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This Week: Trump Fools America


Yup, time to review the sixth week of the Trump Presidency.

Trump had two big speeches this week: one at CPAC (the largest conservative convention in the US), and one before a join session of Congress, filling the purpose a State of the Union speech would (but first-year Presidents don’t give a SotU).

Trump did a good job with both, if by “good job” we mean “staying on script and not coming off like an Alex Jones call-in guest.” Probably 90% of Americans manage that, so it’s no impressive feat.

Trump’s CPAC speech, while acceptable in its delivery, was vile in content. Trump gave shout-outs to the right-wing populist movements sweeping Europe, implying that once these waves of xenophobic reactionaries take over their respective governments, the world will be made “safer” from Muslims, or something.

Trump also declared he won’t be going to the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, which is fine because it’s always been a gross, shitty display of the incestuous relationship between Beltway journalists and DC politicians. Good riddance.

But hey, let’s bullet out some of the rest here:

  * Trump and his administration lied, lied, and lied some more. What, you want specifics? Well, read (or watch) basically anything any of them said. That'll do.
  * Trump announced massive military spending hikes, and massive cuts everywhere else, because who needs to take care of your people when there are Muslims that need bombing?
  * Trump blamed the military for getting a Navy SEAL killed in that Yemen raid. Remember Truman's "the buck stops here" deskplate? For Trump, it is apparently "the buck stops anywhere else, believe me."
  * He also suggested that Jews were desecrating their own graves. That sounds like the kind of thing that came from the mouth of Steve Bannon, and probably did.
  * Trump then gave his speech, which got rave reviews because he paraded said dead SEAL's widow before the cameras and she got what's been called the longest standing ovation in history. While her loss is tragic, such war propaganda is hideous. Displays like this are done not to honor fallen soldiers, but to whip up public support for more military action. Some bad guy killed him, after all, and don't we need revenge? And the effort to get that revenge will get more soldiers killed, which will demand _more_ vengeance, and we can just keep doing this until everybody's dead or Trump gets bored (let's hope the latter comes quickly).
  * The press fell over themselves to talk about how "Presidential" Trump has become, as if not shitting his pants during one speech is so praiseworthy. Standards have gotten so low. Sad!

But this was not bound to last. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, we found out, had contact with the Russian ambassador during the election, after saying under oath before the Senate that he hadn’t. Even worse, it came out that he used political campaign funds to pay for dinner with the ambassador, making it quite obviously a campaign event. Sessions partially recused himself, saying he would have no involvement in any investigation that concerned Russian involvement in the election. This will probably not mean much.

Trump’s kudos barely lasted a day before everyone was reminded that this is the most corrupt, inept, dangerous administration in history. But I guess Trump has figured out all he has to do to snow his critics temporarily is to competently deliver a speech with a few conciliatory touches and some sweet ass war propaganda. It works! At least until news breaks that one of his cronies lied, again.

Source: The New Republic