In the time since Donald Trump “returned” to social media by launching his own fringe social network, I’ve made a point of ignoring probably 95% of what he’s said. Even when he’s made posts that I thought were newsworthy in terms of what they gave away about his strategy or mindset, I’ve always been careful not to simply post them in full. Trump was banned from major social networks after January 6th for a reason, and I don’t want to be one of the people who unwittingly gives him his voice back by automatically writing about every inane and idiotic thing he says.
All that said, with Donald Trump now days or hours from being criminally indicted in Manhattan, his words feel a bit more relevant – if still not in any way reliable. For instance, when he recently announced that he was going to be arrested on Tuesday, it was newsworthy. It was also baseless. It turned out Trump hadn’t been informed of the date of his arrest, he was just taking his best guess and stating it as if it were something he knew to be the case.
So it stood out as interesting that Trump began pushing two narratives on Sunday night. One was that Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg is the one who should be criminally indicted. This appears to be a classic case of projection. By calling for Bragg to be arrested, Trump is acknowledging that he really does expect to be arrested.
The second narrative from Trump on Sunday night was that President Biden does “NOTHING except Eat, Sleep, and S..t!” I didn’t censor that; he censored himself. But it’s still an utterly bizarre thing for him to post. Then again, Trump just described the daily life that a lot of people perceive prisoners to have. Perhaps Trump has now become obsessed with the scary thought that, like Al Capone, like John Gotti, like other crime bosses who were once universally thought untouchable, he might indeed spend the rest of his life behind bars.
In any case, Donald Trump’s psychological condition appears to be unraveling even further as the hours tick away to his indictment and arrest. His posts to his social media network are now entirely in all capital letters. Much of what he says makes no sense on any level. Either Trump is that far gone or he wants us to think he is. Some have suggested that Trump is now aiming for an insanity defense at trial. If so, it’s yet another aspect of the criminal justice system that he misunderstands, because this isn’t how you go about it.
Even if Trump did manage to defy the odds and successfully plead mental incompetence at trial, it would certainly be the end of his political relevance. It seems more likely that Trump, who has spent 76 years committing crimes and managing to not get criminally indicted for them, is merely falling apart upon realizing that he’s finally getting indicted – and he has no experience or playbook when it comes to being a criminal defendant.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report