Donald Trump is not what he seems. The supposed master of media manipulation stumbled so often at his first press conference, it is hard to recall why anyone thought the TV star was good at this stuff in the first place.
If the potentially explosive story embroiling him weren’t so salacious, you might say this is a case of the emperor’s new clothes. Instead, it’s safe to say the Trump presidency is already in shambles. And it has yet to reach its official start.
For a showman who promised to restore the Reagan era – and even ripped off Reagan’s slogan – this is just one of the most surprising revelations of the past few days.
Reagan and his advisers knew how to project a sunny image that kept the presidency separate from whatever the pesky media wanted to focus on, such as high unemployment or secret gun-running to enemy states.
Judging from Wednesday’s trainwreck press conference – the first since July – Trump and his handlers have no self-discipline and no strategy to deal with the Russian crisis that has been simmering for the best part of the past year.
They also have no sense of irony or, apparently, reality. The press conference opened with Sean Spicer, the incoming press secretary, condemning the media coverage of Trump’s compromised relationship with Russia as “frankly outrageous and highly irresponsible”.
It seems churlish to have to recall this tweet from Trump in the closing phase of the recent election: “Did Crooked Hillary help disgusting (check out sex tape and past) Alicia M become a US citizen so she could use her in the debate?”
This kind of thing makes it hard for the new White House to pass the laugh test, never mind the smell test. It’s heartwarming to know that the president-elect is so concerned about how fake news can destroy real people. If only he had the self-awareness and self-discipline to live by his own words.
Read the rest. It’s quite exact, and thoroughly true.