Monday, January 16, 2017

Remember, Media: Trump's Popularity Is the Lowest in Decades. He Can -- and Will -- Be Beaten Down Further.

Buck up, journalists. You've got your work cut out for you, and you should be licking your chops!

He doesn't know it yet, but he can -- and will -- be taken down.

First, a couple of polls:
This sets the table for why the press should be sanguine about the future under a Trump presidency:
Trump wants to bully the press and profit off the presidency. He's told us this clearly in his own words. We need to accept the reality of both. The press should cover him on that basis, as a coward and a crook. The big corporate media organizations may not be able to use those words, I understand, but they should employ that prism. The truth is that his threats against the press to date are ones it is best to laugh at. If Trump should take some un- or extra-constitutional actions, we will deal with that when it happens. I doubt he will or can. But I won't obsess about it in advance. Journalists should be unbowed and aggressive and with a sense of humor until something happens to prevent them from doing so. Trump is a punk and a bully. People who don't surrender up their dignity to him unhinge him.
Trump's Twitter war will begin to bore people -- I've said the best response is "meh..." -- and become increasingly ineffective. Savvy journalists will realize that the biggest scoops of the Trump era will be those that really sock him in the eye, and we can count on Trump himself to produce the material for those scoops, if they don't exist already.

Alec Baldwin has an early lead on insulting and abusing -- and cutting down to size -- Donald Trump, but others will blossom, too. Have at him!

And on a serious note, Paul Waldman points out how Trump continues to be his own worst enemy, as well as enemy to the GOP that was forced, in a way, to adopt him:
We should begin with the assumption that nothing Trump says can be taken at face value; the “plan” that he claims is being devised could be no more real than the secret plan to defeat the Islamic State he used to claim that he had formulated. But that’s not the point. What matters is this: Donald Trump just emphatically promised universal health coverage. That’s an absolutely gigantic promise, and it’s one that Republicans have no intention of keeping.
But now they’re stuck with it. Democrats will be saying, “President Trump promised that everyone would be covered!” every day for as long as this debate goes on. Every time a congressional Republican is interviewed on this topic, they’ll be asked, “President Trump said that everyone would be covered. Does your plan do that?,” and they’ll have to bob and weave as they try to avoid admitting the truth.
Randomly saying what pops into his head -- trusting his "gut" -- will get increasingly harder for Trump to cope with, as the above example will likely prove. Saying your plan will be "great" and "cheaper" and "cover everybody" might feel good, but laying down markers caught on video tailormade for Democrats to point out ad nauseum is not a plan, it's a trap, one you've laid for yourself. Good luck with that, Donald.

Don't get me wrong. Trump is smart, and much of what he says and does is "planned," but much is also by a man who is narcissistic beyond reason and thus prone to mistakes. This can, and very well might, set him up to be brought low.

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