If you want to understand this president's motivation and philosophy, all you need is a quick study in contrasts. Whatever President Obama did, President Trump does the opposite. Except for separating kids from their parents, they both did that.
President Obama wanted the world to love him, and he was embarrassed by this place called America, so he apologized on our behalf. A lot. He treated us like the drunk friend who barfed in the rich girl's bimmer, and no one wanted to give us a ride.
President Obama crafted the egghead/butthead North Korea policy called strategic patience, which did as much to endanger the world as anything in the Middle East and it caused a huge mess that needed mopping no matter who was the next free leader.
There was no real pressure or believable threat, no nicknames like "little rocket man," because classy apologists don't stoop so low. They go high!
Now this unorthodox, befuddling maximum pressure might yield surprising, stabilizing results, and if it all works they should Indian give Obama's Nobel Peace Prize to Trump.
President Obama used to both spy on Angela Merkel and nibble on her schnitzel. President Trump throws Starbursts at her after an annoying lecture.
Will strong-arming western Europe work? It might lead to frosty tariffs and awkward meetings, but it sure kicks the kettle off kilter because the global country club members don't know how to respond to this president and that's exactly how he wants it. President Macron wants to be both servile and tough, but it might cause him to lose footing.
Justin Trudeau is as tough as he is handsome, but his trade surplus betrays his dependence on the bully rube he has to pacify for at least two and a half more years.
The big question is: Will this post modernist bull in a China shop change the world for the better? Who the hell knows, but it's wildly entertaining to binge watch a presidency that offers a new episode every single day.