The Most Powerless Man in the World
I saw a funny video a few months ago that compared Our President to Thanos. You know who Thanos is, right? Maybe? He's the big bad guy from those Marvel movies that make Disney disgusting amounts of money. The Marvel Cinematic Universe (or MCU) is a movie series that began in 2008 with Iron Man starring Robert Downey, Jr. There are over 20 movies in the series and many of them are among the highest grossing of all time. Thanos is the villain whose shadow lies over the whole saga and who is the focus of the series’ ultimate climax. So needless to say, this video is both great for Trump's ego (he’s the most all-consuming force in the world!) and not great as a sign of how Stephen Colbert views him (he’s pure fucking evil!).
I've been thinking a lot lately about the Infinity Stones. They're six magical Stones that Thanos seeks in order to become the most powerful being in existence. These Stones are the incarnate manifestations of the most important elements in the universe: Space, Time, Reality, Power, Mind & Soul. If one being collects all six Infinity Stones, they can do literally whatever the fuck they want by simply snapping their fingers, including Thanos’ goal of wiping out half of all life. Our President hasn't extinguished quite so many lives but he's certainly giving Thanos a run for his money these days - as of this writing, more than a quarter million Americans have died from the disease that Our President has surrendered to.
In the video above, Trump/Thanos has collected all six Infinity Stones and achieved his goal. In the real world though, how many Stones does Our President truly have? Is his Infinity Gauntlet glowing with absolute authority or are there a few open spots? What do Space, Time, Reality, Power, Mind & Soul really refer to?
I'd argue Our President has a strong grip on only a few of our world's Infinity Stones while several others have slipped through his grasp. To his credit, I can't think of anyone in the world who takes up more Space and Time in our everyday lives. Reality is the intersection of Space and Time, and seems to be his favorite of the Stones. His Twitter feed is proof of this - if you’ve ever questioned the fact that Reality is subjective, look no further. I'm not going to try to convince you whether he has a Mind or Soul; I believe all people possess these inherently, though both can be corrupted. However, I do believe he has no Power. And this was true before he lost a decisive election to Our President-elect, Joe Biden.
I know Our President is "the most powerful man in the world," but he's also the most Powerless. To paraphrase another famous superhero movie, great Power does not come without great responsibility. Capital-P Power comes from taking credit and blame in equal measure, standing up for what you believe in, speaking truth when others are silent. Above all else, Power comes from the overcoming of obstacles. However, Our President does not overcome anything. He uses his unlimited resources, manpower, and wealth to remove obstacles, but removal is not conquering. What is the last hurdle he scaled rather than passed by? What has he overcome through will, creativity, hard work, imagination? Bullying is not Power. Hypocrisy is not Power. Ruling through fear is not Power. Unlimited “power” at his fingertips has exposed how little Power he truly has. And when the Powerless are threatened, they lash out.
“This election is a verdict on whether we want to live in a country where the people who lose an election refuse to concede and spend the next two years trying to shred our Constitution and rip your country apart.” - President Trump, June 2019
Our President is trying to break democracy. Democracy bestows Power to the People, something that threatens his fragile status. He attacks the most basic tenets of our society. This is nothing new; it’s been true ever since the cries of "Fake News" began. But now, he attacks the vote. He refuses to accommodate a peaceful transition. He refuses to concede his loss in the election, and in doing so he aims to rip our country apart. These last couple months will get uglier, because Donald Trump is an ugly man. But he will fail because he is lazy, weak and small. When power is snatched from the Powerless, we see them for what they really are.
Donald Trump - I See You. I’m sorry there is so much pain inside of you. I’m sorry you've never felt real Power. I’m sorry that history will remember you as a loser, since winning is all you’ve ever wanted. I’m sure you’ll continue to hold sway over Space and Time long after you’ve left the White House. I’m sure your Mind and Soul will still have cracks in them, and I’m sure you’ll do your best to bend Reality to your will. Most of all though, I’m sure you’ll feel just as Powerless as you always have, despite your best efforts to convince everyone of the Opposite. True Power comes from within. Enjoy the Stones you have while you have them. They won’t last forever, and neither will you. I wish you the best in your civilian life, and I look forward to telling my grandkids about the weakest man who’s ever led our Powerful nation.
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