Ladies and gentlemen, behold, some s*** the president said during the previous week:
- “I want to do it faster. I could do the wall over a longer period of time. I didn’t need to do this, but I’d rather do it much faster…. I just want to get it done faster, that’s all.” 2/15/2019 National Emergency declaration. Rule #1 of concocting an emergency: don’t blurt out, “I didn’t need to do this.”
- “And I don’t need to do it for the election. I’ve already done a lot of wall. For the election. 2020. And the only reason we’re up here talking about this is because of the election. Because they want to try to win an election, which, it looks like they’re not going to be able to do.” 2/15/2019 National Emergency declaration. Yes, tell us more about how you’ve built the wall specifically for the election, but the new wall will be for some national emergency only you can see. That’s fascinating. Fun fact: he actually has not built any new wall at all. Tying the wall to his own re-election is tantamount to an admitting this whole thing is a farce. He is not good at this.
- “We could save billions and billions of dollars and hundreds of billions of dollars in drugs and what they’re doing to us with drugs. And so much of it comes through. Don’t believe people when they say it all comes through the portals; it doesn’t – the ports of entry.” 2/12/2019 Cabinet meeting. When President Trump says “don’t believe people,” it’s important to note he is referring to his own Drug Enforcement Agency, whom maintain the overwhelming majority of drugs are smuggled through ports of entry. Trump’s Border Patrol agrees with his DEA. It is bizarre for a president to urge distrust of his own agencies, and replace it with things he made up.
- “I get my numbers from a lot of sources, like Homeland Security, primarily. And the numbers that I have from Homeland Security are a disaster.” 2/15/2019 National Emergency declaration. The obvious follow-up question, which was asked but never answered, is, “Can you share those numbers with us?” Government statistics are public information. If there’s anything out there to justify a medieval wall, it’s hard to believe anyone in the Trump Administration would keep it a secret.
- “This card was just given to me by [Dept. of Homeland Security] Secretary Nielsen. And – assaults: 99,000 assaults. Larceny: 40,000. Burglary: 25,000. Fraudulent activities: 25,000…Kidnappings: 4,112. Murders: 3914.” 2/12/2019 Cabinet meeting. Here’s a theory: the president sees these stats devoid of any context and thinks, “Big numbers. Yuge numbers. National emergency numbers!” He never bothers to do the math, so he doesn’t realize two things are true at the same time – these numbers are both real, and equate to small crime rates compared to native-born Americans. Combine that with him trusting his gut over the advice of professionals, and his gut having told him long ago that illegal immigration is the foremost problem in America today – and this is where we end up.
- “We’re getting rid of tremendous numbers of MS-13. And the Democrats don’t like us to get rid of MS-13. Now, you figure that one out. These are violent people, and they don’t like us to get rid of MS-13.” 2/12/2019 Cabinet meeting. MS-13 is a gang. Nobody wants gangs. Everybody wants to get rid of gangs.
- “We’re thinking about doing, on the 4th of July or thereabouts, a parade. A “Salute to America” parade. It will be a – really, a gathering, as opposed to a parade, I guess you’d have to say. Perhaps at the Lincoln Memorial. We’re looking at sites. But we’re thinking about doing something, which would become, perhaps, a tradition.” 2/12/2019 Cabinet meeting. Come on, man. A tradition? On July 4th? With a parade? This is such a good idea, it’s amazing no one thought of it 240 years ago! Maybe after that we could think about sending a fat guy down kids’ chimneys with presents, or, oh! I got it! Maybe a national day of thanks, say around the 4th Thursday in November or thereabouts. We’ll call it, Trumpsgiving. I don’t know if I can take two more years of this guy.
- ” “After The Flight 93 Election, The Vote That Saved America – And What We Still Have To Lose,” by very talented Michael Anton, is a terrific read. Check it out!” 2/14/2019 Trump tweet. The title of this book compares the act of electing Donald Trump to running a passenger plane into the ground on 9/11 – a necessarily horrible thing to do to prevent something even worse. Donald Trump thinks this is a compliment.
- “Coal is an important part of our electricity generation mix and @TVAnews should give serious consideration to all factors before voting to close viable power plants, like Paradise #3 in Kentucky!“ 2/11/2019 Trump tweet. How subtle to include that one, specific plant at the end there. Quick question: do you really think President Trump has an intimate knowledge of individual power plants supplying the Tennessee Valley Authority (@TVAnews) electric grid? What if I told you Paradise #3’s coal is supplied by a huge Trump campaign donor, is obsolete and was just days away from a closure vote by the TVA board? (The TVA board did in fact vote to close this plant and another that Trump didn’t express any interest in keeping.) He seems to have discovered corruption out in the open is easier to get away with than the hidden form. It’s all corruption to me.
- “Nothing funny about tired Saturday Night Live on Fake News NBC! Question is, how do the Networks get away with these total Republican hit jobs without retribution? Likewise for many other shows? Very unfair and should be looked into. This is the real Collusion!” 2/17/2019 Trump tweet. It’s strange for someone familiar with Fox News to complain of partisan hit jobs in American media…on the part of Saturday Night Live. It’s even stranger for the president to suggest that this “very unfair” thing would be fine if only there were “retribution.” I see statements like these as evidence that Donald Trump isn’t hostile to the rule of law so much as he is oblivious of it. Retribution is his language. In that language, the question worth asking isn’t, “Is this legal?” or, “Is this right?” but, rather, “Can I get away with it?” As long as that answer stays, “Yes,” I humbly predict we’ll see more lies, corruption, fake emergencies, and calls for people to “look into” those whom criticize.
That’s our report for this week. Be sure to check out the links for more info on any particular topic and, as always, thanks for reading.