In 1709, Alexander Pope wrote, “A little knowledge is a dangerous thing.” It’s especially dangerous when a powerful person regularly acts impulsively with little or no knowledge of facts. If they’re the leader of a country, it results in constant chaos, acute divisions and dangerous errors of judgment.

The president is a perfect example of that danger. He never stops bragging about how much he knows and how great he is. There are videos that show him saying, at various times, that he knows more about: taxes, trade, steelworkers, construction, technology, courts, banks, politics, drones, infrastructure, environmental impact statements and renewables than anyone else in the world. He’s also said, “I know more about ISIS than the generals do, believe me.” And, to cover everything, he said, “I know a lot, I know more than I’m ever going to tell you.”

Video showing him bragging about these things can be seen on YouTube, “Now This: “Everything Donald Trump Is an Expert In, According to Him.” Seen altogether, it’s frightening, especially since he’s proven how ignorant he is on most topics.

However, his claim that he knows more about debt than anyone, is one of the few true things he’s said. Because of his poor financial reputation, many American banks have refused to loan him money. On Oct. 11, 2016, before his election, Time magazine published a list of his business failures and bankruptcies. They include Trump Airlines; Trump Mortgage Company; Trump Casinos; Trump Steak; Trump Magazine; GoTrump.com, a luxury travel search engine that lasted one year; and Trump University for which his business ultimately had to pay $40 million for defrauding its students. Despite all that, he continues to say how rich he is. If he were really rich, wouldn’t you think he’d want to prove it by releasing his tax returns?

Then there’s his laughable claim that he knows more about technology than anyone. On Oct. 18, conservative Washington Post columnist Kathleen Parker referred to his claims about the Democratic National Committee’s server that, based on an unfounded conspiracy theory, Trump claims was hacked by the Ukrainians even though our intelligence agencies proved it was hacked by Russians: ‘“I want to see the server,’ he told reporters in the White House last Wednesday. ‘I think it’s very important for this country to see the server.’”

Parker continues,“Really? I have bad news for the president: The idea even that a single server exists — and can be hidden somewhere — is ludicrous. Nowadays, a ‘server’ is actually dozens of interconnected systems.”

On Oct. 23, proving his ignorance of U.S. geography, Trump told a Pittsburgh audience at the Shale Insight Conference, “We’re building a wall on the border of New Mexico. And we’re building a wall in Colorado.”

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Colorado. Gov. Jared Polis replied on Twitter, “Well, this is awkward … Colorado doesn’t border Mexico. Good thing Colorado now offers free full-day kindergarten so our kids can learn basic geography.”

Many former staffers like four-star Marine Gen. John Kelly, and former Secretary of Defense Gen. James Mattis have stated how uninformed he is. And after leaving office, former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, said, “What was challenging for me … was to go to work for a man who is pretty undisciplined, doesn’t like to read, doesn’t read briefing reports, doesn’t like to get into the details of a lot of things, but rather just kind of says, ‘This is what I believe.’”

The president’s statements and actions are clear evidence he suffers from narcissistic personality disorder. It’s described by the Mayo Clinic as, “a mental condition in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for excessive attention and admiration, troubled relationships, and a lack of empathy for others. But behind this mask of extreme confidence lies a fragile self-esteem that’s vulnerable to the slightest criticism.”

Anyone who reads the list of symptoms can’t help but see that the president exhibits, not just the majority, but all of them. And Trump keeps adding to the evidence, as shown by his 71-minute spiel during a Cabinet meeting on Oct. 21 when he declared about Islamic State militants, “I’m the one who did the capturing. I’m the one who knows more about it than you people or the fake pundits.”

Ask American farmers who are going bankrupt because of his ill-advised trade policies, or the Kurds, our former allies, who are being displaced and mourning the slaughter of their loved ones, how dangerous it is when a powerful man ignores the advice of experts.

Meanwhile, Russia sells their soybeans and corn to China, and gains favor and power in Syria. Since he’s done so much for them, maybe Russians should elect him president of their country and we can go back to normalcy.

Pat Nash has lived in the Baraboo area, off and on, for more than 35 years. Contact her at patnash5149@gmail.com.

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