Why is Trump doing this? There are many possibilities. 1 - He's a Russian asset merely carrying out orders by Vladimir Putin. 2 - He's such a complete narcissist that he believes his delusion and that he's an exceptional leader and everything will be just fine. 3 - He's so emotionally damaged that this is revenge to the entire US population for not adoring him. 4 - He's just completely insane, suffering from dementia. 5 - Any or all combinations of the above. The point is and one that you have been hammering as long as I've read your posts going back to Media Matters is where the #$&! is the press in all this? For years now the byline is always "Dems in Disarray". The press was cheerleaders for going into Iraq during W. How'd that work out? Now I see WH press on the front lawn talking about the Administration strategy. Strategy! What strategy? I feel like I'm living on Bizarro World!

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Let's flip the magical thinking of those deep in denial, completely corrupt or incompetent. not doing anything for us. Here goes.

The Universe, Karma, Supreme Being, Q (Star Trek not conspiracy), or some other transcendent spiritual power has decided that we have had enough and deserve some help. This "power" has set out to expose every aspect of the evil we suffer in order to break through the denial of the masses, and trigger whole-scale, systemic change. One bad apple? See the videos. Not abandoning the rule of law? See Bill Barr and whistle blowers. No need for big government? See Covid-19 response. Democratic institutions will hold? See voter suppression, Mike Pompeo and whistle blowers, June 1st protester assaults, the end of the two-party system and impeachment.

OK, I'm kidding. Mostly.

Have a good weekend, and thank you for all your hard work.

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Mr. Boehlert, I think you err in ascribing a rationality or coherence to Trump that he simply doesn't possess. Trump needs no "reason" for any of his actions.

Or rather Trump's reason for anything is Trump's perceived self-interest at any given moment.

It goes to his demands for fewer COVID tests. You see it as a way to lie about infection rates. Some see it as the "Schrodinger's Cat" of COVID. The cat isn't dead if we don't know it. The person isn't infected if we don't know it. I see it as Trump's long standing preference for the image over the reality, or perhaps the image as reality. It makes Trump look and feel good if there are no positive tests. That's the only "reality" that matters.

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I have a notion of a billionaire class that has moved beyond loyalty to any nation state or constitutional system, and views those things strictly in terms of self-interest. Agglomerating more wealth and power. Putinism is a good system from their p.o.v. It isn't so much that Trump is under Putin's thumb, or not just that. It's more that he wants to bring that system about in the US as well, and maybe the real oligarchs will let him be in their club, just like their pet Putin, if he can shred America into bits and rebuild it after the Russian model. It's not particularly conspiracy-mongering to say so. It's a fact that much of Putinism resembles the Republican vision for America--suppression of dissent, hatred of liberalism, policing homosexuals, quasi-official state religion, quasi-official state media, all kinds of goodies, what's not to like? A lot of 'em have been proclaiming their admiration for Putin since before Trump. McConnell is certainly on board. A presidency that shatters belief in formerly trusted institutions and organs of government by exacerbating every crisis is exactly what's required to get there. I don't think Trump is a member of any oligarchic cabal, but I do think he's aware of what those people want and regards his mission as bringing America to that future, because that's who he wishes he was.

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Great article with a "hair on fire" tinge. I think something to be considered about the NYT is that when they deliberately don't mention Trump in a piece and instead mention "government officials," it is trolling him. Nothing makes him happier than to get their attention, for good or ill. Trump loves and needs to be railing against something. Keep going after the press. They need it. But sometimes it may be something other than the evident.

Just saying.

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tRUMP-45 has behaved his entire term as a Russian asset. They bailed out his businesses, so he could remain solvent. They helped him get elected. He may be being blackmailed as well, for some perversion on video or evidence on his many other crimes. They have promised, along with Mark Zukerberg, to help him get elected again. (won't work as he is going down.)

So yeah what would the ex-KGB chief Putin want from him. Death and economic chaos in the U.S. A.

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