James Hohmann of the Washington Post writes that Trump makes consequential decisions without consulting people who are deeply knowledgeable about the consequences.

IDEA: President Trump tweeted last week about his own “great and unmatched wisdom” as he defended his controversial conversation with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. It was a window into his certitude and self-confidence that belies a lack of careful study or deep knowledge of the world.

That Oct. 6 call, just like his July 25 phone conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, would have played out very differently if Trump had listened to the warnings of his advisers at the White House and appointees in the national security apparatus.

“Mr. Trump’s error, some aides concede in off-the-record conversations, was entering the Oct. 6 call underprepared, and then failing to spell out for Mr. Erdogan the potential consequences — from economic sanctions to a contraction of Turkey’s alliance with the United States and its standing in NATO. He has since threatened both, retroactively,” David Sanger reports in today’s New York Times. “The horrors that have played out with lightning speed were clearly not anticipated by Mr. Trump, who has no fondness for briefing books and meetings in the Situation Room intended to game out events two or three moves ahead. Instead, he often talks about trusting his instincts. ‘My gut tells me more sometimes than anybody else’s brain can ever tell me,’ he said late last year.”

— Some of this is a result of Trump surrounding himself with more “yes men” than during the first two years of his administration. Jim Mattis, you might recall, resigned as secretary of defense last December after Trump initially announced he would withdraw U.S. troops from Syria.

“During deliberations in the past, Trump has repeatedly pushed to remove troops from Syria but has usually been dissuaded by top officials, such as John F. Kelly, his former chief of staff,” Seung Min Kim and Josh Dawsey reported on Sunday. “The usual argument against removing troops, according to former senior administration officials, would be that doing so would cause widespread deaths and chaos and Trump would be blamed for it. ‘Normally, convincing him he would be blamed for death and chaos could keep it from happening at least at that moment,’ one former senior administration official said. But current administration officials say many moderating officials like Kelly are gone, and longtime friends say the move is consistent with Trump’s worldview — and that he has long wanted to do this.”