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Narcissus In The White House Press Room

Did you see the Trump press conference? If not, you can watch it here and read the transcript [1], or read the annotated transcript here. [2]

If you do, you’ll find things like this:

QUESTION: Mr. President, on national…

TRUMP: Wait. Let’s see. Who’s — I want to find a friendly reporter.

QUESTION: Mr….

TRUMP: Are you a friendly reporter? Watch how friendly he is. Wait. Wait. Watch how friendly he is. Go ahead.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)…

TRUMP: Go ahead.

QUESTION: So first of all, my name is (Inaudible) from (Inaudible) Magazine. I (inaudible). I haven’t seen anybody in my community, including yourself or any of the — anyone on your staff of being (OFF-MIKE).

Because (OFF-MIKE). However, what we’ve already heard about and what we (OFF-MIKE) is (OFF-MIKE) so you’re general forecast (ph) like 48 (OFF-MIKE). There are people who are everything (ph) happens through their packs (ph) is one of the (OFF-MIKE)…

(CROSSTALK)

TRUMP:…he said he was gonna ask a very simple, easy question. And it’s not, its not, not — not a simple question, not a fair question. OK sit down, I understand the rest of your question.

So here’s the story, folks. Number one, I am the least anti- Semitic person that you’ve ever seen in your entire life. Number two, racism, the least racist person. In fact, we did very well relative to other people running as a Republican — quiet, quiet, quiet.

See, he lied about — he was gonna get up and ask a very straight, simple question, so you know, welcome to the world of the media. But let me just tell you something, that I hate the charge, I find it repulsive.

I hate even the question because people that know me and you heard the prime minister, you heard Ben Netanyahu (ph) yesterday, did you hear him, Bibi? He said, I’ve known Donald Trump for a long time and then he said, forget it.

So you should take that instead of having to get up and ask a very insulting question like that.

And this:

QUESTION: Mr. Trump?

TRUMP: Yes, oh, this is going to be a bad question, but that’s OK.

QUESTION: It doesn’t(ph) have(ph) to be a bad question.

TRUMP: Good, because I enjoy watching you on television. Go ahead.

QUESTION: Well, thank you so much. Mr. President, I need to find out from you, you said something as it relates to inner cities. That was one of your platforms during your campaign. Now you’re —

TRUMP: Fix the inner cities.

QUESTION: — president. Fixing the inner cities.

TRUMP: Yep.

QUESTION: What will be that fix and your urban agenda as well as your HBCU Executive Order that’s coming out this afternoon? See, it wasn’t bad, was it?

TRUMP: That was very professional and very good.

QUESTION: I’m very professional.

I will never, ever get this about Trump: his obsession with the media and how it covers him. He is President of the United States, yet he stood on the stage for a long time, bitching about the media. It’s crazy, just crazy. Hey, I don’t much care for the media either, but this is just nuts.

No! Now we hear that Mattis ally Vice Admiral Robert Harward (Ret.) has turned down Trump’s offer of National Security Adviser. The FT, quoting someone close to the discussions, says “Harward is conflicted between the call of duty and the obvious dysfunctionality.” [4]

You think? Would you want to work for that dumpster fire of a White House? Does seeing the president’s press conference today bolster your confidence in him and his executive leadership?

At some point, it is bound to occur to even strong pro-Trump partisans that there’s something really wrong with this guy. You cannot, you know, run a country if you spend so much time obsessing about the media. Richard Nixon was a thousand times smarter than Donald Trump, and his paranoia did him in. Ronald Reagan probably wasn’t nearly as intelligent as Trump, and he got bad press too, but he was a lot smarter about the media than Trump is.

UPDATE: The President of the United States is running an online survey [5]about how the media are covering him. Really, he is. Meanwhile, today in Washington state, the Baronnelle Stutzman got pummeled by the state Supreme Court, which is destroying her business on behalf of a gay couple. But please, let’s not get upset over the strangling of religious liberty in this country, and the crushing of the livelihood of a gentle Washington grandmother by two vindictive gay men. Let’s worry about how mean CNN is to Donald Trump.

199 Comments (Open | Close)

199 Comments To "Narcissus In The White House Press Room"

#1 Comment By Bob Taylor On February 17, 2017 @ 11:59 am

Every public, unscripted act of Trump’s ratifies the no standards, no class, astounding vulgarity template of our times. I agree, it was a hopeless, hopeless choice last November, but for the first time the United States has knowingly elected a president who reflects its trashiest personal instincts. He’s a John Waters 1970s vision of a president. Didn’t you point these things out just yesterday, Rod, or are too many great blogs combining and recombining?

#2 Comment By MB On February 17, 2017 @ 12:08 pm

As for conservatives watching this, since when are we more concerned with the things we hate than the things we love? — RD]

Great question, Rod.

#3 Comment By Andrew On February 17, 2017 @ 12:09 pm

jamie says (February 16, 2017 at 10:31 pm):

“Statements restricted to dumping on the press, while offering support to Trump, but only an avatar of their hatred of the media: Andrew, [etc.]…”

(By the way, there are at least two Andrew’s, although on this topic we seem to think alike. I’m the real Andrew.)

First, I enthusiastically support Trump, apart from his treatment of the media. I was once reluctant, but now am much more in favor of him.

Second, I want Trump to take it to the media so that he can accomplish his goals, which (for the most part) I agree with. It’s not just “hatred of the media.” I believe the media, along with the politicians they are allied with, are fully capable of beginning a war with Russia, just as they once did with Iraq. I don’t want that to happen. One of the reasons I voted for Trump over Clinton was that I didn’t want a war with Russia (whether via Syria, Ukraine, or wherever). So my favorable view of Trump’s press conference is not just that he took the fight to the media. It’s that he is standing against their eagerness to provoke a confrontation with Russia. I’m truly surprised that Rod and others here don’t see that. Do you want Russia as an enemy? Do you want the civil war in Syria to become WWIII? Do you understand that Trump is the anti-war politician, at least in this context?

#4 Comment By Andrew On February 17, 2017 @ 12:25 pm

The Other Sands: “I no longer have time for those carrying his water. To anyone who watches this flaming disaster and is still rationalizing it, I now simply say that I don’t respect you and I have no obligation to ‘hear your side’ and understand ‘your America.’ If this is what people in the Rust Belt support, then the Rust Belt is filled with dangerous idiots and I guess the normal elites really were a better choice. My only concern now for Trump and his voters is to protest and defeat them.”

Thank you for your honesty and your passion. Please keep holding that attitude. Please keep expressing contempt for the idiots and deplorables who are rationalizing Trump. Keep trying to defeat us using the same tactics as before. Consider the battle joined.

I live in the midst of the Rust Belt. You have no idea who these people are, or why they think the way they do. It might be worthwhile to talk to your fellow citizens rather than dismissing them as idiots. Trust me, they are very aware of your disdain and contempt. That’s why Trump is president. But please, keep it up.

#5 Comment By JonF On February 17, 2017 @ 12:28 pm

Re: If he had following your media strategy (whatever that is), do you think he would have won?

Yes, because he still wouldn’t be Hillary Clinton. Trump did not win because he was obnoxious to the media– he won because convinced a lot of undecided, highly skeptical voters that he was less risky than Mme. Clinton.

#6 Comment By jamie On February 17, 2017 @ 1:02 pm

Glenn- You had your chance to offer support in response to our host’s direct question and you hedged. You amend your comment only after I called out your hedging.

On this I saw a big NYP headline this morning [6].

I thought such an article would cite some survey, or at least QUOTE one supporter. It does neither.

There appears to be a campaign to boost morale among Trump waverers and convince them that even if the emperor has no clothes, plenty of their friends still think so. Even though there seems to be no hard evidence this is the case. All there is is a bunch of third party analysis and opinion and, uh, “fake news” of Trump’s support.

#7 Comment By Fran Macadam On February 17, 2017 @ 1:32 pm

“Richard Nixon was a thousand times smarter than Donald Trump.”

Never had a job other than swilling at the public trough. And this conversation with Kissinger on the tapes was indicative of his gross stupidity:

“Atomic weapons dropped on Viet Nam? Does that bother you Henry? Why not? I want you to think big, Henry.”

Meanwhile in that press conference the President just lectured everyone why it is a very bad idea not to get along with nuclear powered Russia, even if it makes him unpopular, and what a disaster popular jingoistic warmaking would be.

Destroying rather than building? Hardly.

Trump built plenty, what did Richard Nixon ever build?

#8 Comment By Rusty On February 17, 2017 @ 1:35 pm

That’s the freaking point. They don’t want him to run the country, they want him to break the system.

Is it safe to say that the mask is off now? That the goals were arson and anarchy, not governance?

Truly; enjoy this show while it lasts. In the end, it’s another win for the 1%.

#9 Comment By jamie On February 17, 2017 @ 1:48 pm

You know what Glenn, I’m being totally unfair and I apologize, you’re the fourth commenter in the first 66 to support Trump, and your support is premised on yours and Trump’s shared love of “Patton and John Wayne.”

While you express zero support for his political agenda you definitely seem to share the same mythical headspace. Maybe that’s what the conservative movement is now?

#10 Comment By David M On February 17, 2017 @ 1:58 pm

What exactly does punishing and taking “the media” down a notch accomplish? We’ve already seen that decades of GOP complaints has caused the mainstream media to bend over backwards to provide cover for all kinds of GOP nonsense. What is the end game here? Making viewpoints that differ from the official GOP party line illegal?

#11 Comment By bayesian On February 17, 2017 @ 1:58 pm

As for conservatives watching this, since when are we more concerned with the things we hate than the things we love? — RD

Judging by the public personae of USAian conservatives anyway, I’d say starting sometime in the early Nineties, with a big uptick around 2008.

#12 Comment By VikingLS On February 17, 2017 @ 2:13 pm

“The slander that Trump’s opponents are all seeking military hostilities with Russia is an outrageous lie”

The word “military” is doing a lot of work for you there.

#13 Comment By erudite On February 17, 2017 @ 2:24 pm

“Yes, because he still wouldn’t be Hillary Clinton. Trump did not win because he was obnoxious to the media– he won because convinced a lot of undecided, highly skeptical voters that he was less risky than Mme. Clinton.”

The one thing Trump’s defenders on this thread neglect to mention is that Trump didn’t hold any press conferences between July and November. And he didn’t do it because he was tired of winning…

#14 Comment By JWJ On February 17, 2017 @ 2:39 pm

First, shout-out agreement to other commenters such as Andrew; Nestor; Chris C; Glen Jackson; pov 99; Wes; Mark; Steve M; Ben H; M_Young; Melanius the Seer

“April Ryan is a reporter for American Urban Radio Networks. Ryan claimed that Manigault (White House aide) told her she was among a group of reporters on whom the White House is keeping dossiers with negative information. She claimed that she felt “physically intimidated” by Manigault. She described Manigault’s behavior as threatening enough to be “Secret Serviceable,” meaning that it warranted intervention by law enforcement officers.”
There actually was a tape made of the conversation. The “reporter” lied about everything. She made up her accusations completely. The “reporter” was the one that was aggressive, mean, rude, and confrontational.

This type of outright lying from the “media” happens every single day.

At best the “media” is the opposition party and the “leftist propaganda arm”, and at worst simply an enemy. The “media” will write and/or say anything to try and bring down Trump.

Finally, Mr D, I said it before, but it needs to be said again, thank you for posting all these different comments. Your pieces are the only ones at AC that does so.
Is there any chance you could have a voting system on the comments?

#15 Comment By jamie On February 17, 2017 @ 2:41 pm

Can someone fill me in on the “the press want to start a war with Russia” thing? I’ve seen no evidence of this.

#16 Comment By Lllurker On February 17, 2017 @ 2:52 pm

“I live in the midst of the Rust Belt. You have no idea who these people are, or why they think the way they do. It might be worthwhile to talk to your fellow citizens rather than dismissing them as idiots. Trust me, they are very aware of your disdain and contempt. That’s why Trump is president. But please, keep it up.”

I too live in the so-called rust belt, lets not pretend that confers on us any special kind of cred. We’re 2 people out of dozens and dozens of millions. I don’t live all that far from Middletown OH by the way, where JD Vance spent much of his childhood, you read his book?

Incidentally we really need to do better than “Rust Belt.” Awful marketing but not sure what’s better though. “Midwest” isn’t that great and “Heartland” is taken. I’d go for “Buckeye Country” but I suppose that might not have the broadest of appeal…

Gotta do better than Rust Belt though.

Anyway, I too live here, and at this point I don’t believe I’ve ever held more disdain for for any person than I do at the moment for Trump. So it’s not a geographical thing. I guess the only way my opinion of Trump can go any lower is if he turns out to be an actual, honest to God traitor, and the jury’s still out on that…

#17 Comment By Houston Parks On February 17, 2017 @ 2:58 pm

I usually agree with you, but I think you are wrong. The media are overtly partisan, smug, and hostile to traditional values. I see nothing wrong with someone with the clout of a president calling out their malpractices.

#18 Comment By Lllurker On February 17, 2017 @ 3:02 pm

So here is something I’m wondering about. I just read a couple quotes from Limbaugh and Hannity about yesterday’s presser, and it got me thinking: who actually watched the whole thing? Who formed their impressions of it through a filter of one sort or another?

In my case I didn’t watch it live, I saw clips on CNN and Shep Smith’s fox show, plus some articles on the Washington Post.

#19 Comment By at the soundcheck On February 17, 2017 @ 3:10 pm

As for conservatives watching this, since when are we more concerned with the things we hate than the things we love? — RD

Oh, come on.

Are you asking about this, or one of your other posts, filled with this “love?”

Rod. I think it might be helpful to review some of these comments, like George at February 17, 2017 at 7:15 am and Stephen at February 17, 2017 at 8:58 am, before your pendulum swings again and you find yourself at a progressive wing of some denomination.

Seconding JWJ: I do commend you, Rod, for posting all kinds of comments, and you do draw a smart crowd. But no rating system, please.

#20 Comment By Lllurker On February 17, 2017 @ 3:17 pm

As for conservatives watching this, since when are we more concerned with the things we hate than the things we love? — RD

Just as human beings, when did that become okay? I see people’s homes and cities and families get bombed, and overrun by enemies, and I see how for those people it would be unrealistic to expect any other reaction besides hate. But here?

#21 Comment By hankest On February 17, 2017 @ 3:28 pm

Trump: “My Electoral College victory was of huge, historic proportions!”

MSM Reporter: “No it wasn’t, not even close.”

Trump supporters: “AHA! Proof the MSM is the opposition party!!!”

Bizarre.

#22 Comment By Lllurker On February 17, 2017 @ 3:37 pm

“The prim and proper George W let the press crap all over him for eight years, and all the country’s ills only got worse during his tenure. His popularity went steadily down, and he was ultimately ineffective.”

Don’t handle the press as you advise and a country’s ills worsen, so the flip side would be “good” press conferences and the country does better.

Tell me you didn’t hear this on the radio…

We are actually talking about George Bush?

#23 Comment By jnw On February 17, 2017 @ 4:19 pm

“If the American people want their president to spend the next four years obsessing about his coverage in the media, then the American people are knuckleheads. — RD”

*Whooosh*
Man, you do not get it.

This is particularly odd considering you have written about and have even endorsed to some extent the “Cathedral” doctrine.

The media is simply the PR wing of the Cathedral which has a huge ability to shape public opinion. If that collective body decides to run an propaganda campaign against your own administration and discredit it in the eyes of public, well… what exactly do you do? It’s like trying to ignore a bully. You either believe in your mission as an elected president or you don’t.

If you believe the Cathedral in its current form to be corrupt and toxic it’s likely someone is going to take up the dirty job Trump is doing.

If you believe the Cathedral in its current form to be corrupt and toxic but think that taking it down should involve only the most polite, yet oh-so convincing rhetoric and cooperation to win over hearts and minds.. well, that’s when people start calling you the c-word.

#24 Comment By ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ On February 17, 2017 @ 5:02 pm

The best part about all the people here talking about how Trump’s out to “discredit the media” is that Trump is not a credible figure himself and is not up to the task. Even many people who voted for Trump know what a fundamentally unserious person he is. They only voted for him because they thought Hillary was worse. The inability to see “discrediting the media” as a fairly niche interest among alt-right types is just about as good an illustration of thinking from inside a besieged, hermetically sealed worldview as one can get.

#25 Comment By JCM On February 17, 2017 @ 5:43 pm

Ludo, that’s a pretty rude comment about “Anglo” versus “Latin” families. I thought that such stereotypes died a long time ago. What’s next? the amorous French man, the explosive Italian, the cruel Spaniard. Yikes.

#26 Comment By JonF On February 17, 2017 @ 6:19 pm

Re: His popularity went steadily down, and he was ultimately ineffective.”

George W. Bush’s popularity went steadily downward because he WAS ineffective and largely incompetent and he pursued goals the public came to disagree with. The Media was simply the messenger. People are not tabulae rasae waiting for the Press to scribble something in their minds. They are capable of deciding for themselves and when it came to Bush they decided a big thumbs down. Deal with it.

#27 Comment By JonF On February 17, 2017 @ 6:24 pm

Re: Do you understand that Trump is the anti-war politician, at least in this context?

And I’m the Emperor of Byzantium.
Your post is a example of wishful thinking. If we don’t have yet another war under Trump (see: Iran) it will be because Trump is too incompetent to get one going– or is booted from office before he can.

#28 Comment By Fran Macadam On February 17, 2017 @ 6:37 pm

“only way my opinion of Trump can go any lower is if he turns out to be an actual, honest to God traitor, and the jury’s still out on that…”

Trump Derangement Syndrome.

It’s getting so even I can’t stand the half of the country that hates my guts…

#29 Comment By jamie On February 17, 2017 @ 8:15 pm

jnw-

If that collective body decides to run an propaganda campaign against your own administration and discredit it in the eyes of public, well… what exactly do you do?

When exactly did the press induce Michael Flynn to consort with the Russian government and then lie about it? When did the press convince Trump to keep him on for weeks after he found out? What Trump could do is stop frantically lying about anyone and everything connected with him, that’d be a start.

Trump could also definitively deny that anyone is his campaign hard contact with Russia, or he could say he’d hold people who did accountable. But he hasn’t done this. He used the press conference to say that he “had no knowledge,” and the “leaks are real but the news is fake.”

If you believe the Cathedral in its current form to be corrupt and toxic it’s likely someone is going to take up the dirty job Trump is doing.

It’s probably true only Trumpism, or something very much like it, could possibly deliver the consensus conservative agenda. The demands of the political movement are completely incoherent and unmoored from any rational or consistent principle, from right libertarians to white nationalists to conservative Christians. Only a government that foments a permanent state of exception and crisis, based on a illegality and unaccountability in the name of the interests of the American people, could possibly fill the bill. Thus:

@realDonaldTrump
The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!

Which brings us to Houston Parks-

I see nothing wrong with someone with the clout of a president calling out their malpractices.

He doesn’t call out their malpractices, he just complains about negative coverage of himself. When the malpractice favors him, as it did throughout 2016, he is quite satisfied.

Conservative skepticism of the MSM might be understandable if it wasn’t so self-serving. I’m not convinced Trump, or his supporters, would accept any information that reflected negatively on Donald Trump. They simply use blanket cynicism as an excuse to disregard whatever news sources are inconvenient and accept whatever news sources confirm the priors. Note Donald Trump himself, a man who derides CNN as “fake news” while obsessively watching CNN.

It also reflects in his addiction to Fox news commentators, men and women who are deeply implicated in the selling of the Iraq War and in concealing the inadequacies of the Bush administration, and later nakedly propagandizing for the “swamp” of neocon and Establishment Republicans during the Obama years.

And when these fail, there’s always InfoWars.

It’s getting so even I can’t stand the half of the country that hates my guts…

Conditioning your love for America on America’s attitude towards Donald Trump is a recipe for misery, Fran.

#30 Comment By EngineerScotty On February 17, 2017 @ 9:24 pm

Me:. The slander that Trump’s opponents are all seeking military hostilities with Russia is an outrageous lie”

Viking:. The word “military” is doing a lot of work for you there.

Well, military hostilities, up to and including warfare, are the sort of hostilities we need to worry about. If Putin and the POTUS exchange harsh remarks, it doesn’t kill anyone. Exchanging fire does.

And the specific allegation was that the left and its alleged allies in the press (as if!) want war. Which is nonsense.

There is a lot of policy room between kissing Vladimir Putin’s backside, and dropping bombs on Moscow.

#31 Comment By M_Young On February 17, 2017 @ 9:24 pm

Jamie

The way the ‘respectable’ news reported the supposed ‘day without an immigrant’ was so lacking in context, so one sided, that they are really fake news (my definition is more broad and inclusive than yours). For example, the story you quoted contains no quotes from businesses or immigrants who will be working, presents no data on the number of businesses that closed as a precentage of the industry as a total. The reporter even feature that Jose Andreas saying he would close 3 restaurants, failing to mention that he left three open.

Fake news, fake in the sense that it provides no context, no balance.

#32 Comment By M_Young On February 17, 2017 @ 9:28 pm

“Trump could also definitively deny that anyone is his campaign hard contact with Russia, or he could say he’d hold people who did accountable. ”

A campaign is a big thing. Maybe some people did have contacts with Russia. And you know what Jamie, that’s not illegal, not immoral, not wrong in any sense. You don’t think that the Hilary campaign didn’t have contacts with Mexican officials (as, of course, did Trump). You don’t think that Democratic party officials played a role in yesterdays presidential Los Angeles campaign visit by Lopez-Orbrador.

We aren’t at war with Russia, Jamie. In fact, they are an ally of convenience in Syria (and in fact the only effective outside force in Syria).

#33 Comment By M_Young On February 17, 2017 @ 9:35 pm

@Jamie “Your frame: Trump is a narcissist, the GOP is insane (just not insane enough to do their job), the threat of impeachment is a political reality, ”

Most presidential candidates are narcissists, you like, like a guy who writes a ‘memoir’ at 30 and sez he’ll stop the seas from rising. The GOP is insane in that they don’t take action to counter the long term demographic trends against them (meaning a true immigration reform and restriction), but seeing as how there is zero evidence that Trump has committed any ‘high crime or misdemeanor’, their job doesn’t include impeaching him. But sure, the ‘threat of impeachment’ is a reality, so is the threat of collision with a giant asteroid. Just so unlikely as to hardly bear thinking about (other than to pop Maxine Waters’ and you balloon).

#34 Comment By Brad On February 17, 2017 @ 11:54 pm

Trump, and the reactions of supposed conservatives to Trump, has convinced me utterly that so-called “conservative” America is significantly more toxic and more dangerous than so-called “liberal” America — even to traditionally conservative values.

We won’t get anywhere collectively until we can transcend the obsolete versions of these labels. Your post earlier today — the new book, Vision of the Soul — work like that is a start. Thanks for sharing it, Rod.

#35 Comment By VikingLS On February 18, 2017 @ 12:27 am

@Scotty,

Liberals wanted to elect a president who was going to put a no-fly zone in Syria and enforce it. So yes, that would have ended up in a shooting war easily.

Most liberals do seem to want to maintain diplomatic hostility with Russia.

A lot of Republicans are on the same page on this though, so it’s hardly exclusively a big L liberal thing. That I will grant you.

#36 Comment By PVB On February 18, 2017 @ 1:21 am

Trump is crass, egotistical, thin skinned etc. We know the objections to his style. The caveat is that he fights back. Any other politician would wilt under the onslaught he’s received from the opposition. Perhaps it takes that type of ego to fight the media which is little more than a propaganda arm of the Democrat Party. What about his policies though?

My grades:

1. Pulled us out of TPP – A++
2. Nominated an apparently excellent Supreme Court judge. A++
3. Got Devos confirmed for Education Secretary who supposedly will eliminate Common Core. If so, A++
4. Jeff Sessions confirmed for Attorney General. A++
5. Rolls back regulations. A++
6. Implements refugee pause. A for effort, D for execution.

And in regards to Flynn, nobody outside of the intelligence community and perhaps certain people in the Admin knows what he said to the Russian ambassador. If there were anything illegal, I’m sure we would have known about it by now. NPR reported the following, unfortunately by an anonymous intelligence source:

The intelligence official who has personally seen the transcripts told Mary Louise they contained “no evidence” of criminal wrongdoing, although the official said it can’t be definitively ruled out.

The official also said there was “absolutely nothing” in the transcripts that suggests Flynn was acting under instructions “or that the trail leads higher.”

“I don’t think [Flynn] knew he was doing anything wrong,” the official said. “Flynn talked about sanctions, but no specific promises were made. Flynn was speaking more in general ‘maybe we’ll take a look at this going forward’ terms.”

I despise how Trump plays fast and loose with the truth and his need to respond to every slight, however if he keeps pushing policies like he’s done so far, I’m on board.

#37 Comment By jamie On February 18, 2017 @ 1:39 am

M_Young-

Fake news, fake in the sense that it provides no context, no balance.

Any definition of news that excludes Balzac’s J’Accuse is no standard I want to have anything to do with, that’s my point of reference.

Can you cite any coverage of the Immigrant strike that was non-fake? Just as an example?

Or perhaps the only balanced coverage no coverage at all?

Maybe some people did have contacts with Russia. And you know what Jamie, that’s not illegal, not immoral, not wrong in any sense. You don’t think that the Hilary campaign didn’t have contacts with Mexican officials (as, of course, did Trump).

Who in the campaigns had contact? With whom? What was discussed? Under who’s authority? When?

[7], he’s more cogent than I:

“It is crazy what we are watching every day,” Smith said in his postmortem. “He keeps repeating ridiculous throwaway lines that are not true at all and sort of avoiding this issue of Russia as if we are fools for asking the question. Really?” Smith said. “Your opposition was hacked, the Russians were responsible for it, and your people were on the phone with Russia on the same day it was happening and we’re fools for asking the questions?”

He continued: “That you call us fake news and put us down like children for asking these questions on behalf of the American people is inconsequential. The people deserve that answer, at very least.”

#38 Comment By midtown On February 18, 2017 @ 6:11 am

+1 to M_Young’s two most recent posts. Jamie, Trump said in the press conference, in his admittedly difficult-to-parse way, that he is OK with being hit by the media when he makes a mistake. It is when they exaggerate, avoid balance and context, or air completely unsupported salacious rumor that he hits back. As he or anyone should.

Engineer Scotty, when Hillary Clinton says she wanted to set up no-fly zones in Syria, it would mean shooting down Russian planes if it meant anything at all. I gave another recent example of Pearl Harbor rhetoric. There are untold other instances of members of the left calling Russia a hostile power, an enemy, etc., along with a general sense of paranoia (Russia hacking electric grid! for example). How is this not wishing for war against Russia?

#39 Comment By ludo On February 18, 2017 @ 7:41 am

“Ludo, that’s a pretty rude comment about “Anglo” versus “Latin” families.”

I know, ironic isn’t it(?), considering the sort of comments Donald Trump has made:

“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. …They’re [sending] rapists. And some, I assume, are good people,”

“So true. Jeb Bush is crazy, who cares that he speaks Mexican, this is America, English !!”

Also ironic the consensus that seems to be forming within the American media (including many conservative ones): with Trump and his people America is “not sending their best…They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us…And some, I assume, are good people.”

Trump is a picaresque character like no other in modern American political history, he flaunts his populist rascality, it is, of course, the basis for his success, but a nation governed by a rascal runs the very real risk of becoming subsumed in the populist image that he offers down to them, of becoming absorbed and entrapped by the mentality of the rabble. The rabble recognizes no truth outside of its desires, which are often ribald, as such these desires are controlled by its irrational appetites, which are in turn the strings by which the demagogue stirs and sways his followers. This circular irrational reality, almost literally a circus, is what runs the risk of becoming normalized in American society, thereby displacing the rationality of the higher levels obtained by Western civilization throughout the centuries and descending to the worst sort of barbaric tyranny, the tyranny of tyrannies, in which each man is governed by his own irrational inner tyrant, recognizer of no common truth outside his own appetites and experiences, while governed without by the most experienced appeaser and promoter of this delusion. This is the fate and the warning of those who dwell in Plato’s cave.

In the best case scenario, with Trump, we may be seeing a simple and direct Sancho Panza like character, who means well and seeks to be honest: “…a duke and duchess who pretend to make Sancho governor of a fictional fief, la ínsula Barataria (roughly “Isle Come-cheaply”). He eagerly accepts…In a letter, Don Quixote gives Sancho provincial advice on governorship gleaned from the romances he has read…

The Duke’s servants are instructed to play several pranks upon Sancho. Surprisingly, Sancho is able to rule justly (mostly), applying common (if occasionally inconsistent) sense and practical wisdom in spite of, or because of simplistic advice that Don Quixote has read about. As Sancho is abused in these staged parodies he learns how difficult it is to rule and “resigns” to rejoin Don Quixote and continue the adventure.

[8]

#40 Comment By Glenn Jackson On February 18, 2017 @ 11:18 am

Hi Jamie,
Let me give you some history…I’ve been a Buchanan supporter since he ran for President against Poppa Bush. I was there forming a Buchanan alternative to the GA Reform Party and was state Chair of the Georgia Reform Party for Buchanan as he worked to get on the stage with Bush Junior in 2000 (it was the end result of that that gave us TAC). I still have one of my “America First – Buchanan for President” yard signs. Do you think the Buchanan Brigades don’t recognize the platform that Trump is running on?
Is Trump a Buchanan clone…of course not. Pat Buchanan was a gentleman, and the media and the Republican Party cut his legs out from under him and silenced his voice. Trump is Trump, a gentleman when he wants to be, and a horse’s rear-end when he needs to be. The same voices that silenced Buchanan (including that idiot McCain) are working against him as they did against Buchanan, but Trump will not go quietly (and yes, I love it).
Hedging? No I’m not hedging; I’ve been out there for this platform for a very long time and understand what Trump has to do to get it done. I do not care about Trump’s personality quirks, I care about people’s inability (especially here at TAC) to see beyond the personality to what he is trying to do.
Glenn

#41 Comment By jamie On February 18, 2017 @ 12:45 pm

Glenn-

I have fond memories of Jesse Ventura running on the Reform ticket in Minnesota in the 90s, maybe we’re seeing a replay of that.

I still have an “Economic Patriot for Paul Tsongas” bumper sticker. I also have a supply of Wesley Clark swag if you’re interested. No? Nobody is…

I do not care about Trump’s personality quirks, I care about people’s inability (especially here at TAC) to see beyond the personality to what he is trying to do.

Don’t you think the term “quirks” is somewhat underselling it?

We can definitely place some of Trump’s stated positions within the framework of Pat Buchanan’s conservatism, we can even identify his “policies” such as they are as paleoconservative. I will not touch upon the merits of your beliefs here, your honesty honors me and you’ve been very patient.

I do not think Trump rises to Buchanan’s level of gentleman, it’s hard for me to see Trump gamely debating Rachel Maddow on MSNBC; Buchanan strikes me as a fundamentally and painfully honest man, something I could never say of Trump. I can’t speak to the Republican Party’s treatment of Buchanan from ’92 on but I can only say his agenda has always been very unpopular, just as Trump is exceedingly unpopular now. This unpopularity is something that has to be reckoned with one way or the other if we are to continue having elections.

We can overlook Trump’s manifest lack of wisdom, and his immorality, and his deeply compromised character, but this will only perpetuate the mistakes of the Republican Party, it will only compound the crime committed against Buchanan. The conservative movement has been playing musical chairs with political leaders for decades with the apparent belief that character is redundant and all that matters is loyalty to the agenda, managing the message, and doing what “has to be done.” These are not wise men, they are not ethical, because nobody wants them to be, ethics and wisdom would only make them independent and unreliable (like McCain).

I’m glad you share more with Trump than Patton and John Wayne. Because these are ridiculous reasons to make a man President.

#42 Comment By artsandcrafts On February 18, 2017 @ 1:04 pm

Mrs. Cracker, you should still be able to read more than the Post’s headlines, even without a subscription. They say five articles; I usually read two or three–and I do have a log-in available! (I don’t think it’s worth it unless you want to comment, which I don’t. Besides, it doesn’t always work correctly. For the Post, and also the NYT, you can read a few articles, and then clear the cookies and the cache, which I do anyway. The you can go back later, and read again.) I agree about the bias, for both papers. This has been happening some years now, but during the election, and afterward, I don’t ever remember seeing such bias. Thank you, by the way, for your reply on a thread a few days ago.

LIlurker, I do like the Rust Belt as a description (I live in Chicago, although I think the Great Lakes is its own region; I’m not a Midwesterner). But I read your name as being from Long Island!

#43 Comment By Andrew On February 18, 2017 @ 2:25 pm

Au contraire, in honor of our new President’s presumed life mantra, Ego=Is=Always=Healthy, I must contest, that I AM the Genuine Andrew. (Though I don’t post as much as Andrew the Lesser, so I concede his point.)

#44 Comment By MB On February 18, 2017 @ 5:26 pm

We can overlook Trump’s manifest lack of wisdom, and his immorality, and his deeply compromised character, but this will only perpetuate the mistakes of the Republican Party, it will only compound the crime committed against Buchanan.

Perpetuating the mistakes of the Republican Party/offending the character of Buchanan would be some of the least significant ramifications of overlooking Trump’s obvious corruption, incompetence, and state of compromise.

Just trying to think in the grand scheme of things.

#45 Comment By sjay On February 18, 2017 @ 7:00 pm

“Richard Nixon was a thousand times smarter than Donald Trump.”
Never had a job other than swilling at the public trough.

In fairness to Nixon, besides working his way through school in the family grocery, he was also in the private practice of law both before joining the Navy in World War II and after leaving the vice presidency in 1961. Granted, in the latter period as a highly paid corporate counsel, he was likely swilling at a different but even more unseemly trough.

#46 Comment By M_Young On February 18, 2017 @ 11:36 pm

““Your opposition was hacked, ”
True, Mr. Podesta apparently fell for one of those scam emails.

“the Russians were responsible for it,”

Still no solid public evidence, still no definition of ‘the Russians’.

“and your people were on the phone with Russia on the same day it was happening and we’re fools for asking the questions?””

They were? Which of ‘your people’? What are the names? And how does one call ‘the Russians’? Which Russian or Russians were on the phone with which of ‘your “Trumps” people?”

And for that matter, what day was it that the DNC was hacked? Nothing, not even the reports of the company ‘CrowdStrike’ — which seems to be the source of the ‘proof’ that “the Russians”, meaning the hacker collective known (allegedly) as Cozy Bear — narrows the actual hack down to anything other than a vague ‘early June’ IIRC. So how could Shepard’s statement about ‘the very day it was happening’ possibly be true; he doesn’t know when the hacking began, CrowdStrike doesn’t know when the hacking began, no one knows when the hacking began and likely the ‘unauthorized access’ to the DNC was over a long period of time, not a ‘day’.

So, more fake opinionating.

#47 Comment By M_Young On February 18, 2017 @ 11:38 pm

“These are not wise men, they are not ethical, because nobody wants them to be, ethics and wisdom would only make them independent and unreliable (like McCain).”

LOL, ROTFLMAO. 2008 called …it want’s its Narrative back.

#48 Comment By JB On February 19, 2017 @ 7:07 am

“Ronald Reagan probably wasn’t nearly as intelligent as Trump”
Really? How do you figure?

#49 Comment By Siarlys Jenkins On February 19, 2017 @ 4:00 pm

Trump said in the press conference, in his admittedly difficult-to-parse way, that he is OK with being hit by the media when he makes a mistake. It is when they exaggerate, avoid balance and context, or air completely unsupported salacious rumor that he hits back.

But, in Trump’s mind, he never makes mistakes, any insinuation that he might have is exaggerated and unbalanced, and any firm evidence he has made a mistake is unsupported salacious rumor. Standard practice in any business PR department, and not credible there either.