Our Dumb Media and Trump’s Twitter Traps

We’re approaching half a year into the Trump presidency, and the media still won’t stop freaking out about Donald Trump’s tweets.

It’s like a guy going to the same magic show every night, and getting up and yelling “It’s fake! He’s not really sawing that woman in half!” every time.

This is the latest source of the freakout:

Normal people see that as tweet as President Trump having fun tweaking the media. The media responded to it hysterically as “inciting violence” against their sacred bodies, because of course they did. Which, of course, sets off another round of normal people mocking the media for their continued arrogant cluelessness.

The same cluelessness the media have displayed every morning for, what, a year and a half now? Because they never read or understood Salena Zito’s “seriously, not literally” essay.

Shampoo. Rinse. Repeat.

Someday someone is going to write a book on the deceptive effectiveness of Trump’s Tweets. Trump uses his tweets in a variety of ways: As a cudgel, as a tool of persuasion, as a destroyer scattering depth charges into the media ocean. (Most won’t hit an enemy sub, but the ones that do…) Scott Adams has only been explaining how Trump uses persuasion techniques for over a year, and the media doesn’t seem to have picked up on that either.

Trump’s tweets let him dominate the news cycle, starving competing story lines of attention like the oxygen destroyer in the original Godzilla. And the media, either because they’re too stupid to know any better or too addicted to Trump bump ratings, keep falling for it.

While Trump does many things with his tweets, the latest controversy displays his masterful exploitation of the vast gulf between the borderline delusional self-regard of the media in general (and CNN in specific) and the public’s low opinion of same. It’s like watching Groucho Marx humiliate Margaret Dumont every morning. Normal people are laughing their asses off, while other stuffed shirt media pundits are aghast. “How dare he keep insulting that old rich lady!”

And here it is, a year and half or later, CNN is still declaring “Well, I never!” and wondering why everyone is laughing at them. Trumps attacks are effective because average Americans hate the news media more, and trust them less, than they do Trump. And they feel that way because of the CNN and the media’s own self-inflicted wounds, and for obvious left-wing bias visible to pretty much any non-liberal observer.

The media keeps falling into Trump’s Twitter traps because their delusional self-love keeps leading them straight in. “Why surely fiend Trump’s latest attack on America’s sacred media outlets will finally rouse the populace to outrage!” Like Margaret Dumont’s characters, the media’s moral outrage never lets them realize they’re the butt of the joke.

Which, of course, always makes the joke that much funnier…

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