Trump recently did an interview where he claimed that ten years ago Israel owned congress, “and rightfully so”. It’s actually kind of rare for Americans to realize how much influence Israel had over U.S. foreign policy so that alone implies a social understanding in the top 10%.

But then anyone with the social understanding to realize it, usually has the social understanding to keep silent about it, but then Trump can get away with saying things other politicians can’t and rather than condemning Trump for his comments as they would with most people, the media is shrewdly ignoring them, because calling out Trump would backfire by causing his base to rally around him.

However in psychometric testing there’s a thing called spoiling an answer, where a response that would normally get partial credit on the Wechsler, suddenly gets downgraded to zero when the subject elaborates.

For example when asked “what is ice cream?” the subject might get 1 point for saying “you put it in the freezer.” But when the examiner asks for elaboration, to help the subject get up to 2 points, he says “you know, to keep it warm!”. The elaboration has spoiled the answer and reduced him to zero.

This is kind of what happened to Trump. He was smart enough to know that a foreign country had enormous influence over U.S. foreign policy (something Chomsky expects even his fans to be too dumb to know), but rather than getting the full 2 points by understanding why this is problematic, he reduced his score on this item to 0 by saying “rightfully so”.

Or maybe Trump only added “rightfully so” to inoculate himself against charges of anti-Semitism or to pander to his Zionist base, but I don’t think so. I think Trump genuinely worships Israel, which would make sense if he were Jewish or if Jews were being persecuted, but being an unwitting Uncle Tom to a more powerful people (even one as impressive as the Jews) raises questions about Trump’s intelligence.