Strongmen and their doctors. Throughout human history there have been innumerable cases of autocratic leaders whose whims and obsessions have been indulged – or exploited – by one or more would-be healers. In modern times many people think of the “mad monk” Grigori Rasputin plying his dubious wares in the Court of the Romanovs or the malodourous physician Theodor Morell squirming his way around the upper echelons of the Third Reich. Indeed in the latter example it’s arguable that the various diets and dubious treatments proscribed by the obese quack to Adolf Hitler contributed towards the psychotic fugue that the Führer found himself in during the final stages of the Second World War (though he certainly wasn’t the only one among the Nazi leadership to ride out the end of the conflict in a narcotic stupor). Even democratic leaders can have their fair indulgence of charlatans. Though remaining the subject of much speculation, and admittedly much myth-making, there is little doubt that Nancy Reagan allowed her pet astrologer Joan Quigley to have some influence on the policies of her husband’s White House administration during the 1980s.
So the news that the current and less-than-democratic incumbent of the Oval Office has taken to a more contemporary form of quack-medicine in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic is probably unsurprising to most people. Given Donald Trump’s increasingly poor reputation the wannabe Roi Soleil is only one more episode away from purposefully ingesting irradiated gold flakes in his food.
From a report by the Guardian:
Donald Trump has told reporters at the White House that for “a couple weeks” he has been taking a malaria drug as a defense against Covid-19 – despite warnings from his administration that it is dangerous.
Trump said he was taking hydroxychloroquine – a drug approved to treat malaria, lupus and rheumatoid arthritis – in response to the coronavirus threat.
But the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been warning since April that the drug should not be used for that purpose because it could cause irregular heartbeats and other cardiac trauma.
The drug is not approved as a treatment for Covid-19 and Trump has not been diagnosed with the disease, to public knowledge.
Trump’s claim to be taking the drug was made as he attacked an administration whistleblower who went before Congress last week and described internal pressure to endorse the drug as an effective coronavirus treatment.
The whistleblower, Rick Bright, was the former director of a federal agency in charge of vaccines.
18,000 lies and rising daily, no one can know for sure if he is merely continuing one of many of his cheap cons. People however will probably die from his encouragement.
Dettol and bleach still to go then. Can’t have tried the UV light tube up his arse yet, he’s still speaking.
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“wannabe Roi Soleil” Brilliant!
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Ha! Thanks. In Trump’s case it works on a number of levels 😉
It sure does. I’m tempted to rob that off you in general conversation! 🙂
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Après nous, Lisa Simpson.
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I wish it were true but seriously doubt that Trump – a raging hypochondriac, obsessive germaphobe, and all-round coward – is taking Hydroxychloroquine. Much more likely that one of his buddies/donors stands to make an(other) obscene fortune from increased sales. Or he may have said it to deflect media attention away from something else
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Trump has been claiming to take all manner of vitamins, tonics, and such for many many years-like since the 1970’s. This is in a way nothing new. He just wasn’t President at the time. In fact, most of the time when he jumped from one such thing to another he not only wasn’t President but was at least nominally a Democrat and a sort of playboy nobody took that seriously.
Another thing that isn’t new is the idea that hydrochloroquinine has antiviral properties. Lab tests have long suggested it. There were a number of viral illnesses where it was at least tried, but has YET to prove effective on any particular virus. Who knows maybe some day a virus will come along that it can defeat. I just don’t want to roll through more and more pandemics to find out.
Bigger problem? Now a lot of people will write off ANYTHING being researched for this disease, be it anti-viral drugs of any kind, monoclonal antibodies being studied by some companies, vaccine studies, various stop-gaps to a vaccine being researched, any new mass tests, and contact tracing-or anything else being investigated to control this virus.
People will put ANYTHING for this virus other than -apparently indefinite- social distancing and lockdowns into the same category as hydroxychloroquinine and have in many cases “abandoned all hope” of anything having any effect on this virus whatsoever. If you point out the research that is being done in a number of places, they point to hydroxychloroquinine and say “Nope, just another dumb, dumb idea like that.”
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Bigger questions is what folks can take to protect themselves from Trump.
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And for those readers interested in mutations consider this.
The madman that is Trump is half Scottish. Half Celt in fact because his mother Mary Anne MacLeod was a full blown first language Gaidhlig speaker from the Gealtacht Island of Lewis. A pure Gael with the genes going way back. Indeed, Trump has full cousins on the island, but save for Donald John’s older sister who visits, there is no contact from Trump..
So how does a mutation like Trump evolve so quickly. Truly frightening. Is it something in the water. Something in the food. Or is the German genes from the father. More importantly is there a vaccine?
To veer slightly off topic – but still on the subject of populist, self-styled strongmen and the rabidly loyal but woefully inept lackeys they surround themselves with – let this sink in from yesterday’s Guardian:
“We have been told repeatedly that the UK was unprepared for this pandemic. This is untrue. The UK was prepared, but then it de-prepared. Last year, the Global Health Security Index ranked this nation [the UK] second in the world for pandemic readiness, while the US was first. Broadly speaking, in both nations the necessary systems were in place. Our governments chose not to use them.”
Do you think Trump suffers from sort of addiction. His brother was a alcoholic. He loves junk food and sleeping with women. He says he doesn’t drink or take illegal drugs but could he also be a secret drinker. They say a lot of Americans are secret drinkers or functioning alcoholics. He just seems very compulsive and prone to doing things on a whim without thinking about the consequences later down the line. And there was a lot of cocaine around the New York social circles that Trump inhabited in the 1970s and 1980s.
God knows, is the honest answer. He’s a malign narcissist, that’s for sure, and a pathological liar and obvious sociopath. He’s not very bright, but has an unerring nose for his own benefit and well-being. To be totally honest, I’ve sometimes wondered if his supposed sexual conquests/prowess is yet another cover for the truth re his true sexuality. Is he truly heterosexual? And if not, does he subconsciously hate himself for it, and as a result he is lashing out at everyone else? Is the overt uber-masculinity just a front, yet another truth-concealing pose? As I say, God knows.
As for functioning alcoholics, I’m sure the US citizenry is no more prone to this than other societies – including our own.
He is heterosexual. There are rumors about his performance and endowment, but who knows what the truth is.
My opinion of Trump? I believe a lot of it comes down to the fact he probably has ADHD/ADD and his reading skills and math skills may marginal. He was sent away to military school due to behavior problems, and only avoided being the black sheep of the family because an older brother directly rebelled.
In a way, he probably is an shadow inverse of Edwards VIII. I always bought the theory that he abdicated the Crown, ultimately due to multiple sources of ambivalence about the role and the knowledge that he just couldn’t hack it!! He’d have to be a war time King and that would destroy most non-sociopaths. The thinking is that while he may have loved Wallace Simpson, to some degree she was a face saving “exit strategy” from a role he knew he just couldn’t handle. In those days “doing anything for love” had a sort of Romantic cache despite its odds with the morality of marrying a divorce and the Windsor way of doing things. If he said “I’m abdicating because I love this woman, there was some dignity salvaged”, if it was “I just can’t handle this, Bertie’s stutter is getting better!!” he would have been much more scorned.
What does this have to do with Trump? Essentially Trump is the inverse of a similar psychology. Edward VIII was and Trump is learning disabled. Both were born to expectations they could never meet. The difference is that Trump is more motivated by hatred towards people who came from more humble origins and moved up in the world-like Obama.
I believe that once Obama embarassed him in public, he was going to do anything to get revenge. Why did anyone support him? I believe the single biggest factor was his show “The Apprentice”.
An interesting, and largely compelling, hypothesis. However, while I agree with the Obama part, I think it misses other more compelling motivating factors. Most especially, Trump’s overt racism, which goes way back and of which there are innumerable examples. For example, his and his father’s treatment of, and attitude towards, black tenants of theirs, and Trump’s role in publicly advocating for the execution of the Central Park Five. More recently, his labelling of Mexicans as rapists, and his overt islamophobia. While Obama’s rise from a relatively humble background is probably a factor in Trump’s hatred of him, I suspect his [Obama’s] race, and his intellect, are much greater factors.
Here’s link to a Guardian piece on Trump and the Central Park Five, for those not already familiar with the details:
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There are a lots of racist politicians in this world-most aren’t like Trump, so that’s a poor explanation. Also Trump’s pattern of vindictiveness to people who are smarters, more poised, or more well spoken them him, is not confined to any particular race or ethnicity. It’s across the board. HIs more outrageous statements cross the whole board. He made fun of disabled people. He made fun of two Gold Star Parents (a deeply taboo thing these days). The overall pattern, I’d say was a sort of “fuck you” to every accepted standard of acceptable behavior in the public light, decorum, and Presidential conduct.
Trump’s father treated all their tenants badly. A lot of the people they had conflict with were Holocaust survivors who often disliked the family because they weren’t buying that story about the family being from Sweden-they could figure out where the “Drumpf Family” came from.
With the Central Park Five? Everyone and their dog believes one of two narratives both of which have very little to do with yhe truth about what actually happened in the Park that night. One narratives says the boys were irredeemable monsters and Linda Fahrenstein was a feminist hero. Another says they were these sweet innocent little babies, who were never suspected of anything for any reason other than racism and Fahrenstein was this racism monster hell bent on revenge. Of course, the truth is as a lot harder to pin down, but definitely doesn’t fit either (largely political) story at all.
Their exoneration was actually typical of men cleared of rape in one respect: DNA evidence was key. Basically the science of forensic DNA was evolving to fast, they were cleared by a DNA test that wasn’t really possible at the time of the initial trial. It was atypical in the sense that the race of the victim, the accused and actual rapist if caught are nearly always all the same. Also it was unusual in that a serial rapist came forward to confess. The sociopathic serial rapist was already serving a life sentence and the statute of limitations was up, so he had nothing to lose. Still it’s unusual for a sociopath to confess to anything out of conscience. The later DNA matched him but still seemed to have at least one other many who was never identified although Reyes claimed to act alone. So the Central Park Five were cleared of actual participation n the rape, got reasonable doubt for bystander participation and incitement. The other mayhem of Central Park that night that they may or may not have been involved in? The statute of limitations was up and the trail was too cold to investigation further. Like the Jack the Ripper Murders, The Murder of Rasputin, and Jimmy Hoffa’s sad demise, the whole story on what happened in Central Park that evening may never been fully known.
Fahrenstein’s long career also fails to meet any simplistic political narrative or label like “feminist hero” or “racist monster”. The fact was she was a tough prosecutor in a lot of cases many of which included relatively well-to-do white men (aka The Preppy Murder) and sought exoneration or clemency for a large number of cases as well.
Trump is like half of America in that respect: He wants to Central Park cases to be some great political story that has little to do with the messy realities. There are people on the other side swearing that the victim was a “whore” who “made it all up” or that she was probably raped by this “so-called boyfriend but he’s probably really her pimp”-even though she lost 3/4 of her blood and spent two weeks in a coma.
Your bristling at anything remotely critical of the US, and even finding explanations verging on excuses for a monster like Trump, never ceases to amaze me, Grace. Surprise, surprise that, according to you, the Central Park Five might well be guilty. And you’ve really surpassed yourself with this line: “There are a lots of racist politicians in this world-most aren’t like Trump, so that’s a poor explanation.”
I suppose Ahmaud Arbery wasn’t really an innocent jogger? Nah, on second thoughts, don’t bother answering that.
You didn’t read what I said. They were cleared by DNA evidence-like nearly all men cleared of rape during that time period and got reasonable doubt for bystander participation and pretty much everything else that occurred that night.
The larger point you just don’t seem to want to believe is that both the political right and left have tried to turn the whole thing associated with the riots in Central Park that night, into a neatly packaged little story that fits their political agendas.
The reality is that some things don’t really have a political “moral”. Most crimes and most cases of wrongful conviction alike make very bad “morality stories”.
According to the book Fire and Fury Trump liked to invite married male friends over to Trump Tower and tell them he had a couple of models flying in for a sex party that afternoon and inviting them to join him with the male friends wife listening in secretly on the speakerphone.
Had to laugh when Pelosi casually referred to him as “morbidly obese”. This will have got to him big time. Pelosi knows how to live in his head. Bad enough that she’s a strong woman, never mind that she take him on. I live in hope that someday a previous paramour will publicly state about him that she “never saw as small a dick on as big a man”. Can you imagine his reaction? It would infuriate him. 🙂
Sounds like Trump’s living in your head Tamam.
Pelosi is one tough cookie and not to be messed with she knows exactly how to deal with Donald Trump.
Didn’t the porn star Stormy Daniels insult his manhood I bet you he took it to heart. Being In her line of work I’m sure she knows what she is talking about when she insults Donald’s member.
You know the way countries are usually eager to claim a familial connection, however tenuous, to a US president. Not with Trump, though. Scotland to Germany: “Go ahead, you can have him.” Germany to Scotland: “Nah, you’re all right.” Both countries to Ireland: “Are you guys sure his people didn’t originate from about Killarney or somewhere?” Ireland: “Yep, we’re absolutely certain.” 🙂