See? I told you so.
I have some friends and family who supported President Trump from early on in the process. From time to time they will ask me when I will admit that I was wrong about him. "If Trump does x... If Trump gets y... If Trump supports a policy that results in z... will you admit that you were wrong?" My answer is always "no", because I wasn't wrong. To be clear, I could be wrong in practical application, but that isn't what an election is about. Elections are about theory and speculation and, generally speaking about judging records. Trump had no record to speak of, and his history of stances on issues was all over the map. I opposed his candidacy for several major reasons, all of which are proven valid in this single issue we now refer to as the "travel ban". Here were my reasons.
Deception and outright lies.
If you're not familiar with Justice with Judge Jeanine, it is a show on the FOX News Network starring Jeanine Pirro. She is known for her over-the-top rants where she serves up gobs of fresh red meat for her largely hard right wing audience. While it's not unusual for her to be a little fast and loose with the facts, she has been known to occasionally return from the break with a correction from her producers. Last night, however, there was no such correction to an outright lie she told on the show, and the matter being discussed should have (at the very least) contained a disclaimer from the host. I would cut her some slack, but as a former prosecutor and judge, she should be well aware of what proper protocol should have been here.
Trump is detached, and you can't fix that.
It's not cute anymore, Republicans. The President of the United States is completely detached from reality, and you can't fix that. You can't cover it up, you can't explain it away, and let me make this as clear as I possibly can for you. You cannot possibly undo the damage you are doing to the party brand by trying to pretend this man is anything other than completely unhinged. I'm watching Sean Hannity borrow guests from the Alex Jones show in an attempt to bolster Trump's conspiratorial claims. I'm seeing relatively mainstream conservatives make themselves look like the crazed fringes of the paranoid right wing. Don't believe me? Look at this.
Where did this guy come from?
I'm not sure what President Trump hoped to accomplish in his speech last night, but if it was to look Presidential he totally nailed it. Wow! Where did this guy come from. It's as if the crazy old man who lives next door and yells "get off my lawn" at neighborhood kids as they pass by woke up one morning and instead offers a calm, well worded explanation of personal property rights and the stresses placed on low growing vegetation by excessive foot traffic. We can and will have our disagreements on a lot of things, but I tip my hat to President Trump today. He appeared calm, collected, and in control, and these are three things that had alluded him for quite some time.
Will it really happen?
Saturday morning a friend of mine on Facebook was talking about how President Trump was keeping all of his promises. He brought up the Keystone Pipeline. It was interesting to me because I heard a Trump surrogate on CNN talking about how Trump was keeping all of his promises, and she too brought up the Keystone Pipeline. Now understand that at this point it would be silly for me to say that he hasn't kept his promise because the pipes aren't in the ground with oil flowing through them. This caused me to wonder if Trump's supporters actually know what he has done on the pipeline, because if they did they should see that it's equally silly to claim that Trump has kept his promise on that subject. First, let's look at some of the language in the executive order that he signed on the subject.
Keeping it real.
In the lead up to the 2016 Presidential Election we heard a lot about fake news. Stories like "Pizzagate" were getting their play on Facebook and other social media sites much to the frustration of legitimate journalists. It got so bad that Facebook was supposed to introduce a "Fake News" alert to pop up on stories that aren't legitimate, although I've seen no evidence of them having done that. Since President Trump was elected, we've heard even more about fake news, but it seems to be an entirely different type of thing which he is referencing. Last week the President spoke at CPAC and he gave us a glimpse into what he is talking about when he makes the "Fake News" claim, and it might not be what you think it is. Let's take a look at what Trump had to say about fake news, and then we will take a look at what fake news actually is.
Was it as impressive as he claims?
President Trump went on a long rant of a press conference yesterday where he lashed out at the press, and praised the job that he's been doing as President. He claimed that his Administration is running "like a fine tuned machine" and blamed the notion of a chaotic White House on "fake news". This word comes on the heels of one of his appointees resigning or being fired (depending on which day you ask the President), another appointee withdrawing to avoid being voted down, and a third declining his appointment, referencing the offer as a "shit sandwich". In the presser, President Trump also told a few whoppers, including one he has often repeated even though it has been thoroughly debunked.
Mexico is going to pay for it.
These words rang out time and again from Donald Trump during the Presidential campaign. "We're going to build a wall," Trump would exhort his rally audiences. He would then ask them who is going to pay for the wall? "Mexico!", they would yell back. As President, Trump signed an executive order to get the wall started. This lead many people to proclaim that he was keeping his campaign promise. However, the President has asked Congress to pay for the wall with the promise that he would find a way to get the money from Mexico at some point in the future. Then the Administration floated the idea of a 20% tax on Mexican imports. Now before we get into that, let's discuss the notion of keeping promises.