Even when they’re trashing you, editorialists don’t seem to be willing to push past the easy, semi-palatable gloss of chalking your misdeeds up to a lack of understanding or ignorance. The example I came across most recently (as in, I just finished reading it) is a WP op-ed by Garrett Graff entitled:
The systems meant to prevent doomsday can’t keep up with
How can you keep the president safe when he insists on endangering himself and his advisers?
Graff explains that the Secret Service is charged with protecting the Office of the President and that the long-standing practices, strategies, and contingencies for doing so are predicated on the person who occupies this role being a “rational, sober actor.” In other words, for those charged with protecting the POTUS to be able to do their jobs, they need a POTUS who is mature and sensible because otherwise, all bets are off. If they have to deal with someone who is impulsive, illogical, and self-absorbed (check, check, check, right?) then they have to run themselves ragged trying to head off self-own disasters ALL THE F*ING TIME. You won’t win re-election, but dude, if you did, I think you could have some serious issues with vacancies in the Secret Service ranks since who in their right mind would sign up for another four years of such torment?
As a counter-example to you, Graff recounts how President Bush initially wanted to return to the White House on 9/11 to reassure the American people, but in the interest of his safety (and the preservation of the Office of the President) he was persuaded by the Secret Service people to stay elsewhere until it was determined the threat was past. They also had VP Cheney moving around various undisclosed locations so that he and Bush were never in the same place lest they both be taken out. Graff goes on to show how you and Pence are basically doing everything wrong, which is correct, but he attributes this chiefly to your:
“…..ahistoric and incurious view of the world (that) has led him to misunderstand the very role of a president in a democracy.”
I seriously think he’s being obtuse here. Yes, you are impulsive, illogical, and self-absorbed, but you damn well do understand the role of a president in a democracy and you are knowingly undermining both the presidency and democracy in a malign effort to turn us into an autocracy. This isn’t a matter of a misunderstanding. If it were, someone in your camp would have helped you figure out the true nature of your role a month into your term and you would’ve done a ‘oh – so that’s how I should be approaching the presidency, as an awesome responsibility to the American people and the well-being of future generations – dang, why didn’t somebody just say this from the get go?’ Never in a million years could I see this happening. And don’t try to sell me the complete and utter horseshit that you actually believe what you’re doing is in the best interests of the American people and future generations. You know what you’re doing is destructive and divisive. Your actions are not predicated on misunderstanding, they are by malign design.
The media needs to stop promulgating the false narrative that you are simply a bumbling fool who missed all of his Democracy 101 classes and instead get real about the menace that you are.
May we be safe from systematic underestimation of our evil POTUS.
May we call out the would-be truth tellers who soft-pedal how dangerous you are.*
May we keep a strong bead on reality.
May we accept that many among us can’t accept that you understand exactly what you are doing.
*I posted a comment to Graff urging him and other journalists to stop chalking your behavior up to “misunderstandings” and “ignorance.”