The early days of Trump’s presidency have been strange, bewildering the media with errors so unforced they appear deliberate. Starting with the new press secretary’s weirdly combative conference on Saturday, at which alternative facts were presented, and continuing through a meandering series of appearances and sternly-worded executive orders of uncertain consequence, they have managed to raise an already-high alarm level in newsrooms.
The most established of these media have now taken to calling out falsehoods plainly, which is admirable but highly unlikely to change anyone’s opinion of Trump. Given what has already come to light, the chances that exaggerating his inauguration attendance will finally sway public opinion is remote.1 The New York Times’ newly-discovered scolding tone accomplishes little really, other than to reassure those already in the fold that it will now hold Trump to account, the impact of which might be, to the Gray Lady’s horror, nothing. Read more…
- “What’s that you say, he made up attendance numbers? Well I can overlook the bankruptcies and the lecherous comments, but lying about our grand civic pageant is just beyond the pale.” ↩
- And though they might be able to ignore his spokespeople, they can’t so easily do that to Trump himself, who remains the one and only President of these United States. ↩
- It may be that Trump is immune to the Streisand Effect; in fact it may actually make him stronger. ↩