Sometimes there's so much TrumpNews (tm) that it's almost too much. All the different stories overlap and get covered SO much with unrelated reports of all the unrelenting outrage that to single-out one thing alone seems far too limiting yet to note it all seems like you're piling on with a garbage dump. Happily, though, it doesn't really matter either way because it's all getting covered in full with overlapping headlines, so not much is needed to add to it.
What is fascinating, however, and worth noting is that within just one mere week of being inaugurated, the Trump administration has amazingly already provoked TWO massive national protests on two totally-separate issues -- the women's march and Muslim travel bans -- each into the millions of people. You have to admit, that's pretty impressive by any standard.
All the more impressive is that none of these two massive national protests have anything to do with all the other problematic issues the administration is facing, like investigations into ethics violations, or investigations into Russia involvement to help Trump in the elections (two investigations after just one week is pretty good, too), or simply getting its cabinet approved. And more.
What's so especially-intriguing to see amid all these are the Trump officials who are already whining to the press about how besieged they feel from attempts to "delegitimize" their administration. Keep in mind, this is only after a single week in office, and they are already complaining about being besieged. And they still have three years and 51 more weeks to go from a four-year term -- assuming they make it that far. And the protests, investigations and problems are nothing. The administration hasn't really even had time yet to do enough things to get the public seriously riled up. It's only been one, paltry week.
But then now the Trump administration is finally getting a chance to see the difference -- the massive difference -- between being a candidate, a president-elect...and the President of the United States. With the first two, you can yammer all you want, and none of it actually matters because you're just a private citizen. You can be as irresponsible as you want, the public may even find it entertaining, much like a circus out of control. But when you're The President, people take that very seriously. When you're The President, every word you say counts. Every sentence you "tweet" is dissected. Every unformed thought you bring into existence becomes real. Not just in the U.S., but all over the entire world. Everything. Not just by those who oppose you, but even by those who voted for you. People take The President very seriously. That's why the whole "sarcasm" thing Trump kept saying he was joking about throughout the election was a profoundly bad omen for him, because it showed what was in store if elected and that he didn't understand. That's why the whole "You're taking his words at face value rather than what he means" defense was always empty as a void. When you're President of the United States, the reality is...People Pay Attention to EVERYTHING. Most especially when you sign Executive Orders that give standing to your "sarcasm" and 3 AM tweets. And even more when you sign Executive Orders so outrageous that the Court knocks them down.
During the election, I wrote about how when people say they supported Trump because he was such a great businessman (never mind the six bankruptcies...) it was foolish because being president has nothing to do with being a businessman. When you're a businessman, I wrote, and head of a company, you're completely in charge. What you say goes. You make a policy, and everyone in the company has to adhere to it. If you want someone fired, they're gone. It's a little fiefdom, and you control it all. You may even own it, everything. It's business. Politics doesn't work that way. Not even the presidency when you're The Most Powerful Man in the World.
For starters, as I noted, there is another entire party that opposes you, and it's basically equal in size to yours. And you can't fire elected representatives of the other party. They'll be in office as long as their supporters vote for them. Nor can you fire all the civil service employees who fill the government. And there are state governments over which you have absolutely no authority. And none of this even takes into consideration all the other countries around the world which each have their own sovereign governments...let alone their own military and actual weaponry, for which you have utterly no say in their actions -- even when they're your allies. Which doesn't take into consideration all those nations and others who are your very real and deeply-serious enemies, who aren't just trying to undercut you on pricing and market share, but may actually be trying to do you very real, deeply-serious harm, trying to literally blow you off the face of the earth.
Being a good businessman has utterly nothing to do with this. And only a week in office, we're already seeing the results of that. The results of having zero experience, zero background and zero capabilities to be President of the United States, Commander-in-Chief of the American military, and the Most Powerful Man in the World.
Now toss in an egomaniacal, insecure, sociopathic personality who can't even accept that there were more people attending his predecessor's first Inauguration than his. Who can't even accept that although he won the election his opponent received almost three million more votes than he did. Who can't get past a comedy show making jokes about him. Who can't get simply deal with the there being singers who don't want to perform in his honor.
Mix that all together, and you end up with a first week like this. And there's still three years and 51 weeks to go. Assuming he makes it that far.
Still, I have to admit that, as horrific has the first weak week has been, there is a certain whimsy to seeing the Trump administration whining about people trying to delegitimize them for a whole seven days. Given that the very man they're whining for spent five years intentionally building a lie in an known-attempt to delegitimize his predecessor -- and that his own party's leaders literally met the day before his predecessor was sworn in as President to reach an agreement to block everything he would do during his entire presidency, even before they had any idea what the action would be -- the concept of irony, gall, hypocrisy and legendary comeuppance still doesn't come close to defining the reality.
The Trump administration doesn't need others to deligitimize them. They're doing a fine job all on their own.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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