1. Wake up with President Trump! By sheer chance, I surfed by Fox and Friends just as the three goofs (or two goofs and a random blonde from the stable in a tight party dress) on the sofa were having a spontaneous phone interview with President Trump, just like in the good old days in 2015, when CNN and NBC let the crazy old reality star and eccentric real estate mogul blather on while they smirked and nodded because it was great for ratings and might even saddle the evil Republican Party with a Presidential candidate that Hillary Clinton could squash like a bug, finally leading to the Great Progressive Awakening in America, with open borders, no more guns, free college, a ban on fossil fuel, and Harvey Weinstein as a White House regular.
- Say what you will about Trump, this was just after 8 AM, I could hardly utter a coherent sentence, and the President was sounding like Harold Hill doing “Trouble in River City.” Either he had 20 cups of coffee or was hooked up to an electric generator. I have a lot of energy, but Trump is older than I am, and he was energetic, engaged, and, for him, articulate.
- His performance this morning highlights how disgusting the “Trump has dementia, let’s use the 25th Amendment to get rid of him” plot was, with the news media in full complicity. It made it hard for me to focus on what the President was saying on Fox, frankly. That particular post-election, anti-democratic attack—it was Ethics Alarms’ Plan E on the alphabetical list of “the resistance’s” ongoing efforts to overturn the election, if you recall—makes me furious every time I think about it.
- Nevertheless, I will never get used to having a President who talks like he does. It isn’t statesman-speak, or even demagoguery. It’s pure salesman patter, again, like Harold Hill, or any infomercial spokesman. It’s almost hypnotic. What Trump-Whisperer Scott Adams would say, indeed has said many times, is that this is a talent and a skill, and we aren’t going to see it become commonplace among Presidents because most people just can’t do it well. No, it’s not Presidential, and will never be. But it works.
- I also realized, once again, how much class bigotry is involved in the extreme hostility to President Trump from the “elites,” and yes, I count myself in that group. Never mind what schools Trump went to: he’s Fred Trump’s son, and unlike the Kennedy boys, never polished off the rough spots passed along to him through his humble, street-smart, back-alley forebears. I just watched the film of “My Fair Lady” again after many years, and found myself thinking about Henry Higgins’ theories while I was listening to Trump: if he spoke like Barack Obama, how differently would the news media and his adversaries treat him? Yet how many of his supporters would then regard him as just another one of “them”?
Why can’t the English teach their children how to speak?
This verbal class distinction, by now
Should be antique
If you spoke as she does, sir
Instead of the way you do
Why, you might be selling flowers, too!
An Englishman’s way of speaking absolutely classifies him
The moment he talks he makes some other Englishman despise him!
- Trump just doesn’t “get” the journalism principle. He expressed amazement that NBC, which he lumped with CNN, CBS and ABC as purveyors of “fake news,” didn’t treat him “better” because he had “made them a fortune with ‘The Apprentice.'”Everything is quid pro quo with Trump. Professional integrity, objectivity, none of these and other ethical concepts are part of his world view. Of course, few of them are in evidence among journalists, either…
- It was fun watching The Obsequious Three Sofa-Sitters as the President literally rattled on, free-associating, without taking a breath. They didn’t want to interrupt the President of the United States, but they also had no idea how long he would filibuster and whether he would ever stop—I had visions of them sprawled asleep on the sofa hours later as Trump continued ranting. That was a tough ethical conflict for them, and to their credit, they eventually figured out how to end the segment without being rude.
- The President should do more spontaneous phone monologues, and fewer, like none, tweetstorms. The live rants are risky and unsettling, but there are no typos in interviews, and he can explain himself an interviewer can get a word in edgewise.
2. Wow—that was a fast ethics train wreck! Dr. Ronny L. Jackson, the White House physician nominated to lead the Veterans Affairs Department, has withdrawn from consideration.
Although I don’t know for certain, I think this was another inept, impulse Trump nomination, BUT
…President Obama employed Jackson, and was unequivocal in his praise, BUT
…Obama’s entire administration was riddled with incompetents and hacks—See: Secret Service; IRS; Eric Holder; Hillary Clinton; Healthcare.gov; the VA; OPM; the FBI; and on, and on—-so that endorsement was obviously meaningless, BUT
…The accumulation of rumors, stories and allegations against a Presidential nominee without names attached and without providing a nominee the opportunity to rebut and defend is unfair and unethical; at, least Anita Hill had to testify…BUT
…The sheer mass of the rumors and allegations, once they are made public, make it impossible for a nominee to take office with the public’s trust, so the partisan tactic is unethical but effective…STILL
…The FBI, we are told, did a background check, which is something they supposedly know how to do, and found none of these issues—the handing out of drugs, the drunk driving, the office abuse—, so shouldn’t that be a definitive rebuttal of over-the-transom attacks? NEVERTHELESS…
…You know what we’ve been learning about the trustworthiness of the FBI. Yet..
…All of this alleged misconduct took place during the Obama Administration, which, as was its pattern, did nothing about it, and yet the fall of Johnson is being checked off by “the resistance” as an embarrassment for President Trump.
Of course it is.
3. Fortunately, we have a Supreme Court. Anything is possible, but witnesses to yesterday’s Supreme Court oral argument regarding the Trump travel ban affecting certain Muslim nations agree that the conservative majority strongly signaled that it would overturn the various courts and judges that have blocked the policy. Good.
This was, from the start, one more example of President Trump being treated differently from every one of his predecessors, with tortured law, ethics and logic being employed as weapons against the elected President and his office. This has taken the form of a theory that while any other President has the power to enact such a measure, this one does not because his motives are suspect. However, An act is either legal or it is not. A system that says that what you do is legal because you have nice motives while my not-so-nice motives make the same conduct illegal has no integrity, in addition to the fact that it involves mind-reading.
As is often the case in SCOTUS oral arguments, one hypothetical nailed the case shut. From the Times:
Toward the end of Wednesday’s argument, the questioning again turned to how much weight the court should assign to Mr. Trump’s campaign statements and how long they should haunt him.
Mr. Katyal said Mr. Trump and his advisers could easily have repudiated the earlier statements. “Instead they embraced them,” Mr. Katyal said.
The chief justice then asked whether Mr. Trump could immunize his order from constitutional challenge simply by disclaiming his earlier statements. “If tomorrow he issues a proclamation saying he’s disavowing all those statements,” the chief justice asked, “then the next day he can re-enter this proclamation?”
Mr. Katyal said yes.
The answer is nonsense, as well as a lie.
Does anyone really believe that the Left’s opposition to the Executive Order would have been different in any way if the President had explicitly disavowed what he said on the campaign trail? The Court did not make the Obama Administration disavow—as in saying “we were lying”—its claim while ramming Obamacare through the system that the individual mandate was not a tax, but a penalty, when a majority of the Justices determined that the mandate was constitutional because it was, in fact, a tax. Moreover, as was quickly pointed out by the Solicitor General, The President did make clear that he had no intention of imposing a “Muslim ban”:
“He has made crystal clear that Muslims in this country are great Americans and there are many, many Muslim countries who love this country, and he has praised Islam,” Mr. Francisco said. “This proclamation is about what it says it’s about: foreign policy and national security.”
And the opposition to it has been about crippling a Presidency.
Source: New York Times