The inmates have taken over the asylum
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Artist Abroad

The inmates have taken over the asylum

/ 08:00 AM March 18, 2020

President Donald Trump speaks during a White House briefing on coronavirus. AP PHOTO

NEW YORKIt’s the blond leading the blind.

That blond, or President Less Than Zero (PLTZ), has described the COVID-19 virus as “foreign.” I wouldn’t be surprised if that yellow head of his thinks therefore that he can have ICE deport it, banished from his America, barred from ever returning. We all know that he has an unshakeable belief in how his fantasies are actually real, while the rest of us who don’t go along with his pretend world are not, that the complexities of this planet, and of us as living, breathing human beings, are all fake news. The fact that he has fired so many of his Cabinet isn’t surprising. As the host of The Apprentice, PLTZ’s go-to phrase was “You’re fired!”

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Weaponized, it was a phrase that demonstrated unequivocally that he was the Man, completely in charge,  a virtual God. One who could do no wrong.

Thus, convinced of his own infallibility, that he was a “stable genius,” he believed he could grab women by their genitals, and did. He believed he knew more than the weather experts, using a Sharpie to indicate erroneously a storm’s path. Being Vladimir Putin’s fanboy, he has repeatedly ignored the advice of top security experts in government that Russia interfered in the 2016 elections and will likely interfere again this November.

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From 2017 to 2019, PLTZ  has made 16,241 false or misleading claims. Not surprising then that in the current pandemic crisis, PLTZ has on a number of occasions contradicted his own health professionals, claiming at one point that even if you were a carrier but the symptoms were manageable, you could go to work, and everything would be fine. If anyone was to blame for this crisis—he described it as a hoax, by the way—it would be the demonic Democrats desirous of usurping his throne. (Not surprisingly, given his profligate mendacity, a healthy skepticism abounds, on whether or not he was actually tested for the virus, and if so, whether it was in fact negative.)

Come to think of it, doesn’t his use of the word “foreign” implicitly translate into a push yet again for that wall? This is the only solution his brain seems to be able to conceptualize. Any and every problem that he discerns, the robotic response he favors is to build a barrier. Whatever problems we face are not, are never, home grown; they originate from outside the country’s borders.

And there is another innuendo in the use of the word “foreign,” one rooted in the shameful and still extant xenophobia that is never far from the surface here and that has very demonstratively roared back to life these past three years—an innuendo that revives fears of the Yellow Peril, the irrational fear that hordes from the East will undermine the sacrosanct Via Americana, that people from south of the border will “invade” the country and wreak havoc, taking away jobs, women, and soiling the purity of the race.

It is a reminder of the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act, still the only federal law that explicitly targeted an ethnic group, though that prejudice was aimed as well at other Asian groups: the Japanese, the Koreans, South Asians, and Filipinos. As Carlos Bulosan once wrote in his classic America Is in the Heart, speaking of the Depression era, “[I]n many ways, it was a crime to be a Filipino in California.”

When PTLZ  pushes for “America First,” what is he really saying? That a nation built by immigrants from all over the globe should stand apart from the rest of humanity. And by “stand apart” I don’t mean that he envisions a transcendent nation at the top of the mountain, a nation of glorious promise standing head and shoulders above the rest.

But of course transcendence is not a word, or a glimmer of an idea, in his vocabulary. He means that literally America should isolate itself from the rest of the world. He may not know it but in effect he is saying that the country should quarantine itself.

Now there’s an idea well worth applying but only to PLTZ  and his cabal. Social distancing at its best!

Copyright L.H. Francia 2020

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TAGS: COVID-19 leadership, President Trump, The Apprentice, Trump lies, xenophobia
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