A historian tried to place President Donald Trump and his glaring neuroses into context, and he wondered when the unceasing drama would end.
Jon Meacham, a historian and executive editor of Random House, told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that Trump’s tweets Tuesday demonstrated “the limits of the reality TV presidency.”
“Don’t you remember all those JFK tweets from the missile crisis?” Meacham said. “‘My cigar is bigger than your cigar?’ No, but we’ve all made the point that it’s like Miranda in ‘The Tempest’: ‘It’s a brave new world that has such people in it.’ This is such a president in it.”
Meacham said the presidency was hindered by Trump’s disinterest — or inability — to reach voters outside his insubstantial base.
“It seems to me we’ve almost without a doubt now, which is always a dangerous thing to say in human affairs, but pretty much without doubt, we are dealing with someone who is governing for his 30 percent to 38 percent of the public,” Meacham said. “He’s not interested in growing that number particularly, he’s not interested in what other world leaders actually think about him. What he’s interested in is what they say to him.”
The historian predicted later in Wednesday’s program that Americans would eventually get sick of seeing Trump’s name in every headline, but for now the media served a vehicle to stroke the president’s fragile ego.
“We’re living through a kind of national experiment in narcissistic disorder, and we have to figure out, you know, can there be an intervention in time or are we going to continue to have to watch this drama unfold?” Meacham said. “I fear it’s the latter.”