I wonder whether our president is losing something from his meagre store of mental clarity. Or maybe it's just that each day's dumbness crowds out the memory of the last episode, so you always think things are deteriorating, when actually it's just the same ongoing shit-show. The other day I was driving to Target, NPR on in the car, and it happened that his presser with the Spanish prime minister began just when I got there, so I sat in the parking lot and listened as he referred to the prime minister as the "president" of Spain, a wonderful country, a very wonderful country--great architecture there--before explaining, in the manner of someone who had been briefed earlier in the day, that Puerto Rico is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, which is "a very big ocean," and that you can't just drive trucks there from another state, but that everything is great, and everyone in Puerto Rico is thanking him for what a great job he's doing, or will do, or something.
And then there's this business, in connection with the Republicans' latest health-care debacle, about the need to get rid of the senate filibuster, and moreover what terrible bad luck it was that, just when they're running out of time to pass the health-care bill, a senator from Mississippi has to go into the hospital. And he would have voted for it! Sometimes, like when mocking John McCain's physical disability, he seems to understand that the R's problem is not that they can't get sixty votes but that they can't get fifty, or McCain's, which renders irrelevant the support of the Mississippian. But then it slips his mind, and he starts talking as if the filibuster is the culprit, as well as the hospitalization of the senator from Mississippi, who actually is not in the hospital, and could vote, but of course there will be no vote since there aren't fifty votes for the bill among the ailing and the well.
Also earlier this week, he was asked about some changes to his travel ban--who's on, who's off the list. Here's the transcript of the exchange:
You couldn't really say that the travel ban resides on an obscure byway of the official policy of the Trump administration. His slate, however, is blank.