There are only two plausible explanations for Trump's chat with the President of Taiwan. Either one of the many despicable people around him conned him into it, or he stumbled into it all on his own. Either way, it is obvious that he did not have a clue what the foreign affairs implications were, and he does not have around him someone who did know and could be relied on to tell him. And this is seven weeks before he actually becomes President! I have been focused on Trump's cupidity and brutal hostility to large swaths of the American public and on the sheer evil of his closest advisers, so perhaps I may be forgiven for having overlooked his mind-numbing incompetence. I am not only ashamed to be an American, I am also embarrassed.
As I said to my wife yesterday evening when we were sitting at the counter in our favorite restaurant eating happy hour half-priced oysters, I am struggling to achieve some semblance of inner balance and equanimity in the face of this on-rushing disaster. I am more determined than ever to live long enough to see things take a turn for the better, even if I must soldier on into my nineties.