Is Donald Trump rational

Media and externalsMockery is the wrong way to go

Why do they all have such strange hair? Donald Trump, Boris Johnson and various other figures of the populist right differ in that they not only make contradicting, false, bizarre statements, but also in the fact that they are sometimes simply absurd in their appearance, mannerisms and demeanor. The media, which have been publishing precisely these failures for years, because readers like to make fun of powerful people, are well-liked. But why do you make yourself ridiculous voluntarily? For these politicians, there is a double profit behind this.

First, they gain thereby in the attention economy. In the interaction of social media and classic media, the most dazzling, colorful and scandalous characters win. You get an incredible amount of free airtime and attention and thus manage to gain more and more followers.

The alternative is the middle

Second, they win on a much deeper level. The alternative to them is symbolized by the middle, by figures such as Biden, Merkel and Macron. They all have a command of reason, but their goals represent a diffuse mixture of capitalism and bureaucracy, which has led to many of the current crises among other things. Their motto seems to be that changes have to be as small and meaningless as possible. That we should always do everything as before.

Marina Weisband (Lars Borges) Marina Weisband was born in the Ukraine in 1987 and came to Germany as a quota refugee in 1994. From 2011 to 2012 she was the political director of the Pirate Party. The focus of the author and graduate psychologist is participation and education. In her book "We call it politics" she describes the possibilities of new political participation through the Internet. Since 2014 she has been leading the aula project for the democratization of schools at politik-digital.de.

Representatives of the absolute middle can even be quite dogged and uncompromising because, from a rational point of view, there are not many good arguments for their positions. That is the reason why coal-fired power plants are still subsidized, why we all drive cars, why everything is faxed in authorities and why lobbying dominates the European Union excessively. If someone wants to change something about that, they say: "Anyone who has visions should see a doctor."

Populists pass ridicule against themselves to supporters

And then come these "joke figures" and mix a lot of bullshit (and racism) with some real points in a populist way. Trump says he will "dry up the swamp and fight corruption". Sure, he won't. But saying that helps him. What happens is this: He says that, wears a tie that is far too long and waves his arms. The middle laughs at his ridiculous demeanor. Mocking articles are published.

But many people who are also against corruption only see that established politicians laugh at his idea that corruption can be combated. As if one weren't mocking Trump's tie, but SHE. Because they see that he is addressing a relevant problem. When people feel attacked in their self-esteem in this way, they don't care about the rational argument that Trump is of course one of the most corrupt politicians himself and lies about his intentions. Populists attract the ridicule and sell it as ridicule against their followers. In the broadest sense against all people who want substantial change.

Journalists have to break mechanisms

They open up a false dichotomy: either persistence in political immobility, led by people laughing at you - or my brand of populism. But it is precisely this mechanism that journalists have to break instead of using it. There are more than these two poles.

It would be better to pay attention to people who have concrete concepts of doing things differently. Exactly - actual politics. There is no shortage of that. But concrete solutions are more difficult to market than the collective laughing of clowns.