I am writing this at a particular moment in time. It is Thursday, January 14, 2021. There are five days left in the Donald Trump Presidency.
I wanted to begin by marking what day it is because I feel this moment will eventually be forgotten.
Someday we will tell out grandchildren, "By the end of the Trump Presidency businesses were closed, buildings were boarded up, people couldn't leave their houses. There was a vaccine, multiple vaccines, for the virus that kept everyone in their homes, but Trump quit caring, and vaccines almost went to waste waiting to be shipped out across the country.
Our grandchildren will not believe us. "No, come on," they'll say. "You're making it up."
No, we are not making it up.
I worked under a bad boss several years ago, who quit trying, openly stopped caring, and eventually was fired by the company we worked for.
A co-worker of mine at the time said to me, "I always wondered what exactly a bad boss is. How does a bad boss act? What does a bad boss look like? Well, now I know. That's what a bad boss looks like."
Donald Trump was always a terrible President; self-obsessed, racist, corrupt, reactionary, spiteful.
Then, eventually, he quit caring and quit trying.
Eventually the country fired him.
Many people are tempted to declare Donald Trump the worst President of all time. He might be. It's hard to tell, because moments are forgotten. We have no real way of knowing just how bad several 1800's Presidents were. Andrew Jackson? Three words: Trail of Tears. Franklin Pierce and James Buchanan? Come on down Civil War! Herbert Hoover? Hm, well, this one is an interesting comparison.
The Great Depression began on Hoover's watch, and Hoover's response was a yawn and a shrug. Homeless campouts were named after him; "Hoovervilles."
One person I was talking to about this recently suggested that this means we should rename all over-capacity hospitals "Trump-villes," or better yet, Trump Towers.
The point is a simple one. We don't know exactly how bad some of those old Presidents were in the context of their times. The only real reference point we have is how bad Trump has been from day one, and how horrifically terrible he has become in his final days in office. Trump has been so bad that many many liberal Democrats have openly said they would do anything to have Mitt Romney as President. Romney lost to Obama in 2012 (a little reference point for our grandchildren). Trump has been so bad that he has made those of us who couldn't stand George W. Bush, recall with fondness his butchering of the English language ('misunderestimate'), and pine for the good old days.
Trump has been so bad that the United States of America is poorer, worse off, more depressed and more scared than at any time in recent memory.
That's what a bad President looks like! Now we know. Good riddance Donnie baby. Don't trip over the armed extremists in the doorway on your way out. Don't be alarmed. You invited them
January 14. 2021