It was interesting to hear Lev Parnas comment to Anderson Cooper today that he once had such “a shrine” to Trump in his home, and that he “idolized him” and “thought he was the savior.”
It exemplifies the apparently religious fervor that many of Trump’s most ardent supporters express.
I am loathe to give Trump credit for anything. But I am always surprised at his ability to instill loyalty in his base.
He truly could shoot someone in broad daylight and still retain his followers, as he once so infamously claimed. That’s why it’s naive to think they’d care about graft or election interference or collusion with foreign powers.
What is it about the man? He has zero charisma. He’s mercurial and confusing about his positions, he’s inarticulate, and he’s sometimes incoherent. He isn’t handsome. And his habit of attacking people seems to contradict every Dale Carnegie training course I ever heard of.
But watch footage of his rallies. The attendees devour his every word with elation. I am a reasonably intelligent and likable adult. And so, presumably, are you. Yet we will never know such adulation in our lifetimes.
No matter how vague or dumb or muddled or ugly his message may be, he inexplicably induces euphoria in them. The psychology of that is blackly fascinating.
Recall, please, that Trump’s supporters (if not his base) comprise roughly a third of the American electorate. How can so many people have brains that are so tragically wired like that?
The Age of Trump has me worried not just about him, or about his base, but about human beings in general.