TUESDAY, MAY 16, 2017
Mainstreamers still don't want to ask: Most mornings, we start by looking at certain news sites.
After last night's craziness, we found ourselves doing something different this morning. We reread the start of King Lear. You can accomplish that here!
Was the famous monarch "mentally ill" in some way? Was he suffering some form of "dementia?"
It seems to us that Shakespeare said yes. At any rate, Lear's behavior at the start of the play is not unlike Donald J. Trump's.
(Lear insisted on getting conned by the grifters Goneril and Regan. Trump is now said to surround himself with the gruesome Ivanka and her blame-shifting husband and with communications aide Hope Hicks, age 28. Two of his three favored sycophants are youngish former teen models.)
For whatever reason, Donald J. Trump has always had unattractive impulses and values. Now, it increasingly seems that he may be losing his basic acuity. It seems to us that many pundits still want to avoid this topic. This seems like a lousy idea.
We're also puzzled by two recent posts by Kevin Drum, whose work on lead exposure has been so instructive. In the first of these posts, Drum headlined Trump as an "idiot." In his very next post, he plainly suggested that Trump is dealing with dementia.
Trump has always had unattractive values and impulses. That said, dementia is a terrible disease, producing a loss to the individual and to the wider world.
When a person dies, "what has gone is not nothing?" We will remind you, once again, that (the late) Yevtushenko said that.