Thursday, May 28, 2020

"Recognize It"

Do you remember Dr. Anthony Fauci?

Of course you do because he is still in the Trump Administration, even after two weeks ago he cautioned against premature reopening of schools and businesses and the President countered "I was surprised by his answer, actually. It's just -- to me it's not an acceptable answer, especially when it comes to schools."

He remains because he has shilled for the return of professional sports and has suggested there may be a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine by the end of the year, a possibility the President wants voters to consider on November 3, 2020. But most of all, he remains because he is great on television, and there may be nothing  more admired by Donald Trump. That helps the President maintain credibility with the American people and the media.

And so I know Charlie Pierce is underestimating the danger:

He may be raving or even a maniac, depending upon interpretation of the word. However, he's neither out-of-control nor stupid. From a rising political scientist, a more important take:

Perhaps he'll come first for Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter, which will be more easily controlled pursuant to an executive order the President is preparing as of this moment. Then it may be "the boring but very nasty magazine, The Atlantic"  or the Washington Post's Jeff Bezos, whom Trump wants to bring down, not because of Amazon but rather The Washington Post.

In a second Trump Administration, the President wouldn't have to shut any of them down.  As of Thursday morning, Trump was prepared to sign an executive order "that could open the door for federal regulators to punish" the three social media platforms. There is a variety of options a re-elected, re-energized Trump claiming the Mandate of All Mandates could employ to strike fear into media organizations throughout the nation, to persuade them to acquiesce in the dismantling of the First Amendment.

It is not a joke from a broken-down or maniacal stand-up comedian. It is a threat. Donald Trump recognizes an excellent communicator- such as Dr. Fauci- when he sees one and uses him accordingly. He knows what he is doing and his Administration is warning us.

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