Trump Literally Doesn't Understand Time Zones

Illustration for article titled Trump Literally Doesnt Understand Time Zones
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It seems that there is no way to overestimate our president’s ignorance. Yet it’s still hard to comprehend the fact that, according to a new Politico article, he has no idea how time zones work.


Politico reports that Trump’s time zone confusion came up on a “constant basis.” For example, he’d ask to call Shinzo Abe, the Prime Minister of Japan, during the afternoon in Washington—the middle of the night Japan time.

“He wasn’t great with recognizing that the leader of a country might be 80 or 85 years old and isn’t going to be awake or in the right place at 10:30 or 11 p.m. their time,” a former Trump NSC official told Politico. “When he wants to call someone, he wants to call someone. He’s more impulsive that way. He doesn’t think about what time it is or who it is,” another source reported.


“He’s the president of the United States. He’s not stopping to add up [time differences],” a source told Politico. “I don’t think anybody would expect him or Obama or Bush or Clinton or anybody to do that. That’s the whole reason you have a staff to say ‘Yes, we’ll set it up,’ and then they find a time that makes most sense.” Ok sure, but I’m going to guess that Obama and Clinton were at least aware of the fact that only one side of Earth faces towards the sun at any given time.

Trump’s staff would then have to explain, again, how time works:

In the case of Abe and others, Trump’s NSC staffers would advise him, for instance, that “the time is messed up, it’s 1 o’clock in the morning” and promise to put the call on his calendar for a more diplomatically appropriate time. Former national security adviser H.R. McMaster would assure him: “We can try to set it up.”

The Politico piece is filled with similarly mind boggling errors made by our president. “In one case, Trump, while studying a briefer’s map of South Asia ahead of a 2017 meeting with India’s prime minister, mispronounced Nepal as “nipple” and laughingly referred to Bhutan as “button,” according to two sources with knowledge of the meeting,” they write.

Before a meeting with Indian leader Narendra Modi, Trump asked about Modi’s wife before learning they’d long been estranged. “Ah, I think I can set him up with somebody,” Trump joked, according to staffers in the meeting. He then proceeded to admit that he had no idea that Nepal or Bhutan existed.


“He didn’t know what those were. He thought it was all part of India,” a source told Politico. “He was like, ‘What is this stuff in between and these other countries?’”

Then there’s this tidbit: “The Washington Post reported in January that he sometimes puts on an Indian accent and imitates the way Modi speaks.”


World leaders are essentially engaged in an emotionally abusive relationship with Trump. Politico reports that leaders were afraid to correct him on false facts. “Some world leaders feel like he goes on autopilot and makes factual errors but they don’t want to correct him and don’t want to set him off,” a foreign policy expert said.

This is apparently the way things are in 2018. Our country’s leader has the geopolitical understanding, and racist sense of humor, of a sociopathic sixth grader. God help us all.

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