"[H]ow many of these people are just batsh*t crazy, legitimately so?"

And that’s the question: can Trump’s ability to use lies and conspiracies as a political tool be wielded by others successfully without him there as cover? The little ray of hope I’ll hang onto is that once Trump has gone, a lot of this pressure or opportunity that they see in being able to do that might become less effective politically. We don’t know that.

We don’t know but also don’t forget, Joe, that some of these people are actually nuts. I mean, again, I can’t be specific because I’m not a doctor, but some of these people actually believe this. They’re not just pretending for the sake of votes, for the sake of support, some of these people are… I mean, this is one of the great unexplored aspects of public life both media and politics, is how many of these people are just batshit crazy, legitimately so? And I’m sure we could have a very fruitful conversation with the microphones off and beer in hand about who we think are the craziest people, legitimately crazy, not just playing a role on TV, but there are a bunch of them out there because a lot of them have been mainstreamed by the Trump administration because they couldn’t get jobs in previous Republican administrations.

Well, yeah, under Trump, being crazy was a benefit. If Trump is casting for his staff in the White House, he was casting for that kind of crazy. And it was politically effective as long as it was under the umbrella of Trump. I’m not saying there haven’t been crazy people in politics on both sides before this…

Democrats and Republicans, but the idea of the number of people who are just loons, people who just believe crazy things, deranged conspiracy theories, who don’t care about evidence, who don’t care about facts, who are willing to suspend all skepticism and allegiance to empiricism just to be part of the gang or for whatever reason, again, this is something for a doctor to explore, it’s just again, not just in the administration, in Congress, but also on TV news, and I use the word news loosely, it’s remarkable.