The Embattled President

One thing is crystal clear by now. The 45th President of the United States sees himslef beseiged by enemies on every side – the Press, the People, Democrats, Republicans, other two Branches of Federal Government, and of course women (other than “his” women), darker-skinned people, immigrants and refugees, most foreign countries – and is actively, proactively engaged in a battle to the death. Judge for yourself whether this will end well for anybody.

Whether or not you believe the 45th President to be psychopathic and addicted to public attention, he operates like a disruptive force of Nature, like a hurricane: everyone has to hunker down and hold on as best they can when he is around, and everything stops until his attention has turned to other opportunities to terrify large numbers of people.

In what is now typical Presidential behavior, the current head of State barks orders, most of which aren’t even remotely Constitutional. While the media and its “consumers” struggle to see some rational plan behind the chaos, they are owned and controlled completely by what the Samurai considered entry-level strategy.

“The Way and The Power” (subtitled “Secrets of Japanese Strategy”, by Fredrick J. Lovret, Paladin Press), tells us that acting like a general with his men “… does not work against a well-organized group, because its combined will is much stronger than yours as an individual. To order such a group around, you must first turn it into a mob. Then you can treat this mob as if it were a single individual of very low intelligence. …To destroy this cohesion, cause them to think more about each other than about you.

“One way to break up the cohesion of a group is to concentrate on one person. Strike him so that he is knocked into one of his teammates. Once this starts happening, the other members will start worrying more about tripping over each other than hitting you. As soon as you sense a lack of coordination in the group, start shouting orders. This will create even more confusion, allowing you to knock down a few more opponents.”

The President has not, as far as I know, studied much of anything, let alone ancient Japanese martial arts. But consider the character of a schoolyard bully with a rich and powerful father in the New York City real estate business. The stress on this child must have been unimaginable. Some people grow up to thrive on this kind of relentless terror. They are not in it for the money, or even the power: it’s the juice. It’s the adrenalin rush of living on the edge when the stakes are extreme.

Genghis Khan is famously quoted on this point (this is as close to what he may have actually said as we’re going to get, being contemporary report, translated last into French and finally English):

“…the greatest enjoyment of a man is to overcome his enemies, drive them before him, snatch what they have, to see the people to whom they are dear with their faces bathed in tears, to ride their horses, to [squeeze in his arms] their daughters and women.” – from a French translation of the Jami’ al-tawarikh (the Ilkhanate’s “History of the World”)

Hail to the Chief…

(c) 2019 Peter Barus