September 18, 2017

Not a big twitter day for the President, and I wasn’t expecting anything other than perhaps an early morning dig at anyone from the Emmys last night.  That didn’t happen.  I think it highly likely that Trump will get back at one or several people from last night whenever any of their names appear in the news again.  Vindictiveness is one of Trump’s defining characteristics and I guarantee he’s not going to let last night go.

This past day, as often is the case, staffers are loading images on Trump’s twitter feed and it’s possible he writes the blurbs for most of them.  There is the highly predictable video of himself reading, rather uncomfortably, from a prepared statement for the UN Assembly.

It’s not that Trump can’t read.  He just doesn’t enjoy it and it is done with difficulty. He also has a hard time remaining focused for more than a minute or two, so lengthy reading for enjoyment would be entirely impossible.


“Trump also “skims The Wall Street Journal.” He doesn’t get The Washington Post, although a friend predicted that would change soon.”

“His aides reportedly subscribed to an electronic clipping service before Trump’s campaign so they could print out articles with mentions of the president’s name.”

“Trump rarely reads books and doesn’t use his phone for anything but making calls, the report said.”


It is with this in mind, and other similar reports, that we can conclude that something like this:

“Chain migration — the ability for the Dreamers to sponsor relatives, including their parents who broke the law by bringing them to the U.S. — is one of a number of issues President Trump and congressional leaders will have to work out as they reach for a deal on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, the Obama-era amnesty that the administration is phasing out.”

results in a tweet like this:

Trump doesn’t read the newspaper, he scans it for mentions of his name.  This one resulted in a golden nugget for him.  A catch phrase that could be reused. It’s not that “chain migration” is a new concept, it’s new to Trump.

His difficulty with reading affects his ability to grasp subtleties and nuance, and ultimately results in incoherent ideas and the absence of well formed ideas. I almost hate to get into this, but let’s go ahead and do it.  The above speech at the UN is probably the most dense speech I have ever seen Trump read.  Obviously not in his language.  Further, it appears to be about 8-12 sentences a page.

If you’ll notice the Secretary General, on the right of the President, can’t keep his eyes off of the paper Trump is reading from.  I’m willing to bet it’s marked up with placeholders, much like the way Trump needs to keep a finger stabbing on the page so he won’t lose his place.

A large amount of words look like an ominous jungle to Trump.  It’s true.  This is, far and away, his best attempt at remaining focused on the written word.

Look at this. This speech is about 6-8 sentences per 8 1/2×11 paper.  Very large text. His inability to remain focused is maddening. This is, however, written in his own simple language. It’s hard to watch, because it takes 10 minutes to say these 7 sentences:

Today I am here to let you know that I am here to listen to you.  Our nation is too divided.  We talk past each other, not too each other and those that seek office do not do enough to step into the community and learn what is going on.  I am here to learn, so that we can together learn to remedy injustice  Our political system has failed the people and works only to enrich itself.  I want to reform that system so that it works for you.  I believe true reform can only come from outside the system.

what do Trumps hand written speeches look like?  Freeze this around 16-20 seconds.


It is important to understand this limitation on the President.  It is important to understand this because it informs us as to not only where he can get his information from, but also what he is capable of understanding.



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