A strategy explained…..by Sean Illing

Trumpism.  What exactly is it?

Trumpism is a style of con.  It is mostly just about his style of misdirection, dissembling and distracting from what is REALLY going on behind the scenes.  It’s about muddying the waters so that truth is confused to the point of fatigue.  Take any story line, any quote, any tweet, any statement, any alternative fact and the point of it is really just to confuse the reader/watcher/thinker.  It is the stuff of the classic con. The important thing for Trump is NOT if his story is regarded as true or false, it is just just that you/they/us are focused on it.  In fact, that is likely part of the reason for the orange skin tone and the crazy hair job.

The important thing is that we’re watching him and and we’re talking about him because the president wants us focusing on him.  Even when he is talking nonsense means we’re not talking about more important things.  Magicians employ the same tricks:  beautiful assistants, bait and switch, sleight of hand, misdirection.  By October, look for smoke and mirrors.

He’s good at it.  In fact, he is masterful.  He may actually be smart!  He is ignorant as hell.  He is totally mentally screwed up.  But his mastery of the tools of the trade he is in is something akin to fascinating – like a constant, real-time train-wreck.

But he is NOT alone in this.  Just as the magician needs a beautiful assistant, a fancy stage and a gullible audience, so does Trump.  In his case, he has many many assistants from the shapely Ivanka, Hope Hicks, etc. to the Fox Network, from the Michael Cohens and Flynns to the Lindsay Grahams and the Mitch McTurtles.  His audience?  That’s the surprising part.  The audience is the mainstream media.  They are the gullible dupes.

“Isn’t the audience the ‘Merican people?”

Yes and No.  Firstly, most ‘Mericans don’t think critically or freely – they are ‘partisan’.  Secondly, many, many, many do not follow the news or politics in any kind of detail – just the headlines or the talking heads.  Thirdly, as stated before, they are easily fatigued.  Hell, most of us are fatigued by this too-long-running burlesque show.  My guess is that some of my readers have already stopped reading this blog.  “Dave is on about Trump again.  I’ll play video games instead.” 

The main audience is the media.  He plays to the media and they, like the guests at the Hotel California, can check out anytime they want but they can never leave.  The media cannot leave because they are addicted/enslaved.  Some call it ’employed’.  They are obliged to find a story even where there is none.  They have a hole to fill and Trump fills it with BS.  He’s a ‘story-pusher’ feeding the habit of ‘gossip’.

There is more, much more…..so much….but I just wrote the intro….forgive me.  I have been distilling what Sean Illing wrote so much better in VOX.  Read it for yourself: https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2020/5/16/21258788/obamagate-trump-flynn-bannon-flood-the-zone

6 thoughts on “A strategy explained…..by Sean Illing

  1. Well, he had years of practice, which makes him skillfull just be rehearsal, not by being smart I think. You can train animals to do nice tricks if they keep practicing enough. And for the media, it’s easy bait, they can just sit and wait for the next “story” to reveal itself, they don’t even have to dig or research, it just falls into their laps. And lots of people get tired of this and just stop following the “news”, but THAT does not solve the problem. It seems we are just tired of all these stupid politicians…we just shake our heads on continue as we were, hoping maybe that someone will step up and change the game for us? Just plain fatigue on our side (and yes, I blame myself also)


    • There was a financial chart that showed last night on one of the MSM shows. It showed Trump losing hundreds of millions of dollars every year but two. In of the two, he only lost about $10M and the the second different year, he lost $1.17 billion. The chart, which spanned around 12 years, did not show a single year in which he made money. In fact, back in ’87 when the Art of the Deal was published, he was having his assets seized by various creditors. The show went on to say that DJT Jr. in an interview once said, “Our biggest investors are Russians.”


  2. The only fate I wish upon Trump is…….his reptilian Son in Law steals everything from him, divorces the daughter and flees to Russia with a gay lover….. I can dream can’t I?


  3. It is all too tempting to quote sources that agree with our own perspectives. Naturally, we tend to want to read and quote sources that agree with our biases. It helps, given the real division across viewpoints, to understand the perspective of our sources.
    I’ve begun to look at all the media sources and origins of news editorials that get quoted, analyzing their perspectives, using this tool:


    They have several ways of rating the various media sources, including reader ratings and feedback of many many readers. They rate all sources across five levels of the Left to Right spectrum.

    VOX media is not only “Left Leaning”, it is solidly fully “Left Biased”. Allsides rates VOX here:



    • I agree that VOX is lefty. I knew that. I think ALLSIDES was more correct when they had VOX classified as LL (left-leaning) rather than L (full-on left) but the point is a good one and I am glad you added that to the mix. However, even FOX News has leaned a bit NON-RIGHT by way of a few commentators especially Chris Wallace. So, not all VOX articles do not have to be classified as left even if most of them are. But the article I referred you to was neither left nor right. It was simply an article on how the media works.


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