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Donald Trump – Devil’s Jerk?

August 8th, 2015

Devil’s Advocate – In common parlance, a devil’s advocate is someone who, given a certain argument, takes a position they do not necessarily agree with, for the sake of debate or to explore the thought further.

Pundits the world over have been gnashing their collective teeth the last few weeks, trying to figure out Donald Trump, his motivations – as well as the reason he’s polling so well with the Republican-voting populace. While the reasons for his polling success are obvious and depressing, that’s not what I want to talk about today. I heard a phrase in a meeting today (about a totally unrelated topic) that instantly resonated with me in describing Donald Trump and his motivations.

You’ve heard the term Devil’s Advocate many times – there’s even a movie with that title. But the phrase I heard this morning was uttered by someone who was jokingly disparaging himself. Instead of Devil’s Advocate, he called himself Devil’s Jerk. Doesn’t that sound familiar?

Trump’s ego won’t let him shut up – not about himself (or anything else, apparently) but the ideas he throws out there don’t seem to be – in the normal Devil’s Advocate usage – for the purpose of exploring a thought he may not hold himself – but instead to just be a jerk. Winning the debate at any cost seems to be his motivation, and I can’t help but think this new term Devil’s Jerk describes that perfectly.

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