Destined to take its place in “resistance” and mainstream media obsessions along side President Trump’s stubborn misrepresentation of his inauguration crowd, the controversy over the bizarrely altered Dorian path map was one more in a long nauseating chain of similar incidents. If you were lucky enough to miss it, here’s the scoop.
In the middle of a Labor Day tweeting frenzy, President Trump issued an erroneous tweet that Alabama would be affected by Hurricane Dorian. I have no trouble in filing this part under “Who cares?” He’s not a meteorologist, a scientist or even a relaible source of information. Over-heated and contrived complaints that his goof “endangered citizens” are just familiar Trump derangement: anyone who depends on the President for weather predictions when there are so many obviously more reliable authorities available may be doing the gene pool a favor.
Officials with the National Weather Service quickly issued a public correction, tweeting, “Alabama will NOT see any impacts from #Dorian. We repeat, no impacts from Hurricane #Dorian will be felt across Alabama. The system will remain too far east.” That should have ended it
But, in the throes of the kind of inexplicable, self-destructive, foolish impulse that we have all grown to expect and love, President Trump then appeared in a video released by the White House in which he displayed a weather forecast map, dated from 11 a.m. on Aug. 29, supposedly showing that Alabama would be affected. The graphic appeared to have been crudely altered with a black Sharpie, however, as you can see above.
“We had, actually, our original chart was that it was going to be hit — hitting Florida directly,” Trump says. “That was the original chart,” Trump said. “It could’ve, uh, was going towards the Gulf.” Later, he tweeted out that chart, saying,
This was the originally projected path of the Hurricane in its early stages. As you can see, almost all models predicted it to go through Florida also hitting Georgia and Alabama. I accept the Fake News apologies!
Here’s the chart that he tweeted:
It also includes misleading lines drawn onto the graphic.
Why, why, WHY??
1. This is another astounding self-inflicted political wound and embarrassment by President Trump, astounding only in the sense that the mind boggles that he apparently has no functioning block on such impulses. But we knew that. Didn’t we all know that? We had hope, did we not, that once he became President he would realize that he couldn’t responsibly engage in such foolishness, but that hope was quickly dashed. Remember during the campaign when he said he watched U.S. Muslims celebrating the 9-11 attacks on TV? Then he refused to back down, even after it was shown beyond a shadow of a doubt that no such scene ever was broadcast? This is the same thing. This is the heartbreak of narcissism, and the President could be the poster child for a TV fundraising campaign.
2. And yet…so what? Does this episode tell us anything new, other than “Yup, this is the same guy we elected!” No. Does the video or the chart matter, other than to those who take glee in pointing and screaming when the President does what he does? No. Is it wildly out of sync with what any previous President would do? Yes, but the fact is that this is not a substantive episode. It’s trivia, and it also is the kind of thing The Julie Principle was formulated to explain. If one has accepted reality, that this is the elected President, then one cannot rationally keep freaking out when he does stuff like this. If insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly while expecting different results, it is also being shocked over and over when a known personality behaves exactly as he always has.
3. The Trump Deranged seized on this as they have every gaffe, botch and dumb tweet for three years, shouting, “See? See? We’re right! He’s an idiot/liar/unfit President!” Yes, we know you think that. We know you don’t comprehend that looking for excuses to denigrate your nation’s leader even when it makes the U.S. more divided and weaker while undermining the public’s belief in our institutions is unethical and destructive. Agreed, the whole Dorian episode is depressing: GEE, I wish Donald Trump wasn’t the way he is, but for God’s sake, don’t you realize how boring it is for those of us who do not wake up every day hating their President to read and hear the same mantra over and over? Don’t you realize that you are modeling the same irrational behavior the President is, refusing to accept reality?
4. No, this episode is not in any way evidence that the Plan E, the 25th Amendment coup option, is justified or could be justified. Narcissism is not a leadership disability (often it is a feature, not a bug), and a demonstration that the President is a lousy meteorologist is not germane to his ability to be an effective President.
5. Is this news? Sure. So far, only the progressive blogs and the Left-biased mainstream media have covered the story–I haven’t seen any mention of it on Fox News—and that’s one more example showing that we don’t have a trustworthy media. I give the New York Times credit for placing the story in proper perspective, on A-16 of this morning’s paper. That’s about right.
6. The new White House Press Secretary tweeted,
What an idiot.
If he can’t come up with something better than a #22, “There are worse things” rationalization, then he should have kept quiet. Yes, the news media reaction is excessive, shows bias, and also demonstrates a lack of proportion, but that doesn’t excuse the President’s juvenile, unsettling conduct.
7. Now the Deranged are claiming that the President violated a U.S. statute making it a crime to falsify a National Weather Service forecast and pass it off as official. I doubt that an old forecast qualifies, since the point of the law is to prevent people from deceiving the public into believing a current forecast that is fake, and good luck proving that the President personally falsified either graphic, or was even aware that they had been altered.
Nevertheless, I’m sure the “falsified weather map” will eventually find its way onto a list of “high crimes and misdemeanors” as an impeachable offense.
8. Remember this post, from February 2017? It’s relevant again, unfortunately.