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We are a worldwide social network of freethinkers, atheists, agnostics and secular humanists.

The following is an excerpt from The Atlantic, dated 3 September, 2020:

On Memorial Day 2017, Trump visited Arlington National Cemetery, a short drive from the White House. He was accompanied on this visit by John Kelly, who was then the secretary of homeland security, and who would, a short time later, be named the White House chief of staff. The two men were set to visit Section 60, the 14-acre area of the cemetery that is the burial ground for those killed in America’s most recent wars. Kelly’s son Robert is buried in Section 60. A first lieutenant in the Marine Corps, Robert Kelly was killed in 2010 in Afghanistan. He was 29. Trump was meant, on this visit, to join John Kelly in paying respects at his son’s grave, and to comfort the families of other fallen service members. But according to sources with knowledge of this visit, Trump, while standing by Robert Kelly’s grave, turned directly to his father and said, “I don’t get it. What was in it for them?” Kelly (who declined to comment for this story) initially believed, people close to him said, that Trump was making a ham-handed reference to the selflessness of America’s all-volunteer force. But later he came to realize that Trump simply does not understand non-transactional life choices.

“He can’t fathom the idea of doing something for someone other than himself,” one of Kelly’s friends, a retired four-star general, told me. “He just thinks that anyone who does anything when there’s no direct personal gain to be had is a sucker. There’s no money in serving the nation.” Kelly’s friend went on to say, “Trump can’t imagine anyone else’s pain. That’s why he would say this to the father of a fallen marine on Memorial Day in the cemetery where he’s buried.”

-- Jeffrey Goldberg, “Trump: Americans Who Died in War Are ‘Losers’ and ‘Suckers’,” The Atlantic

Between this article and Mary Trump’s book, Too Much and Never Enough, we get such a clear picture of Donald Trump’s self-involved Weltanschauung that any other embellishment might almost seem redundant. Trump sees life, or at least certainly HIS life as based utterly in transactionalism, quid pro quo, and completely zero-sum. Selfless service or dedication to a cause is equally a mystery to him, because it speaks to serving something other than oneself or larger than oneself, as we all doubtless know by now, Trump is about no one other than himself, and serving something or someone other than himself is a concept he not only will not entertain; he can’t even conceive of doing such a thing.

The foundation for this attitude is well-documented in Too Much and Never Enough, and its source is Fred Trump, Sr., Donald’s father. To listen to Mary Trump describe him, Fred was a martinet, narcissist and sociopath, and the circumstances of Donald’s upbringing resulted in his becoming a near-clone of his father, only without the skills of management which had given rise to Fred’s real estate successes. Regardless, neither of them had any use for participating in any form of service. In fact, TMaNE includes a scene wherein Donald is threatened with being disowned if he entered the military in any capacity. Fred Trump’s attitude was clear: we don’t serve; we ARE served, an attitude his son clearly adopted.

And so we have a man in the post of president of the United States, a position of service, who not only has no concept of service but no desire or interest in serving his fellow man and woman, but only himself. If he bolsters the position of the 1% with his tax policies, that is likely only a coincidental side effect. His intent in passing it was purely to fatten his own pockets, though it also increases the likelihood of maintaining the super-rich’s support of his policies.

General William Tecumseh Sherman, when being drafted for the presidency, is alleged to have said, “If nominated, I will not run. If elected, I will not serve.” Donald John Trump did run, was elected, and occupies the Oval Office of the White House as President of the United States.

But in no way, shape, or form, does he serve.

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Comment by Mrs.B on September 9, 2020 at 3:59pm

People need to stop giving him all that attention he craves, & that includes not nominating him for anything but prison!!!

Comment by Mrs.B on September 9, 2020 at 3:33pm

Terrifying!!!!

I am reading a free copy of Too Much and Never Enough online right now, & it's really an eye-opener! It's frightening how many people in one family can be so destroyed forever, & it turn, the ripple effect is horrendous.

Comment by Chris B on September 9, 2020 at 8:59am

Appalling!

Comment by Stephen on September 9, 2020 at 8:52am

Loren and many of his supporters are armed to the teeth, and I think you are right it could get ugly.

Comment by Stephen on September 9, 2020 at 8:48am

Donald Trump nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

(Oh for crying out loud has the world gone stark raving mad?)

US President Donald Trump has been nominated for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize. 

Norwegian politician Christian Tybring-Gjedde made the nomination following a “historic peace agreement” between the United Arab Emirates and Israel. 

The far-right leader also praised Mr Trump for resolving other protracted conflicts worldwide and said he has made "tremendous efforts" in brokering peace.

“For his merit, I think he has done more trying to create peace between nations than most other Peace Prize nominees,” Mr Tybring-Gjedde told Fox News.

https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/world/donald-trump-nominated-for-nob...

Comment by Loren Miller on September 9, 2020 at 8:45am

You have it precisely, Stephen ... and this is why I wonder what will happen regarding the "peaceful transition of power" which is SUPPOSED to happen when/if Biden defeats Trump at the polls, never mind what Trump does between November 4th, 2020 and January 20th, 2021.

This could get major-league ugly.

Comment by Stephen on September 9, 2020 at 8:41am

The sad thing about Trump's base is they won't listen to reason. The Dunning-Kruger effect is rife amongst Trump's base. Stupid people who believe they are intelligent.

Comment by Stephen on September 9, 2020 at 8:33am

 Chris those sort of people here in Western Europe are a very small minority and when they emerge from the "wormwood" to organise a demonstration they get overwhelmed by massive counter demos and the people who take part are ordinary folks

Comment by Chris B on September 9, 2020 at 7:03am

So they want power without responsibility, without thinking,without justice or science, just the power of a howling mob.... I know what they do to the LGBT community, and to others. We have that sort here too of course, a few politicians try to rouse them, but so far they're a minority. I hope you all have a safe place to run to.

Comment by Loren Miller on September 9, 2020 at 6:28am

Chris, have you seen the video coverage of some of these right-wing protesters?  Birds of a feather, I'm afraid to say, and as I've stated more than once, Trump gave them permission to come out of the wormwood, and they will BE out after Trump is defeated.

Trump is a considerable problem, all by himself, but THOSE PEOPLE are even more so.  They are as afflicted with Dunning-Kruger as Trump is, refuse to listen, refuse to learn, and will insist on THEIR way.  Worse, there are doubtless people out there who will pander to their irrational fears and political positions and run for office with their support.

Trump opened Pandora's Box.  I'm not sure closing it again is an option.

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