The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool.
– Richard P. Feynman
In case you missed the show last night, it was the last Presidential Debate of this 2016 election. Two and a half more weeks and we’ll know who will be leading the “free world.” We’ve all seen Donal J. Trump speak countless times over the past year. Undoubtedly he speaks with fervor and passion; it is hard not to get sucked into what he is saying. That is until you realize the substance of what he says is shallow and has no meaning behind it. Behind his words are simply fear tactics and sound bites.
sad troubling (as Clinton would say) thing is that he is so adamant about his rhetoric. He believes with all of his energy in what he is saying. That is why while he is speaking, he’ll sometimes realize what he just spoke makes no sense or was completely false and he’ll catch himself off guard. Even in those moments, Trump doesn’t admit he was wrong. He’ll “modify” his words, or simply steer the conversation elsewhere. As Scott Adams would say, this is the master persuader at work. It is because he can’t succumb belief that what he said was wrong. I believe this all stems from the fact that he hasn’t had very many people that ever stood up to him. He has rarely, if ever, had to admit that he is wrong. He’s gotten away with being a bully for so long, he doesn’t know how to say: “you know what, you’re right and I was wrong. Let’s move past this.”
I’ll give him credit for pointing out lots of real issues, and it seems to get him a large following for doing so. It has become obvious to me that he is only popular for what he is not, and not what he is. And what he isn’t is part of the establishment—the status quo. Running on that platform given the level of distrust there is in government gives him an edge. That’s why I won’t be surprised if he is elected. As Feynman might say, Trump has definitely fooled himself. The question is has he fooled enough Americans come November 8th?