A White House reporter needs to ask Trump, "What the F*ck is wrong with you?" If not, we are indeed screwed.
Until then, the television news stations’ broadcasting of “The Daily Trump Show” will lend a legitimacy to Trump that bolsters his approval ratings. That is because he is given inordinate free time to act as the Chuck Berris “Gong Show” host of his variety show that stars him in the role of President. He provides the television stations with spectacle, which increases their viewers, and print media with sensationalist fodder that draws more readers. It’s all part of a tacit mutual understanding. Even Trump’s ongoing berating, mocking and bullying of reporters is part of the show.
It needs to be remembered that until Trump had to cancel his campaign rallies, the DC Press Corps was complaining that he did not regularly hold news conferences, and they were left clamoring for chicken feed duplicitous quotes in “sprays” or “gaggles” as he was about to board Air Force One, or occasionally when they were invited in for a few minutes as Trump was meeting with a dignitary.
Trump, however, is masterful at controlling the media, knowing that they rely on him to provide shocking statements, digressions, attacks on whomever his enemy of the moment is, and, of course, berating of the reporters whenever they point out contradiction in his positions by quoting him. After all, Trump learned from the infamous Roy Cohn: deny, deny, deny—and then relentlessly attack.
BuzzFlash has heralded the rare DC Press Corps journalists who press Trump beyond an initial question, including Yamiche Alcindor and Jim Acosta, that he parries by insulting the reporter until he brusquely moves on to another question. The end result is that Trump is in full control of his now daily variety show, which perhaps reached its zenith last Thursday when he had a full cast of characters ranging from medical experts to Secretary of the Treasury Steve Mnuchin, Jared Kushner making his infamous statement about “our” national stockpile, an admiral who revealed that the goal of obtaining needed medical supplies was to enhance the profits of the private sector as they made their way through the “supply chain,” and other “guests,” as if it were a second-rate rerun of “Gilligan’s Island.”
The so-called “White House Corona Task Force” daily briefings were a brilliant move by Trump. They not only replaced his campaign rallies that he was forced to curtail, but enabled him to reach a large audience in the guise of an official presidential briefing, which the media hypes up ahead of each episode. Trump said early on in his presidency that the press would prefer him in 2020 because he is never boring, and his BFF felon Roger Stone has said many a time that boring is the worst adjective a politician can be stuck with.
There was one day, a week ago Monday, when Trump was a bit solemn and claimed to recognize the gravity of the Coronavirus pandemic. The press tripped all over itself announcing that Trump had adopted a new “presidential tone.” That lasted about a day, as is always the case.
It didn’t take long for Trump to get back to slamming governors, almost all Democratic, who are the ones desperately trying to rein in the COVID-19 carnage, accusing hospitals and heroic front line health care workers of hoarding PPE’s, or as he did on Monday taking shots at the Department of Health and Human Services Inspector General for issuing a report that, indeed, hospitals nationally were in dire need of PPE’s, ventilators, and other equipment, all of which Trump has denied is occurring and has resisted providing.
The media lets him get away with a harmful con that diverts attention to how he unnecessarily has caused the infection and deaths of countless Americans.
Trump knows that as long as the DC Press Corps puts him on television and reporters use the name “White House Coronavirus Task Force,” he is persuading nearly half of Americans that he is doing “something” about the Coronavirus, despite the fact that as The Washington Post noted in an April 4 article and Obama National Security Adviser Susan Rice said, in a Washington Post interview with Jonathan Capehart, the Trump administration “waited two months. It’s not the one month that the New York Times had as a headline, “A Wasted Month,” it was a wasted two months, Jonathan. And those two months have meant the difference between many tens of thousands of Americans dying who might otherwise not have died.”
Nevertheless, the DC Press Corps suffers from an American form of the Stockholm Syndrome. It keeps believing that “The Daily Trump Show” will yield important information, which it rarely, but occasionally does. About 90 percent of what Trump and Pence announce are lies, and the rest could be reported after the “briefing” has ended, particularly what the medical experts have to say. About 15 percent of his “briefings” have been consumed with Trump’s obsession with hydroxychloroquine. This is when “The Daily Trump Show” becomes “The Daily Quack Show.”
The only positive value is when Dr. Anthony Fauci speaks. Dr. Deborah Birx and Surgeon General Jerome Adams are knowledgeable, but enable Trump at times. Fauci reminds us of how starved we are as Americans for guidance on COVID-19. The rest of “The Daily Trump Show” cast of shifting characters are Trump lackeys who sow confusion and betrayal, who dismay and confuse.
Trump is like the hucksters who pedaled "magic potions" to gullible people with ailments such as cancer. As usual, the media lets him get away with a harmful con that diverts attention to how he unnecessarily has caused the infection and deaths of countless Americans. Can’t the media devote the hours of time spent on “The Daily Trump Show” to dealing with solutions to the Coronavirus pandemic, focus on local and state leaders who are fighting it, and the solidarity of Americans who are committing thousands of random acts of mutual support, kindness and volunteerism in this battle instead of Trump’s derangement and vitriol?
His emphasis on hydroxychloroquine is just one example of his severe mental health problem in the midst of a raging killer virus. More dangerously, distractions like this actually become topics discussed by the media, in this case as to whether it is a valid Coronavirus treatment, as I heard on a radio program last night and saw discussed in The Hill (as “making headlines,” because of Trump). Not only that, hyping it is dangerous to persons with some ailments — such as diabetes — and Trump has caused hoarding of the drug, which could prove extremely harmful to persons with lupus and rheumatoid arthritis who need it for treatment.
More importantly, it is an example of the media airing “The Daily Trump Show” and reporting on it when he shows all the signs of being a sociopath who appears to obstruct and distract from the battle against a ghastly pandemic rather than provide leadership to battle it. His unrelenting narcissism often dominates large portions of “The Daily Trump Show,” as reporters, after four years, have become numb to how they have legitimatized an unhinged man. He is a prestidigitator, a magician who promised that COVID-19 would “disappear like magic,” but when it didn’t — and he has done everything to avoid doing anything but public relations actions to stop it — he pulls another diversionary rabbit out of his hat.
What is blatantly obvious is the horrifying realization that he cares little for the lives of Americans except for his immediate family, and this goes unreported by the DC Press Corps. He hasn’t “bungled” or “botched” an anti—pandemic plan: he has willfully derailed it. The two-month delayed and still woefully insufficient testing for the Coronavirus is just one example of how Trump facilitated community spread, but on Monday, he preposterously blamed the states and the Obama administration for the testing kit disaster and the states for lengthy waits to obtain results (sometimes more than 8 business days). This is after he is on record as saying more than once, “Anyone can get tested at anytime,” and the other day claiming “he hadn’t heard about testing being an issue in weeks.” He also made the absurd claim that people are being tested when they get on and off airplanes. But who in the DC Press Corps will hold him accountable for 16,000 lies and counting?
Who will ask the one and only relevant question to be asked of Trump, “What the f*ck is wrong with You?"
This is a diabolically sick man, but the press treats him as a normalized president.
(Admittedly, there are some fact checks after the “The Daily Trump” Show is aired, but the majority of viewers don’t likely stick around for the “clarifications.”)
The DC Press Corps is complicit in the dissemination of the lethal disinformation spouted by Trump and his daily undermining of a national effort to control and reduce the virus’s spread. The reporters are generally craven, scared for their careers and of their editors if they call out Trump as being a lying sociopath — and many love being so close to power they don’t want to say the emperor wears no clothes. As far as COVID-19, Trump is guilty of negligent homicide, but the TV stations still air "The Daily Trump Show" unfact-checked in real time. They have a responsibility to the health and safety of the nation not to enable Trump.