Thankful for Me
(Door Hugo Kijne te Hoboken USA)
It’s one of those weeks when you’re grateful that Trump is playing golf because you have already absorbed the maximum amount of sheer nonsense you can take. Visiting the ravaged areas of California the president praised Finland, where according to him removal of brushes keeps the fires away. He did not seem to realize that while California is mostly hot and dry it rains a lot in Finland, a country that is also covered by snow half of the year. Apparently Trump didn’t know either that 60% of the Californian forests are managed by federal agencies, so that he was essentially criticizing his own administration when he was blaming poor forest management for the fires. After touring the scarred leftovers of Paradise the president called it ‘Pleasure,’ adding ‘what a name.’ When he made that mistake a second time and Governor Jerry Brown corrected him Trump, unable to acknowledge a mistake, said ‘Pleasure, or Paradise,’ as if it was the same thing. Asked if what he had seen changed his thoughts about climate change he said ‘no, I have a strong opinion,’ but added ‘I want great climate, and we’ll have that.’
Back in DC the president’s lawyers submitted Trump’s answers to written questions from Robert Mueller. Trump insisted that he had written the answers himself, which is not very smart because it takes away the option of blaming any misstatements on his lawyers. There were no questions about obstruction of justice, now probably the main area of inquiry for the Special Counsel, because Trump had indicated in advance that he would not answer those questions, which makes it likely that he will still be subpoenaed by Mueller unless Mueller has collected enough proof from different sources. In an interview the president insisted that he had not known about his toilet-salesman turned acting Attorney General’s criticism of the Mueller probe when he appointed him, which is about as believable as his denials of sexual harassment because Matthew Whitaker was precisely put in the Department of Justice to spy on the investigation. More legal problems emerged when it turned out that Ivanka had used a private email account for government business, something Trump had wanted to prosecute Hillary Clinton for.
Meanwhile the president’s assessment of guilt in the Khashoggi murder evolved from ‘we’ll never know’ to ‘who cares,’ denying the leaked opinion of the CIA. An official statement said that although the Saudi Crown Prince may or may not have ordered the gruesome act it would not change anything in the relationship between the US and the kingdom because a $450 billion investment and thousands of jobs were at stake. That investment exists only in Trump’s imagination, the real number of Saudi investments in the US is $14.5 billion so far and the rest consists of vague promises, but it was enough to blame ‘the world’ for the murder, because it is ‘a mean place.’
Trump’s attempt to limit asylum requests to official points of entry was put on hold by a Ninth Circuit Judge in San Francisco, which prompted the president to tweet about an ‘Obama-Judge’ and earned him a rare rebuke from Chief Justice John Roberts. It is, again, not very smart for Trump to piss off Roberts, who may very well be the swing vote on the new Supreme Court. To redeem himself Trump declared that the ‘very tough people’ in the military on the border had been ordered to use lethal force if necessary, and threatened to close the border altogether if he wouldn’t get his way.
Under the auspices of the most vulgar president since Nixon, and probably ever, the White House adopted new ‘decorum’ rules for its press corps, in the same week that the president attacked the Navy Seals Admiral who was in charge of the elimination of Osama bin Laden. On the occasion of Thanksgiving Trump declared that he was mostly thankful for himself, which is not only the pinnacle of narcissism but also a way for Trump to consolidate his base by guiding them into the house of horrors of his mind.
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