This just in:  I was watching Robert Gates, ex-Secretary of Defence, on Face the Nation a couple of days ago.  He was brilliant and I found myself agreeing with him, even on those occasions where he agreed with Trump.  How could that be?  I feel like everything Trump does is wrong, and yet Gates found things to praise.

I want to talk about this a bit as a tool for helping myself to figure this out.

Let’s start with Gates….

He said, Trump brings a certain amount of disruption to foreign policy.  Take North Korea; The last 3 administrations basically all followed the same policy with regards to North Korea.  The result is what we have today – a rogue country with nuclear weapons.  Why not stir things up?  Why not try something different since what we have been doing has not worked?

So, he likes the “outside the box” approach.

He then goes on to caution about Trump’s spontaneity.  He’s concerned that Trump’s unique approach is not well thought out and could quickly lead to undesirable consequences.

So, he has concerns about Trump’s “outside the box” approach.

Gates took one issue and broke it down into two compartments; one he liked and one he didn’t.

I then look at my own predisposition to not like Trump.  I look at Trump’s foreign policy and throw a giant blanket over everything.  I subconsciously understand that there are things I like and things I don’t like.  I like the “stirring things up” but I don’t like Trump’s “spontaneity.”

Since my fear of the later is greater than my affection for the former, the latter is what I use to judge ALL of Trump’s policy.  I’m only using one blanket to cover everything and thus, only allow myself one opinion.

Someone else may be less concerned about Trump’s spontaneity and more happy about “stirring the pot” and thus, when they throw their single blanket over Trumps’ foreign policy, they like it.

I look at my conclusion and their conclusion and decide, “We are complete opposites.”

The truth is that we are probably very close.  Trump supporters don’t want nuclear war with North Korea any more than I do.  They just think the likelihood is lower than I do.

Who knows?  They may be right.

To me, this explains how I can talk issues with someone from the political right (I am left) and find that we agree on a lot of things.  However, If I just consider them Trump Supporters and I am a Bernie Supported, it appears that we are complete opposites.

I’m going to have to think on this some more.

The compartmentalization seems to explain a lot for me.  It could be a useful tool going forward.  By “useful” I mean something I can use to help reduce the divisiveness that seems to be eating us all up.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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