The Saudis are Treating Donald Trump Very Fairly; Praise ‘Great Electoral College Victory’
The first thing they did was-praise his ‘great electoral college victory.’ Great maybe he’ll stay there as the Saudis are so much fairer to him than us.
Looks like the Saudis are presenting Trump a certification that he was the winner of the Electoral College. pic.twitter.com/9gurI3qcxP
— T. R. Ramachandran (@yottapoint) May 20, 2017
This was very smart by the Saudis. You praise Donald Trump he’ll do anything for you.
— John Aravosis (@aravosis) May 20, 2017
Clearly the Saudis studied for Trump’s visit”
“Tips for Leaders Meeting Trump: Keep It Short and Give Him a Win.”
And lo and behold, he’s gotten his win as he’s already claiming he has some deal with the Saudis that will create jobs. Back to the Times:
“After four months of interactions between Mr. Trump and his counterparts, foreign officials and their Washington consultants say certain rules have emerged: Keep it short — no 30-minute monologue for a 30-second attention span. Do not assume he knows the history of the country or its major points of contention. Compliment him on his Electoral College victory. Contrast him favorably with President Barack Obama. Do not get hung up on whatever was said during the campaign. Stay in regular touch. Do not go in with a shopping list but bring some sort of deal he can call a victory.”
Check, check and check. As Tom Nichols shows, this makes Trump pretty darn easy to game:
“Trump’s tweets, from an intelligence standpoint, are a gold mine. Not because they contain classified information or reveal important aspects of U.S. policy, but because they are a direct and continuous stream of information about the president himself. Classified information is important, but an ongoing look inside the president’s head is, in many ways, more valuable than any transitory secrets.”
Perhaps this is why Trump’s staff is staging a ‘Twitter intervention.’
No wonder Trump is held in such high regard. Scott Sumner:
“Here’s what I said last month:
“Trump is like one of those kings/sultans/emperors in the history books who assumed power as a child and had various ministers conduct governance while they spent time in their harem or engaged in falconry.”
“And here’s Ross Douthat:
“There is, as my colleague David Brooks wrote Tuesday, a basic childishness to the man who now occupies the presidency. That is the simplest way of understanding what has come tumbling into light in the last few days: The presidency now has kinglike qualities, and we have a child upon the throne. . . .”
“Read the things that these people, members of his inner circle, his personally selected appointees, say daily through anonymous quotations to the press. (And I assure you they say worse off the record.) They have no respect for him, indeed they seem to palpitate with contempt for him, and to regard their mission as equivalent to being stewards for a syphilitic emperor.”
I like “syphilitic emperor” much better—if only I could write like Douthat.
The syphilitic emperor. But surely this is just Fake News!
Do senior administration officials really call the president "a complete moron," even not for attribution?
— Glenn Kessler (@GlennKesslerWP) May 19, 2017
I have had mutliple off the record convos with people who've worked for him who call him much worse. https://t.co/lgGlnytm8X
— Christopher Hayes (@chrislhayes) May 19, 2017
Indeed, the view of Trump now is something of a laughingstock:
‘People Here Think Trump Is a Laughingstock’
“On the president’s ill-timed world tour.”
“For months, the American president has raised unprecedented questions about the future of the American-led alliance that has persisted since the end of World War II. He has slagged off NATO, evinced skepticism about the European Union, cheered for like-minded right-wing populists, boosted antidemocratic strongmen like Russia’s Vladimir Putin and vowed to rip up free trade deals—and Europe’s political class has been outraged, confused and even terrified.”
“Trump’s tumultuous last two weeks—from firing his FBI director to allegedly sharing highly classified information with Russian officials even as a formidable special counsel was being named to investigate his campaign team’s possible collusion with the Kremlin—has them still confused about his foreign policy. But now they are more appalled than afraid of the man with whom they have no choice but to partner.”
“People are less worried than they were six weeks ago, less afraid,” a senior German government official with extensive experience in the United States told me. “Now they see the clownish nature.” Or, as another German said on the sidelines of a meeting here devoted to taking stock of 70 years of U.S.-German relations, “People here think Trump is a laughingstock.”
As Malcolm Nance argued on Joy Reid this morning, foreign leaders also see that our system of checks and balances have giving him some guard rails now and are reassured over that.
“The dominant reaction to Trump right now is mockery,” Jacob Heilbrunn, the editor of the conservative journal the National Interest, told the meeting at the German Foreign Office here while moderating a panel on Trump’s foreign policy that dealt heavily on the difficulty of divining an actual policy amid the spectacle. Heilbrunn, whose publication hosted Trump’s inaugural foreign policy speech in Washington during last year’s campaign, used the ‘L’ word too. “The Trump administration is becoming an international laughingstock.” Michael Werz, a German expert from the liberal U.S. think tank Center for American Progress, agreed, adding he was struck by “how rapidly the American brand is depreciating over the last 20 weeks.”
Is it possible to get tired of not winning?
“When European diplomats meet these days, they often swap stories about Trump—and how to manage their volatile new ally. “The president of the United States has a 12-second attention span,” NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told a former senior official in April after meeting Trump in the Oval Office. Not only that, this person told me, the president seemed unprepared and ill-informed, turning the conversation to North Korea and apparently unaware that NATO is not a part of the ongoing North Korea saga. (A NATO spokesman later denied this, saying “the Secretary-General never said this and it does not represent his views.”)
Oh, don’t worry about it NATO Secretary-General, we Americans say the same and much worse.
P.S. As we saw in my poll out last week, the long awaited poll results are in, and right now I’m just 11 points down vs. Peter King (GOP-NY-District 2). And the voters don’t even know who I am yet.
There is nothing more important in getting answers to Trump-Russia collusion than a Democratic House in 2019. Please donate to help me in my part of the effort to fight for a Dem House.
Thank you. We must have a Dem House. And so, we will.