The Trump Administration – American Id(iot)
Tim Jones analyses the Trump Administration through the lens of the ‘id’. Will the super-ego keep them in check? Will Americans accept rule by kleptocrats and oligarchs?
HBO’s Bill Maher once described Donald Trump as ‘id’. That is, Latin for ‘it’. In Freudian terms, the unfiltered, raw and animalistic side to the human being. This is usually kept in check by the super ego. That is, the rules, prohibitions and inhibitions which prevent id based action – the conscience if you will.
This post refers not to Mr Trump’s personality, but to his administration as a whole. They have come to represent, in microcosm, many of the problems present within the American political system today. The Trump Administration represents the id of the hypocritical, corrupt, self-interested oligarchy that America has become.
Networks Don’t Rock the Boat
We start with the media. There has always been a tacit understanding between politicians and the media. The networks don’t rock the boat (read don’t do journalism) and in exchange they get access to the politicians. Were they to do real journalism, as Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski did to Debbie Wasserman Schultz during the campaign, threats could be made, as Schultz did, to talk to their boss if they didn’t tow the line. Trump has taken this tacit understanding one step further, with Kellyanne Conway, or, if you prefer her official title, Propaganda Barbie. Conway said that Trump surrogates would not appear on networks that did not ‘promote’ his agenda. Schultz may have threatened the media with blowback if they did not tow the line, but Propaganda Barbie threatened access to representatives of the Trump Administration.
This was a tacit understanding, the networks don’t rock the boat and they get access. But the Trump Administration, in its id, lacks the subtlety to keep it that way. In their brazenness, they have, intentionally or otherwise, exposed the corruption and the symbiotic relationship that exists between politicians and the media.
With a Little Help To My Friends
We now turn to policy, legislation and advisors. At a recent press conference about the undermining and eventual destruction of the weak and ineffectual Dodd-Frank Financial Reform bill, the President let two gems slip. This was, again intentionally or not, lay the game bare on the corruption, self-interest and symbiosis that exists between the US government and big business.
To quote the President, from CNBC
We expect to be cutting a lot out of Dodd-Frank because frankly, I have so many people, friends of mine that had nice businesses, they can’t borrow money.
There has long been a suspicion that US politicians have governed in both their own and their friends’/donors interests. But not one of them, even the often derided Mr. Bush, would ever have said it. President Trump just openly admitted that he was undertaking policy in the interests of his friends. Here, again, we see it – id – no filter at all. Policy (admittedly weak) that benefited the majority, is to be done away with to benefit a tiny fraction of the population. If America were not an oligarchy before, it certainly is now.
In that same press conference, Trump said that he had been advised on financial regulation and related matters by Jamie Dimon, the CEO of JPMorgan Chase. Indeed the President said there was ‘nobody better’ to advise him on such issues. Foxes guarding the hen-house, anyone? We see it here yet again: the public acknowledgement of the power and influence of special interests. No filter – the fox is advising me on how to protect the hens.
Finally, consider some of Mr. Trump’s Cabinet appointees: from Mr. Perry at Energy, to Mrs. DeVos at Education (who, through ‘campaign contributions’ – read bribes – quite literally bought her position), to Mr. Pruitt at the EPA. These people are actively opposed to the very agencies they have been appointed to lead.
That Republicans have been anti-government for at least a generation is well known. As well as their hostility to public education and environmental protection. But they have always worked covertly, behind the scenes to achieve their agenda. At least, they have couched it in rhetoric designed to sell it to the rubes.
But Mr. Trump, with his id mentality, lacks the subtlety to do that. He has no filter, and the hypocrisy, corruption and self-serving nature of his administration is on display for all to see.
There are two possible responses to this. Either the oligarchy is so well entrenched that, as Betsy DeVos did, they can literally buy and sell the government and are to be able to do as they please unimpeded, or this is seen as a signal moment in American history.
Trump’s lack of subtlety, as I said above, lays bare the corruption, hypocrisy and symbiosis that is the operating principle of American governance. America, do you take this opportunity, or do you accept rule by kleptocrats and oligarchs?
This is your moment – I am not holding my breath
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It is quite clear. In America we have the best government money can buy. There is no longer any subtlety about any of it. Never mind foxes and hen houses. We have literal thieves guarding the Treasury. America is now over.
Tim, two quick additions in the interest of parity:
1. Clinton beat Trump in “intentionally or otherwise, expos[ing] the corruption and the symbiotic relationship that exists between politicians and the media”.
2. In the spirit of US entrepreneurship, all things are for sale.
I’m pinching “Propaganda Barbie”. Boom.
After seeing the reaction to DeVos et al it had me thinking about here. Our Cabinet picks are put through no hearings, no vote. In Cabinet nominations we are far worse than them. His picks aren’t even the fox guarding the henhouse, they are the fox destroying the henhouse.
Don’t worry though, Alex Jones says he will bring back provenance and righteousness LOL
These kleptocrats and oligarchs are open and honest about the fact! The US Government is a Franchise owned by the City of London. They own all the assets, the future labour, intellectual property and resources of the people. Same in Australia. We are governed by law of the sea, not law of the land. I find it amusing when AIMN articles attack Trump and his personality. For better or worse, he is President of USA Inc. If HRC was President, would we get the same level of feedback, analysis and opinion, I wonder? Slick Willie got away with murder when he was President, We are just now learning how corrupt, devious and self seeking he and his Foundations performed. We are just now seeing evidence of arrests associated with the pedophile Podesta boys. The Protocols refer to us as “cattle”, and Trump realizes that Americans are being milked for the benefit of the European Union (NATO), the Five Eyes (ANZUS), and the UN. The World is waking up and leaving the Yin period and moving to the Yang. I am not surprised so many feminists are upset.
Robert Shaw, in case you hadn’t noticed, this is an article (a good one) about the corruption of Trump, not Hillary, so get off your fake high horse.
No actually, I hadn’t noticed. I thought it was an article on political corruption across the board. I would never think that AIM would be so partisan as to damn and convict just the one side when both are guilty of the same crime.
And l’ll get off my fake high horse when you clear the bong smoke from your addled mind.
Robert. I find you comment a tad confusing. Trump is now the President. His administration should be criticised.
Hilary is over. Finished. Gone. Nada. Nothing. Zilch. That time has passed. You seem to want to take the approach that we in no way shape or form criticise the Turnbull Front Bench, but instead focus on Labor (I know that is a normal thing on this site haha!) but you know what I mean, I hope.
Just forget about Hilary. The next Democratic President is tipped to be Gavin Newsom. Based on the fact that he looks like Matthew McConaughy, and he is damn hottie. I think even the republican women will vote for him. Look out Trump! No one will care about his policies. He could just say random stuff that means nothing and people will vote for him. Oh Wait………
One would have thought Trump would have been clever enough to surround himself with clever people instead of yes men who are more irrational than he.
when did the US Government become a Franchise owned by the City of London? Or, am I being too literal. Could you please give me some insight?
Robert, to infer that another commenter is under the influence of an illegal substance is a bit below the belt.
Sorry if this comes across as advertising, but I encourage everyone to watch Channel 10’s I’m a Celebrity… at 7pm in which Tom Arnold talks about a tape he has seen – outtakes from The Apprentice – in which Trump says the most outrageous things, including calling his autistic son Barron a moron.
I didn’t realise Barron was autistic. On Trump’s outrageous election night when most of us in AUS were watching on late at night, I was reminded how very late it was for that poor kid who was showing the signs of exhaustion as you would expect a child at that late hour in the US.
No wonder Melania is more protective of the boy with a pig father like that.
OK, you can all turn off your TVs now. There’s more to this story which Tom Arnold spoke about, but he didn’t reveal all of what he saw and heard on the tape. He left out the bit about Trump’s son, but I thought it the most damning part.
I’m going back to my bong. 😉
Am I being unduly suspicious but what father holds hand of married adult daughter. Something he is reluctant to do with the wife. I got impression she pulled her hand away. Reminds me of an elderly father that finds them self relying more and more on their daughter.
I find that family very unusual. All adult children including in-laws are bound to Trump. Trump centre of their world.
It’s called massive wealth, FnF.
Not at all. 🙂
I’m simply mocking the idiotic myopia that passes for commentary by some here, some like silkworm, who think that “Left is Good” in each and every circumstance.
They clearly are not.
My point is simple: we will be forever consigned to opposition, to a dwindling electoral base, to be a force of reaction rather than agency, if we do not first undertake an honest and often brutal self examination.
For example: this article suggests, among other things, that Trump “represents the id of the hypocritical, corrupt, self-interested….”.
To be sure, he most certainly does. But to sweep, what I believe to be, the equally corrosive forces within the Clinton junta under the carpet (evidenced in my two examples) seems to me to be a most despicable act of dishonesty, of sophistry. I don’t believe that on such foundations we can build a party worth following, worth believing in, worth fighting for, worth staking our children’s future on.
The election of Trump has proven that view correct on nearly every count.
I have read not one syllable from any source, anywhere, to contradict that view.
What does that say to you Trish?
We are very similar in many ways, so I ask that question sincerely – what does that tell you of our current state, and our current dilemma? On the one hand half the Leftie’s here still have no idea why Trump won, and on the other they believe the Berkeley rioters justified and their cause legitimate.
It’s to these people that I entrust my children’s political future??
No Trish, this battle goes way deeper than simply these distracting idiocies.
Trump and Hanson are the products of our indolence, our hubris, and our slow tap dance to the Right.
Until we press the reset button and take the lead on policies essential to the everyday lives of normal everyday people, speak to their immediate concerns, present options and solutions to the very things that trouble them such as jobs, healthcare, their children’s education, housing affordability, then we may as well pack up our tent and go home.
We’ve forgotten those skills, that capacity for conversation, for listening.
We’re more content it seems in the sandpit of puerile name calling Liberal politicians, of ridiculing their policies whilst offering none of our own.
And people have stopped listening.
I once imagined that to be the worst affliction.
Not only did they stop listening but they voted the other way!
And I thought that to be the worst calamity.
Not only had they stopped listening, not only had they voted the other way, but now they despised us, mocked us, openly savaged us!
And our response?
Deer in headlights.
Scrambling for a foothold.
And I’ll tell you this much Trish, we ain’t gonna find that foothold in defending the fires of Berkeley, calling Turnbull ‘Turncow’, laughing at Hanson’s diction, or placing our spin on Pickering’s cartoons.
Trump is installed.
Europe is on the precipice.
And we have fools here telling me that my opinion is hate speech.
Labor and the Left are our best hope for a redemptive social and political practice.
Not in these hands though.
Not by a long shot.
Something to consider. And consider very seriously.
And yes, I do know what you mean.
The barbs come easy enough.
Constructive, positive, critique and suggestion, not so.
Keep plugging away though Trish.
To you and Victoria.
Sorry many, myself included are very aware of why Trump won. For the same reasons the likes of Abbott did. Sick of left being describes as being stupid.
I have come along way over my life to be rusted on Labor. From DLP, even once Liberal when Gorton run. From anti-communist to a socialist. All choices I made.
Don’t bother replying as I won’t be following this line of tripe. Have better things to do with my time.
Yes, people have stopped listening. What they can’t ignore is the results of this government is emerging. All Abbott’s chickens coming home to roost
It is all about perceptions not listening.
Jennifer more about control by father. Frightening.
Ok RGS or DR or OJ or whatever other acronym you wish to call yourself,
mere mortals like myself would like some insight into how to compete against AltRight arseholes like Trump, Hanson and their brigades, with good homegrown equitable Alternative Left Progressive measures.
Care to start the list running?
you have my respect and understanding.
Jennifer, we had a similar troll on Bob Ellis’ site that adopted multiple identities, each one claiming to be of the Left, and yet despising the Left at the same time. He/she/it was extremely arrogant, long-winded and narcissistic. Perhaps this RS or DR or OJ is just a continuation of the Ellis site troll.
Oh, and it used the same insult against me here as it did on the Ellis site, that I was a bong user.
“The Left must listen to the insights of the Hanson supporters.” Eff off.
I’ve already started the ‘running list’.
i’ve seen your banal blogging MO a thousand times.
You enter a conversation with a slur and an accusatory question.
You get an answer, a slur of your own, and a return question.
You disappear, only to reappear two threads down the road with another idiotic slur.
You asked about Milo.
I told you.
I then gave you my thoughts as to how and why the Left can eschew violence, assault, censorship, and hypocrisy.
I asked you several questions in return.
True to form, no response.
True to form, here with a new ad hominem.
You don’t contribute to debate or insight.
You’re just a pedestrian, a blogging bludger, riding on the back of other people’s ideas whilst offering nothing.
The only time you write more than a sentence on anything is to herald the single subject – medicinal marijuana.
That’s how I knew to drop the bong smoke line.
You think I’m going to have my political compass, my political opinions, commented on by the likes of you?!?!
Add irony-free comedian to your frugal list of ‘skills’.
A quick tip: Afghani black hash, soft as butter, will work wonders for you. If it doesn’t, and I don’t see it why it wouldn’t, try the Moroccon dry. It is tan/almond in colour and true to name is very crumbly. Almost like shortbread.
Either one, you can’t go wrong.
It will clear the cobwebs and restore some clarity and courage to your ‘contributions’.
At least that’s what I’m told.
Robert G. Shaw February 12, 2017 at 9:55 p
more and more I’m getting where you are coming from and am starting to agree with a whole lot of your assumptions