Donald Trump

Trump's Continuing War on His Own Credibility

Twitter fights aren't a replacement for well-formulated policies.

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Trump
www.visionsofamerica/Newscom

Asked about Melissa McCarthy's portrayal of him on Saturday Night Live, White House press secretary Sean Spicer had some advice for the actress: "Dial it back." May I suggest the president adopt that phrase as his administration motto?

So far, Donald Trump has made it a practice to obliterate every known limit and pump up every grievance. Harvard law professor and former Reagan administration official Charles Fried, marveling at the president's Twitter volleys at federal judges, said, "There are no lines for him. There is no notion of, this is inappropriate, this is indecent, this is unpresidential."

Trump may think: Hillary Clinton acted presidential, and what did it get her? He, by contrast, ran a campaign seemingly engineered to prove how unpresidential he was. But a majority of voters—sorry, a minority of voters—nonetheless elevated him to the White House.

It would not be impossible for Trump to take his campaign themes and turn them into a reasonably workable and defensible agenda for his presidency. It would consist of cracking down on unauthorized immigrants, renegotiating trade deals, rolling back regulation, beefing up the military, reforming the tax code and fixing the Affordable Care Act.

Racking up a few accomplishments from that list and avoiding any foreign policy disasters, combined with a strong economy, would set him up nicely for re-election. Not blowing things up would be enough to assuage doubts.

But Trump likes blowing things up, and he clearly figures that what worked for him on the campaign trail will work for him in the Oval Office. Campaigning, however, is theater. Governing is real life, which requires grappling with arduous practical matters. The difference is roughly akin to cheering for Tom Brady versus blocking for him.

Trump's fondest admirers grant him considerable latitude. A September Washington Post/ABC News poll found that only 48 percent of his supporters actually believed his vow that Mexico would pay for a wall on the southern border. But they liked the aggressive tone of his promise and the purpose it captured. If he were to take visible measures to get rid of some undocumented workers, most of his fans would count that as vindication.

After his surprise election victory, his former campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, said journalists had erred because they "took everything that Donald Trump said so literally." But Trump himself doesn't always seem to know when he's merely exaggerating for effect. His response to the court decisions that went against his travel ban suggests he was flabbergasted to learn he can't unilaterally do everything he wants.

Nor does Trump seem to realize that what works in front of an adoring crowd may fall flat with a larger audience. Talking about banning Muslims during the campaign served him well. But formulating policy requires deliberation and care. The travel ban, implemented in haste, caused chaos and hardship that made the president look like a callous bungler. It also forced the courts to step in.

Vilifying judges merely because they rule against him doesn't help. Jack Goldsmith, a high Justice Department official under George W. Bush, wrote that Trump's intemperate tweets "will make it very, very hard for courts" to grant the president the latitude on these matters that they have in the past. He'll get no benefit of the doubt from judges who feel obliged to show they can't be cowed.

Nor does it accomplish much for him to blast away with abandon at anyone else who challenges him. Grown-up voters are not going to humor a leader who claims that journalists are conspiring to hide terrorist attacks. Falsehoods like that one could eventually push his credibility over a cliff.

When you have the lowest approval rating of any new president on record, you need to do more than pander to your most rabid defenders. Every time Trump embarrasses his more rational allies with his over-the-top antics, he saps their willingness to work with him.

He got away with defending Vladimir Putin last year. But going so far as to equate U.S. policies with the Russian dictator's—"What, you think our country's so innocent?"—infuriated members of his own party. He gave Republicans in Congress new reason to ponder what a fine president Mike Pence would be if Trump were impeached and removed.

It can be strategically shrewd for a leader to occasionally breach boundaries and violate conventional standards. Push too far or too often, though, and you can soon become a laughingstock.

© Copyright 2017 by Creators Syndicate Inc.

NEXT: The Sessions Debacle, the Travel Ban SNAFU, and Trump's Residency Between Your Ears: Matt Welch on Red Eye

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  1. SC;DR

    Oh and fire Shikha.

    1. “””””Oh and fire Shikha”””

      You need to translate that into Latin, it will sound more impressive.

      Example “Delenda est Carthago”

      1. No trabajo por Shikha.

  2. “Push too far or too often, though, and you can soon become a laughingstock.”

    Donald Trump has been a laughingstock since the eighties. But I can only imagine that the people who voted for him only recently learned of Trump’s existence. Then again, he made an ass of himself the entire campaign, and people still went for it. Perhaps these people are simply poor judges of character? Whatever. Nobody who’s been following his long career as a laughingstock thought he would suddenly, at this stage in his life, begin acting presidential.

    1. It’s simple the American people would prefer to be ruled by a laughingstock than by an evil heartless soulless bitch.

      1. ^^^THIS^^^

        1. Once again, proof of the need for a like button.

      2. Except that he isn’t just a laughingstock; he is an evil heartless soulless laughingstock. When you whittle your statement down to just “laughingstock” vs. “bitch”, it comes perilously close to the truth.

      3. Except *he won the primary*. Even if you want to argue that he’s an obvious choice compared to Clinton, there was no such dilemma in the primaries.

        Fool yourself if you want, but the simple fact is that the Republican party choose him as their nominee because they liked him more then their other candidates.

    2. you saw a laughingstock; his supporters saw an orange middle finger toward the system. And your casual dismissal of his supporters as hayseeds and fools is a big reason why he got so much support.

      1. And I suspect a ton of this ass well..

    3. If you gave good judges of character a choice between the two Presidential candidates at gunpoint, they’d scream “PULL THE TRIGGER”.

    4. They all knew him from pro-wrasslin and reality TV.

      1. Battle of the Billionaires is basically a wrestling metaphor for the 2016 Presidential election.

    5. You don’t get it. People want a bully for president, to bully the other team. Why do you think the Dems nominated Clinton? People are very good judges of character.

      1. No, they wanted a maniac who would flip tables, break stuff, and generally wreck things in DC.

        They are getting exactly what wanted and liking it.

  3. Concern trolling 101

    I didnt know twitter was used for policies. Who the hell wants the federal govt to come up with “well formulated policy”. Where has this ever been the case?

    Id rather the federal govt accomplish and do nothing. If they are making policy it is usually bad

    1. Concern trolling 101

      Yup:

      The Department of Education shall terminate on December 31, 2018.

      You have 74 characters left.

      1. Shorten that to “DOE” and you have room for “HHS, DOE, DOC, BATFE, EPA, BLM, DHS, IRS, DEA, FTC, BIA, and DOL” too…..

    2. This^

  4. “Twitter fights aren’t a replacement for well-formulated policies.”

    Obviously Twitter fights are not a replacement for well formulated policies, or a good haircut, or a bj in the oval office. What they are a replacement for is media channels that are controlled by partisans, Democratic cronies, and incompetent people.

    They are not a good replacement: it would be better if the media did their job competently and without bias, but alas they don’t.

    1. Obviously Twitter fights are not a replacement for well formulated policies, or a good haircut, or a bj in the oval office. What they are a replacement for is media channels that are controlled by partisans, Democratic cronies, and incompetent people.

      And this is the most important reason I believe the progs have gone batshit about Trump twittering: he has denied them the ability to let them use the press to control or destroy him. He has refused to play by the rules that team red usually gets f-ed over for following, and that is why the left is in pure pants shitting mode.

      1. Everyone here seems to overestimate how much the press cares about Trump’s use of Twitter. Did the press bitch when celebrities started using Twitter, because people could now interact directly rather than getting their celeb-fix through press-controlled media? Not that I remember. If anything, Trump’s usage of Twitter just gives them more bullshit to fill air time with.

        1. Everyone here seems to overestimate how much the press cares about Trump’s use of Twitter. “

          Is this an attempt at a strawman or are you not good with English?

          What the press, and thus the left (I know, same thing), care about, is that Trump found a way to go around them. The democrats have always counted on the press to push their narrative, at all costs, and this guy they thought they would easily trounce, has basically given them the 140 character finger.

          Trump’s usage of Twitter just gives them more bullshit to fill air time with.”

          Wait what? They didn’t need Trump or twitter for that. It has been pretty much nonstop bullshit for a few decades. The only difference is that they went all retard for Clinton – you never go all retard – and whatever veneer of legitimacy some still thought they had, is now toast.

        2. Everyone here seems to overestimate how much the press cares about Trump’s use of Twitter

          then 2 sentences later…

          If anything, Trump’s usage of Twitter just gives them more bullshit to fill air time with.

          Was it your intention to contradict yourself?

  5. If the liberal derangement keeps up i might actually become a Trump fan.

    Somebody get Chapwoman a tampon for her weeping mangina.

    1. Why can’t you just continue to abhor both?

  6. “There are no lines for him. There is no notion of, this is inappropriate, this is indecent, this is unpresidential.”

    Oh, no. Not a lack of decorum. Mr. President, this is Washington DC, and we have a way of doing things in this town.

    1. There’s a difference between being fastidiously decorous and acting like an adult. It’s the difference between keeping your pinkie up while you drink your tea and not farting at the dinner table. Then again, Trump is something of a gasbag.

      1. Please. You have known, worked with, or even been friends with people worse in this regard than Trump that you wouldn’t hesitate to identify as adult.

  7. I feel the sudden urge to breakdance.

  8. Asked about Melissa McCarthy’s portrayal of him on Saturday Night Live, White House press secretary Sean Spicer had some advice for the actress: “Dial it back.”

    Take a chill pill.

    1. Ooohhh, burnnnn.

  9. ” made the president look like a callous bungler”? I think you mean ” revealed the president to be a callous bungler”.

  10. My main concern is that his twitter-feed mostly looks like a whiny little bitch constantly blubbering about how unfair it is that stupid loser poopyheads keep saying mean things about him that just aren’t true. That’s what I like to see in a strong leader, projecting an image to the world of an eight-year old fat kid who gets wedgies from the bullies on the playground and runs home crying to his mommy so she’ll pat him on the head and reassure him that Mommy loves her big brave little man with a big slice of chocolate cake and a double-scoop of ice cream.

    Fuck, we elected Eric Cartman president!

    1. Since when were libertarians so enamored with strong leaders and concerned about projecting a strong image to the world?

      1. They’re not. H&R comment section is at least half conservatives.

      2. Speaking for myself, I do NOT want a Dear Leader Strongman (or woman) in charge. That type of thing has gotten us to where we are at now with the Imperial Presidency.

        But at the same time, I don’t want my president to be a complete joke and laughingstock either.

        Obama was a joke in his own way, particularly when it came to foreign policy. It was plainly obvious that he had no idea what he was doing and he made the world less safe because of it.

        Trump is a different type of joke.

        1. chemjeff | 2.9.17 @ 11:28AM

          This.

        2. But this is a joke that everyone can get, not like that highbrow Obama stuff.

      3. Some of them just find it amusing (ok, hilarious) that a “strong leader” is projecting the image of a whiny crybaby.

        Of course, they also find it somewhat amusing that a manly man like Donald Trump sure does seem to spend a lot of time obsessing about his appearance – his elaborate hair-do, his fake tan, his line of clothing, what his hands look like – not to mention the references to his flair for design and fashion and interior decorating. NTTAWWT.

      4. No one likes a whiner. There’s a difference between ‘projecting a strong image’ and not being a whiny bitch.

      5. There’s a difference between a strongman and a strong leader. We want someone who is strong enough to restrain himself.

    2. My main concern is that his twitter-feed mostly looks like a whiny little bitch constantly blubbering about how unfair it is that stupid loser poopyheads keep saying mean things about him that just aren’t true.

      To be fair, most Twitter feeds read like this.

  11. So – when will I be able to purchase my Official Reason Crying Towel?

  12. As a Canadian, I laughed at Obama all the time.

    1. I only wish I could muster the indifference to the plight of the Canukistani peoples to laugh openly at Trudeau.

      1. Is it considered an act of war if POTUS gives the Canadian PM a wedgie?

        1. “Nope, we’re cool with it.”

          /Canadian military

        2. Is it considered an act of war if POTUS gives the Canadian PM a wedgie?

          More importantly, what are the implications regarding a possible war with Russia if it’s an atomic wedgie?

  13. He’s a giant dickbag and everybody knows it. Can people please stop rhetorically asking if people know he’s a giant dickbag?

    1. And yes, many people voted for him because he’s a giant dickbag. Just about everyone wants to feel like they’re part of something bigger now and then. Even giant dickbags.

      *Bonus: I just taught my phone a new word.

      1. He is their dickbag. Had the political and media elite not been populated with largest collection of smug dickheads in American history, the public wouldn’t have wanted their own.

        1. Correct, John. Trump’s voters were sick of pols who purse their lips in a phony show of sorrow, tired of that thumbfist gesture, tired of the tired old “Main street, not Wall Street” line, tired of debate answers that begin with 45 seconds of word cruff, tired of the painted-on smiles.

          Trump’s voters saw a lack of polish as an asset. They associate all of that canned bullshit that other politicians repeatedly do with “same old, same old, business as usual” in Washington. They believe that Trump flouting all the typical candidate conventions means he is actually going to make meaningful, positive changes during his term(s).

          I hope they’re right, but I’m skeptical.

          1. Bill Clinton invented the thumbfist. Supposedly it’s a less confrontational, less accusatory way of pointing at the audience to make a point. Personally, I’d like to see the knifehand become a presidential gesture.

  14. so we can add Chapman to the list of scribes offended by a person’s ability to use Twitter as a means of going over the media? Here’s a clue, Stevie: how about you folks not chase each shiny new tweet like the predictable herd you have become. Return to skepticism instead of activism, look at the import of decisions or EOs or appointments instead of the politics or optics, and judge ideas on their merit rather than who came up with them.

    A healthy republic needs a diligent press. The media will never be Trump’s lap dog and that’s good, but it has allowed itself to be made into his bitch.

  15. Oh, no. This might even cause people to lose respect for the office, because up to now they’ve been so deserving of it.

    I mean, if somebody’s going to bend me over, I at least expect them to be Presidential about it. It’s only proper.

  16. Trump may think: Hillary Clinton acted presidential, and what did it get her?

    Constantly lying and trying to act human, and failing, are now acting presidential?

      1. Clinton’s attempt to act like an actual human being reminded me a lot of Harper’s attempts to do the same. It’s like their androids who don’t understand how these meatbags operate but they’re trying their damnest to create the illusion.

        At least Harper was programmed to play the piano.

        1. At least Harper’s occasional attempts were funny. I laughed when the news showed him shaking hands with his kids after bringing them to school.]

          Hillary just creeps me the hell out.

          1. Duh. That’s because her spirit would be capable of haunting any house.

  17. And his Stupid Party colleagues help how? They shut down Fauxcahontas and it becomes a big stink instead of letting her bloviate to, what, a dozen or so people. No one would have noticed or cared if Warren said mean things about Sessions. Nooooo, instead of giving them enough rope to hang themselves, the GOP gives the progs yet another martyrdom to raise money and call those who can’t stand to hear Corretta King, racists.

    1. The current spin is that they’re deliberately trying to raise Warren’s profile because she’s unpatlatable to most voters and would continue to tarnish the Dems.

      I don’t know if A: that’s true or B: Mitch is that bright.

      1. Bright or not, he has a long history in politics and can’t help but see the long game. Warren suffers all of Clinton’s deficiencies, having to defend and double down on the rapidly deflating Obama legacy, having to differentiate herself from Sanders despite being for many of the same things, and (sorry not sorry) sounding like a tired old lady, which is to say like gnarled oak branches scratching glass late in the evening.

        1. Listen to that voice. Would anyone vote for that? Can you imagine that, the voice of our next president? I mean, she’s a woman, and I’m not s’posed to say bad things, but really, folks, come on. Are we serious?

        2. Add to that, the fact that Lizzie Warren is very, very, very hard left. And has a had a long career in a very cushy academic sinecure. Over $300 for a part-time government job might not be disqualifying in Massachusetts, but I’m not so sure it will play well in the rest of the country.

          1. I find it very hard to believe that an aging, far-left woman from Massachusetts who faked her ethnicity to further her career and made shitloads of money doing the very things she excoriates in others could possibly be a viable candidate for president.

            Then again, I never thought Trump was anything more than a sideshow, so what do I know.

          2. She’s also extremely arrogant and dismissive of anyone who doesn’t share her hard-left views. Is it any wonder progs love her so dearly?

          3. Add to that, the fact that Lizzie Warren is very, very, very hard left.

            Now she is. Prior to 1995 she was Republican. She said at the time that she abandoned the Republican Party because she felt they were moving away from market-based economics and she liked the Democrats’ move toward centrism.

            She’s got about the right amount of attention right now. More and she’ll have some ‘splaining to do to her hard left “base.”

          4. And is also a massive hypocrite as regards her hard left affectation.

  18. He’ll get no benefit of the doubt from judges who feel obliged to show they can’t be cowed.

    Well in all honesty, that’s probably a good thing.

  19. Trump is a post-credibility president. Incredible, you might say.

  20. Funny, a few of us have been pointing out that Reason has been undermining its own credibility for a couple of weeks now.

    The crux of this article seems to be that Donald Trump is bad for not behaving in a sufficiently “presidential” manner. So, I’ve got a question. Would it somehow be better if presented a bland, vanilla, scripted demeanor and passed gun control, hate speech laws, a no-fly zone in Syria, and additional support for the regulatory state? Because for a good long time now, that’s what we’ve been being told is “presidential”. Personally, I’ll take the barking buffoon who even occasionally happens on a freedom-enhancing policy.

    As to Twitter, why shouldn’t he use it? The press, even Reason, has made abundantly clear that they view their mission as being one to oppose Mr. Trump on any issue, no matter what his take on it. Twitter provides an alternative medium for him to communicate his message. If he can use it to his advantage, why would it make any sense for him to entrust his political fortunes to the tender mercies of Shika Dalmia and Peter Suderman.

    1. Chapman, like most reporters, is pissed off because twitter provides the user with an end around the press. It really is that simple. Worse, they hang on every tweet like it’s some modern-day burning bush instead of ignoring the nonsense and actually, you know, reporting on things.

      1. Chapman, like most reporters, is pissed off because twitter provides the user with an end around the press.

        I cannot speak for Chapman of course, but Trump’s tweeting irritates me not because it is an end-run around the press, but because it reveals what a petty whiny man that he is.

        1. we just got finished with 8 years of whiny pettiness and now you find it off-putting? Yes, Trump can act childish but no one forces the press to chase after every tweet. Sadly, I think journalism has degenerated into little more than following twitter feeds and reworking govt-issued press releases. No one even picks up a damn phone anymore to ask someone a question.

          1. What makes you think I approved of what Obama did either? Whenever he got into his usual false dichotomy rhetoric, that pissed me off to no end. “Some say that we should follow the Republicans’ lead and poison the water and kill the orphans. My idea, however, is much more optimistic.” Bah.

            But yes you have a point about the lack of real investigative reporting. Ironically the place where I have found a lot of investigative stories is on NPR.

            1. Whenever he got into his usual false dichotomy rhetoric, that pissed me off to no end.

              This. ‘Some say we should worship Satan, and sacrifice small children and puppies to him after raping their corpses. I disagree.’

        2. Do you really think that pettiness and whininess aren’t hallmarks of just about anyone who wants to be in charge of other people? I’d rather they take it out on a Twitter hissy fit than keep a nice, pleasant, calm demeanor and use the power of the government to fuck over the lives of people who they don’t like.

          1. Do you really think that pettiness and whininess aren’t hallmarks of just about anyone who wants to be in charge of other people?

            Well, I think of a guy like Mitt Romney, and for all of his faults, nevertheless I cannot see him going to Twitter to complain about some judge’s order that he doesn’t like. I think that is a guy who is able to lead by commanding respect in a positive way.

            1. I cannot see him going to Twitter to complain about some judge’s order that he doesn’t like.

              I can’t see him doing that either. I could, however, see him having a chat with one of his allies to see if there weren’t some dirt that could be dug up on the the judge. Or run a series of articles about the judge’s judicial temperament and tendency to legislate from the bench.

              I’d rather he call the judge a poopyhead on Twitter.

              1. And this, I think, is what drives the establishment to distraction about Trump

                It’s not that he does things that are so beyond the pale, it’s that he does the stuff that’s usually done behind closed doors (because everyone involved realizes the ethical implications and wants to hide them), and just does them right out in front of God and everyone in the crassest possible way.

                The main fiction being acted out right now is that Trump is fundamentally different, not that he’s doing the same old abuses of power in a much more naked and unapologetic way.

    2. The crux of this article seems to be that Donald Trump is bad for not behaving in a sufficiently “presidential” manner.

      Do you seriously disagree with this? Wouldn’t it be better if Trump got into fewer petty Twitter fights and stopped personally insulting people?

      1. “Better” how? Because it doesn’t look good? Who gives a shit?

        1. No, better because it would indicate at least some amount of self-control and rational thinking. Things that, you know, it would kinda be good for a president to have.

          1. You mean it would be better because he would then not have a way to go around the people that have sworn to destroy him and exaggerate or outright lie about anything he says or does? The guy is a buffoon, but the people pretending that is their issue with him is laughable.

      2. You may not like it, but Trump actually is representing an American ideal.

        1. Trump actually is representing an American ideal.

          obeisance to that contrived ideal has caused voters to demand that the executive be granted more and more power and latitude.

          you’d think people would be THRILLED someone’s finally popped the bubble.

          I said last summer, one of the few possible upsides of a Trump presidency would be that people would forever stop thinking of the presidency as something requiring special deference by the citizenry, and something which turned what are normally “failed lawyers” (politicians) into dignified quasi-monarchs.

          yet instead you have libertarians moaning that his tweets aren’t “presidential”. its so fucking retarded.

          1. I don’t know that I’ve read any actual libertarians complaining about it…

      3. One thing I find vastly more annoying than Donald Trump’s Twitter fights is all the pants-shitting over Donald Trump’s Twitter fights. And the pants-shitting over Donald Trump’s Twitter fights is the only reason I know about them in the first place.

        Donald Trump acts like an ass. Who in God’s creation hasn’t known that for years? I’m not so in love with the government that I particularly care one way or the other whether the guy in charge of all the guys with guns ordering people around is someone I’d care to have over to my home for a dinner party.

        1. I’m not particularly in love with the government either. But I am at least enough of a patriot that I don’t want to be embarrassed by the actions of the guy in charge. I don’t want to be embarrassed by his vapidity (Obama), or by her corruption (Clinton), and neither by his petty whining (Trump).

          1. That’s funny. I’m enough of a patriot that I don’t feel the need to be embarrassed by the personality of some person in office.

            1. After Obama’s apology tours and constant self-aggrandizement, I’m not sure how much worse Trump reflects on our country. That’s not an endorsement of his Twitter habits, but it’s not like he can drag us much lower than Obama’s European-style mawkishness.

            2. It’s not about being embarrassed by him. It’s about him demonstrating that he has self-control and critical thinking facilities.

          2. If you’re embarrassed by the actions of a politician you’ve already absorbed too much TOP MAN thinking.

            1. ^better than my version

          3. I am at least enough of a patriot that I don’t want to be embarrassed by the actions of the guy in charge

            that doesn’t even make sense

            “patriotism” has nothing to do with demanding that temporary-civilian-office-holders pretend to be some highly-respected, dignified, priestly caste. that’s authority-worship.

      4. Meh. Depends. You can make a strategic argument that having a whiny boor as President will delegitimize the whole Imperial Presidency idea. I mean, I don’t actually believe that, but you can at least make the argument.

  21. If Trump were Presidential like Chapman’s beloved Obama, judges would respect him. I mean Obama never lost any cases before the Supreme Court right?

    1. Obama’s the same guy talking about Pubs going to the back of the bus, who told them to win some elections if they didn’t like things, and so forth. But that crease in his slacks was what mattered.

    2. If you weren’t such a fucking partisan zombie you’d be as appalled by Trump’s vulgarity as you were by Obama’s shocking unwillingness to be white.

      1. by Obama’s shocking unwillingness to be white.

        Well, he did meet him halfway on that point.

        1. Obama’s shocking unwillingness to be white

          Not sure what that even means. His occasional attempts to “black it up” were pretty embarrassing.

          1. Tony is just calling John a racist, it doesn’t have to make sense.

          2. If he had a son, his son would look like Trayvon Martin.

            But Obama’s son would have gone to absurdly expensive private schools and graduated into a prestigious college, his sinecure guaranteed for life, rather than assaulting an armed neighborhood watch volunteer.

      2. Obama was and still is half white, which had as little to do with opposition to him as his being half black. But please, keep ignoring why the Dems have lost so many seats the past 8 years. Calling people racist has been such a great tool.

      3. Obama’s shocking unwillingness to be white.

        I have no idea what this means. Can someone translate this from Derp to English?

        1. U R RACIST!

          1. Thanks. Tony doesn’t come around here much anymore so I am not as fluent in understanding Derp as I used to be.

  22. There was a show a week or so ago that talked about Trump and Twitter during the election. Trump was gloating about spending half as much money as Clinton on advertising. Clinton would launch a new ad on TV, then Trump would tweet 140 characters and turn the media’s attention back to him.

    Trump uses twitter as a weapon.

    Trump does this on purpose.

    The media falls for the same shit every time.

    In the words of the late, great Marion Barry, “Get over it”.

    1. Trump uses twitter as a weapon.

      Sure, it is his own propaganda channel. That’s fine, he’s allowed to dish out propaganda as much as the next leader. But let’s call it for what it is.

      1. I call it getting around the propaganda machine you would prefer he be forced to go through. As others have already pointed out. Who cares what he says on twitter? We only know about that because the idiot left can’t seem to stop crying wolf.

  23. “There are no lines for him. There is no notion of, this is inappropriate, this is indecent, this is unpresidential.”

    It’s not like he talked about his dick size on a nationally televised debate st… oh yeah.

  24. “So far, Donald Trump has made it a practice to obliterate every known limit and pump up every grievance.”

    No, he hasn’t. Hyperbolic much?

    “Trump may think: Hillary Clinton….”

    You don’t know what he thinks, except for what he says, and he has said none of this.

    “But Trump likes blowing things up,…”

    “The travel ban, implemented in haste, caused chaos and hardship that made the president look like a callous bungler. It also forced the courts to step in.”

    The courts were itching to step in.

    “Vilifying judges merely because they rule against him doesn’t help.”

    This is not why he “villified” judges. And since when is it bad form for one of the branches to criticize the other? Obama did this at a State of the Union addres, and you weren’t bitching about it then, Steve…so what gives?

    1. “Why is everyone getting into lifeboats? Nay, handcuff yourself to the Titanic, that’s the ticket!”

      1. Please explain to my how anything Chapman just said about Trump amounts to being handcuffed to a sinking boat.

    2. forget it Wizard, it’s Chapman town.

  25. Governing is real life, which requires grappling with arduous practical matters.

    [citation needed]

  26. On the one hand Trump denigrating the office of the president is one of the best things about his administration.

    But on the other all he does is whine, whine, whine on Twitter which is just pathetic. He’s like if Fredo Corleone became president:

    “It ain’t the way I wanted it! I can handle things! I’m smart! Not like everybody says… like dumb… I’m smart and I want respect!”

    1. Yeah, he is just like Fredo. A total loser and a whiner. Keep telling yourself that. Whatever makes you makes you feel better.

      1. It’s true – Donald Trump never complains.

      2. You know how you frequently accuse Reason writers and other commenters here of desperately seeking approval from the prog elite?

        That basically describes Trump and his relationship with the media. He absolutely cannot stand the fact that they don’t like him or take him seriously, hence the frequent lashing out.

        A real man who didn’t give a shit would just ignore them while only occasionally taking a shot at them.

        1. A real man who didn’t give a shit would just ignore them while

          And let the media/left get all the attention? I think you’re misreading his intent here.

        2. He CAN stand the fact that they hate him. In fact, it fuels him.

          If you want to understand how Trump is using the media, go back and watch when Hulk Hogan started the nWo and how he manipulated the crowds into hating him to fuel his popularity. Trump is doing the same thing with the media today.

          My only question is, will McCain and Graham form today’s version of the nWo Wolfpack or will he leave that to Rand and Amash?

        3. That basically describes Trump and his relationship with the media. He absolutely cannot stand the fact that they don’t like him or take him seriously, hence the frequent lashing out.

          I don’t think that is what he is doing. I think he is baiting and them leading them by the nose to take positions and frame issues the way he wants them to be framed.

    2. I don’t know, I’m getting cynical to the idea of Trump denigrating the office, rather than himself. The conclusion people are drawing is not “gee, maybe we should invest all this power in one guy”, it’s “we shouldn’t invest all this power in a guy like Trump.” They’re not learning the lesson.

    3. A better case could be made for saying the Twitter feed is a calculated strategy – Trump tosses out something out of the norm, the media pack dutifully spends the next two days chasing its collective tail and ruminating over the tweet, and he and his team do whatever they do with no one watching.

      1. Yes, no one paid attention to that midnight executive order.

        If anything his Twitter nonsense enhances the immature buffoonery of his administration.

        1. there has been a bunch of executive orders. You’re making my point. A curious media has plenty of real news to keep it busy, without worrying about Trump’s pissing match with Nordstrom or some Hollywood personality.

    4. He doesn’t just whine on Twitter, that’s his third job. His first job is running the government and his second job is running Trump, Inc. Which makes some people marvel at his stamina and ability to work 20-hour days, and makes others of us wonder what kind of drugs this guy’s hopped up on and whether or not there’s a psychotic break in his near future.

  27. I knew this was a Chapman article from the title.

    1. I’ve heard that soon he’s going to just replace his titles with emoticons of a diaper and a turd. So nobody will complain they are misleading.

  28. Even the best big league winner can’t save it: Twitter advertising revenue falls after Trump buzz fails to drive growth

    Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) reported on Thursday it had more active users than a year earlier but lower advertising revenue, disappointing investors with its failure so far to translate fans such as U.S. President Donald Trump into more dollars.

    “The shocking part is that the Trump effect was zero. Their growth actually slowed during the quarter,” he said.

    Bad!

    1. It would be hilarious if the only reason Twitter survives the decade is that Trump bails them out so he can keep tweeting. Annoying, but hilarious.

    2. Even the best big league winner can’t save it: Twitter advertising revenue falls after Trump buzz fails to drive growth

      Twitter: “We don’t understand it. It’s almost as if there’s some method by which users could block our ads.”

      1. Throw an AdBlock-blocker up – that’ll solve it.

        1. *shakes fist at forbes.com*

  29. It’s comical, absolutely comical. Every election season we see the reason.tv piece about how nasty politicians were to each other going back to the early days of our nation. We read stories of how things are no worse now than they’ve ever been.

    Then we see a story completely contradicting those facts in which an author says what trump is doing is beyond the pale. It’s ridiculous, especially in light of the fact that Obama was a hectoring jerk at least half the times he opened his mouth.

    It wasn’t too long ago that newspapers were all but owned by political machines and they routinely spewed venom at those in the other party at the bidding of their political masters. What we are seeing now pales in comparison to that, yet it’s being reported on osnifnit were the end of the republic.

    Note to most Reason staff: step away from the MacBook, take a deep breath, read a few stories historically important to the subject for a better perspective, then slide back into your chair and peck away. It’ll save you the embarrassment of constantly being proven wrong or proven to be a partisan.

  30. So someone at Reason Magazine, the people who proclaim End Government and imagine themselves painting themselves blue, swinging their Claymores left and right against government at all levels while screaming FREEDOM is upset that Trump says things that government officials don’t like or which might bring discredit to the position of President

    1. Look, its very important that the institutions which hold citizens in complete contempt be treated with proper respect.

      1. We’re better than you, and we know it.

    2. Chapman’s not libertarian, or a Reason employee. They post his articles for some godforsaken reason.

    3. It’s also the same magazine who had several writers say they were voting for Hillary Clinton because she was a better “system” politician, for lack of a better word.

      If I recall correctly, they said she was bad “within normal parameters” as opposed to a total outsider that would likely dismantle huge swaths of the regulatory apparatus and pare the power the DoEd and other lousy bureaucracies have.

        1. Read the piece where that’s a direct quote from PJ O’Rourke from Nov 8, 2016. Also read the piece from October 9th of last year when the staff and friends say who they’re voting for.

          1. From the former:
            “O’Rourke said on NPR’s Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me he thinks Clinton is “wrong about absolutely everything, but she’s wrong within normal parameters.” “

            1. One contributor said she was voting for Hillary Clinton, and PJ is not affiliated with Reason.

  31. “Trump’s not helping his own credibility”

    Neither is Reason….

  32. Flake, McCain: break up the ninth circuit.

    For years conservatives have mocked the 9th Circuit as the “nutty 9th,” partly because of its unusually high rate of U.S. Supreme Court reversals, some of them unanimous.

    “If you can’t get anyone on the Supreme Court to agree with you,” Fitzpatrick opined, “it’s not a good sign.”

    Don’t sugarcoat it, Fitz.

    IANAL and I don’t know much about the federal circuits, but anything that diminishes California’s influence on the country sounds like a good plan to me. This is exactly why I laugh when people point Clinton’s popular vote margin, ie out how many more people in California voted against Trump: well, sure, but they’re commie lunatics out there.

    1. Speaking of McCain, here’s Cato’s take on him.

  33. I haven’t heard anything about it lately, how’s Trump coming along on his promise that if he were President, Crooked Hillary would be behind bars?

    1. Didn’t he almost immediately bury that promise? Which is just as well, no need to martyr Clinton.

    2. He was going to put her in Gitmo, but Obama closed it. 🙂

  34. Push too far or too often, though, and you can soon become a laughingstock.

    If anyone knows what it’s like to be a laughing stock, it’s Steve Chapman.

    1. He’s just concerned about Trump’s credibility. Trying to help him out cause they’re buds.

  35. The travel ban […] made the president look like a callous bungler.

    No, being a callous bungler made him look like a callous bungler.

  36. If the worst thing the president does is make a fool of himself on Twitter, we would all be far better off.

  37. Can’t we at least come up with some fake Trump tweets? 1, 2, 3, go…..

  38. If i was potus, there would be no SOTU. Very few interactions with the press. I have actual shit to do. No parties. No dinners. Gtfo of my white house, im waiting for congress to send me bills.
    Or, I’d have killer parties and invite everyone. Theres 15 kegs on tap by the fence on the lawn, come get a pint. Bring your own red cup.
    Radio killed the office. Tv made it worse. 24/7 only expanded on all the shit parts.

  39. he is not the first president to attack those he disagrees with and frankly thats why he was elected because we are tire of people like president bush who never defended himself.

  40. @realDonaldTrump At least Robbie has his hair to fall back on. It’s almost as sexy as Ivanka’s. Chapman has nothing. SAD!

  41. Oh believe me, he is already a laughing stock. Hitler was a laughing stock too, for about the first year.

    We have to find a way to keep this man from starting a war. He has plenty of opportunities to start one. As his stock plummets, he may have plenty of need to start one.

  42. The out of his depth and over matched manically insecure Trump is the shows master conman, gifted flimflam artist, and bumbling 3 card Monte dealer in the red plaid suit, purple tie, orange wig, and giant clown shoes at the carnival. It’s no wonder a majority of the nation now views him as the worst and most despised new President in U S history.

  43. How was his “You think we’re so innocent?” comment wrong? I mean really if you’re going to condemn Trump condemn him when he gets it WRONG. It’s not like that isn’t often enough.

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