Trump is getting it done
As President Donald Trump maneuvers through fast-paced meetings with fellow world leaders in Europe, the most urgent matter before him is how to address a growing threat from a nuclear North Korea.
Yet as Trump meets with Vladimir Putin and ponders the best response to Kim Jong Un, we remain steeped in wildly irrelevant obsessions about his social media habits.
There is nothing funnier than watching media reports announcing that the “firestorms” over Trump tweets “have not subsided.” Well, here’s a way for them to subside: Stop the saturation coverage of them.
For days, we were treated to breathless, repetitive news cycles over an inane video featuring Trump in a 2007 stunt skirmish with WWE owner Vince McMahon. A random Reddit user replaced McMahon’s face with a floating CNN logo, yielding a post of a symbolic Trump body slam of the network, which has wasted countless hours on Russia collusion fantasies.
Trump, being Trump, saw it, loved it and tweeted it. CNN, being CNN, launched into an absurd fit of hand-wringing as if the president were literally advocating violence against reporters.
I would prefer a mannerly, philosophical, eloquent president. But if a few unseemly tweets are the price of admission to an administration that will strengthen our borders, revitalize the economy, ditch Obamacare, rebuild the military, beat ISIS, rediscover climate sanity and restore a constitutionalist Supreme Court, I’ll cut that deal every day.
I believe firmly that I am joined in that sentiment by nearly all Trump voters, who are far more interested in policy victories than Twitter sideshows. To the degree that his most controversial tweets may distract from actual agenda progress, I count myself among supporters who would like to see him dial back some of the tweets and put some legislative points on the board.
But the notions that his posts are crippling or politically suicidal, or my favorite, evidence of psychological unfitness for office, are the prattling of people who don’t like him, including some Republicans still unnerved that he won in the first place.
But, funny thing: Neil Gorsuch is on the Supreme Court, the job-crushing regulatory state is being drawn down, we are speaking truth to the evils of global jihad, the White House has made clear its devotion to protecting religious freedom, gun rights and the unborn, and we have reversed the pandering to Cuba and the junk science of man-made global warming.
The alarm bells are sounding not because Trump is wobbly, unreliable and erratic, but because he knows exactly what he is doing and he is doing it. Genuine conservatives remain thrilled at the results so far, and eager to see more.
Do we have a feeling that there may more tweets we wish he would have thought twice about? Sure. But for every such moment, there are countless examples of Trump using Twitter to do what no president ever has: connect with Americans in an unfiltered, instantaneous way, going right over the heads of a media culture burned by its resulting loss of influence.
On his Europe trip, much is made of Trump’s “unpopularity.” In a mightily screwed up world, it can be expected that a leader looking to wrestle influence away from those who have created the problems might be viewed dimly. Similarly, Trump’s sluggish poll numbers at home prove that the change is real. Genuine reforms were always going to be jarring. Add in the adventure of a president who enjoys firing off tweets like a teenager, and the ride exerts even more G-forces.