“We know that Trump is an inveterate liar because the Washington Post has keep an actual running count of his lies (now topping 2,436) since he took office. There is another word for lying on this scale. It is propaganda, and Trump doesn’t just rely on his own lies to mislead the public. He has had his spokesman deliver lies from the podium in the White House press room quite literally since the day he took office, when Sean Spicer tried to make the laughable case that Trump’s inauguration was the best attended in history.”—from a salon.com article by Lucian K. Truscott IV on March 21.
I lead off with that because whatever Deceitful Donald says about anything, this qualifier of recorded lies-per-day must be kept in mind. For the entire Salon article, see: https://www.salon.com/2018/03/21/now-we-know-who-trump-really-is/
The story is headlined: “Now we know who Trump really is” with the subheading “Gag orders for his own people and lawsuits for everyone else. Trump has nobody’s interests in mind but his own.”
From another recent source: “Narcissists are dangerous because they think only about themselves. Megalomaniacs are dangerous because they think only about their power and invincibility. A narcissistic megalomaniac who’s unconstrained—and who’s also president of the United States is about as dangerous as they come.”—RobertReich.org, 3/29/18
I sort of miss a troll of earlier years who could do no better than accuse me of “cutting and pasting” whenever I quoted from someone else’s remarks. But I remain happy having knowledgeable experts on whom to draw, individuals closer to ground zero of the political scene, who spend full time digesting, analyzing and writing about it. I also don’t hesitate to also quote sages of yesteryear—for instance Aristotle, Martin Luther King or the Bible—to support a point now and then.
“Trump is increasingly flying solo,” reported Catherine Lucey and Johnathan Lemire of Associated Press recently. “Trump has told confidants recently that he wants to be less reliant on his staff, believing they often give bad advice, and that he plans to follow his own instincts.” And he also says he has “great instincts.” Thus he continues firing his self-appointed staff at a rate never before seen in presidential history—seeking to form a backup choir that will loudly sing “yes” in unison. And Lord help any of his associates who receive any press headlines or TV camera time that he wants centered solely on himself.
This was never better illustrated than last week, when Demented Donald ignored his security advisors, who specifically warned him (in writing) in his daily briefing “DO NOT CONGRATULATE” with regard to Vladimir Putin’s victory in a rigged Russian election. He called the Russian premier and did just the opposite. He also ignored aides who urged him to condemn Putin for the attempted murder of a former Russian spy in England. Instead he called Vladimir to chat cordially—and you can bet there wasn’t a lot of talk about the Russian meddling in the U. S. election process, or the strong-arm tactics used in Russia’s own election.
But we all know Dim-Bulb Donald, who has assured us he attended the best schools and is a very intelligent person—a genius even. Which is why he has left so many diplomatic posts unfilled—and fires or forces to resign anyone who has the temerity to suggest his way’s the wrong way. Reich’s comment above pretty much nails it. Perhaps the best we can do at present with this petulant and paranoid dictator is take away some of his toys—such as the U. S. Congress—during the 2018 mid-term election.
HANG IN THERE, JOHN—Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) last week said that Trump “insulted every Russian citizen” when he congratulated Russian President Vladimir Putin on his re-election to another six-year term. “An American president does not lead the Free World by congratulating dictators on winning sham elections,” said McCain, the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee. “And by doing so with Vladimir Putin, President Trump insulted every Russian citizen who was denied the right to vote in a free and fair election to determine their country's future, including the countless Russian patriots who have risked so much to protest and resist Putin's regime.” The two leaders spoke by phone earlier last Tuesday, the White House said, and Trump “congratulated” Putin for winning re-election. The legitimacy of Russia’s election was widely condemned by international election-observers, and Putin’s top opponent was barred from running. Trump told reporters that he and Putin would meet “in the not too distant future.”
When asked at last Tuesday’s press briefing whether Russia’s elections were free and fair, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said: “Look, we don’t get to dictate how other countries operate.” Evasively meaning, I guess, that it’s OK, however, to endorse their foul play.
And unless Mueller’s Russian investigation turns up something specific, we can only continue to speculate about just why Donald has continued to fawn so over Putin. It’s almost as if Vladimir knows where the bodies are buried.
I know that when I was writing this blog this morning that Trump expelled a few dozen minor Russian diplomats. I don’t consider that significant; it was the least he could do. It was if he decided it was a cheaper sop to world opinion than retracting his recent trade tariffs.
SMARMINESS AT FULL SPEED—As columnist Thomas Friedman of The New York Times pointed out last week, Mother Trump’s little boy continues to push what he can get away with. It all started back when he promised to release his tax returns when the IRS finished auditing them. Anyone hearing much on that since back when he was first elected? He lies, he stalls, waits until the public more-or-less forgets and turns to the other daily distractions he tosses out.
The stage having been set with that toe-in-the-water get-away-with on his taxes, we’re now stuck with his non-stop pushing of the envelope—lying, sex with “adult movie” stars and miscellaneous sexual assaults, seemingly vindictive general humiliation of others, trashing the FBI, tolerance of racists and gun violence, coddling Putin, lowbrow tweets. He even seems to have gotten away with lying to the Canadian premier about a U. S. trade deficit he dreamed up totally out of convenience.
It’s almost beyond belief that there are now 19 women claiming to have had affairs with or have been physically violated by the president of the United States in various ways. And I forgot here for a moment that hoax of a “Trump University” with which he tried to bilk the unsuspecting—until he was shut down by the courts . . . and paid a good-sized financial settlement. What in the merry hell is it that attracts people to vote for such a person to head our country?
Friedman noted: “Trump and Putin are cut from the same cloth. Their strategy is: keep pushing, keep grabbing, keep lying, keep denying, no matter how implausible the denials—and never apologize. Because when you lie on an industrial scale, it overwhelms everyone else.”
And he summed things up pretty well: “That steady erosion of norms is what Trump is doing to America and Putin is doing to the world. And we let them get away with it. Your kids won’t just grow up in a different America, they’ll grow up in a different world.”
Friday, Corrupt Donald, threw another mud ball at the wall to see if it would stick. He asked Congress to re-install the line-item veto for his convenience of striking, say, a socially-oriented appropriation he didn’t like from a spending bill. And this is a guy trying to blame Democrats for not joining in bipartisanship as they did in the current appropriations bill. He whined about the bill before finally signing away another $1.3 trillion largely because it was heavy on military spending he had proposed.
The Supreme Court ruled the line-item veto unconstitutional back in the 1990s.
FAVORITE COMMENT OF THE WEEK—A guy identified only as Ken posted this on yahoo.com last week: “Karen McDougall tells of her 10 month affair with Trump. The next day during The View broadcast (the topic is Trump/McDougall) Trump holds a press conference. Of course the press conference interrupts all scheduled programming, including The View. The View's audience doesn't hear the entire discussion of the affair.”