The Trump administration is not a fan of details.
This was apparent early on when Trump’s official inauguration photo contained the sentence:
“No dream is too big, no challenge is to great.”
Since then, the American people have been subjected to misspellings of every kind, as well as obvious errors in administrative procedures and a fundamental lack of understanding of how the American government works. For example:
The disastrous attempted rollout of a racist travel ban
Children separated from their parents at the border that still cannot be found
Errors in his tax cut legislation that have prevented whole industries from benefiting from the cuts
Time and time again, the Trump administration has proven to be unconcerned and unaware of basic policies and procedures that govern this nation.
Which brings us to this map, which Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin stood beside last week.
See anything wrong with the map?
First, the United States is cut in half. Maps shown by United States officials don’t typically short-shrift our own country, particularly when countries like Russia and China are shown nearly in full.
But even worse (considering the cloud of suspicion that the Trump administration is under):
The symbol representing the White House is placed smack-dab in the middle of Russia
It might turn out to be symbolically accurate when all is said and done, but it’s just another detail that this administration has ignored and makes them look stupid.
Ignoring details isn’t always a terrible thing. I am famously ignorant of many, many details in life, so much so that it occasionally irritates colleagues and friends, including Elysha, who has an artistic eye and will obsess over aesthetic details that are completely lost to me.
I was once asked what color house we own, and I answered incorrectly. I argued vehemently that I was right until we arrived home and was forced to concede my mistake.
In the words of Plato Karafelis, I am the eagle (a position on a Native American spirit wheel). I see the big picture but am rarely close enough to attend to the minutiae.
Elysha, he went on to say, is the mouse. Detail-oriented (which is true) and able to see the small but significant things (also true) but sometimes unable to grasp the larger context.
Elysha pointed out that eagles eat mice, which didn’t make her feel good and was perhaps not the peppiest of pep talks for a wife who wanted to strangle her husband.
But not untrue.
All of this is fine, of course. because I am me. If I miss a detail, a test score doesn’t get entered in some probably meaningless computer software. Or I miss a row or three while mowing the lawn. Or I somehow put on two pairs of underwear before leaving the house.
But when you have your hands on the nuclear football, or you’re cruelly and indiscriminately separating kids from families at the border, or you’re enacting enormous and complex legislation designed to return money into the pockets of the wealthiest Americans while screwing the middle class, details are important.
They really, really matter.
The Trump administration, through their own actions, disagrees, and that should frighten us all.