Some of my media friends in the United States are saying that they will now listen more carefully to what Donald J. Trump on the US Presidential campaign trail. Really? Why this sudden conversion on the "Road to Damascus"? ("Road to Damascus," according to Wikipedia, refers to a sudden turning point in one's life. It's in reference to the conversion to Christianity of the apostle Paul while literally on the road to Damascus from Jerusalem. Prior to that moment, he had been called Saul, and was a Pharisee who persecuted followers of Jesus.)
My view is that, with a few exceptions, it's unlikely the US media will extensively scrutinize The Donald. He's been around a long time, and he's gotten away with lies, more lies and still more lies. Scarcely any challenges for him in the media; challenges involve digging and a significant amount of insolence directed at political targets who, like Mr. Trump, are used to media antics. If he can't bully media types, then he buys them with flattery
Meanwhile, Hillary Rodham Clinton - self-inflicted wounds, stumbles and all - continues as the Cruella de Vil (a slimy character who kidnaps puppies for their furs in "The Hundred and One Dalmatians," the 1956 novel by Dodie Smith).
After all, many -- if not most -- media persons and pollsters seem convinced that he will be the next American president. So why antagonize him? After all, there will be lots of communications jobs to be handed out in a Trump Administration, no?
I hope I'm wrong. I hope The Donald is called out for what he is - an inveterate charlatan posing as a "savior" of America. Savior? Oh my!
My good friend Alexis White, as shrewd a political observer as any, emails me the following from Mexico: "Is the media thinking that the Fourth Estate will be treated with respect and a laissez faire hand in a Trump presidency? He taunts, he scams, and he uses the media -- as he did yesterday with his hotel promo-disguised-as-a-news-conference/announcement. And then (!) he tweets (go read) that he scammed them.
"What will happen to the media, (be it print, online or broadcast) that we respect? Ivanka [Trump] walked out ("Apologies, but I have to run") on Cosmopolitan when Cosmo asked some normal questions (not gotcha ones) about her father's childcare policy/plan for which she was the spokesperson and ostensibly the crafter. Cosmo? She tells them that she expected them to be kind. They were, but this was not a photo shoot. So Ivanka left and her dad stood behind her decision. (And we all know about dad and WaPo and the rest of his growing laundry list of media non grata.)
"The point is that I truly believe the Fourth Estate, (those entities and persons we respect for their journalism, their integrity), better wake up to the reality that once he is in (God forbid) all bets are off. He is in charge. And with the getting-motlier-by-the-day band of inner circle members -- many of whom have for decades been Swiftboating and Paula Jones promoting (Kelleyanne Conway's husband, George T. Conway III, in the latter group) and positively lying and trolling even before Yelp et al were created - well there are many ways to get at your enemies and unravel that freedom of the press tenet.
"J. Edgar Hoover may be dead, but Trump can take his lead from some of his favorite foreign strongmen about how to deal with media and media types who don't fawn."
Hoover, who was named Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation when he was only 29 years old by then President Calvin Coolidge in 1924, maintained incriminating dossiers on those media types, and politicians he didn't like. Few dared to defy him for alleged blackmail of suspected Communists and sexual deviants, according to Curt Gentry's scathing biography, "J. Edgar Hoover: The Man and The Secrets." It was whispered that Hoover, a lifelong bachelor, engaged in peculiar deviancies of his own: these did not involve women.
The Donald need not necessarily open his history books - that is, if he possesses any - to learn from Hoover.
(There's a joke that made the rounds when Ronald Reagan was president: A radio bulletin broke into regular programming to say that Reagan's library at his Santa Barbara, California, ranch had burned down: "Both books were destroyed, but the president had had time to color only one of them." Perish the thought that a fire would consume The Donald's library at his home-cum-headquarters in the 68-floor Trump Tower on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue - although he might not be that distraught if his copies of GQ Magazine, whose British edition carried nude pictures of Slovenia-born Melania Knauss some 15 years ago; Melania and The Donald were wed in 2005 in what his third marriage.)
More contemporaneously than J. Edgar Hoover, The Donald can emulate a man he openly admires, President Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin of Russia. The Putin modus operandi is really very simple: Opponents in business and politics are issued one-way tickets to pecuniary oblivion and/or premature obituaries.
But this is America, you may protest. Of course it is. Just ask Jimmy Hoffa, the head of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. That is, if you can locate him.
He reputedly had strong links to organized crime. One humid day in July 1975, after dining at the Machus Red Fox restaurant in suburban Detroit, he walked out and was never seen again. His body was never found, and in the books of the FBI the case still remains open.
I'm not suggesting that The Donald, once elected 45th President of the United States on November 8, will act thuggish. But he can, if he wants to. After all, who's going to challenge him? The American media?
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Source: Elder Care Huffington Post