In a scorching column for the Daily Beast, longtime political observer Margaret Carlson ripped into Donald Trump saying that his desire for self-promotion has reached its nadir as he uses the coronavirus pandemic that has killed over 16,000 Americans as a way to continue marketing himself to the public.
Under a brutal headline stating, “Trump’s Sick Reality Show Is Built on Coronavirus Corpses,” Carlson wrote, “Do you remember those innocent days when people said the presidency would change Donald Trump? It didn’t, except to accelerate his mental and moral decline. You only need to watch Trump’s briefings, as long as two hours some days, to realize that a catastrophe of biblical proportions won’t transform him either. In fact, the pandemic he insists no one could have known about but everyone actually did is making him even less presidential.”
According to the columnist, Trump is using the respect traditionally afforded the presidency to steamroller the press who have no idea how to handle a president who baits and insults them on a daily basis during the COVID-19 task force press conferences.
“As fine as the White House press corps is, it just doesn’t have the tools to deal with this man. Its members have become props in his long-running effort to destroy us. He revealed it to CBS’ Lesley Stahl in 2016: ‘I demean you all so when you write negative stories about me no one will believe you,'” she wrote. “His briefings are a devilishly effective forum for pursuing that goal, much more than the rallies they replaced. Rallies were good for revving up the crowd to boo the press corralled in a pen. How much better it is to tear into them one by one, to hold a show trial of nasty and horrid reporters like NBC’s Peter Alexander, PBS’ Yamiche Alcindor, and ABC’s Jonathan Karl, his latest foil.”
“There is so much at these shows, their ratings rising along with our death count, that shouldn’t be seen: Trump grazing shoulders with aides, not wiping the shared microphone, his outrage at the recommendation he wear a mask, as if he’d been asked to don a skirt. His wistful references to those who urged us to ride out this pandemic like cowboys. In that reminiscence, he’s the cowboy,” she explained before adding that a large part of what Trump is doing is creating moments for Fox News to broadcast out to his most rabid fans.
Those same clips also allow him to push out misleading information to that same group who not taking the coronavirus pandemic as seriously as they should.
“You can hear Trump giving previews of a special three-hour episode of the Trump Show built around the flattening of the curve for which he will take the credit,” Carlson explained. “Promos are already running on Fox. He will ignore that what flattened the curve was what the experts said would flatten the curve. He’ll brazenly re-assert that the cure was worse than the problem, the country didn’t need to be shut down at the cost of his perfect economy, that he, who amazed the medical community with his knowledge, was right. It was no worse than the flu, after all.”
“Trump’s act is getting old,” she added, before concluding, “Although he lies better than most people tell the truth, the show should be canceled now that he’s lying about matters of life and death. The president can’t stop himself, but to show appropriate respect for the office he occupies, we have to.”
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