Idiot-Savant

In a previous post I wrote about talents.  Almost everyone seems to have some particular talent or talents, and we should respect them and their abilities.

Occasionally, talent manifests itself in a very unusual form.  An idiot-savant is a person who has a mental or learning disability but is extremely gifted in a particular way, such as the performing of feats of memory or calculation.  The condition is quite rare, but I know one such person very well.  This man is severely afflicted with dysgraphia, meaning that he has great difficulty in expressing his knowledge, thoughts, and ideas in a written form.  His grammar and spelling are atrocious.  At the same time, he has an almost encyclopedic memory of facts. He can read books and articles with incredible speed, and he retains almost everything.

Despite this person’s undoubted brilliance, the communications handicap described above has severely limited his professional advancement.  Unfortunately, fellow professionals have failed to properly recognize and make use of this man’s extraordinary gifts.

Donald Trump has some of the characteristics of an idiot-savant.  I believe he is a very intelligent man.  Certainly he demonstates a broad range of interests and abilities and is a man of exceptional energy.  He has had great success in a wide variety of enterprises. At the same time, he is severely handicapped as a communicator.  In a previous post I referred  to his problem as dysspeakia. (My own label.)

Trump’s handicap was on full display during his interview with Rush Limbaugh on Friday, October 9.  Rush did everything he could to keep the President on track, but it was a losing effort.  It reminded me of my observations about an exchange between Trump and members of the Fox & Friends morning news team some months ago   I quote:

This session (with Fox & Friends) convinced me more than ever that our President is terribly inept in expressing his thoughts in a tight, cogent manner.  Each question addressed to him resulted in a virtual avalanche of words flowing on and around the subject at hand.  It was as if he were asked to fire a rifle at a target, and, instead, he opened up with a shotgun or machine-gun; and when he finished firing the entire target frame was destroyed, whether or not he had actually hit the bullseye being uncertain.  I did not disagree with the general thrust of his responses, but I was saddened by his tendency toward braggadocio and inability to be precise.

“The President’s handicap in communicating thoughts and ideas is a definite impediment to his effective leadership, and it makes him more vulnerable to criticism.  As often as possible he should stick to prepared statements. The more words he uses and the more he wanders off script, the more his words can be twisted; and Trump’s enemies love to twist anything he says.  I believe, however, that Trump’s communication failures are not a reflection on his basic intelligence.  I see it rather as a handicap, much like dyslexia, dysgraphia, or a speech impediment.  The fact that he has achieved so much with such a handicap is a tribute to his determination, energy, and overall abilities.  By the way, Trump’s communication style is actually helpful in his great political rallies in which emotions are more important than rhetoric. 

“I believe that Trump is probably aware of his weaknesses, touchy about them, and excessively sensitive to personal attacks.  When criticized, he responds with even more scattergun like responses, often with ill-chosen words, against those who assault him. 

“Despite his handicap and sometimes errant ways, I am convinced that our President is fundamentally a decent man who desires the very best for our nation.”

Look beyond the Trump’s handicap and behold the man and his works.  He is far superior to any candidate the Democrats have to offer at this critical moment in history.  On November 3, vote to reelect the President.

One thought on “Idiot-Savant

  1. Your analysis of President Trump’s verbal abilities on target. However, his rally’s seem to address current issues I am in agreement with. Hope Demo. won’t have access to this article as they would love to label him as an” idiot” coming from a reliable source.. Just my thought…. Betty Oct., 11, 2020 Sent from Mail for Windows 10

    Like

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