Our previous resolve not to expend any further vocabulary on the subject of our sitting President was irresistibly shattered by a particular Presidential declaration, so reprehensible, yet so uniquely revelatory, that adherence might be tantamount to committing the historically forbidden sin of silence.

The shameful and arbitrary pardoning of the bigoted Sheriff Joe Arpaio, the vain, outspoken innovator of desert concentration camps for undocumented immigrants, was egregious and reprehensible.  This Presidential pardon was not, as previously, granted to a convicted person serving time for a violation of criminal law. It was instead issued for the willful disobedience of a judicial subpoena to appear in Court to answer for the offense of criminal contempt of Court. The pardon was a shameful approval of Arpaio’s arrogant act of disrespect for the Rule of Law and a Presidential “tip of the hat” to an obscene act amounting to “giving the finger” to a Judge. It is observed moreover, that the recipient, himself, is a sadistic enforcer of the law, especially regarding Latino immigrants without official papers.

We have observed that the tactical timing of the public announcement of the pardon, at the onset of the horrific Houston disaster, sought to utilize the diversion created by the Houston event so that it would not be especially noticed by the public; but noticed, subliminally, by potential witnesses to be called in the Russia inquiry. They would now, presumably have the assurance that “he has their back” regarding any potential peril implicit in offering supportive, perhaps, false testimony in his behalf.

In response to questions posed, as to the timing of the announcement of the pardon, at a public press conference, Trump’s response was so shameful and obnoxious (but at the same time, so self- revelatory) as to warrant the stated exception to our previous firm resolve.  Trump’s incredible response was that he felt that the Arpaio pardon would garner greater television ratings than the Houston catastrophe. In addition to amounting to a false statement of intention, and a shameful juxtaposition of the two events, it was unmistakably revelatory as to his single, and singular, criterion for the determination of significance, television viewer ratings. This neurosis may not have been harmful when Trump was the glitzy host of a vapid television game show but is now exceedingly alarming considering that he has been vested with the position of President of the United States of America and leader of the free world.

In past writings, we have maintained that the true measure of personal success is best determined, internally, by rational personal criteria, as distinguished from an external accounting of one’s acquisition of assets and notoriety. However, regarding the nuanced character of this note’s selected personality, any such determination would certainly not be binding on others. Value and significance to our Mr. Trump, by his explicit admission, is solely dependent upon an official count of eye balls trained on the television screen. He has, admittedly, been successful in his aspiration beyond measure, in becoming the acknowledged subject du jour, as appears, of all news- oriented media.

The classic syndrome of the neurotically needy child who will tactically misbehave in order to attract attention to himself, even at the risk of punishment (the latter certainly qualifying as exclusively personal attention) is especially unfortunate and worrying when carried into adulthood. To observe that the concern is greatly exacerbated when such an inadequately socialized adult attains the position of our nation’s chief executive, may well qualify as a sardonic understatement.

Consistent with such adolescent, narcissistic need for approval and adulation, he has sought to create the illusion that his public rallies are attended by huge crowds, irrespective of photographic proof to the contrary, has rewarded those who tactically sing his praises and fired (with the same verve as he employed in the game show “The Apprentice”) those who do not, and has maintained the simplistic view of the international scene that evinces favor for those countries who in his perception “ like” America, and views as enemies, those who do not.

Our view, concerning personally internalized criteria for success, would, no doubt judge him happy, given all the attention he attracts (for good or bad), except for the empirical fact that this neurosis is insatiable. We are inclined to observe that this game show affliction appears to be chronic, and, unhappily, predict that it will persist.


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Retired from the practice of law'; former Editor in Chief of Law Review; Phi Beta Kappa; Poet. Essayist Literature Student and enthusiast.

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