President Trump is a pig. In the best sense of the word.
WASHINGTON -- Richard Nixon will forever be remembered for his November 1973 protest: "I am not a crook."
Donald Trump, likewise, may be recorded in history for the assertion he made over the weekend to a skeptical nation: I am not an idiot.
The commander in chief volunteered an unexpected defense of his intellect and sanity in response to a book in which many of his aides are portrayed as believing the boss to be, in the medical parlance, a few fries short of a Happy Meal.
"My two greatest assets have been my mental stability and being, like, really smart," Trump tweeted -- because, like, nothing says "intelligence" like using the word "like" like that. Trump went on to tweet that his achievements qualify him as "genius. ... and a very stable genius at that!"
At a mini news conference that same day, Trump explained why he felt compelled to defend his mental health and acuity: "I went to the best colleges or college. I went to a -- I had a situation where I was a very excellent student."
This was, like, almost as ill-advised as what Sen. William Scott, R-Va., did in 1974 upon being named the dumbest member of Congress by an obscure publication. He held a news conference to deny that he was dumbest -- thereby proving the charge.
But maybe this is, like, a misunderstanding. Maybe Trump didn't mean to type that he is a "stable genius" but a "stable genus" -- that is, of a genus and species typically found in a stable. In this case, an argument can be made that Trump is indeed a stable genus -- specifically a descendant of Sus scrofa known as Sus domesticus. The common pig.
Before you accuse me of being rude (which would compel me to host a news conference to deny it), I am not suggesting that the president is a pig in the pejorative sense Trump meant when calling Rosie O'Donnell a pig. (Although, if the hoof fits …) I mean pig in the best sense -- that of the most intelligent animals on the farm, and the ones George Orwell selected to lead all other animals in "Animal Farm."
It has been many years since I read the 1945 classic, but I have perused the CliffsNotes, and my horse sense tells me there are some echoes in current affairs.
There is Snowball, a pig who is the ideological leader of the animal movement. But the leader forces him into exile and thereafter blames him for all hardship. Snowball was originally seen as a Trotsky figure, but after the past week, it is pretty clear that Snowball's demise foreshadowed Steve Bannon.