Trump’s FBI Problem Is a Character Problem

This points to something I’ve been writing about for two years now. Trump defenders want to defend everything Trump does outside of the lines of normalcy on the grounds that he is a disrupter. There are several problems with this argument, but I’ll focus on two. The first is that much of Trump’s disruptiveness is characterological, not programmatic or ideological.  If you want to defend the president’s prerogative to question the value of NATO, that’s fine. That’s one kind of disruption, to be sure. But his personal behavior from his pettiness, impulsiveness, and constant mendacity is disruptive, too. And you can’t expect people un-besotted with him to compartmentalize the two the way you do. Trump’s erratic behavior is endearing to some and worrisome to others. Expecting those endeared to find it troubling is as foolhardy as expecting the worriers to find it charming, particularly if the worrier has a responsibility to act.

Second,  Trump supporters simultaneously celebrate his disruptiveness, and even his violation of democratic norms, but are scandalized when he provokes equally disruptive or norm-violating responses. When I hear Kevin McCarthy complain that Nancy Pelosi’s quasi disinvitation to deliver the State of the Union is “beneath” the office of the speaker, or when I hear praetorian pundits denounce the profane language of his opponents as if they shock the conscience of Trump supporters, I want to resort to the international sign-language gesture for Onanism.

If you are going to anoint a Cincinnatus who lays down his golf bag to save the Republic for being willing to break the rules and fight for ends heedless of traditional means, you should probably avoid clutching your pearls when partisans and even non-partisan institutionalists alike behave as if there are no guard rails for them either.

How to Stop Being Attracted to Someone Who’s Not Good for You

Figure out what the heck you are so attracted to in that person who isn’t good for you.

First, understand that your attraction – the pull – is probably either primarily physical or emotional. If it’s physical, it is obvious what the attraction is about. If it is emotional, your attraction could be for one of these reasons: you see that person as happier, more likable, better, etc. than you and you want to be around them so you can become more like that; you see that person as “cooler” or more interesting than you; you see that person as unemotional or withholding and you want to win them over; or you see them as depressed, sad, self-destructive, etc. and that makes you want to save or rescue them.

The list of possible reasons is endless, of course, but the reasons I highlighted are some of the most common ones. If you are someone who feels the need to learn how to stop being attracted to someone, one of the reasons I mentioned probably applies to you (at least a little bit).

Counter sexual, romantic or positive thoughts with immediate negative ones.

There are several things you can say to yourself to redirect your feelings and focus on reality instead of fantasy – or what your heart wants. I will list examples of things you can say to yourself when you feel the pull so that you can detach and resist the person who isn’t good for you. “Just because I’m attracted to someone doesn’t mean that my attraction to them is a good thing.” “The way they look on the outside is great, but what’s on the inside is less appealing.” “I need to find someone who makes me feel less anxious or insecure, not more.” “Am I supposed to be chasing someone?”

Think about the qualities of your best friends.

Write about your romantic penchants.

An effective way to change anything is to write about it. By writing things down, we organize our thoughts and get to the root of a problem. Start by writing about why you believe you ever became attracted to someone who isn’t good for you in the first place. Did your parents model that? Do you think you suffer from low self-esteem? Do you actually trust boyfriends or girlfriends in relationships, or do you secretly believe love never works out or that you will always end up feeling disappointed or even betrayed? Write down your thoughts and feelings, and you will instantly gain some self-awareness in doing so.

A final question to ask yourself…

Ask yourself this: “Are relationships really supposed to be this frustrating or unfulfilling, or am I simply looking for love in all the wrong places?”