Donald Trump
Credit: Michael Vadon/Flickr

Here is another interesting tidbit from Trump’s interview with the Associated Press:

They had a quote from me that NATO’s obsolete. But they didn’t say why it was obsolete. I was on Wolf Blitzer, very fair interview, the first time I was ever asked about NATO, because I wasn’t in government. People don’t go around asking about NATO if I’m building a building in Manhattan, right? So they asked me, Wolf … asked me about NATO, and I said two things. NATO’s obsolete — not knowing much about NATO, now I know a lot about NATO…

In other words, all those times that the president talked about NATO on the campaign trail and during the first months of his tenure, he didn’t actually know much about it. He goes on to say that he knows a lot about it now. But that is obviously not true since he continues to claim that he was right back when he didn’t know what he was talking about (just try and wrap you mind around that one) because countries aren’t paying what they owe. These are the facts:

As of 2014, NATO’s collective agreement directed members to spend 2 percent of their GDP on defense spending by 2024…

The problem with Trump’s claim is that Germany doesn’t pay that money to NATO or to the United States or to any other country, said Daniel Benjamin, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution.

This is a reminder that there are a lot of things Trump didn’t know about. Here are some examples that come to mind:

Those are just the ones I can remember. Did I miss anything?

As a lot of people are pointing out, that is a pretty steep learning curve for a POTUS. The problem with Trump is that he feels no hesitancy in ranting and raving about topics when he is obviously ignorant about them. Here is another one of Steve Benen’s irony-loaded understatements about that:

Trump, with literally no background in government, politics, or public service before taking the nation’s highest office, took firm stands on a wide variety of issues he knew nothing about. As a rule, this isn’t a wise approach – it’s generally better to rely on some information before coming up with opinions – but this guy threw caution to the wind, and 46% of the American electorate found it compelling.

On that 46 percent of the American electorate that found this compelling, one gets the impression that they saw it as a feature rather than a bug. But we’re all about to find out how dangerous ignorance can be in a president.

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