Lately many Republicans (specifically Trump supporters) have been feeling under pressure. For years they've been smugly saying "Trump is doing a GREAT job! The economy is good and everything is under control." Over the past few weeks, though, it's clear that the economy is not doing so well, and that it's due, in part, to Trump's ham-handed bungling of the US Coronavirus response. From cutting funding to the CDC's pandemic programs, to appointing a proven healthcare bungler as "coronavirus czar", to turning down the offer of WHO assistance with testing, there's no doubt that much of the economic meltdown is due to his mishandling of the crisis. And if any more proof were needed, one of the biggest and fastest slides the Dow has ever seen happened while he was talking about Coronavirus and getting most of his facts wrong. Trump supporters have always exhibited a bit of Trump Defense Syndrome, sometimes called Trump Derangement Syndrome. It occurs when otherwise intelligent people try to justify Trump's illogical and ignorant behavior. A great example happened recently on another forum during Trump's announcement of travel restrictions. During his speech he also announced that "these prohibitions will not only apply to the tremendous amount of trade and cargo, but various other things as we get approval. Anything coming from Europe to the United States is what we are discussing." (This is also one of the primary reasons the Dow tanked.) Someone on the other forum questioned the wisdom of halting trade and cargo, since you can't catch Coronavirus from cargo. The Trump supporter in question immediately started defending his decision, saying "I guess Democrats would rather get cheap wine than stop the spread of Coronavirus, because they don't give a shit about human beings." A few hours later Trump walked back his ill-considered announcement. That put the Trump supporter in a tough position. His equating allowing trade to "not giving a shit about human beings" was right there in black and white, and it would seem to indicate that Trump did not give a shit about human beings. This posed a dilemma for the poor Trumpie - admit he was wrong and walk the comment back, or double down? Of course he chose to double down. "I wasn't talking about cargo, I was talking about wine, which can carry disease!" When enough people pointed out that wine was one of the few substances that was, in fact, a disinfectant, he switched to "I was joking. You don't know what humor is, do you." This sort of deranged behavior is becoming more and more common among Trump supporters as they have to disavow their earlier statements. The great many cases where Trump supporters have equated Trump's competence to stock market indexes, for example, are coming back to bite them. So they are now making up more and more bizarre explanations. "It's a temporary blip." "The president has nothing to do with the stock market!" "It was Obama." I fear this will get worse before it gets better. In the meantime, identifying TDS sufferers will allow people to tailor their responses appropriately. Look for these warning signs: - Obsequious flattery of Trump for no good reason - "he is handling this better than anyone else could!" - Fabrication of evidence. "Obama/Clinton/Soros sabotaged the CDC to harm Trump." - Attempted rapid and illogical subject changes. "Well, but Biden's son did something illegal in Russia. What, did you forget about that?" - The trifecta of asking for examples, asking for sources, then disregarding the sources. "You can't point to a single thing he did wrong." "Who said he did something wrong? Show me the proof!" "I don't like that proof, so I will substitute my own reality here." Unfortunately there's no real cure for this, and until Trump is replaced, these diehards will slip deeper and deeper into this sort of derangement. It will be a long six months.