“There were many different kinds of fools: holy fools, hapless fools, vicious fools. Fools were rude and frequently unabashed liars. They were willing to make idiots of themselves. The point of the fool was not to be admirable in himself, but to be the class clown who had the guts to talk back to the teacher. People enjoyed carnival culture, the feast of fools, as a way to take a whack at the status quo.
You can see where I’m going with this. We live at a time of wide social inequality. The intellectual straitjackets have been getting tighter. The universities have become modern cathedrals, where social hierarchies are defined and reinforced.
We’re living with exactly the kinds of injustices that lead to carnival culture, and we’ve crowned a fool king. Donald Trump exists on two levels: the presidential level and the fool level. On one level he makes personnel and other decisions. On the other he tweets. (I honestly don’t know which level is more important to him.)”
Bravo David Brooks, this is brilliant. It’s amazing how many of the commenters refuse to go with the carnival story. You are absolutely right that Trump is a successful fool. Perhaps it takes one to know one. I have been fooling for am English American morris and sword dance for over 40 years, and what we do is distract and entertain the audience, before asking for their money. It is a lot of fun, and the New Haven Morris and Sword Team desperately needs a few new dancers.
You are right to warn people not to get too focused on Trump’s tweets and asininity. I quibble with you about not covering his carnival act, since that is what he does most of the time. Time will tell, but there might not be much else to talk about. Trump wants to dominate the news with his foolish tweets. It is best for the press to stop covering them every night and all day.