Enmity Toward the Press

0bcfb788-a484-4d91-8e3e-f7faf0c722cdHe calls the stories in newspapers, magazines, and on TV about him “fake news. He refers to the free press as “the enemy of the people.”

But in a way, I understand Donald Trump’s enmity toward the press. After all, they call out his lies, they fact check his “alternative facts,” and they demonstrate just how unhinged, unfit, and unqualified he is to hold the office of President of the United States.

By printing what he says and does, by video taping his own words, by counting his lies, and by documenting his misstatements and fabrications, the press is demonstrating the depth of his narcissism, his lack of knowledge, his inability to be empathetic, and his moronic delusions.

By quoting him, the press is showing that he has an inability to construct cohesive sentences, which is not surprising, given the clearly chaotic way his mind works.

Unfortunately and inexplicably, about 40% of American voters hang on his every word and believe every lie that escapes his lips. Apparently, if they even watch news, it’s only Fox News. And if they even read newspapers, it’s only conservative newspapers.

So the master of the con continues to carry on and we just have to hope that the press will continue to do the job that the Republicans in Congress seem to be unable and unwilling to do: keep the president in check for the good of the country.

Written for the benefit of America and for my one-word challenge (enmity).

What I See

7C8260CB-C309-4420-9093-4A31A7483F8ESome of you may be critical of this post because it isn’t reflective of the spirit of Christmas. And you’d be right, it’s not. But that’s because I’m upset, angry, and disgusted.

I see the stock market tanking, wiping out gains in people’s 401(k) retirement savings accounts, including my own. I see the prices for consumer goods rising thanks to Trump’s unnecessary, ill-conceived trade wars.

I see a man and his Republican sycophants bound and determined to take away healthcare benefits from the citizens of the country who need it the most. I see the government shutting down just before Christmas, putting hundreds of thousands out of work, because of Trump’s wet dream about building a wall on our border with Mexico.

I see America’s standing in the world in free-fall due to Trump’s nationalistic lunacy. I see the president of the United States being seen as a laughing stock around the globe. I see our so-called leader being so easily manipulated by our adversaries. I see the rise of racism, hate crimes, misogyny, homophobia, and division in America, all enabled and encouraged by Trump’s rhetoric.

I see a human tragedy unfolding at our southern border, where people seeking legal asylum are being literally jailed in makeshift detention centers and young, innocent children are being indefinitely separated from their parents.

I see a conscious and deliberate effort to roll back environmental protections, to promote fossil fuels (coal, gas, oil) over clean energy sources, like solar and wind. I see a separation from the rest of the entire world on climate accords.

I see total chaos in Washington with a dangerous, paranoid, vindictive, lying narcissist sitting in the Oval Office. I see a man in the White House who is an unfit, unhinged, unqualified conman, who has no business pretending to be the leader of the free world.

So, at the risk of being called a grinch, I say to all of the lemmings who voted for and continue to support the abomination, Donald Trump, Merry fucking Christmas. I hope you’re happy with the coal in your stockings that you hung by the chimney with care.

Dog Days of August

Today’s Ragtag Daily Prompt is “dog.” Given the events of this past week between Donald Trump and his former White House staffer, Omarosa Manigault Newman, the only African-American to have served in a senior role, I thought this prompt was well timed.

To set the stage, Omarosa was fired from her White House position by chief-of-staff John Kelly in February. Omarosa, an “Apprentice” contestant several times over, published a “tell-all” book this week. It’s titled Unhinged, and is all about her time in the Trump White House. She’s also released some audio tapes she surreptitiously recorded and says she has many more.

Aparently Trump apparently went ballistic and, of course, he started rage tweeting. In one of them, he called Omarosa a dog.img_2202Calling Omarosa a dog did not sit well with a lot of people. But, of course, his loyal, puppy dog-like press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, defended him.img_2195

Free Press Protest

8333C3D0-C775-4349-BDB5-1A9763F2C40DDonald Trump has been accusing the mainstream media of spewing fake news and has called the free press an enemy of the American people. In response, an estimated 300 newspapers have signed on to a call from the Boston Globe for a coordinated editorial campaign in today’s editions as a way to protest against President Trump’s “dirty war on the free press.”

Naturally, I assumed that, when I opened my paper this morning and turned to the editorial page, I would see a well-crafted, engaging defense of the free press. After all, I live in San Francisco, the heart of the resistance.

But no such editorial was there. WTF? So I went to the newspaper’s website to see if maybe they published the protest editorial there. Nada.

But I did find an article attempting to justify why the editorial board of the Chronicle did not join the protest.

“It’s not that we take issue with the argument that Trump’s assault on the truth generally, and his efforts to diminish the free press specifically, pose a serious threat to American democracy,” the article said. “We wholeheartedly agree with Marjorie Pritchard, the Globe’s deputy editorial page editor, that such unprecedented attacks on press freedom by the president of the United States ‘are alarming.’”

The concern, according to the Chronicle article, is that “it plays into Trump’s narrative that the media are aligned against him” and that Trump will use that as an excuse to spew out tweets accusing the fake news media of collusion and anti-Trump bias. “He surely will attempt to cite this day of editorials to discredit critical and factual news stories in the future, even though no one involved in those pieces had anything to do with this campaign,” the article suggested.

“Our editorial page will continue to speak out against this president’s war on the free press. Our silence on Thursday is testament to our commitment to do it in our own way, on our own timetable.”

Personally, I disagree with the position the newspaper’s editors took to not participate in this organized protest. Sure, Trump will probably lash out at those newspapers for speaking out against him. That’s what he does. But should that threat render us silent? Should anger or retaliation on the part of our unhinged, incompetent, vindictive president cause us to stop protesting what he’s doing to our nation?

I don’t think so. What do you think?

The Un-President

Years ago, from 1969 to 1975, 7-up started to advertise itself as “The UnCola” in an effort to differentiate itself from Coke and Pepsi.

I was thinking about the American disaster known as Donald J. Trump, the fraud and con man who is now our country’s first un-President.

Trump says he prides himself on being unpredictable. But the leader of the free world must be a stabilizing influence, and Trump is clearly unstable. His behavior and demeanor are totally uncharacteristic for someone in the position of President of the United States. Many of his actions have been unprecedented. On the world stage he seems to be taking our country into uncharted waters.

He’s undoing most of the regulations intended to protect our environment. He’s also undermining Obamacare mostly because it’s named for Obama.

Trump may lead us into an unwinnable nuclear war with North Korea. He’s even undercutting his own Secretary of State’s efforts to come up with diplomatic solutions to North Korea. And he’s unlikely to re-certify the nuclear deal with Iran.

There’s an undercurrent of discontent among those who deal with Trump both within and outside of the White House. Many pundits and politicians are declaring Trump to be unfit for the office and that he has become totally unhinged.

From my perspective, the only hope we have to save the American democracy is for our elected representatives in Congress to grow a spine, to show some backbone, and to put the good of our country ahead of the good of the Republican Party and their own unenlightened self-interests and start the impeachment process.

My concern, though, is that Donald J. Trump, America’s first un-president, America’s most unpresidential president, America’s most un-American president, may also be America’s most unimpeachable president.

And that’s unfunny.

I originally published this post about an hour ago. But then I saw today’s one-word prompt, “fraud,” and decided this post fit that prompt well. So….