Goodbye and Good Riddance, Sarah

DAF0B5EE-6C9A-4C67-BE0C-25E9F3627513I have to share this. I was reading the Sunday morning paper and came across this blurb in the weekly column by former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown.

So long, Sarah: I was watching a clip of President Trump’s press secretary, Sarah Sanders, making her exit announcement the other day.

Up on the screen at Sam’s Tavern, Sanders was saying how she hoped to be remembered for being “transparent and honest.”

At which point I heard a female voice behind me adding what President Trump’s self-described paramour had tweeted at Sanders’ comment: “And Stormy Daniels wants to be remembered as a virgin.”

I think that sums up Sarah’s time as Trump’s press secretary quite nicely.64CCAEAC-71DF-469C-A16F-B4BAAA4278E2

Should the Press Boycott the President?

US-POLITICS-TRUMPI read this post yesterday from the excellent blogger behind Write Brain Widow. It’s all about what is happening to America’s free press. And she posted it in August 2017. I wrote in my comment after reading her post, “You wrote this almost a year ago and it still applies today, only things have gotten even worse for the media due to the instigator-in-chief and his inflammatory rhetoric.”

One of her memorable lines in her post was, “Like a mirror, the news is only your enemy if what you see or hear isn’t true, not if it’s just not what you want it to be.” Our president (and I use the terms “our” and “president” loosely) doesn’t like what he sees and hears (I’d say reads, but I’m not sure he actually reads anything other than his teleprompters, and he doesn’t even do that very well), not because it isn’t true, but because it’s not what he wants it to be. And so he lashes out at the press, claiming everything they say about him that he doesn’t like is “fake news” and calling the reporters and journalists “the enemy of the American people.” His rhetoric is actually putting members of the press in jeopardy.

Write Brain Widow responded to my comment on her post by writing,

“I always wonder why the media doesn’t rise up, doesn’t boycott the so-called press conferences, and the ego-stoking rallies; why every legitimate media source doesn’t strike back each time the hateful barbs are thrown. It may not change anything but now, though they take the ‘high road’, their silence is deafening.”

I agree “bigly.” I also wonder why the members of press still attend the White House daily briefings when they know that the smokey-eyed, snide press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, is going to lie to them and demean them. Why does the press attend Trump’s rallies, when all he does is spew lies and hate and inflame his lemmings against reporters?

Interestingly, I read this morning’s newspaper column by Willie Brown, former mayor of San Francisco, and he asked the same question. Why doesn’t the press boycott him?

“No reporter or news organization should show up for the White House briefings or for his appearances. Little of value comes out of them anyway.

“All the reporters assigned to the White House could be reassigned to cover the federal agencies where the action really is — the ones that are implementing Trump’s avalanche of executive orders.

“White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders would probably welcome it. No longer would she have to embarrass herself by being asked about facts and having to respond with Trump’s fantasies.”

Trump said that we shouldn’t believe what we see, read, or hear. We should, he said, believe only him, the liar-in-chief.

As the Write Brain Widow said at the end of her excellent post, “Remember, it’s rarely true that no news is good news.”

The Real Witch Hunt

Did you watch Michelle Wolf’s performance at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner on Saturday night? I did. And I thought she was hilarious. Yet, her spot-on monologue has spurred a wave of indignation among Republicans and even some journalists.

Sure, it was on the raunchy side. And yes, she used some not-ready-for-prime-time language. But come on, people. The role of the comedian at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner has evolved into the equivalent of the host of a celebrity roast. Only with the President and his administration being roasted. Have you ever watched a celebrity roast? They can get pretty down and dirty.

Who can forget when Seth Meyers, host of the WHCD in 2011, threw some wicked shade at Donald Trump? “Donald Trump has been saying he will run for president as a Republican, which is surprising, since I just assumed he was running as a joke,” Meyers said.

Meyers added, “Donald Trump said recently he has ‘a great relationship with the blacks,’ but unless ‘the Blacks’ are a family of white people, I bet he is mistaken.”

Even then-President Obama poked fun at Trump, saying, “Just recently, in an episode of ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ at the steakhouse, the men’s cooking team did not impress the judges from Omaha Steaks. And there was a lot of blame to go around. But you, Mr. Trump, recognized that the real problem was a lack of leadership. And so, ultimately, you didn’t blame Lil’ Jon or Meatloaf. You fired Gary Busey. And these are the kind of decisions that would keep me up at night.”

So what did Michelle Wolf say that got people’s bowels in an uproar? She accused White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders of lying. In other words, she told the truth.

“Every time Sarah steps up to the podium,” Wolf said, “I get excited because I’m not really sure what we’re going to get. You know, a press briefing, a bunch of lies, or divided into softball teams.”

What’s the big deal? Everyone knows that Sarah Huckabee Sanders lies all the time. She restates and defends virtually all of the lies, misstatements, and untruths that come from her boss’ mouth.

Yet Michelle Wolf’s performance was panned by the right and even by many journalists in the mainstream media who claim to speak truth to power. They gnashed their teeth and said she went too far, even from the first joke she told: “Like a porn star says when she’s about to have sex with a Trump, let’s get this over with.”

She followed that with, “You can’t shut me up as a woman … unless you are Michael Cohen and wire me $130,000. You can find me on Venmo under my porn star name, Reince Priebus.”

Fantastic, right? And she got some good laughs. At first. But when she started going after the press, the mood in the room quickly changed. “What no one in this room wants to admit is Trump helped all of you,” she said. “He couldn’t sell steaks, vodka, water, college, ties, or Eric. But he has helped you sell your papers, books, and TV. You created this monster, and now you’re profiting off of him.”

All of what Michelle Wolf said was absolutely true. Yet, the head of the White House Correspondents’ Association, Margaret Talev, felt the need to issue a formal apology afterwards for “the entertainer’s monologue.” Talev said it was not in the spirit of the mission to “offer a unifying message about our common commitment to a vigorous and free press while honoring civility.”

Right. Never mind that Donald Trump calls the free press the enemy of the American people and continually denigrates the “failing” New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN, and even takes personal shots at many mainstream media reporters.

While Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Kellyanne Conway repeat and reinforce all of Trump’s lies.

So apparently Michelle Wolf is suffering slings and arrows from all sides. I wonder if speaking the truth is going to be a career setback for this young, promising comedian. Is she going to be the victim of a real witch hunt?

I hope not.

Sean and the Blondies

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I saw this blurb in today’s local newspaper and I thought it might be worth sharing. It’s both funny and kinda sad at the same time.

After ESPN publicly scolded host Jemele Hill for tweeting that President Trump is a “white supremacist” — and White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that could be a “fireable offense” — Fox News’ Sean Hannity called in three panelists to discuss the comments of the African American sportscaster: all women, all white, but with diverse shades of blonde.

The Fourth Reich

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I don’t remember the exact question, but I do remember the exact answer:

“I think that’s a ridiculous and outrageous claim and doesn’t dignify a response from this podium.”

That was White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders responding to a question at a recent White House briefing. A reporter asked Sanders about some harsh comments made about Donald Trump by Republican Senator Bob Corker.

The clear message to the press from the White House, via its press secretary, is that all criticism of the president is out of bounds. If you can’t ask something nice, don’t ask anything at all. Because it’s apparently un-America and unpatriotic to ask questions that in any way cast shade upon POTUS-45. Such questions are apparently not deserving of answers.

The lesson to be learned is that in today’s America, we must revere our Dear Leader and accept his will without question.

Welcome to the Fourth Reich.


Written for today’s one-word prompt, “dignify.”