Master Manipulator

Real Clear Politics:

The Media Have Been Played by Trump’s Tweets

About 18 months ago, back when the world was young, I examined candidate Donald Trump’s success in using social media – in particular Twitter – to circumvent the mainstream media and speak directly to the electorate. There was nothing new in this general approach – candidates and officeholders have taken pains to control their messaging for at least the past century, but Trump seemed to have struck political gold.

Now, roughly five months into his administration, we see how the things have played out. Not only is Trump president, but his Twitter base has grown from 5 million to 31 million. Instead of acknowledging the advent of a potent new mode of presidential communication, the very people Trump is trying to bypass — the traditional media — have derided and mocked his use of this technology. To be sure, the president’s indiscriminate and sometimes intemperate tweets have made an irresistible target. In the past few days, he has used Twitter to pick an odd fight with London’s mayor while seemingly undermining the Justice Department’s legal rationale of his travel ban.

Yet the Fourth Estate’s knee-jerk opposition to Trump does a disservice to the electorate.


Consider, for example, Trump’s inscrutable “negative press covfefe” tweet early in the morning of May 31, a term that currently has 52 million search results on Google. It’s easy to see why: Print and broadcast news outlets pounced on the abbreviated tweet and hyperventilated for days.

This is precisely the problem: Most of Trump’s tweets, especially this sort, should not be reported as breaking news. As Michael Barone, the longtime co-editor of The Almanac of American Politics and senior political analyst for the Washington Examiner, points out, “Early on, he [Trump] realized that by sending out a tweet early in the morning, that was very provocative, very in violation of political correctness, he could dominate an entire news cycle.” What’s more, Trump knew he could feed the media’s “addiction” to anything remotely resembling “breaking news,” all to his benefit.

This failure of U.S. broadcast media to use proper news judgment in covering Trump is among the gravest professional sins the industry has committed in recent memory because it fails to recognize the manipulation involved. George Lakoff, a professor emeritus of linguistics at the University of California, Berkeley, asserts that Trump’s tactics are “all strategic” in nature, “not crazy,” as many observers believe.

Lakoff has written several books on political speech and is an expert on the concept of idea framing, which has become an influential technique in the art of political persuasion. He asserts that Trump’s tweets embody one of four strategic communication tactics: preemptive framing, diversion, deflection and trial-ballooning.

“In general, if you frame first you win, and Trump knows that,” Lakoff said. “The media is having trouble with the truth because the truth doesn’t sell – and they could sell it if they went about it the right way,” he added. “Right now they can’t help themselves, having the entertainment elements of their job take over for the news element.”

I’m pretty sure that Trump is also behind a lot of the bogus leaks. The media thinks they are smarter than him but they can’t see that they are dancing to the tune Trump plays.

I won’t be watching the Comey hearing. I already know what’s gonna happen.


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"If you hit an artery, somebody can bleed out in two minutes."
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230 Responses to Master Manipulator

  1. Dora says:

    That’s a good article. I think Mr. Gorka would agree with it.


    Gorka: 7 Dead In UK, And CNN Asks Me About Trump’s Tweets For 16 Minutes; Media In “Alice In Wonderland Reality”

    Counterinsurgency expert and adviser to President Trump, Sebastian Gorka, vents to NewsMax’s Steve Malzberg about his interview Monday morning on CNN:

    • elliesmom says:

      The ambulance arrived in 6 minutes. What is the obsession with how fast help gets there in the UK? Is it because citizens are denied the right to defend themselves?

      • Constance says:

        Yes! because when seconds count the cops are only minutes away and meanwhile you are a sitting duck.

        • CiscoKid says:

          Federal 9mm 147 grain Hydra-Shok JHP at 1060 fps. Per second.
          I’m not waiting a couple of minutes, I’m going to make my seconds count.

      • 49erDweet says:

        You nailed it. It’s a distraction from the obvious. “No, you can’t carry a gun to defend yourself because medical help is too close”.

    • taw46 says:

      The three women shouted “Allah”, but not to worry, police say it’s not terrorism.

  2. taw46 says:

    Obama, still looking for all that adoration. And trying to undermine the Trump presidency.

  3. DeniseVB says:

    I love it ! GOP tells Trump to slow down on his twittering yesterday and this morning the President tweets out his FBI director pick 😀

  4. Dora says:

    Barry certainly is getting around. And everywhere he goes, he seems to have something negative to say about our president.


    Obama delivers a new veiled slap at Trump as he warns – in Canada – that America could descend into ‘extreme nationalism and xenophobia and the politics of us-versus-them’

    Former U.S. president Barack Obama delivered a extended, vicious coded critique of his successor Donald Trump without naming him

    He bashed the rise of ‘extreme nationalism and xenophobia and the politics of “us-versus-them”,’ a clear slap at Trump in the language of American liberals

    Obama seemed to characterize Trump’s ‘America First’ philosophy as an abandonment of international institutions

    In a veiled attack on Trump’s ‘America First’ philosophy, Obama he warned against the belief that ‘what’s good for me and my immediate people is all that matters, everybody else is on their own’

  5. Dora says:

    This is Canada? This is where Barry has been speaking from? How frightening.


    Canada Passes Bill 89 Allowing Government To Seize Children From Parents Opposed To Gender Transition

    Bill 89, “Supporting Children, Youth and Families Act, 2017,” was approved on June 1 by a vote of 63 to 23. The Minister of Children and Youth Services, Michael Coteau, who introduced the bill, said earlier this year that a parent’s failure to recognize and support a child’s gender self-identification is a form of child abuse, and a child in these circumstances should be removed from the situation and placed into protection.

  6. votermom says:

  7. Anthony says:

  8. Dora says:

    While all the media were focused on the Comey testimony, the President quietly began efforts to reform the Fed.

    He did tell us he was going to do this. 🙂

  9. foxyladi14 says:

    I just had to share this great post on FB! 😀

  10. foxyladi14 says:

  11. DeniseVB says:

    Ohhhhhh, he’s a hawtie ❤

    • votermom says:

      who is he? not a secret globalist, I hope?

      • Venus says:

        He lead Enron prosecution under GWB’s DOJ.
        He’s in private practice now at King Spaulding –an international law firm — doing white collar defense.
        He last represented Christie in that bs bridge closure scandal.

  12. taw46 says:

    I am so sick of this BS that the left started, that everyone living in the US is an immigrant. And oh yeah, go ahead and give Cuomo what he wants, deport his ass.

  13. Venus says:

    The MSM, Dems and NeverTrumps are insane. Trump beat them all, spending a third of the money, and they still think he’s the dumb buffoon who lucked into the White House.

    Fact: you don’t get to dominate the Manhattan real estate market without being a TOP of the food chain shark.
    There is a reason the song goes: “If you can make it there, you’ll make it anywhere.”

  14. DandyTIger says:

    Every time people ask Trump about Comey’s testimony, Trump says “good luck” to Comey. Cracks me up. Perfectly framed as a competition where you could win or lose, and he’s wishing him luck in his competition.

    • Ann says:

      New York: Kirsten Gillibrand (Won by 72% in 2012) (Running in 2018) Current age: 50

      I have not heard of an R challenger. I would think s/he would have to be on deck fairly soon to mount any sort of real campaign (although I doubt Gillibrand would lose regardless of who is running against her).

      • Constance says:

        So many places the Republicans just give up and don’t even run anyone. That is the status quo in Seattle and even all of Western Washington. If nothing else get someone out there to represent Republican alternatives and give the “inevitable Democrat” hell.

        • Ann says:

          Ironically, I have an R congressman. His area covers purple to deep red NYS constituents.

          It is like all those NRA signs and “repeal the S.A.F.E. act” signs everywhere in NYS that is not within a city limit – if “upstate” just got together and voted as a unit (or based on one item), they’d blow out the cities who vote D. There are more than twice as many people that live in suburban NYS as live in NYC, Buffalo, Rochester, and Albany combined. But the suburban and rural people would have to vote as a unit, just as the city people do (so 80-90% for the statewide R).

          • Ann says:

            “live in suburban NYS”

            that should read suburban and rural NYS, not just suburban

  15. taw46 says:

  16. foxyladi14 says:

    And more almost Daily. 😡

  17. taw46 says:

  18. taw46 says:

    Sen. Heinrich from NY is an ass. Just saying.

  19. 49erDweet says:

    My apologies if this issue has been raised earlier, but I’m truly curious as to the POV of TCHers on one aspect of the Duke Divinity Dust-up, and that is – – – did gender play a part in the reactions to the professor who criticized the training POV of another professor? Did He lose his job bc She was offended by his comments and another She agreed with her?
    Just a nagging question the keeps rattling around in my noggin.

    • elliesmom says:

      I haven’t been following the Duke Divinity School story closely, but I have been part of some serious discussions IRL about what the role of the church should be. Is it a place for worship or a place for social activism? My lesbian buddies recently left a church because they were at odds over whether the church was serving them well. One was raised Catholic and wants to go to a church with ritual and a concentration on worship. The other seeks out a church with a lot of social activism especially around the gay and lesbian community and sits through a church service as “payment” for entrance into the work the church does there. When the minister began shirking her duties re the worship part, partner #1 stopped going to church. Now they’re looking for a “happy medium”, but there’s no meeting of the minds as to where the middle actually is.

      From what I’ve read about the Duke Divinity School dust-up is the school is too conservative for black students who want an opportunity to study and embrace Black Liberation Theology, and some of the profs, notably the one who is “retiring early”, don’t feel it fits with the theology of the school. Similarly, “love the sinner, but not the sin” is not enough acceptance for the gays and lesbians. At least at the moment, Duke Divinity is not the place to study theology if you’re more inclined to see the church as a source of social activism than as a conduit to the worship of God. I think the prof in the hot seat is about as guilty of sexism as the space scientist with the cool print shirt. I would guess the female professor is an SJW with a victim complex, and he’s an older guy who speaks his mind. With all of the divinity schools in this country, I’m not sure why someone would choose a school that doesn’t match with his or beliefs. It seems to me like just one more instance of students not going to learn, but to try to bend other people to their will, and a professor whose beliefs are contrary to where she has chosen to teach.

      • 49erDweet says:

        Agree. I see it more as two profs with different views, the she prof claimng harassment instead of intellectual debate in the part of the He prof, and the she Dean agreeing it was harassment. When his words were clearly philosophical, not personal.

  20. taw46 says:

  21. Anthony says:


  22. Venus says:

    IT’S DOWN!

  23. DandyTIger says:

    Kamilla Harris and Deputy AG Rosenstein had a good spat. She basically wanted him to turn Muller into a full blown special prosecutor separate from DOJ. Something the Senate previously shut down and made it clear they don’t want. She was very aggressive and snarky. It was some fun theater for her future Presidential run.

  24. taw46 says:

    McCain at the hearing. I hate that f**ker.

  25. taw46 says:

    Yes! So many Americans had no idea this crap was occurring under Obama.

    “Attorney General Jeff Sessions is reversing an Obama administration practice that encouraged and sometimes required banks and other companies to donate large amounts of money to outside groups as part of settlement agreements with the federal government.

    In the Obama administration, the Justice Department negotiated settlements, especially with large banks in connection with the residential mortgage-backed securities crisis, that required the settling parties to pay funds to third-party community organizations, such as the National Council of La Raza, Habitat for Humanity and the National Urban League.

    “These third-party organizations were neither victims nor parties to the lawsuits,” Sessions said in a memo sent Wednesday to senior Justice Department officials and U.S. attorney’s offices. Sessions said that, effective immediately, settlement payments to nongovernmental third parties, such as advocacy or housing groups, are prohibited.

    “When the federal government settles a case against a corporate wrongdoer, any settlement funds should go first to the victims and then to the American people — not to bankroll third-party special interest groups or the political friends of whoever is in power,” Sessions said in a statement.”

  26. Dora says:

  27. helenk3 says:

    I had no plans to see this movie. after reading this, if I have to borrow a kid to take to see it I will
    ashley judd and the other morons are upset because the star fought isis.

    • helenk3 says:

      ashley judd and her moronic minions would not make a pimple of the ass of the women that fight everyday against isis.
      these women put their lives on the line for their families and their countries.
      would ashley judd and her minions? I doubt it.

      end of rant

    • votermom says:

      I hear it’s a fun movie.

      • lateblum says:

        My daughter loved it. More than “Guardians . . . ” Part deux

        • Ann says:

          I loved it too. It is a top 3-4 superhero movie for me, and by far the best DC comic book movie I have seen. They did a marvelous job with this one. Go see it if you like – comic book, war hero, love story, mythology – movies.

          As an aside – my husband liked it even more than I did. He said it reminded him of a cross between the first Captain America (reminded me of that too, and that is my favorite “superhero” movie) and Zena (which he loves {insert eye roll})

  28. mothy67 says:

    • Jadzia says:

      His thesis advisor has been ALLLL about getting his face on every television channel that will have him today. While at the same time saying hey, don’t blame me, I haven’t seen him in a year and a half. Way to take your job seriously, Professor. Anyway, the prof is saying that the attacker had always expressed pro-Western views to him.

  29. Dora says:

    Today’s speech by the president was one of my favorites. He sounded so typically American as he stood there by the river and spoke of the farmers, steel workers and coal minters.

    As a New Yorker, I just loved hearing him talk about Gov. DeWitt Clinton and the history of the Erie Canal. He made me feel so proud.

  30. taw46 says:

  31. Jadzia says:

    His buddies’ “get well soon” present is priceless:

  32. helenk3 says:

    WHOA can not wait for this. James O’Keefe and the fake news networks

  33. helenk3 says:

    London remembers their history

  34. taw46 says:

  35. Dora says:

    James O’Keefe Just Hinted At Something Huge In Response To President Trump’s Tweet

  36. helenk3 says:

    busy news day

    South Korea will not take the next four things that are the US missile defense system. China asked them to stand down

    Trump names FBI Director

    congressional hearing with National defense leaders

    comey leaks his remarks before he appears before congress

    report on fast and furious blames holder and doj for gun running and getting Brian Terry killed

    I will say it has never been dull since Trump got elected

    • helenk3 says:

      trumps speech on health care, infrastruction, jobs in Ohio

      The Queen of England trumps the mayor of London

      the msm is going to need roller skates just to try and keep up

    • helenk3 says:

      north korea fires a volley of shore to ship balistic missiles today. After south korea refused the US SAD missile system

  37. taw46 says:

  38. CiscoKid says:

    While the media is fucking around with the muh Russia, 12 new candidates selected for Astronaut training were announced.
    Go to 55:00 approximately.
    Not a fucking hair bun or safe space puppy hugging snowflake among them

  39. taw46 says:

  40. helenk3 says:

    this young lady could teach many people of all generations a little about life

  41. taw46 says:

  42. taw46 says:

    • Lulu says:

      Comey said it was ended. That is the investigation of Flynn. Was Comey lying about that too? What has he NOT lied about or twisted around? Comey needs to be grilled to by a prosecutor.

  43. taw46 says:

  44. lyn says:

    Every anti-Trump asshole, including Obama and Hillary, needs to do this.

  45. lyn says:

  46. Venus says:

  47. Venus says:


  48. Venus says:

    When a NeverTrump like Sean is forced to conclude this, you know it’s true:

  49. Dora says:

  50. Dora says:

    I wonder if the voters have to bring pooper-scoopers with them.


    As people go to the polls to elect the UK’s next government, their canine companions are once again out in force at polling stations across the country and the pictures are possibly the best thing about the whole election spectacle.


    What you need to know about Comey’s prepared testimony.

    Tips? Contact me @Eveldhausz on Twitter.


  52. Dora says:

    I used to love that show.

    RIP Mr. Smith.


    ’77 Sunset Strip’ Star Roger Smith Dies At 84

    Smith was married to Ann-Margret for more than 50 years.

  53. Dora says:

  54. mothy67 says:

    The left seems pretty confident they have something. Distresses me. Have to go talent show and then a meeting so can’t watch.

    • Constance says:

      The Left has that religious self righteous faith that Trump is the devil and they are better people than we are because THEY are believers, THEY have faith and THEY were obviously chosen to be the favored ones who understand things. Their superiority complex seems to be a religion.

    • 49erDweet says:

      It’s called “smugness”. It’s because they’ve been told they are “smart”. In the same way all little kids think they’re “delightful”. But they’re not smart enough to realize they aren’t THAT smart.

  55. Dora says:

    Here he comes.

    • helenk3 says:

      comey always has this smug look on his face that makes me want to slap it off.
      he really does think he is the kingmaker. he decides who should be president. with his actions and her own actions Hillary did not make it to the whitehouse. Now Trump will not show him what he thinks is his due, so he now must pay.
      just my opinion

    • Jeffhas says:

      He drives a White SUV, because he’s the Good Guy, all those people
      Who are in Black SUV’s are the Bad Guys…. this guy is over the moon in love with his own schtick.

    • Constance says:

      That is sure some clusterfuck of a bunch of meters and fuse boxes on the back of his house. It seems like those should be locked up behind a fence or some sort of cover.

  56. Dora says:

    Anyone watching Varney?

    He opened his show with what is, in my opinion, the plainest and most accurate description of what’s going on when he said – “In another hour, the democrats are going to try to bring down the president”.

    That;s it in a nutshell.

  57. Venus says:

  58. foxyladi14 says:

    lol remembering Obama!!

  59. Venus says:

    must read by Nolte:

  60. elliesmom says:

    I am such a bitch. My BFF has always been obsessed with her weight. She’s pretty much tried every diet there is, lost weight, and gained back more. Sometimes we’re the same size, and sometimes I’ve worn a size bigger, but I’ve never worn a smaller size. She left Florida for New England yesterday, but before she headed north, she asked me if I’d like some of her clothes that are too warm for her new place. I know I was supposed to say they’d probably be too small, but instead I got to say they’re 3 sizes too big. I told her I had been waiting to surprise her, but the reality is she probably would have had gastric bypass surgery if she thought I was skinnier than she is, and I didn’t want to be responsible for that. But the best part is she used the excuse that Trump made her eat too many cookies out of stress. I think our visit is going to be fraught with humor. And I’m a bitch. Sorry, not sorry.

  61. Venus says:

  62. DandyTIger says:

    Been watching Comey. Holy crap, he really is a nutjob. Straight up paranoid crazy. I’m actually shocked at how crazy.

  63. Venus says:

    • Lulu says:

      I bet this rural hick has more linear feet of bookcases full of books than anyone she has every known. And my “grounds” are bigger. Why she must be an urban peasant! Does her master allow her travel?

  64. Venus says:

  65. Venus says:

  66. Venus says:

  67. Venus says:

  68. Venus says:

    • Venus says:

    • helenk3 says:

      did I understand this correctly, comey had a friend leak his memos to reporters?
      so much for honor. what a sleeze did not have the guts to do the dirty deed himself.

      turns my stomach

      • Venus says:

        you got it.
        Comey ran a leak campaign. MSM will not report that.

        He also said Lynch interfered with Hillary investigation, but MSM won’t report that either.

      • mcnorman says:

        Yup, Comey is one dickless creep. I’m sure that those within the FBI that actually have principles watched this guy do stuff like this for a long time.

        • helenk3 says:

          he is like the old biddy that every neighborhood has

          so and so seems like a nice person but……………..

  69. Venus says:

  70. Lulu says:

    I was trying to figure out how to make a delicious sandwich I ate this weekend. All it took was looking it up. It is the Mother Clucker.

    • helenk3 says:

      try one of these. but you have to use the right italian rolls

      Here’s how to make the famous Philadelphia ITALIAN HOAGIE

      1/4 lb Genoa salami
      1/4 lb Prosciutto
      1/4 lb Soprassata salami, hot
      1/4 lb Capicola.

      1/4 cup Iceberg or romaine lettuce
      1 Onion, small
      1/2 tbsp Oregano, dried
      1 Tomato, large

      1/4 cup Cherry pepper hoagie spread, hot
      2 tbsp Olive oil
      1 tbsp Red wine vinegar

      2 Long italian hoagie rolls
      1/4 lb Provolone cheese, sharp

      • Lulu says:

        I don’t have local access to good Italian anything. My husband would eat it everyday if we did. But I bring it home when I’m in Houston from some of the markets. I ate the real thing in Italy and it was to die for. Texas barbeque sandwiches are good too and I can make them. This Clucker sandwich has a sauce of mayo and hot vinegary barbeque sauce which is delish on chicken.

  71. gram krakka says:

    OMG!! So Obama’s saying on TV during the ongoing investigation of Hillary Rotten Clinton’s email that she wasn’t guilty didn’t have a “chilling” effect on the poor FBI underling investigators? The hypocrisy is stunning! And Comey didn’t feel a need to make notes about his meetings with his direct boss Lynch. Somebody please ask that question. Even I can think faster on my feet than most of these highly educated folks.

  72. Dora says:

  73. DandyTIger says:

    McCain called Comey “President Comey”. Long past time to put him out to pasture.

  74. helenk3 says:

    If I were an FBI agent today, I would want to punch the shit out of comey. He as made the FBI into a political arm of the democratic party by his actions. not prosecuting the real crimes of the backtrack bunch and the clinton cronies and pushing a false narrative against trump.
    He has made the FBI look untrustworthy.

    • CiscoKid says:

      I think unofficial tradition is to confront Comey somewhere, hand him your badge/shield and say, ” I believe you know what you can do with this”

  75. DeniseVB says:

    Oy, from the bowels of New Laptop Setup Hell. Received the new ACER about 24 hours ago, who knew there would *walking on hot coals* requirements, the security layers are thick, as in one false click, we start you back to the beginning, as proven by my trying to log back into Twittah!

    We noticed a recent login for your account @blogho.
    Device Chrome on Windows
    Location* Virginia Beach, VA
    *Location is approximate based on the login’s IP address.

    If this was you:

    Great! There’s nothing else you need to do.

    Oh great, WP is making me log in again to post this……..

    • DeniseVB says:

      It seemed to work…..but only after I had to verify my Lucy gravatar too. Oy, next time I buy a new laptop, I hope Jitterbug has a line for granny friendly online experiences.

      Great news, this thread is over 200 comments now, and it’s working for me like buttah 😀

  76. DandyTIger says:

    Judge Napolitano says Trump is in big, big trouble after the Comey testimony. I think a number of the Fox folks are very establishment and will jump if they perceive any blood in the water.

    • Venus says:

      WTF was he listening to?

      MSM has gone from claiming Comey testimony would be a ‘bombshell’ to it ‘doesn’t make Trump look good’

      Only Dems and NeverTrump could think Comey hurt Trump

      • Lulu says:

        They told him to say what they want him to say or no more cannolis to his dressing room. And his dye job looked really bad today.

  77. Venus says:

    TWO reporters make EXACT same ‘mistake’ — not a coinidence

    • gram krakka says:

      And Comey was speaking about criminal investigation of HRC email/server, not Russian interferences in election.

      Amazing how Comey couldn’t determine “intent” on Hillary’s part, but he could determine intent on Trump’s part.

      When do they change the signs at FBI headquarters to FBM, Federal Bureau of Matters? Lynch’s legacy.

  78. Dora says:

  79. taw46 says:

    I was away from home this morning, so tried to follow on twitter. Our former FBI director: “don’t leave me in the room with him alone”, “confused”, “stunned”. Sounds like a wuss to me, not head of a big, bad, FBI agency.

  80. Dora says:

    And the American ISIS continues their destruction!

  81. Dora says:

  82. taw46 says:

    President’s lawyer said Trump never said “I need loyalty, I expect loyalty”. Waiting to hear from him. Watching FBN.

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