Appreciate the Rose Garden, until the Creatures take over

On Wednesday afternoon Donald Trump tweeted, “I will be announcing my decision on the Paris Agreement on climate change during the next few days. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”

That’s right, the President, America was teasing pulling from the vital and historical Paris agreement like it had been a potential lesbian kiss coming up on a day soap with ratings.

Mr. Trump has repeatedly said that climate change is now a “hoax.” He’s credited the Chinese with the idea, tweeting “The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to create U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”

On pulling from this deal, he campaigned, and a number of news outlets mentioned, following the tweet, which officials knowledgeable about the plans of the President said that is what he’d do. I imagine that, even as they said this, they had no firm idea of what would actually come from Mr. Trump’s mouth when the time arrived.

On Wednesday evening Mr. Trump elaborated, promising he’d be “announcing my decision on Paris agreement, Thursday at 3:00 P.M.. The White House Rose Garden.” You may recall Mr. Trump’s recent tweet on the prospect of repealing the Affordable Care Act. “If victorious, Republicans would be having a huge press conference at the beautiful Rose Garden of the White House promptly following vote!” He enthused.

There’s not any evidence that is greater that the exhausted-looking Donald Trump would much prefer to be retired compared to his quest for explanations to invest more time in his rose garden.

I imagine when those identical officials examine his guarantee of a determination, on what he say once there, they sighed and placed their bets. The odds were likely even on the presentation involving Mr. Trump’s proudly again telling the world that “The Germans are all bad, really bad.”

The kindest word to your President is “capricious,” and nobody uses it.

This is an administration where the ideal hand does not know what the left hand is tweeting but always must be ready for a three a.m. “Hey, which right hand was completely lying to you and there is a very good possibility I conspired to block an FBI investigation!”

After all, it had been widely circulated that, despite his prior characterization of all NATO as “obsolete” and his apparent belief it had been a sort of heavily armed American-owned personal golf club to whom much of Europe owes late membership fees, the President would be reaffirming America’s commitment to NATO’s Article 5 — the first component which makes it more than just a heavily armed golf club — and he very much didn’t do this.

Upon Mr. Trump’s return in his less-than-serene sojourn, national-security adviser H.R. McMaster and Gary Cohn, manager of the National Economic Council, composed a Wall Street Journal editorial boasting that Mr. Trump had done a wonderful job “reconfirming America’s commitment to NATO and also Article 5.”

There’s so much twist coming from this White House it’s as if the world’s been packed into a basement and made to watch someone holiday slides while his doting family narrates.

“Oh, I loved this!” Since they click from image, we hear. “This was among the highlights of the trip!” But all anybody paying attention can say is “Umm, it rather seems like he is fully covered in fire ants.”

“Look at all the excellent friends he made out of his positive energy,” they say, clicking over to a slide showing their celebrity persuading the Prime Minister of Montenegro from his way and then preening before the cameras.

“Dear God, is that the Prime Minister okay? Did any of the fire ants get him on?” We cry out in clear concern.

“No, actually, the trip went great! The fire ants only caused a bit of excruciating agony, barely any unspeakable torment in any way, actually, and the other world leaders were so thrilled to get him there.”

“Was that Angela Merkel in this previous slide,” someone calls out of the trunk, “climbing up a pillar to hang a ‘Team Fire Ants!!’ Banner in the ceiling?”

“No, you’re mistranslating that,” snaps the projector operator, even clicking rapidly throughout the following four slides.

“It had been in English,” says a kid in the audience.

Footage of Mr. Trump greeting President Macron as although the French chief’s arm were a recalcitrant kid he had been attempting to get into a snowsuit was summoned as a attempt to demonstrate strength on Mr. Trump’s part, but of course, as every parent knows, there is no way of coming from the struggle looking statesmanlike.

Mr. Trump’s thorny Thursday Rose Garden announcement which the United States will really pull from the Paris climate agreement, which was signed by 197 nations and ratified by 147, was telegraphed because McMaster/Cohn editorial. The U.S. would like to go it alone.

“The President embarked on his first overseas trip with a clear-eyed outlook that the planet is not a ‘international community’ but an arena in which,” they wrote, “states, non-governmental actors, and companies engage and compete to get advantage. We contribute to this particular forum unmatched political military, economical, cultural and ethical strength. Instead of deny this elemental nature of international affairs, we adopt it.”

This really isn’t the mindset of someone seeking to maintain the present liberal-democratic world order with themselves at the top. That is the plot to Rollerball, which, by the way, is put in 2018 if you have not got your skates nonetheless.

The Paris agreement is not a magic bullet but it’s widely believed to be the best hope we have of coming together. We can consider this as a template for dealing with crises.

It’s as if legions started doing exactly what man-eaters fared best, starting with the very poorest and most vulnerable among us and of radioactive squid creatures from outer space have come to Earth. Earthlings — with the exclusion of the one uncle at Thanksgiving dinner who argues that Squid Monsters from Beyond the Stars are only a natural cycle that the Earth goes through, and also certainly will clear themselves up in a couple of decades — agree that this is a bad thing.

After painstaking dialogue, it’s agreed that the world’s nations should begin protecting the squid critters on their soil before it’s too late, putting their own targets, determining their own techniques, but allowing their international partners know how that is going from time to time.

There would be international dismay if the President of the United States announced that he, together with the head of his Extraterrestrial Prevention Agency, had determined that the Terrible Space Squids were actually only Chinese President Xi Jinping in a squid costume seeking to scare people away in the coal mines they are so obsessive about. Were the President to stand out into his Rose Garden and declare that the U.S. would instead be investing in some enormous wayward children and their talking dog, it could have disastrous consequences for the complete “not being eaten by space squids” effort, but that is pretty much where we are.

The majority of Americans support remaining in the Paris deal. Many companies, from the developing sector to Shell and ExxonMobil, desired the same. But left this bargain was a campaign promise, and Mr. Trump has met nearly none of these.

In between discussion of how much he “love[s] coal miners” and paranoid rambling about the agreement being “less concerning the climate and more about other nations gaining a financial advantage over the United States,” the words “preceding administration,” contrasted with “my own presidency,” played a starring role in Mr. Trump’s statement. This was populism; it had been a challenging quality to respect, naked egoism.

There were a jazz group, roses and an older man speaking about the old times. American hegemony, it seems, will end not with a bang or even a whimper, but having a costly brunch.