Donald Trump

Donald Trump's Epic Meltdown

His response to media doing its job is telling.

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Trump
Credit: Gage Skidmore / photo on flickr

Donald Trump: crazy or evil? That's the question that has loomed over his presidential candidacy from the start. But we now have a definitive answer. He is a raging tsunami of both qualities. Without one or the other, he would just not be the Trump we know. 

All this became blindingly obvious Tuesday, which by any reasonable standard should have been doomsday for his White House aspirations. A news conference about his fundraising for veterans causes was the site of the scariest meltdown since the Fukushima nuclear disaster. 

That coincided with the release of evidence from a lawsuit against Trump University indicating it was, as one sales manager attested, "a fraudulent scheme" that preyed ruthlessly on the vulnerable and the gullible. 

What did we learn about the man who may become president? Nothing that came as a complete surprise but plenty to prove he is even worse than previously realized: a pathological narcissist, a world-class whiner, an indefatigable con artist and a vicious enemy of anyone seeking the truth. 

Trump's eruption against the news media was that of someone who is so hopelessly in love with himself that he thinks he can do no wrong. Anyone who doesn't automatically agree, in his view, is not just mistaken but corrupt. He said, "I find the press to be extremely dishonest. I find the political press to be unbelievably dishonest." 

What provoked such venom? The objects of his ire were doing one of the most basic tasks of journalism: taking note of claims and promises he made in his campaign and trying to find out whether he has done what he said. 

In January, Trump boycotted a Fox News debate to protest his treatment, holding a televised event to raise money for veterans. The effort was so successful, he announced, that it yielded more than $6 million.

But it turned out the amount was several hundred thousand dollars short of his claim. He didn't give the $1 million of his own money he had promised until last week, after reporters inquired about it. Many of the other checks sent to veterans organizations were not cut until May 24—nearly four months after his event. At least one gift went to a group that spends only 10 percent of its funds on programs for veterans. 

Rather than manfully address his own lapses and delays, Trump threw a pity party for himself. "Instead of being like 'Thank you very much, Mr. Trump' or 'Trump did a good job,' everyone's saying, 'Who got it, who got it, who got it?'" he bleated. "And you make me look very bad. I have never received such bad publicity for doing such a good job." 

The searing injustice he decried brings to mind what Oscar Wilde said about a particularly heart-rending scene in a Charles Dickens novel: "One must have a heart of stone to read the death of little Nell without laughing." 

If a high-school student responded to his parents' inquiries about his schoolwork in this fashion, they would probably tell him: "Grow up." Yet many Americans who are mature and responsible are willing to follow a man who is the exact opposite. 

Following through on commitments is part of being an adult. Accounting for your conduct is something you should mind only if you have something to hide. 

Trump has a lot to hide. The lawsuit against Trump University has uncovered information to suggest that the chief education its students received was in the folly of trusting him. 

One former sales executive said Trump's promise to be "actively involved" in the classes "was not true" and his school was "a total lie." Another employee quit over "fraudulent and dishonest" tactics he was expected to use in fleecing potential customers. 

The judge who ordered the release of this material got the same treatment as anyone who doesn't take Trump's word as gold. Trump said U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel is "Mexican" and a "hater of Donald Trump." Curiel, born in East Chicago, Indiana, served 17 years as a federal prosecutor. Like the news media, he is vilified by Trump for simply carrying out his duties. 

The picture of Trump on view this week is an unstable egomaniac and dishonest huckster who sees enemies everywhere. His supporters may enjoy seeing him snarling and snapping like a rabid dog. What makes them so sure that, someday, he won't bite them?

© Copyright 2016 by Creators Syndicate Inc. 

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  1. Just a bunch of decent souls doing gods work…

  2. I for one couldn’t be more disgusted. Can you imagine if we, as Americans, actually elect a president who just blatantly disrespects the courts?

    1. And that’s to say nothing of our cherished freedom of the press. It is simply beyond the pale for a president to stoop so low as to attack reporters for merely doing their jobs. I can only imagine how a president Trump might try to stymie honest investigative journalism.

        1. I don’t know about anybody else, but personally, I could never support a candidate like that.

          1. No need to worry, my friend. Such a tyrant could never become president of these United States.

            You see, we have this notion called ‘rule of law’, which our esteemed public institutions & broadcasting agencies take scared to heart. With a noble, free, and objective press as the vanguard of our essential American freedoms, we shall never falter.

          2. Nice link.

            14 votes from Reason Staff for God Emperor Obama in 2008, one of them from Chapman.

            Progressitarian Moment!

            1. one of them from Chapman.

              That was the only one I was really intending to reference, you just can’t link to them individually.

              I don’t support Trump, but I do tire of pretending as though he is somehow unique among the political class. Every nightmare scenario that I have thus far heard about what Trump might do, Obama, Bush and Clinton before him actually fucking did. Often with little to no pushback, and in some cases with the enthusiastic praise and support, of the folks painting the nightmare scenarios.

          3. Based on his admitted voting record, Chapman is a real piece of shit. Who the FUCK in their right mind votes for a worthless stiff like Kerry (in addition to the communist traitor Obama). Therefore he has zero credibility, and his cognitive abilities are laughable at best.

            1. Shut your fucking piehole, you stupid redneck.

              1. My IQ and overall cognition are demonstrably superior to your own. Also, I’m hardly a ‘redneck’. I live in the ‘burbs, in the NW. So your entire premise is shit. unless this is an admission on your part that you are as big a fucking retard as you are perceived to be.

                Also, I don’t feel like shutting up. So eat shit, you worthless progtarded bitch. Get back in your gimp box, NOW!

              2. Pay up, then you can talk. Shit for brains.

                1. Yeah, PB. Pay up. THEN get back into your fucking gimp box.

    2. I can’t imagine how anyone who votes a liar can live with themselves, although everyone who has voted at all in the past seems to have survived it.

  3. He said, “I find the press to be extremely dishonest. I find the political press to be unbelievably dishonest.”

    What provoked such venom?

    Are you actually that clueless, or are you just doing your best to push the usual propaganda?

    The majority of Americans, and certainly the majority of Republicans, agree with him. The political press simply lies and lies for a living. Who doesn’t know this?

    The picture of Trump on view this week is an unstable egomaniac and dishonest huckster who sees enemies everywhere.

    Anyone opposed to the Progressive Theocracy who doesn’t see the press as their enemy just hasn’t been paying attention.

    1. Well maybe the reason Steve is so butthurt about this is that he thinks he’s one of THEM, those oh so noble reporters of truth to the simpleton masses.

      Do all the reporters really think we don’t hate their guts for selling us out? Obama has basically had a state run media for eight years, including even some apologists here at Reason. The people did notice this and ahem NEWS flash, we agree with Trump.

      1. PB real freaked when I attacked Chapman aggressively above. Could PB in fact be a sock puppet for Chapman?

    2. Are you actually that clueless, or are you just doing your best to push the usual propaganda?

      Steve Chapman really is that clueless.

      1. I concur.

      2. Chapman is evidence of the thin yellow line.

      3. If you think of him as the bearded Spock version of Michael Savage it will all make sense.

  4. So Trump’s great crime was raising “several hundred thousand dollars short” of 6 million dollars for veterans causes, and not dispensing it out fast enough to suit his Progressive enemies in the press.

    He is truly the Great Satan.

    1. actually his great crime is acting as though the press is a great satan for questioning him and not otherwise acting as his pr department.

      1. Well maybe the press shouldn’t act as his PR department.

        But even if they didn’t get suckered into giving the Donald free publicity, they have still recently been fucking abysmal at doing their jobs.

        The pretense of an objective press has completely evaporated in the age of the lightworker.

    2. I, for one, am more pissed off that there is a veterans charity out there that only gives 10% of it’s proceeds to veterans. WTF!!! A 90% overhead? Even our corrupt government isn’t THAT inefficient. Hell, that’s even getting into Clinton Foundation territory of fraud.

      1. Most of the big name charitable organizations are like that. Sadly, charity in this country has become a huge racket, enriching the administrators, trolling for government grants and doing precious little to help the objects of charity (But, rationally, why would they want to help them? If they succeeded, it would remove their reason for existence).

        Be your own charitable organization: Help a neighbor. Help people in or through your own local church, so you can see where the money/effort is going.

  5. Trump is inevitable. His enemies keep attacking him for the same reasons people support him.

    1. yeah, he’s not (just) an incarnation of what’s wrong with republicans. hes one of those things we all do together.

    2. Yes, because people keep supporting him for bad reasons.

  6. Enough already! We get it. Having to choose between Trump and Hillary is like being forced to choose between being beheaded by an un sharpened Isis sword or man-raped by a splintered Louisville Slugger.

    If this election doesn’t usher in the much promised Libertarian Moment, I will officially abandon all hope for America. Zimbabwe’s Mugabe would not be a worse candidate than what our corrupt and putrefied system has vomited up or excreted this time around.

    1. This year is a really good example of ‘lesser of two evils’ after a half dozen or so iterations. Personally I can’t wait to see what the choice is in 2020

    2. If Clinton wins we all know exactly how bad it will be. It is practically a metaphysical certainty.

      There is less certainty with Trump, I suspect he will be a muddled sort of smoldering dumpster fire, but do not think it inconceivable that his shake up of the entrenched powers might lead to real positive outcomes.

    3. Abandon now and avoid the rush!

  7. Just let it happen. Let Trump win. Repubs get to be the democrats that mock the ignorant Americans.

    The foreigners will get raped and pillaged either way. There’s a Quran verse somewhere about this…

    1. Didn’t we use to fund things that involved massacring socialists? This new generation is full of pussies.

      1. Hillary . . .evil lying bitch or evil lying sociopathic bitch?

        Hillary. . .jail time or death sentence for treason?

        The best reason to never vote for a Democrat ever again is because the media enables them. Republicans only have to do or say something and the intentions behind the action or statement are put under a freaking microscope to see how it was evil and/or racist by the slobbering clown posse of idiots in the media.

  8. Team Trump Pulverizes Chapman in the Comments

    1. Well, it is unquestionably uncharacteristic for Chapman to receive any flack from the commentariat as he is usually so well received. I think you’re really on to something.

    2. Anyone with a brain should give that democrat loving dbag a beatdown for his bad choices.

  9. What did we learn about the man who may become president? Nothing that came as a complete surprise but plenty to prove he is even worse than previously realized: a pathological narcissist, a world-class whiner, an indefatigable con artist and a vicious enemy of anyone seeking the truth.

    So, just like Hillary then?

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  11. An “epic meltdown”. now that is hyperbole.

    All I see is a candidate speaking truth to power and I will give a shit when the press either removes the mask and speaks honestly about their bias or perhaps actually do their self-proclaimed role and ask hard questions of all the candidates.

    oh…that’s right, Hillary doesn’t have press conferences.

    1. It’s Chapman on a Trump article. Hyperbolic pants shitting is a prerequisite.

  12. For what it’s worth, I’ll remind everyone who dislikes Trump that any attention makes him a stronger candidate.

    It’s no mystery why Trump’s enjoyed so much success. Ours is a nation overrun with people who’ve shirked responsibility for their troubles. Instead of working to make better choices, millions have claimed victim status that entitles them to blame others. Trump knows it, and he’s stepped up to tell people who they should blame and that he’s going to fix all their problems. And there’s no shortage of boogiemen who want to stop him from doing that. Any publicity that attacks Trump, therefore, feeds a narrative of vague powers that be bent on keeping helpless victims down and out.

    In this light, it’s entirely counterproductive to air these breathless accounts of Trump’s flaws. One audience (tired of hearing about it) already agrees; it’s preaching to the choir. Another (increasingly large) audience, however, only receives even the most damning evidence as a vindication of their faith in Trump’s virtue.

  13. As I suspected, most people who comment on Reason are anything but Libertarian.

    1. Half the people who WRITE for Reason are anything but libertarian.

      1. Which brings us to the unpleasant subject of Sheldon Richman.

      2. They are hardly anything.

        Far too consistent to be anything.

  14. Um, “the media is dishonest” is not a falsehood or all that “venomous.” My criticisms would have been much harsher. Yes,Trump University was a slimy endeavor that took advantage of rubes. Duh! And what do you call the “timeshare” industry? I don’t hear calls from libertarians demanding the end to those “businesses.” And the complaints about donations to veterans groups? It’s like a starving hobo complaining you gave him your half eaten sandwich instead of a fresh complete meal.

    1. Well hell, if students with worthless college degrees are going to take it out on the Universities they got them from, there should be a hell of a lot more Universities in court than just Trump University.

  15. Evil? I’m no Trump fan but that is just a fucking retarded assertion.

  16. Sorry, but he was right on the money.

    No one says the media shouldn’t go after politicians, and HARD, but you have to be BLIND to not see that they do it in a massively partisan manner.

  17. Trump doesn’t understand how the game works.

    Republicans are expected to regard personal insults as constructive criticism.

    Democrats are expected to regard any criticism as sexist, racist, or homophobic.

  18. Trump is a total buffoon and an utter douche, but can you imagine a group of reporters treating BHO or hrc like that and getting less childish responses? They would’ve flipped term times harder. Then, again, it never would happen…

  19. The media’s done this to themselves with their extreme partisanship. Watching them stand up for reporters with the “tough questions” is absolutely hilarious — these were the same people who defended Obama against tough questions on the Iran deal.

  20. Donald Trump: crazy or evil? That’s the question that has loomed over his presidential candidacy from the start.

    Only in your fevered brain, Chapman. Any chance you can jus tkeep yoru mouth shut until you cast your ballot for a Democrat in the fall?

    1. No, there will be much pants shitting from Chapman in the next five months.

  21. I can’t stand Trump, but he is doing the Lord’s(See that apostrophe Chapman? You might want to use one in the title.) work on unmasking the Media propagandists.

  22. “I find the press to be extremely dishonest. I find the political press to be unbelievably dishonest.”
    Venom? Epic meltdown?
    As it happens, I agree wholeheartedly with the quote above. It appears to me that the epic meltdown was suffered by Mr. Chapman while writing this article. I’ll be throwing my vote away as usual on Johnson but this shit is really getting ridiculous.

    1. Right! It looks like Chapman is the one who has completely lost it!

  23. Trump being crazy evil and the political press being dishonest are not mutually exclusive concepts and there is plenty of evidence for both. Trump has incredibly thin skin. Look at how Clinton server scandal is being covered or the IRS. Acting as if the press is beyond reproach in the face of their bias is one of things that fuel the Trumpkins.

    For that matter, consider the hissy fit Obama threw at Major Garrett for asking a question he did not like.

  24. “An unstable egomaniac and dishonest huckster who sees enemies everywhere”

    Dammit, I thought this was about Hillary Clinton

    1. No……..Chapman has a lil’ chubby for Ms. Cankles.

  25. “All this became blindingly obvious Tuesday, which by any reasonable standard should have been doomsday for his White House aspirations.”

    I bet Chapman has predicted “doomsday” for Trump’s campaign about 50 times before. It is very amusing to see establishment pundits wetting their pants over this campaign.

    1. Well, I see the villagers are out in force tonight, and are bearing torches to the establishment castle. We reject this smear article for it’s delusions and utter detachment from reality.

      Please “like” our “Libertarian Party Defense Caucus” Facebook page, for an antidote to Chapman’s nonsense.

  26. Trump probably made a mistake by attacking the press rather than using it, but since he won the nomination, presumably, they had turned against him. Clinton, tho, has made a bigger mistake in attacking Trump, which makes about as much sense as invading Iraq.

    1. Trump’s attacks on the press are half the reason people like him. When was the last time we had a candidate who didn’t put up with the crappy and biased treatment people not running with a ‘D’ before their name get?

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  29. Chapman is delusional. Trump couldn’t have planned this better if he leaked the story to the Washington Post and the AP himself, which I bet one of his alisases did. The whole political press came to a stop to hear Trump – in blanket coverage, just after Memorial Day – read a list of 40+ veterans groups he raised millions of dollars for. Stop and think about that image for a second. Now think about how the press has to start asking about the Clinton Global Initiative, and the Clinton Foundation, where their billons have come from and where they go.

    The Washington Post thought they were going to frame a story of Trump being mean-spirited on Memorial Day, but they were played by a master.

    1. Hear, hear, Tyler Durden! Please “like” our “Libertarians for Trump” Facebook page.

      1. Sure, though I can’t see a link.

  30. Is a pot calling a kettle black? What about the “Discovery Institute” which Steve Chapman used to head? The Seattle-based think-tank been hustling donations from fundamentalists for years, to pour “creationist” wine into “intelligent design” bottles.

    Now this would-be scientist has found new worlds to conquer, and would advise us on politics. Yet what does he know? What about Gary Johnson’s mis-management of federal election funding from 2012? Why is the FEC assessing Gary 1/3 million dollars? Here is the FEC letter:

    http://www.fec.gov/audits/2012…..randum.pdf

    Trump has donated a million of his own money, as he promised. He has been busy campaigning, is short of staff, and had to vet the recipients before giving out that kind of money. He responded to the rush request, but then gets damned for responding. Instead of being thanked for his good deeds and for the help he has provided veterans. Which explains why he gets our support.

    We unwashed masses prefer America and it’s allies not be subjugated by sharia law. Is Steve Chapman blind to the danger of militant religion? Or is he just ignorant on science and politics?

  31. I stopped reading after the word “Epic”.

    1. You got the gist of it then: “Donald Trump’s epic.”

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