Donald Trump – ‘Anything Obama must go, regardless of whether it’s a good idea or it isn’t. It’s Obama!’
|CRIMSON TAZVINZWA, AIWA! NO!|US President Donald Trump seeks to repeal anything with ‘Obama label’ on it. Not because it were bad policy but because it was formulated and implemented by someone he despises.
Take tax reforms for instance; ‘Repeal and Replace Obama Care’, Military Spending, NATO and ‘America First Agenda’; the media, as fourth estate included among many targets.
Trump’s relentless attacks on ‘fake media‘ and freedom of the press gets noticed –
2 – August 2018 – UN and Inter-American experts on freedom of expression condemn U.S. President Donald Trump’s repeated attacks on the free press and urged him and his administration to cease efforts to undermine the media’s role of holding government accountable, honest and transparent.
“His attacks are strategic, designed to undermine confidence in reporting and raise doubts about verifiable facts,” said David Kaye and Edison Lanza, the Special Rapporteurs on freedom of expression for the United Nations and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, respectively.
The President has labelled the media as being the “enemy of the American people” “very dishonest” or “fake news,” and accused the press of “distorting democracy” or spreading “conspiracy theories and blind hatred”.
“These attacks run counter to the country’s obligations to respect press freedom and international human rights law,” the experts said. “We are especially concerned that these attacks increase the risk of journalists being targeted with violence.”
Kaye and Lanza said that, over the course of his presidency, Mr. Trump and others within his administration have sought to undermine reporting that had uncovered waste, fraud, abuse, potential illegal conduct, and disinformation.
“Each time the President calls the media ‘the enemy of the people’ or fails to allow questions from reporters from disfavoured outlets,” the experts added, “he suggests nefarious motivations or animus. But he has failed to show even once that specific reporting has been driven by any untoward motivations.
“It is critical that the U.S. administration promote the role of a vibrant press and counter rampant disinformation. To this end, we urge President Trump not only to stop using his platform to denigrate the media but to condemn these attacks, including threats directed at the press at his own rallies.
“The attack on the media goes beyond President Trump’s language. We also urge his entire administration, including the Department of Justice, to avoid pursuing legal cases against journalists in an effort to identify confidential sources, an effort that undermines the independence of the media and the ability of the public to have access to information.
“We urge the Government to stop pursuing whistle-blowers through the tool of the Espionage Act, which provides no basis for a person to make an argument about the public interest of such information.
“We stand with the independent media in the United States, a community of journalists and publishers and broadcasters long among the strongest examples of professional journalism worldwide. We especially urge the press to continue, where it does so, its efforts to hold all public officials accountable.”
The experts encouraged all media to act in solidarity against the efforts of President Trump to favour some outlets over others.
“Two years of attacks on the press could have long term negative implications for the public’s trust in media and public institutions,” Kaye and Lanza said. “Two years is two years too much, and we strongly urge that President Trump and his administration and his supporters end these attacks.”
Paris Climate Agreement; views on law and order, human rights, gender equality – not because it were bad policy but because it was formulated and implemented by someone he despises.
Barack Obama breaks his silence to attack Donald Trump, asking ‘how hard is it to say Nazis are bad?’
Barack Obama has launched an unprecedented attack on Donald Trump’s presidency as he returned to the political spotlight for the first time since leaving the White House.
As he returned to the political spotlight ahead of November’s midterm elections, the former US president accused Mr Trump of “cosying up” to Vladimir Putin and adopting the “politics of fear and resentment”.
In a speech that lasted more than an hour, Mr Obama delivered a series of attacks against Mr Trump’s policies since entering office, from tax cuts for the “wealthiest Americans” to repealing climate change legislation.
Mr Obama rebuked Mr Trump’s response to a violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia last year, asking a crowd at the University of Ilinois: “How hard can that be, saying that Nazis are bad?”
Mr Trump said there were some “very fine” people on both sides of the protests, in which neo-Nazis clashed with anti-racism demonstrators leaving one woman dead and several injured.
In a reference to the incident on Friday, Mr Obama told the audience: “We’re supposed to stand up to discrimination. And we’re sure as heck supposed to stand up, clearly and unequivocally, to Nazi sympathizers. How hard can that be, saying that Nazis are bad?”
Mr Obama also poked fun on the issue the current president frequently heralds as one of his greatest achievements – the strong economy.
Mr Obama was eager to “remind” voters that the economic recovery – one of Mr Trump’s favourite talking points – actually began “in 2015” under his presidency.
“When you hear how great the economy’s doing right now, let’s just remember when this recovery started,” he said.
The Republican party
Mr Obama also hit out at the current face of the Republican Party, calling it a “radical” organisation which has embraced conspiracy theories, attacked voting rights and rejected climate change.
He said: “What happened to the Republican party? Its central organising principle in foreign policy was the fight against communism and now they’re cosying up to the former head of the KGB, actively blocking legislation that would defend our elections from Russian attack. What happened?”
He went on to attack the administration’s repeal of climate change legislation, saying: “They’ve made it so that the only nation on earth to pull out of the global climate agreement, it’s not North Korea, it’s not Syria, it’s not Russia or Saudi Arabia. It’s us. The only country.”
Mr Obama was especially stern in his condemnation of Mr Trump’s pattern of pressuring law enforcement officials, including Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
Mr Trump has repeatedly called on Mr Sessions to fire special counsel Robert Mueller and earlier this week blamed the Justice Department for charging two incumbent Republican members of Congress, arguing the moves could jeopardise their seats ahead of the election.
“It should not be a partisan issue to say that we do not pressure the attorney general or the FBI to use the criminal justice system as a cudgel to punish our political opponents,” Mr Obama said. “Or to explicitly call on the attorney general to protect members of our own party from prosecution because an election happens to be coming up. I’m not making that up. that’s not hypothetical.”
‘Bigots and ‘fear-mongers’
Noting the history of former presidents avoiding the rough and tumble of politics, Mr Obama acknowledged his sharp critique of Trump was something of a departure from tradition. But he said the political moment required a pushback and called for better discourse.
“Appealing to tribe, appealing to fear, pitting one group against another, telling people that order and security will be restored if it weren’t for those who don’t look like us or don’t sound like us or don’t pray like we do – that’s an old playbook,” he said.
“It’s as old as time. And in a healthy democracy, it doesn’t work. Our antibodies kick in and people of good will from across the political spectrum call out the bigots and the fear-mongers and work to compromise and get things done and promote the better angels of our nation.”
In a preview of his message on the campaign trail over the next two months, the former president said: “In two months we have the chance… to return some semblance of sanity to our politics. Because there is actually only one real check on bad policy and abuses of power, and that’s you”.