You might not have heard this one yet, but one out of every 100 Americans attended Saturday's marches to protest the inauguration of President Trump. It's difficult to fully underline how staggering this is. One percent of the nation's entire population turned out in what's being described as the largest series of protest rallies in U.S. history, and we're not even counting the protests that occurred overseas. Jeremy Pressman of the University of Connecticut and the University of Denver's Erica Chenoweth estimated that 3,341,823 Americans participated in the Women's March in various cities last weekend. (The U.S. population is 323,127,513, according to the Census.)
And it's driving Trump bananas.
Getting under Trump's orange skin is relatively easy, and the bigger the event -- the bigger the statement, the more it'll fester. We know this from years of monitoring his Twitter account, and, most recently, we're hearing from actual Trump staffers who are leaking like Russian prostitutes, telling the press that Trump's cheese is rapidly sliding off his cracker.
Both The Washington Post and The New York Times ran stories on Tuesday, revealing a chief executive who's quick to rage, easily bored and who's obsessed with his reputation and legitimacy. The Times reported:
Mr. Trump grew increasingly angry on Inauguration Day after reading a series of Twitter messages pointing out that the size of his inaugural crowd did not rival that of Mr. Obama’s in 2009. But he spent his Friday night in a whirlwind of celebration and affirmation. When he awoke on Saturday morning, after his first night in the Executive Mansion, the glow was gone, several people close to him said, and the new president was filled anew with a sense of injury.
The new president is injured by... crowd sizes? The Women's March was only the first out of many, by the way, minus the rallies following Election Day, and Trump's already completely flummoxed by his own insecurities and weaknesses.
Meanwhile, The Washington Post informed us:
President Trump had just returned to the White House on Saturday from his final inauguration event, a tranquil interfaith prayer service, when the flashes of anger began to build.
Trump turned on the television to see a jarring juxtaposition — massive demonstrations around the globe protesting his day-old presidency and footage of the sparser crowd at his inauguration, with large patches of white empty space on the Mall. As his press secretary, Sean Spicer, was still unpacking boxes in his spacious new West Wing office, Trump grew increasingly and visibly enraged…Over the objections of his aides and advisers — who urged him to focus on policy and the broader goals of his presidency — the new president issued a decree: He wanted a fiery public response, and he wanted it to come from his press secretary.
In other words, the President Of The United States is completely butthurt over the colossal magnitude of the protests. Worse, he clearly can't hold it together -- more evidence of his horrendously erratic temperament and upside-down instincts.
New York Magazine summarized the Post's reporting like so:
1. After forcing Spicer to baldly lie to the White House press corps about the size of his inauguration crowd, the president fumed that his press secretary’s performance was “not forceful enough.” According to Axios, Trump was also incensed by Spicer’s poor taste in suits, and is already considering treating the former RNC staffer to his signature catchphrase.
2. Trump already “feels demoralized that the public’s perception of his presidency so far does not necessarily align with his own sense of accomplishment.”
3. Some Trump aides think Kellyanne Conway is trying to undermine Spicer so as to steal his job.
4. Jared Kushner tried to prevent Conway from being invited into the White House at all, because he viewed her “as a possible threat to his role as Trump’s chief consigliere.”
So, the Post added, Conway's office (and presumably her Spinbot docking station) was exiled to the second floor of the west wing, ostensibly because Trump won't bother to walk up the stairs to consult with her. I'm not making that up. Other aides to the president noted that Conway tends to go off message in order to boost her own standing in the cable news media.
The revelations in the Post alone were apparently gathered from not one but twelve Trump insiders. Yes, a dozen members of Trump's new White House are already blabbing to the press that their boss is some sort of mad man. And they're correct in their assessment, obviously.
Couple all of this with news that Trump spent a considerable portion of his remarks to the CIA re-litigating his speech and his cabinet picks to what must have been stunned Agency operatives and officials. Then, on Monday, Trump met with congressional leadership and wasted much of that meeting ranting in support of a debunked conspiracy theory that three million illegal immigrants voted for Hillary Clinton, nullifying her popular vote victory.
There's an opportunity here.
This could be a viable strategy for confronting and disrupting Trump's ability to get away with the awfulness he intends to unleash. Hell, it could also trigger the 25th Amendment if he disintegrates into being a Howard Hughes type -- or Nixon in his final days, locked away in a private room inside the executive mansion, storing his urine in jars while frantically scrolling through Twitter and flipping back and forth between the cable news networks -- his combover hanging lower than his stupid tie -- tissue boxes on his feet and photos of the crowds on the National Mall scattered all around the floor.
By constantly antagonizing Trump with protests, press reports and Twitter trolling, it's possible that he could descend further into madness. In doing so, leadership of both parties might have no choice but to ask him to step aside for the good of the nation -- and to seek some help. Leaders of both parties witnessed his flailing the other night in the Oval. Getting under his thin skin means tweeting crowd photos and videos of the Women's March and future marches to @realDonaldTrump and @POTUS. Protesters should follow him everywhere he goes, giving him the impression that the American people don't want him. The message? Trump is illegitimate. Faker-in-chief. And similar. It's that simple.
It's unlikely the Republican Congress will move to impeach Trump, whether due to mental incapacity or high crimes. But there are other ways to let him know: The People he talked about during his inaugural address are absolutely taking back their country, and this petty, dangerously spastic and mentally unstable game-show host should step down before he's removed from office.