Favorite

Trump's first days 

Never mind that President-elect Trump and his keenest supporters have gone from boasting to whining in two short weeks. "Mommy, they're making fun of me on TV. It's not fair!" Nor that the world's rudest man purports to give etiquette lessons to the cast of a Broadway play. Nor even that Trump appears on pace to set a new American record for the most campaign promises broken in the shortest time.

(Trump never settles lawsuits. Except when he does, paying $25 million in chump change to reimburse gullible students defrauded by "Trump University." Given that he's also the defendant in something like 75 additional lawsuits accusing him of everything from stiffing contractors to deceptive advertising, things could get expensive.)

Alas, Trump seems to confuse the presidency with being the emcee on a reality TV program. Or with being Emperor of Lilliput. It's hard to say. It's not merely the daily spectacle of veteran Republican hacks and flub-a-dubs like Chris Christie and Rick Perry being escorted into Trump's garishly appointed penthouse to perch upon his gilded chairs. The man clearly has no accurate idea of the powers of the presidency: What he can do and what he can't as the elected leader of a constitutional democracy.

Consider the abandonment of his vow to prosecute "Crooked Hillary" Clinton for her imagined crimes. At campaign rallies, Trump led enthusiastic supporters chanting. "Lock her up!" During their second televised debate, he promised Clinton to her face that, "If I win I am going to instruct my attorney general to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation, because there's never been so many lies, so much deception."

Somewhat haughtily, Clinton missed an opportunity to inform Trump that the president of the United States has no such power. There are elaborate mechanisms in the law to prevent the president from meddling in criminal cases. And a good thing, too. Do you really want to live in a country whose president can order his political opponents jailed? No, you don't.

Probably Clinton assumed that anybody who would even consider voting for her already knew that. Indeed, thanks largely to the epic failure of Kenneth Starr's efforts to prosecute both Clintons during the make-believe Whitewater scandal, the Independent Counsel Law was allowed to expire in 1999, and good riddance.

Might Republicans be tempted to bring it back, in the way they bring back massive budget deficits whenever they're in power? Not to harass an already defeated Democrat, no.

For that matter, no president can order the Department of Justice to drop an investigation, either. Given the harm FBI Director James Comey's unethical meddling in the election campaign did to his own reputation, it's easy to imagine him relishing an opportunity to tell Trump to stick it where the sun don't shine.

Appearing on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," Kellyanne Conway made it sound as if the great man was being magnanimous. "I think Hillary Clinton still has to face the fact that a majority of Americans don't find her honest or trustworthy," Conway allowed, "but if Donald Trump can help her heal, then perhaps that's a good thing."

Actually, almost 2 million more Americans voted for Clinton than for Trump, although I doubt she finds the thought comforting.

People aren't exactly enthralled with Trump's honesty. In the last Fox News poll before the election, 60 percent of voters said Trump was neither honest nor trustworthy enough to be president. Judging by his performance to date, it's hard to see those numbers improving.

Meanwhile, Trump invited news media bigshots in for a leaping and creeping session at Trump Tower. According to the New York Post, the president-elect mercilessly bullied the assembled TV executives and talking heads. "It was like a [bleeping] firing squad," one source claimed.

"Trump kept saying, 'We're in a room of liars, the deceitful, dishonest media who got it all wrong ...' He called out [CNN president] Jeff Zucker by name and said everyone at CNN was a liar, and CNN was [a] network of liars," the Post reported.

Talk about ingratitude! The cable news networks decision to treat Trump's comings and goings as the No. 1 news story of 2016 is precisely what saddled the country with this big blowhard.

Conway, of course, described the proceedings as "very cordial, candid and honest."

The amazing thing is that nobody showed enough backbone to stand up and walk out.

Favorite

Speaking of Donald Trump

Comments (11)

Showing 1-11 of 11

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-11 of 11

Add a comment

More by Gene Lyons

  • Reality TV prez

    There is almost nothing real about "reality TV." All but the dullest viewers understand that the dramatic twists and turns on shows like "The Bachelor" or "Celebrity Apprentice" are scripted in advance. More or less like professional wrestling, Donald Trump's previous claim to fame.
    • Dec 8, 2016
  • Forget identity politics

    Amid the climate of disbelief and fear among Democrats following Donald Trump's election, a fascinating debate has broken out about what's called "identity politics" on the left, "political correctness" by the right.
    • Dec 1, 2016
  • Worth it

    My most recent one-to-one conversation with Hillary Clinton took place in October 1991, and I've been laughing at myself ever since.
    • Nov 17, 2016
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Killer's failure

    Has any murdering terrorist ever failed more dramatically than Dylann Storm Roof? Like any punk with a gun, he managed to slaughter nine blameless African-American Christians at an historic church in Charleston, S.C. Intending to start a race war, he succeeded only in shocking the moral conscience of the state and nation.
    • Jun 25, 2015
  • Obama takes long view

    Right now, it's beginning to look as if President Obama will end up deserving the Nobel Peace Prize he was so prematurely awarded in 2009.
    • Jul 23, 2015
  • Trump and political correctness

    So I see where candidate Donald Trump and former Gov. Sarah Palin are complaining about "political correctness," the supposedly liberal sin of being too polite to tell the unvarnished truth. Me too. I've always laughed at the follies of self-styled "radical" left-wing professors.
    • Sep 3, 2015

Most Shared

  • World leaders set to meet in Little Rock on resource access and sustainable development

    Next week a series of meetings on the use of technology to tackle global problems will be held in Little Rock by Club de Madrid — a coalition of more than 100 former democratic former presidents and prime ministers from around the world — and the P80 Group, a coalition of large public pension and sovereign wealth funds founded by Prince Charles to combat climate change. The conference will discuss deploying existing technologies to increase access to food, water, energy, clean environment, and medical care.
  • Tomb to table: a Christmas feast offered by the residents of Mount Holly and other folk

    Plus, recipes from the Times staff.
  • Rapert compares Bill Clinton to Orval Faubus

    Sen. Jason Rapert (R-Conway)  was on "Capitol View" on KARK, Channel 4, this morning, and among other things that will likely inspire you to yell at your computer screen, he said he expects someone in the legislature to file a bill to do ... something about changing the name of the Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport.
  • Fake news

    So fed up was young Edgar Welch of Salisbury, N.C., that Hillary Clinton was getting away with running a child-sex ring that he grabbed a couple of guns last Sunday, drove 360 miles to the Comet Ping Pong pizzeria in Washington, D.C., where Clinton was supposed to be holding the kids as sex slaves, and fired his AR-15 into the floor to clear the joint of pizza cravers and conduct his own investigation of the pedophilia syndicate of the former first lady, U.S. senator and secretary of state.
  • Reality TV prez

    There is almost nothing real about "reality TV." All but the dullest viewers understand that the dramatic twists and turns on shows like "The Bachelor" or "Celebrity Apprentice" are scripted in advance. More or less like professional wrestling, Donald Trump's previous claim to fame.

Latest in Gene Lyons

  • Reality TV prez

    There is almost nothing real about "reality TV." All but the dullest viewers understand that the dramatic twists and turns on shows like "The Bachelor" or "Celebrity Apprentice" are scripted in advance. More or less like professional wrestling, Donald Trump's previous claim to fame.
    • Dec 8, 2016
  • Forget identity politics

    Amid the climate of disbelief and fear among Democrats following Donald Trump's election, a fascinating debate has broken out about what's called "identity politics" on the left, "political correctness" by the right.
    • Dec 1, 2016
  • Worth it

    My most recent one-to-one conversation with Hillary Clinton took place in October 1991, and I've been laughing at myself ever since.
    • Nov 17, 2016
  • More »

Visit Arkansas

View Trumpeter Swans in Heber Springs

View Trumpeter Swans in Heber Springs

Magness Lake, in Heber Springs, is a magnet for swans

Event Calendar

« »

December

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31

Most Viewed

  • Reality TV prez

    There is almost nothing real about "reality TV." All but the dullest viewers understand that the dramatic twists and turns on shows like "The Bachelor" or "Celebrity Apprentice" are scripted in advance. More or less like professional wrestling, Donald Trump's previous claim to fame.
  • Fake news

    So fed up was young Edgar Welch of Salisbury, N.C., that Hillary Clinton was getting away with running a child-sex ring that he grabbed a couple of guns last Sunday, drove 360 miles to the Comet Ping Pong pizzeria in Washington, D.C., where Clinton was supposed to be holding the kids as sex slaves, and fired his AR-15 into the floor to clear the joint of pizza cravers and conduct his own investigation of the pedophilia syndicate of the former first lady, U.S. senator and secretary of state.
  • Stay the course

    I am frustrated and angry with those who claim the only chance of future success is for the Democratic Party, especially in the South and Midwest, to abandon speaking directly to women and people of color and the LGBT community and instead focus on the economy and other "more comfortable" topics in order to win back some of the center.

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Arkansas Democrats' rocky road forward

    • As we saw with the raise in the minimum wage and medical marijuana, there are…

    • on December 8, 2016
  • Re: Arkansas Democrats' rocky road forward

    • Ozark,

      What are the Arkansans marching and rallying about? Is this an anti-Trump rally?

    • on December 8, 2016
  • Re: Reality TV prez

    • He won't clean up his act. He won't even try. He's clueless that his style…

    • on December 8, 2016
 

© 2016 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation