Sorry, But There Is No Defending Donald Trump’s Behavior

Yesterday, one of my friends who seldom posts things of a political nature online shared a link to a YouTube video of President Donald Trump attacking journalist Peter Alexander. The NBC News staffer had asked President Trump for a sort of closing message to the news conference Trump was concluding,

“What do you say to Americans who are scared?”

Rather than answer the question with a message of hopefulness and unity, Trump reacted like an abused animal, snapping and snarling and howling in anger.

“I say that you are a terrible reporter. That’s what I say.”

But Trump was only getting started.

The President accused Alexander of a “nasty question” which is a phrase he usually reserves who female journalists or political opponents who dare challenge him. Last week he used the term when confronting PBS reporter Yamiche Alcindor who questioned Trump on the pandemic response. He used the term to describe Denmark’s Prime Minister, Mette Frederiksen after she mocked his interest in buying Greenland. Trump has used the term on Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Duchess Meghan Markle, and of course, his 2016 rival Hillary Clinton.

  

Trump continued,

“You’re doing sensationalism. And the same with NBC and Comcast. I don’t call it Comcast. I call it ‘Con-Cast’. Let me just tell you something. That’s really bad reporting. And you ought to get back to reporting instead of sensationalism.”

Of course, Trump would have a demeaning nickname for Comcast, and since he is often referred to as “Don the Con” by detractors, there is (as is so typical of Trump) some projection and deflection in the taunt.

Trump went on to smear The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post.

“They’re very dishonest.”

Trump then praised a far-right media outlet, saying it is “very good” and noting,

“They treat me very nicely.”

Apparently in Trump’s world, the line between good journalism and bad journalism is not determined by accuracy or impartiality but by how fervently that outlet strokes the president’s enormous ego?

Someone replied to my friend’s Facebook post with an attack of the media masquerading as a defense of Donald Trump.

“The media has been like the boy who cried wolf for over 3 years ! Making shit up and now they want to tell us something and we are to believe them ! It’s a shame what their doing to all of us !”

I do NOT think the question was inappropriate or unfair, a ‘gotcha’ question as so many Trump supporters are claiming it was (for example, Brit Hume).

But you know what?

We are in a crisis, hurtling towards catastrophe. Trump was told over and over this was coming. He was warned. People begged him to act. Instead, he (and most Republicans and right-wing media) went before the cameras (and on social media) every day and LIED.

Hell, since he began these daily press conferences, half of what Trump says is deliberate lies and half are inaccuracies that he expresses both because he is mentally inept and because he fails to read and listen and take advice like a leader should.

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No matter how many times Trump repeats the lie, there is no vaccine and won’t be one for a year (in a miracle case) or 18 months (standard).

The malaria drugs Trump touts over and over were tested on fewer coronavirus case than the number of people that would occupy a classroom if our kids still went to school. It was an unscientific test that even Dr. Fauci keeps repeating has no value unless results can be replicated in a full-scale scientific study with blinds and variables and placebos and all the other things that take months to do and months more to evaluate.

Even when directly contradicted by Dr. Fauci, Trump had to have the last word, seeking to prove that his words mattered more to the outcome than a lifetime of experience in medicine.

“Let’s see if it works. It might and it might not. I happen to feel good about it, but who knows. I’ve been right a lot.”

Peter Alexander tossed Trump a softball. As he has done his entire life (and sadly, as he has trained his children to do and urged his staff to do), Trump lashed-out like a child (an improperly raised and disciplined one at that) and called names seeking to humiliate the reporter in front of an audience.

He was unpresidential. No shock there; he has been for years.

He embarrassed the nation. Again…since the day he announced his candidacy.

I started to type that Trump admits he takes no responsibility, but the reality goes beyond that. He does not just admit that. He leads with the boast that he takes no responsibility. He is proud of himself. Failing, but putting the blame on someone he dislikes, is a bigger thrill for him than succeeding.

He does not read. Why would he when he can watch TV?

He does not listen to advisors, even experts, as HE knows more than anyone (at least in his own mind).

Remember when he claimed to know more about military strategy than the generals? This is the dumbest man I have ever seen in a position of power, yet he truly believes he is the smartest.

He knows more about war than generals.

He knows more about business than Jeff Bezos.

he knows more about pandemics than the nation’s leading scientists and epidemiologists.

He does not need a stocked cabinet, or a functioning State Department, or an intelligence community. He is smarter than all of them anyway, right?

This was no ‘gotcha’ moment, but you know what? Even if it were, so what?

People are dying because of his incompetence.

Our economy is being damaged in ways it may take a decade to recover from, like the Depression, because of his incompetence.

Our nation is supposed to be the leader of the world, the most prepared, the one to bail out the other countries when disaster hits. But sadly, we have a buffoon in charge. So, we will suffer, damn how we will suffer.

New York State already has more cases than South Korea, and New York City is on the verge of a disaster that will be so catastrophic it will be like 9/11 happened in Wuhan at the same time as the virus.

The Governor of New York is doing all he can every day to keep his citizens alive. Not safe. The time for safe has long passed. He is trying to keep his citizens alive. Rather than help, Trump tweets about him constantly, airing and re-airing every petty grievance.

Many have likened Trump to Nero, fiddling while Rome burned. I know they mean it metaphorically, as Trump would be too busy blaming the fireman to pick up a bow. But don’t worry, when it is all done, he will sit among the ashes and brag about how he is a better fiddler than Charlie Daniels and Yo-Yo Ma combined.

And yes, he will absolutely point out that Charlie Daniels is a great and patriotic American while Yo-Yo Ma (even if born in France) is Chinese and thus at least partially to blame for bringing coronavirus to the United States.

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