Goldman: The ‘Charlie Brown’ Presidency
By Michael Goldman
When Donald J. Trump was in high school in 1959, the rock and roll group the Coasters released a song whose punchline has come to perfectly encapsulate his entire presidency.
The song? “Charlie Brown”.
The punchline? “Why’s everybody always pickin’ on me”?
Poor Donald. Always the victim.
Take the three black, female White House reporters.
All have picked on the president either by asking him tough questions in the White House Press Room or on the White House lawn.
April Ryan, Yamisha Alcindar, and Abby Phillips are their names, and pickin’ on poor Donald Trump is clearly their game!
Sadly for Donald, those three are not alone in their efforts to pick on him.
To that list you can add the names of French President Emanuel Macron, as well as some very upset veteran American soldiers from World War II.
Last week the aforementioned Macron picked on our president during the centennial celebration in Paris marking the end of the First World War. He pointed out his disappointment that our Chief Executive had decided to proudly choose that moment on the world stage to publicly embrace nationalism as his guiding political principle.
The fact Trump revealed this decision just weeks after virtually every historian of both World Wars had universally confirmed it was the “sickness” of nationalism -- -- in Germany, Austria, Hungary, France, England, the Ottoman empire, Japan, China, and Russia that was the central linchpin underpinning the start of both worldwide conflagrations, didn’t seem to bother the president in the least.
In yet a separate incident on French soil, the Veteran of Foreign Wars then brutally picked on poor Donald for wimping out of attending a scheduled memorial ceremony in a cemetery where American war dead were buried simply because it was raining.
(Internet rumor had it that the failure of the president to show up may also have been caused by a sudden reemergence of the bone spurs which allowed Trump to avoid service during the Vietnam War. That rumor was not officially confirmed or denied by the WH, but Trump did later tweet, as he always does after he screws up, that his failure to attend wasn’t his fault).
As I wrote earlier, everybody’s always “pickin’ on him”.
Meanwhile, across the ocean, the head of the California Firefighters Union picked on Trump for what he called, “the president’s misinformed and ill-timed comments on the California wildfires” while Rock legend Neil Young, who lost his multi-million dollar mansion in the fire, piled on by also picking on our low-energy Commander in Chief -- both for his “ignorant denial of climate change as well as his lack of interest and understanding of the extreme weather and extended drought that bedevils that state.
For the president’s sake, I wish I could write that all this pickin’ ended here, but alas, there was so much more to note.
International college students are pickin’ on Trump by claiming he is the sole reason they have chosen not to apply to study at some of America’s best graduate schools.
The leaders of the government of Puerto Rico are pickin’ on Trump for falsely claiming that desperately needed disaster relief funds were being diverted by them to pay off old pre-hurricane debt.
The entire criminal justice system is pickin’ on Trump for naming as his new, acting Attorney General a conspiracy-loving quisling who has publicly stated in the past that the ongoing case against Trump is a witch hunt, and that there’s a possibility that Big Foot is real.
Don’t ask me which idea is crazier.
Finally, virtually the entire Washington establishment is pickin’ on Trump for his nonsensical decision to choose the wife of a mega-financial donor to the Republican party as a 2018 recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. These honors have been awarded only to “those who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interest of the United States; to world peace; or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.”
Giving millions to the coffers of Trump-endorsed Republican candidates doesn’t seem to exactly fit that definition.
Or maybe I’m just pickin’!
Michael Goldman is a consultant to Democrat candidates.