The 5 Stages Of White House Grief
When history looks back on President Donald Trump’s latest week ― the “Seven Days In May” that ran from his firing of James Comey to the plethora of self-inflicted scandals and bombshell news developments that came after ― there is going to be much rejoicing, if for no other reason than relief that we survived it. This is what passes for unbridled optimism these days.
But this brief period of history has been, if nothing else, quintessential Trump. If the media deserved to don the sackcloth and ashes after badly botching our predictions of the outcome of the 2016 election, we’ve all found our salvation in the fact that Trump’s presidency is going exactly the way we predicted ― incompetence, followed by chaos, followed by an incompetent response to that chaos. The only person Donald Trump’s actions have blindsided at this point is the president himself.
What we have now is a White House in which the Kübler-Ross stages of grieving have combined with the Dunning-Kruger effect ― in which incompetent people come to believe they are actually great masters ― to create a new psychological prison in which disorder piles on disorder, nothing ever gets resolved, yet no one seems to want to escape from its confines.
Stage One: “This is fine!”
It wouldn’t be proper to suggest that Trump experiences “denial.” Denial, after all, is just our cheap and dirty brain-chemical defense against our own self-awareness, something Trump lacks. While extant reports suggest that Trump’s staffers were gearing up for a rough fight over Comey’s firing ― once they were briefed that it had happened, anyway ― it seems that […]