are needed to work in high tech fields and low skilled workers for agriculture, meat packing, hospitality and so forth. The Mexican immigrants that Trump wants to keep out are already heading back to Mexico in greater numbers than coming in. And without a steady supply of immigrants, our economy would collapse, notwithstanding the advances in automation.
His budget cuts (which will never pass Congress) also showed his ignorance about Ameirca’s future requirements. Trump slashed funding for the NIH, CDC, and all elements of research and development. The NIH and CDC are the backbone of America’s health system, with the former working to find new cures for cancer and degenerative diseases like Alzheimers, and the latter handling infectious and communicable diseases. The NIH provides many grants to universities involved in important research projects that would be eliminated under Trump’s budget. There is also DARPA and NASA which have been responsible for many innovations necessary for the nation’s economy, like the Internet, global positioning systems, computer processing, ballistic missiles and so forth. Federal funding is imperative for R and D, particularly in the basic sciences. And while Trump tries to cut the R and D budget, China and European nations are increasing their spending, knowing that it will bolster their economies in the future.
Trump’s budget also drastically cuts spending for the State Department, while increasing it for the military, not viewing diplomacy as a critical policy prerogative encompassing both friends and adversaries. The Environmental Protection Agency is also taking a big hit despite the recent problems with lead and other toxins in parts of the nation’s water supply under the EPA’s aegis. Isn’t Trump aware of these problems and the funding necessary to remediate them?
There are also the proposed cuts to Medicaid which would impact the people who voted for him the hardest. In addition to reducing ordinary care, it would hurt preventive programs and opioid and alcohol addiction programs, which are needed particularly in rust belt areas where jobs have been lost.
Given the ways Trump’s actions will undermine the nation, his base voters, and negatively affect the planet, he’s either not smart enough to understand what he is doing, is ignorant of the consequences of his statements and deeds, or is suffering from an early or mild form of dementia. A bright individual in full control of his faculties would not be doing the things he has done. A quandary for America!
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