The convolutions of Donald Trump's character are too numerous and perverse to succinctly summarize. Suffice to say that he is a twisted bundle of frayed nerves and psychoses. His contradictions and hypocrisies are legendary. And anyone who thinks that they can anticipate his behavior - other than as hostile and self-serving - is fooling themselves.
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In a new interview conducted by Raheem Kassam of the ultra-rightist National Pulse, Trump put this personality disorder on display. It was 36 minutes of incoherent rambling and rehashing of the same delusional talking points that he has been dispensing for years.
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The interview began with Kassam asking Trump about the state of immigration: "Did you ever think you'd see this level of American Carnage?" That was a throwback reference to Trump's infamous "American Carnage" inauguration address. Trump's reply was a typically tortured tirade that utterly avoided reality...
"No. Nobody has ever seen anything like this. [...] Nobody has any idea where these people are coming from. We know they come from prisons. We know they come mental institutions, insane asylums. We know they're terrorists. Nobody has ever seen anything like we're witnessing right now. It is a very sad thing for our country. It's poisoning the blood of our country. It's so bad."
So in a single reply Trump asserted that "Nobody has any idea where these people are coming from," then proceeds to tell Kassam where they are all coming from. And, of course, it was all completely false and profoundly racist. He went on to lie that there were zero terrorists intercepted by border patrol during his occupation of the White House. (Fact Check: 216 people on the terrorist watchlist were apprehended this year. There were 280 in 2019 during the Trump administration).
The interview briefly touched on Trump's television habits. We know that he was an avid viewer of Fox News and other right-wing media while allegedly serving as president. He was reported to have watched as much as eight hours of television every day. Most of that was Fox News or some other Trump-fluffing outlet that catered to his massive yet fragile ego. And apparently nothing has changed, according to Trump in the following portion of the interview (full video here, beginning at 4:20)...
Kassam: You make a point about the press and the media. And I think that most of the media is quite hostile towards you. I think one that I think people are surprised that have been hostile towards you has been Fox. Especially recently...
Trump: We've done well with Fox over the years. [...] But somehow there's just an edge there. You take a look at the anchors, look at Sean Hannity, Laura's been great. They've been good. But there's an overhang if you just feel, there's something missing.
Kassam: But do you think [Rupert Murdoch] is going, he kind of went all in against you in this primary cycle. And I think he's realized now that he's not gonna win that battle. Do you think that's why he's kind of shuffling...
Trump: Well they put everything against DeSanctimonious. And he's not a talented person. He's just not a talented person. He only won because I endorsed him. He was at 3%, he was dead, and I endorsed him. [...]
[Note: It's always been curious how Trump frequently brags about having endorsed people who he considers losers and liars and incompetents, and then takes credit for their political victories. Why the heck did he endorse them?]
Trump: The anchors are so good. Jesse [Watters] has been great. Greg [Gutfeld] has been great. You look at what he's done, right? They've all been good. You look on Saturday, it's been fantastic with Pete Hegseth, Rachel [Campos-Duffy], Will [Cain]. So we get a lot of good support. And lately Brian Kilmeade's been great. But Steve Doocy's been terrible. I mean, to me he's been just terrible. He's hurting the show. Ainsley [Earhardt] is good. [...]
Kassam: You still watch it a lot then?
Trump: Yeah, I watch it. I watch it. I watch it, and I watch Newsmax. I try not to watch the other...There's so much fake news. I mean honestly, somebody like MSNBC, it's so bad and so vicious, and same thing with CNN, but maybe even to a lesser extent. But I watch these two and honestly, it's a campaign contribution what they do. It's a campaign contribution. And they should pay a lot of money. Somebody has to pay for this. Because that's an absolute campaign contribution. And they can't be allowed to be able to get away with this. It's so unfair.
So Trump watches quite a bit of Fox News, despite the fact that he has recently maligned them saying that "Fox News is dead,", and that "Fox News daytime is not watchable," and that "Fox News Polls are totally FAKE."
Trump's idea of a free press is one that is consistently adoring of him, and anything less than worshipful devotion is tantamount to treason. He recently used that exact language to condemn the media saying that "They are almost all dishonest and corrupt [and] should be investigated for its ‘Country Threatening Treason.’" He elaborated threatening that "when I WIN the Presidency of the United States, they and others of the LameStream Media will be thoroughly scrutinized," and that they should not "be entitled to use the very valuable Airwaves of the USA," and that they "should pay a big price for what they have done."
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The rest of the interview was boilerplate, dishonest Trumpisms about abortion after birth, which is not a thing; the January 6th insurrection that he incited; his efforts to overturn the election with fake electors; the Mueller report and what he calls the Russia, Russia, Russia scam; and of course, his perpetual preposterous whining about Biden being incompetent and/or corrupt. In other words, it was Trump being Trump, and abandoning what the rest of us recognize as a little thing called reality.