After the bombshell that NBC News had fired veteran anchor Matt Lauer for inappropriate sexual behavior, President Trump did what he does best: availed himself of twitter, found the pettiest possible angle, composed a tweet, and sent it. Trump suggested that NBC executives should be fired for putting out “Fake News,” and suggested that his followers “Check out Andy Lack’s past!”
Wow, Matt Lauer was just fired from NBC for “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.” But when will the top executives at NBC & Comcast be fired for putting out so much Fake News. Check out Andy Lack’s past!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 29, 2017
If you haven’t already done so, I’d advise against checking Andrew Lack’s past as it’s almost entirely comprised of being a news executive. It’s not nearly as topically checkered as Donald Trump’s, with over a dozen women coming forward with allegations of varying degrees of sexual misconduct. Also, unlike Trump, Mr. Lack has never been accused of marital rape. Another juicy tidbit you won’t find while perusing Lack’s “past” is an Access Hollywood audio clip in which he brags about sexually assaulting women.
Meanwhile, this president has now endorsed Roy Moore based on the fact the Roy Moore denies the avalanche of sexual misconduct and assault allegations. If you recall, Trump vociferously supported Moore’s opponent Luther Strange when the two were vying for the GOP spot, so one cannot argue that his love for Roy Moore, whom he called “Ray” on an Alabama radio show in which he was stumping for Strange, is just so deep that it is coloring his better judgment.
So why was Trump dumb enough to call attention to the allegations of sexual misconduct at his own doorstep by firing an arbitrary shot at an NBC News executive? There isn’t a sound reason, folks. But Trump’s ties to NBC are quite deep. Not only because of The Apprentice, but also because Access Hollywood is an NBC property. Could that be what Trump is so salty about?
There’s an organized campaign to discredit the mainstream press in this country, led by the president. It takes many forms. https://t.co/gXPOu6fQfq
— Jay Rosen (@jayrosen_nyu) November 28, 2017
Jay Rosen is a press critic who believes this is just part of a broader scheme to weaken the Fourth Estate. We know that the the Trump-era is completely post-factual. President Trump and assorted mouthpieces lie early and often. The real singular skill that delineates Trump and company from the rest of us is that when caught in a lie, none will concede. Even in the case of direct quotes, it will be the reader’s fault for having misunderstood, the interviewer’s fault for not providing context, etc.
But it isn’t working. This whole strategy is not working. Trump’s job approval rating is currently at 34 percent and perhaps more importantly his disapproval rating is at 60 percent. And this is not exceptional, Trump hasn’t even hit 40 percent approval since July. This is unprecedented for a first-year of first term American president. So why doesn’t his entire administration change tone?
It has been argued that Donald Trump is a post-factual man. There have been accounts of Trump frequently calling upon staffers and friends most likely to praise his presidency. Tony Schwartz, the ghostwriter of Trump’s “autobiography” has long argued that the president is literally delusional.
Remember when Kellyanne Conway offered mind-boggling defense of Donald Trump’s untruths by saying “He doesn’t think he’s lying…”? Really ruminate on that for a minute. Our president says things that are demonstrably false but he doesn’t think he’s lying.