Wednesday, November 16, 2016

CURMUDGUCATION: Trump Teaching Lesson

CURMUDGUCATION: Trump Teaching Lesson:

Trump Teaching Lesson

There's an aspect of Candidate Trump's success that I think is both under-discussed and also a good lesson/reminder for those of us in the teaching biz.

Trump never made folks feel stupid.

Seriously. Members of the public would figuratively run up to him hollering, "Good lord, did you see this terrible story on the internet," and without batting an eye, Trump would respond "I know!! Incredible, right?"   Like Walt Whitman, he could declaim at length about his own awesomeness without ever having to belittle the crowd around him to embiggify himself (because he's just that awesome). He is large; he contains multitudes.

Meanwhile, Clinton could not avoid making people feel stupid. She was the stern one, incapable of not figuratively rolling her eyes at the latest stupid thing that voters had said. She would point out something stupid that Trump had said, not understanding that her message was, "How stupid do you have to be to believe this guy?"

People hate feeling stupid. Hate it. But Trump, with all the basic markers of success like money and fame and arrogance-laced confidence, still managed to say to voters, "Hey, you're all cool." And he augmented that with a natural instinct for the use of third person-- the people who were stupid or bad, those people were "them" or "they." Trump invited folks to join him in being the smart one, the smartest one of all, so smart you wouldn't even believe the smartitude. Meanwhile, Clinton et al just couldn't help letting it slip how dumb the think the yokels are, or trying to move the discussion to questions of facts and data and policy and ethical issues like how to treat other human beings, and all that wonky smarty-pants book talk also made some folks feel stupid. You've got a 
CURMUDGUCATION: Trump Teaching Lesson:

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