Donald Trump is not a normal person and not in a good way

Alex Holder is a British documentary producer who managed to get a lot of time to interview Donald Trump and his three oldest children from September 2020 past January 2021. Holder was interviewed by the congressional committee that is investigating the events of January 6th.

When the House select committee investigating the January 6 Capitol attack deposed British film-maker Alex Holder, it heard from a first-hand fact witness who inadvertently observed some of the darkest and most politically fraught days of Donald Trump’s time in office.

Holder was there for it all: three sit-down interviews with Trump, including one at the White House, numerous other interviews with Trump’s adult children, private conversations among top aides and advisers before the election, and around the Capitol itself as it got stormed.

Holder testified for about four hours behind closed doors last week about his roughly 100 hours of footage, used for an upcoming documentary titled Unprecedented, and turned over to House investigators the parts demanded in a subpoena compelling his cooperation.

In an interview with the “Skullduggery” podcast hosts Michael Isikoff, Daniel Klaidman, and Victoria Bassetti, Holder said that the family agreed to talk to him so much was because they were absolutely convinced they were going to win. They also felt that the family was unfairly portrayed in the US media and this would be their way of setting the record straight.

Holder says his footage, and his own interviews with Trump, show the former president actually believes his assertions about voter fraud affecting the outcome of the election even though there is no evidence to back up his claims. And, he added, in the days before Jan. 6, 2021, the then president was “absolutely” convinced there was going to be violence that day.

“It was so obvious. This was his last hurrah,” Holder said. “He had this — obviously had this — ridiculous idea that intervening in this ceremonial process of certifying these results could somehow prevent President Biden being inaugurated.”

But he says that what he learned from all the time spent with Trump is that he is not a rational person, that he lives in ‘cloud cuckoo land’ as he put it.

[U]ltimately, [they agreed to participate] I think the key thing here is they were very, very confident they were going to win the election. I mean, the hubris was just absolutely remarkable. I mean, they were convinced it would be a repeat of 2016. The pollsters were all wrong — it would be a massive surprise. One of the big lines that was used by Don Jr. throughout the campaign was, “Let’s make liberals cry again.”

Donald Trump is not a rational player. I mean, he just isn’t. You can’t have a conversation with him in the same way that you can have a conversation with most other people. He is somebody that lives in a different reality. He had started the lie about the election back in 2016. What I saw after the first interview with him in the White House was that he now became someone who believed in his own lie, and that is a person who is delusional. That is a person who is incredibly dangerous, because you can’t debate with that person. There is no way that anybody can persuade Donald Trump that he’s wrong. And this is something that’s characteristic of him all the way through his life, and the series goes into this in the sense that he will never accept that he had done anything wrong. He will always double back. He’s always right, and it’s always somebody else’s fault. I mean, he lives in cloud cuckoo land. He’s sitting in an interview in Mar-a-Lago saying that in front of a portrait, an actual oil painting of himself painted 25 to 30 years ago in a golf outfit. I mean, I actually asked about that at the end of the interview. I was like, “You’ve got to tell me about this painting.” I mean, this is a guy who literally has paintings of himself in his house. I mean, he’s just not a normal guy. I mean, you know?

On the first day of the public hearings we heard from another British documentary filmmaker Nick Quested who had been embedded with the Proud Boys. We are likely going to hear testimony from Holder later. It should make for interesting viewing.


  1. mikey says

    Just like the Nazis, who kept such detailed records, which were helpful in the Nuremberg trials. They were sure that they’d be writing the history books.
    Another point for the old saw, “history doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes, it rhymes…”

  2. Lassi Hippeläinen says

    I was just reading “Vessels of Rage: The Secret History of Alcoholism” by James Graham. An interesting book, even though he someimes jumps to conclusions too bravely. But his list of typical behaviour of an alcoholic seems OK. Trump ticks almost all of the boxes. What kind of Diet Coke is he drinking?

  3. lanir says

    Donald Trump has caused so much harm that no person could live long enough to make up for it all. This is a practical limitation, not a political one. All the special pleading because he was president? Those excuses are the reasons why he needs to be more accountable, not less. If presidents can’t be held accountable for trying to be king, then aren’t they already unaccountable kings? You’d think even those right wing pretend constitutional scholars could figure out the basics we teach to kids in grade school history classes.

  4. Owlmirror says

    But his list of typical behaviour of an alcoholic seems OK. Trump ticks almost all of the boxes. What kind of Diet Coke is he drinking?

    Pretty sure it’s just plain Diet Coke. Trump famously eschews alcohol.

    But that doesn’t mean he’s not addicted to something.

    I checked the archives of the last time I remember Trump and drugs being discussed, and Marcus Ranum mentioned his suspicions that Trump abuses:

    Adderall (amphetamine/dextroamphetamine)
    Definitely bad with alcohol. Also: amphetamines cause paranoia, sleeplessness, and dyskenisia.

    If you spend time around amphetamine abusers you learn to recognize the signs.

  5. sonofrojblake says

    I mean, he’s just not a normal guy. I mean, you know?

    Not for the first time, I’m having difficulty remembering that Trump’s first name is not Zaphod.

    “He’s just zis guy, you know?” -- the President’s private braincare specialist. The President whose job was not to wield power, but to attract attention away from it. The worst-dressed sentient being in the known universe. A moral vacuum and habitual liar, a massive egotist and narcissist who thinks he’s much smarter than he is.

    One difference, and it’s important: Stormy Daniels is very much not Eccentrica Galumbits, and she very much did NOT use the phrase “the best bang since the Big one”. Poor Donald. You’re not even Zaphod. What a schmuck.

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