Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Trump doesn't play Bush's game

I disagree with Atrios. I don't think that Trump dismal approval ratings will be treated by the media the same way they treated Bush's low approval ratings. The media kept insisting he was popular and/or just about to have some comeback because they basically liked him. He was the guy they wanted to have a beer with even as they reported that he didn't drink beer. They liked him because Bush spent some effort schmoozing the press and the press loves to be schmoozed.

Trump just doesn't have that in him. He is too vindictive and impulsive to wage an ongoing media charm campaign . If anyone reports anything negative about him, Trump will strike back. He won't dole out perks to reporters. There won't be any invites to ride with him on Air Force One. If he has a tire swing, Trump won't let them swing on it, at least not any member of the non-Fox mainstream media (friendly media like Breitbart and RT will be swinging on that tire whenever they want). There won't be a documentary like Journeys with George because he won't give anyone who isn't committed to fawning coverage that kind of access (and he certainly won't give that access to Nancy Pelosi's daughter).

W wasn't the brightest knife in the drawer, but he knew how to curry favor and he knew that currying favor with the press would pay off for him. Trump is going to treat the media like his enemy. While the media might not have the guts to stand up to him, they are not going to like him either.