Special Investigator Robert Mueller tries to extract
the Stone of Madness out of Donald Trump's head.
The saintly Pence comforts Trump.
Trump's wife Melania watches amused.
Thanks to Jheronimus Bosch painting "Extracting the Stone of Madness"
by the Dutch painter, ca. 1494 or later.
Madrid, Museo del Prado
The original inscription on the painting reads in Dutch:
"Meester snijdt die key ras,
Mijn name is lubbert das."
(Master rid me of this stone soon,
My name is Lubbert Das.)
Below the explanation of the painting on the website of the Museum El Prado in Madrid:
"Popular tradition associated madness with a stone lodged in the brain. Taking the metaphor in its most literal sense, gullible people tried to liberate themselves from this supposed stone by having it removed. Bosch sets the scene outdoors on a small promontory that overlooks a plain with two cities in the distance. He shows the patient as a stout, elderly peasant with his clogs off and tied to a chair.
The charlatan or surgeon undertaking the operation wears an upside-down funnel on his head. This object symbolizes deception and reveals that he is not a learned man but rather a fraudster. Instead of a bag, at his belt he has a grey-brown stoneware pitcher of the Aachen or Raeren type so often depicted by Bosch.
What he extracts from the patient’s head is not a stone but a type of waterlily like the one on the table, which is left over from a previous operation. While this motif is generally interpreted as a symbol of the money that he will be obtaining from the trusting peasant, the fact that it is a flower has led some authors, such as Arias Bonel, to interpret it in a sexual sense.
In this case, rather than curing the patient’s madness the surgeon is castrating him by ridding him of his sexual desire -lust- and thus returning him to the right paths of society and Christian morality. This idea is further suggested by the name of the patient, Lubbert Das, which some authors have translated as castrated badger. As a nocturnal creature that sleeps during the day the badger (das) was considered lazy. Lubbert is a man’s name that is also used as a nickname for a fat, lazy and stupid person, while the verb lubben means to castrate. In addition, the bag hanging from the chair and pierced by the dagger has an erotic, sexual significance."