Edited image by Gerd Altmann
Welcome to Trump’s Week in Review for the 14th of January, 2018.
It’s yet another week, and what does that mean? United States President Donald Trump is in the news again! What else were you expecting? Actual news? Actual important news about Donald Trump?
Like usual, if you only want to read the actually important news, you can skip right to the bottom for the crucial news about him you’ve likely missed:
Trump’s Shocking Slur! Trump referred to Haiti and parts of Africa as shithole countries, and everyone and their mother and Uncle Johnny on Facebook who you haven’t seen since Christmas dinner back in 2007 is talking about it. A President swearing? Not in my twenty-first century!
For the most part, this statement by President Trump is troubling mainly because it is so blunt and obviously attention-seeking. For any President, this would be a shocking statement, but for El Trumpo, it’s just another grab at attention, and blatant generalizing. While some of these countries may be considered “shitholes”—otherwise, why would citizens be attempting to escape them in the first place—but there are more Presidential ways of saying it.
Is it finally time to call President Trump racist? Also known as: We’ve been calling President Trump racist for over a year at this point, but we’ll pretend this is news because my editor expected me to write my “Trump Impeached” article an hour ago.
Some UK MP has labeled Donald Trump a racist: Inadvertently, she answered NBC News’s headline. According to The Independent, Labour MP Emily Thorne “brand[ed] Donald Trump a ‘racist’ who does not understand trade deals”. She also criticized UK Prime Minister Theresa May, but how is this news? It’s the job of Shadow (Opposition) MP’s to criticize those who are in power, because they want the job instead.
Donald Trump Stayed On The Golf Course As Hawaii Panicked, HuffPost tells us, despite also admitting the alert was false, and it also only took ten minutes to discover the Hawaii alert was false. Further into the article, White House deputy press secretary Lindsay Walters says the false alarm was “purely a state exercise”, and the President was already briefed to know this. Talk about burying the lede!
Donald Trump is more dangerous than Richard Nixon, says Watergate lawyer John Dean, The Telegraph tells us. John Dean says both Nixon and Trump are uniquely authoritarian, but Nixon understood the Presidency better. The gist is Trump will likely be impeached one day, and will be brought down just as Richard Nixon was. Just wait a second. A millisecond. Eventually…
Donald Trump has a frightening trait. He believes his own lies, says the San Francisco Chronicle. This article is in reference to Trump’s “shithole countries” controversy. Reporter Willie Brown says a lot of things about Trump being racist, outlandish and an outright liar, but this takes the cake:
Trump, however, does not have the forgiveness gene. He can only insist or deny until we get worn down and move on to the next outrage.
While this is true of Trump, it is more relevant to his critics, especially the outrage brigade that roams Twitter. All this article brings to light is far too many are outraged—President Trump included—about the minor things to focus on the major stuff: re. focusing on what billionaires in Hollywood are doing over Iranians fighting for basic human rights in an outright theocracy.
Donald Trump retweeted a bad, bad man: According to the bastion of sanity on the internet (read: sarcasm) Newsweek, Trump retweeted some Alt-Right man who took a ‘Rape Melania’ sign to a rally.
Jack Posobiec, the alt-right Internet activist who is best known for the “pizzagate” conspiracy theory that falsely suggested Hillary Clinton ran a sex trafficking ring from a D.C. pizza joint.
Has anyone apart from Newsweek even heard of this Jack Posobiec? According to Newsweek, it was Buzzfeed’s influential reporting (yes, Buzzfeed) that was responsible for bringing down Posobiec. Allegedly, Posobiec is responsible for bringing a ‘Rape Melania’ sign to an anti-Trump rally in order to discredit Democrats and liberals, but the article’s headline makes it sound like he took to sign to a pro-Trump rally. It’s ironic Newsweek is anti-Jack Posobiec, when a lot of Left-leaning media and figures have been vehement in their dislike of Melania Trump, calling her complicit in her husband’s behavior and slut-shaming her for her modeling past. Seems like a case of “It’s only okay when I do it”.
Perhaps President Trump doesn’t endorse Posobiec’s behavior? Usually on Twitter, when retweeting something, one doesn’t usually do a full background check on the person we are retweeting. Trump probably saw it, thought “Someone who supports me against the Lying, Cheating Fake News!” and clicked retweet without fact-checking. Are we expecting anything more from him?
A bunch of celebrities have reacted to Donald Trump: Celebrities have reacted. Sean Penn labeled Trump “an enemy of mankind“. J.K. Rowling roasted Donald Trump with just one emoji. Acclaimed ’80s scream queen Jamie Lee Curtis went into a rant about how Trump is immature, narcissistic, rage-filled, unstable and far too many words to show, yes, she does know what a thesaurus is. Christine Teigen called him an outright racist, as did John Legend, Judd Apatow, Mia Farrow, and countless others. George Takei, who is apparently popular again as people have forgotten the allegations of abuse to his name, says he will call Trump “President Shithole”. Why are we still listening to George Takei?
If authoritarianism is looming in the US, how come Donald Trump looks so weak?
according to The Guardian’s Corey Robin. Finally, someone who acknowledges the ridiculousness of “Trump is a fascist dictator hellbent on destroying America and the world” somehow coexisting with “Trump and his whiny manbaby fascists make up no percentage of the American population and have no power because they’re too busy in their mommy’s basements/are actually Russian bots in disguise”. It also includes a Hitler reference, because if you dislike a politician, naturally they have to be conflated with the worst monster in human history. Robin also references one of the most ridiculous articles of 2017-18 in the process; Jonathan Chait’s 2018 Will Be a Fight to Save Democracy.
And here’s the actually important stuff about him you may have missed
Donald Trump is pushing for stronger libel laws in the wake of Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury semi-biography, according to the ABC. This is what he told reporters:
Our current libel laws are a sham and a disgrace and do not represent American values or American fairness, so we’re going to take a strong look at that
We are going to take a strong look at our country’s libel laws so that when somebody says something that is false and defamatory about someone, that person will have meaningful recourse in our courts
Apart from the clear appeal to nationalism and all-American values, this statement makes a lot of sense. Libel is bad. Slander is bad. Obviously.
However, between the lines, it appears Donald Trump wishes to make it illegal for anyone to criticize him. Now, of course, there is already far too much criticism of Trump (and a lot of potential libel, considering far too many people seem to think he is neo-Nazi and America is in a post-apocalyptic fascist hellhole), but it seems Trump also wants to do away with legitimate criticisms of his behavior.
Another allegation of sexual assault. While this may belong in the Yet Another Useless News Article about Trump bin, there is the potential for this to be important. Allegedly, Donald Trump paid porn star Stormy Daniels $130,000USD to keep quiet about an apparent sexual encounter. What makes this different is the White House admitted to Trump paying Daniels the money, however they denied the alleged affair. Two other adult actresses, Alana Evans and Jessica Drake, have claimed they were involved in the tryst, according to The Guardian. Is this true? It’s all still allegations at this point. Could it be proven to be true? Perhaps. Only time will tell.