In a world where someone say “goat” and mean “goat,” we’re left scratching our heads to decipher Trump’s use of language and speech. How can simple sentences, monosyllabic words, and weird usage of words make a truly compelling argument? Sometimes it seems like you’re hearing him speak Twitter (e.g., 140 characters at a time and abbreviated to hell) in a playground bully’s body.
Here’s my attempt to those who are banging their heads on the wall trying to figure out what it all means.
“Alternative facts” (Source): Trump’s view and take on this is more important than truth or reality. Trump can make up fake statistics and reporting to support his claim. Circular logic. Alternative logic?
“Amazing“: Compliment on something that agrees with Trump.
“Bad” or “Terrible” or “Dumb” (Source): Whatever Trump doesn’t want.
“Bad deal” (Source): Deals that aren’t agreeable to Trump.
“Bad hombres” or “tough hombres” (Source): Trump’s attempt to be “multi-lingual” and suggested Mexico’s criminals are widespread and uncontrolled.
“Believe me” (Source): You don’t need sources, just me. Sometimes followed by a phrase that’s “alternative facts” and exaggeration of whatever is being said.
“Best” or “Better“: Whatever it is, Trump has it better.
“Biased” or “Fabricated” or “Nonsense” (Source): Not in complete agreement with Trump.
“Bigly” (Source): Not to be confused with “smallgly.” Some hyperbole version of “big league” or “big time.”
“Classy” (Source): Golden or decorated with gold. Can be “well-cooked” burger (e.g., well-done burger).
“Crooked” or “failing” (Source): When someone else succeeds but not Trump.
“Dangerous” (Source): The scapegoat or boogeyman. Don’t fact check this.
“Destroy” (Source): To dominate by force or discredit and de-legitimize. Anyone against us will be “destroyed.”
“Dishonest” (Source): Not in agreement with Trump.
“Dumb” or “Idiot” or “Moron” (Source): Sometimes “moran” in Trumpian terms. Smear words for Trump to tag onto anyone that he disagree with.
“Enjoy” (Source): Agrees or align with Trump’s views or ideals. Flattering to Trump.
Ethos arguments (Source): Argument based on character or authority rather than emotions (pathos) or logic (logos). When Trump says “believe me” or “I’m the best…” he’s appealing to his character rather than evidences.
“Fake News” (Source): You don’t agree with me so I’ll de-legitimatize you by calling you fake. In other words, “The beatings will continue until you agree with me.”
“That’s how unhealthy the situation is and until the media understands how wrong that attitude is, and how it hurts their credibility, we are going to continue to say, ‘fake news.’ I’m sorry, Michael. That’s the reality,” – Gorka, former Breitbart editor. (Source)
“Folks” (Source): Term of endearment for supporters.
“Great” (Source): Under Trump’s control or align with his views.
“Green Bowling massacre” (Source): It’s an alternative fact (see above) of terrorist attack on US soil.
“Grizzly Bears” (Source): Whatever “it” is to justify having guns on campuses and schools.
“Horrible” (Source): Something that disagrees with Trump or will likely to disagree with Trump. Something that will get Trump angry.
“Huge” or “Yuuge” (Source): Surprising and Amazing (see Amazing).
“Lightweight” (Source): Not having the guts that Trump does or attempted smear at power.
“Loser” (Source): Anyone that doesn’t agree with Trump or his view. For example, John McCain is a “loser” because he was not the type of war hero that Trump envision (the ones that aren’t captured). Also see lightweight and moron.
“Make American Great Again” (Source): Acronym of MAGA. It’s a vague motto that refer to some time “before” with economic and social prosperity. Could also imply to a time when minorities and immigrants were minority groups with less power.
“Many people are saying…” or “Many sources have said…” (Source): Salesman trick of anecdotal evidence.
“Over-rated” (Source): Public figure that does not support Trump.
“Negotiate” (Source): I will strong-arm you into doing something that benefits me.
New Yorker-style speeches (Source): You start a phrase but leave the rest of it for the audience to finish so they can fill-in the blanks with anything that matches their beliefs. For example “Yesterday was so much better than today.” – leaving it “up in the air” for the audience to finish with whatever was “better” to them. Trump would make vague implications and the audience would “fill in the blank”
Non-sequitur (Source): Logical statements that does not follow each other or have very little evidence. For example, “It rains a lot in Washington. I’ll most likely get hit by lightening there” or “I got into an accident in the rain. No one should drive in the rain!”
“Out-of-Control” (Source): Trump is really saying “Not in my control!”
Pathos arguments (Source): Appealing to emotions rather than logic (logos) or authority (ethos).
“Politically Correct” (Source): Stupid politician language that stops Trump from saying what he wants to say. Or, he’ll start off with this and then say whatever is politically incorrect.
Repetition (Source): Keep saying something (even “alternative facts” or “fake news”) until it sticks. People will more likely be able to accept it if they keep hearing about it.
“Sad!” (Source): Something that Trump will make fun or ridicule and a source of joy to him.
“So” (Source): It’s actually “very” but Trumpian style. “So great!”
“So-called” (Source): Smear word to reduce any position, prestige, or title that does not agree with Trump.
“Sorry” (Source): Passive-aggressive sense of “I’m not sorry but I’m saying it anyway.”
“Stupid” or “Terrible“: Doesn’t agree with Trump.
“They“: Anyone that doesn’t agree with Trump or one that Trump scorns. Opposite of “we” and “folks.”
“Tough“: Someone who agrees with Trump.
“Tremendous“: Big or a lot to Trump.
“Trouble” (Source): Something that’ll cause Trump to tantrum.
“We“: Everyone (even if you don’t agree) in the world. Trump will strong-arm you along.
“Weak“: Trump trying to assert dominance by calling anyone weak. For example, he called Marco Rubio weak as a baby.
“Win!” or “Winning“: Agrees with Trump. This is the same sense as how Charlie Sheen uses it.
“Wrong!“: Objection to something that doesn’t agree with Trump. I’ll look like the alpha male if I keep saying the other is wrong.
“Zero“: No mathematical implications but a smear on character.