Adams has had the most interesting, and seemingly accurate, take on the whole Trump phenomenon.
Why I Switched My Endorsement from Clinton to... | Scott Adams' Blog: "Pacing and Leading: Trump always takes the extreme position on matters of safety and security for the country, even if those positions are unconstitutional, impractical, evil, or something that the military would refuse to do. Normal people see this as a dangerous situation. Trained persuaders like me see this as something called pacing and leading.
Trump “paces” the public – meaning he matches them in their emotional state, and then some. He does that with his extreme responses on immigration, fighting ISIS, stop-and-frisk, etc. Once Trump has established himself as the biggest bad-ass on the topic, he is free to “lead,” which we see him do by softening his deportation stand, limiting his stop-and-frisk comment to Chicago, reversing his first answer on penalties for abortion, and so on.
If you are not trained in persuasion, Trump looks scary. If you understand pacing and leading, you might see him as the safest candidate who has ever gotten this close to the presidency. That’s how I see him. So when Clinton supporters ask me how I could support a “fascist,” the answer is that he isn’t one. Clinton’s team, with the help of Godzilla, have effectively persuaded the public to see Trump as scary. The persuasion works because Trump’s “pacing” system is not obvious to the public. They see his “first offers” as evidence of evil. They are not. They are technique. And being chummy with Putin is more likely to keep us safe, whether you find that distasteful or not. Clinton wants to insult Putin into doing what we want. That approach seems dangerous as hell to me...
In summary, I don’t understand the policy details and implications of most of either Trump’s or Clinton’s proposed ideas. Neither do you. But I do understand persuasion. I also understand when the government is planning to confiscate the majority of my assets. And I can also distinguish between a deeply unhealthy person and a healthy person, even though I have no medical training. (So can you.)"
Trump’s African-American Reframing | Scott Adams' Blog: "Emotions matter in the real world because they drive behavior. Facts, not so much. Trump doesn’t ignore facts because he is dumb. He does it because facts don’t matter. Every trained persuader knows that. In the 2D world, where people think that facts and reason matter, Trump’s claim that life is worse than ever for African-Americans is an absurd lie. But in the third-dimension of persuasion – where Trump operates – it was brilliant. In case you are wondering, this is a known persuasion technique. You agree with someone harder than they agree with themselves, and it forces them to argue against their own point. Trump did that in part to dilute racial tensions (that he partly caused) and also to put himself in emotional harmony with the African-American community. Persuasion-wise, and strategy-wise, what Trump did was a base-clearing home run…that you thought was a dumb mistake."
Blowing Your Mind -- as Promised | Scott Adams' Blog: "Smart, well-informed people disagree on nearly all major issues. So being smart and well-informed doesn’t help you grasp reality as much as you would hope. If it did, all of the smart, well-informed people would agree. They don’t...
Trump says lots of things that don’t pass the fact-checkers’ tests. His supporters don’t care because facts don’t influence decisions. Humans decide first, then rationalize their irrational choices with cherry-picked data. You see this all the time with the people who disagree with your brilliance. Just remember that they see the same irrationality in you that you see in them."
And the mainstream is finally catching on. 'Believe me': People say Trump's language is affecting political discourse 'bigly' - LA Times: "But Trump is more than just a free-style rambler. Experts say he employs a very deliberate, effective communications approach unlike any other presidential candidate in memory. The Trumpisms — “Believe me,” “People say,” “Sad!” — have become so well known they are the subject of spoofs. But like a savvy salesman or break-through advertising campaign, Trump’s techniques carry a quiet power...
The art of the insult Little Marco. Lyin’ Ted. Crooked Hillary. Even in the rough-and-tumble world of presidential politics, Trump has taken the art of the insult to a new level. Trump’s name-calling may sound like simple bullying. But labeling his opponents with cutting nicknames also creates simple frames — catch phrases — that stick in voters’ minds, often because they reinforce existing perceptions. George Lakoff, a linguistics professor at UC Berkeley who has written extensively about political speech, says studies show that 98% of thought is unconscious. Creating those nicknames is a way to make the broader message resonate with voters long after the rallies have ended — like a good advertising jingle. “Even if he loses the election, Trump will have changed the brains of millions of Americans, with future consequences,” Lakoff writes on his blog. As a businessman, Trump learned that speaking in an irreverent, shock-jock manner often won him free media attention. Now some Trump supporters are cheering that same willingness to give voice to politically incorrect opinions that they may secretly share, but would never say out loud."