I made a whopper of a mistake the night of Jan. 8 by watching President Trump deliver that lame nine-minute defense of his “manhood” issue (the Wall) when I could have instead watched Stormy Daniels in her underwear, folding laundry.
I am not making this up: Daniels, the porn star who has said she had a famous sexual encounter with Trump, livestreamed herself folding her laundry, including her red thong.
Before Trump began his address from the Oval Office, Daniels went on Twitter to announce: “If you’re looking for anything even remotely worth watching tonight at 9 p.m. EST, I will be folding laundry in my underwear for eight minutes on Instagram live.”
When I read about Daniels’ stunt in the New York Times Wednesday morning, I immediately went to YouTube and checked her out. Yep, there she was, sitting on her bed in a revealing purple bra and matching panties as she meticulously folded her “Penthouse” leggings, a Freddie Mercury T-shirt, her blue jeans, socks, cut-offs and that thong.
The soundtrack was Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall,” Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down” and Taylor Swift’s “We Are Never Getting Back Together.” Message received?
When she was finished, Daniels pulled out a bag of Cheetos (another Trumpian reference), smiled at us and waved.
This was a lot more illuminating than the Trump speech, during which he repeated his false claims about the “crisis” on our southern border in a stone-faced reading.
This is how he expects to “fire up the troops,” his base? New York Times columnist Gail Collins quoted a friend of hers describing Trump’s delivery: “He makes Jeb Bush looks like a combination of Mighty Mouse and Bruce Springsteen.”
During these cold winter nights when we’re absorbing constant media reports about the government shutdown because of the wall, I’ve been splashing around in newspapers about this hot mess and reading Bob Woodward’s best-seller “Fear: Trump in the White House.” I’m just trying to understand the thought processes of our president. (Woodward will speak at the College Street Music Hall in New Haven Jan. 22.)
In his prologue, Woodward wrote: “The reality was that the United States in 2017 was tethered to the words and actions of an emotionally overwrought, mercurial and unpredictable leader. Members of his staff had joined to purposefully block some of what they believed were the president’s most dangerous impulses. It was a nervous breakdown of the executive power of the most powerful country in the world.”
Shades of Watergate! Woodward has seen this movie before, starring Richard Nixon. Woodward co-wrote the book, “All the President’s Men,” with Carl Bernstein.
Anyway, on Tuesday night, when I watched Trump and missed out on Stormy Daniels live in her underwear, I also took in the rebuttals by U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.
Pelosi, another strong, feisty woman who doesn’t back down from Trump, had previously told her Democratic colleagues: “It’s like a manhood thing for him, this wall thing. As if manhood could ever be associated with him.”
During her rebuttal Tuesday, she, like Schumer a couple of minutes later, noted Trump had appealed to fear rather than using facts in his address to the nation. This gets us back to the title of Woodward’s book, inspired by what Trump told him in March 2016 when Trump was running for president: “Real power is — I don’t even want to use the word — fear.”
Indeed, Trump’s nine minutes were filled with statements such as “thousands of Americans have been brutally killed by those who illegally entered our country” “and children are used as human pawns by vicious coyotes and ruthless gangs.”
Trump also said the idea of U.S. citizens paying $5.7 billion for the wall is “just common sense” and that it “would very quickly pay for itself” through a new trade deal with Mexico. (Remember Mexico? Trump told us that country was going to pay for the wall.) As the New York Times pointed out in its lengthy “fact check” story of the many errors in Trump’s speech, that new trade agreement has not been passed by Congress and any economic benefits from it would probably “come in the form of lower tariffs for American companies or higher wages for American workers.”
Back here in Connecticut, our representatives are speaking up for federal workers going without pay week after week. Democratic U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy released a statement noting that the 800,000 employees furloughed or working without pay include about 1,500 in our state.
Murphy added: “My consituents in Connecticut shouldn’t have to wonder when they’re going to get their next paycheck or when they’re going back to work because the president isn’t getting his wall that no one on the border wants anyway.”
And yet Trump claims: “Many of those people that won’t be receiving a paycheck agree 100 percent with what I’m doing. A lot of those people that you think are upset — certainly they’re not thrilled — but they say, ‘Sir, do the right thing. We need border security.’ And these are people who won’t be getting paid.”
Pelosi calls this “delusionary” thinking. She is asking: who are these people that are willingly giving up their wages for the sake of the wall? “Give us names,” she said.
Trump was at least thoughtful enough to hand out candy Wednesday when he again met with Pelosi and Schumer. But when Pelosi reiterated that Democrats will not support spending $5.7 billion in taxpayer money on the Wall, Trump abruptly said “Bye-bye!” and stormed out of the room.
Trump managed to be elected president through crowd-pleasing tactics such as encouraging his followers to chant “Build the Wall!” and “Lock her (Hillary Clinton) up!” But now he seems to be up against a wall of his own making. And while I’ve pointed out the comic absurdity of it all, it won’t be funny if this chaotic stalemate continues and people start to starve.