President’s pose on the White House balcony was a manic act of narcissistic theatre

The trouble with Trump is that, as he told Bob Woodward, “I bring rage out.” It’s hard to see this picture of him posing maskless on the White House balcony after “winning” against Covid without the red mist coming down.

To anyone with a sense of history, the echo of Mussolini on the balcony of Rome’s Palazzo Venezia is unmistakable. But many of his core voters may know as little history as he does and, besides, this is the White House, with American flags flanking him – still for many a stage of democracy, not dictatorship. Perhaps the real shock of the pose is its delusion. There is no crowd – he’s performing for himself and the camera.

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