This appeared on Twitter early this morning:
I call my own shots, largely based on an accumulation of data, and everyone knows it. Some FAKE NEWS media, in order to marginalize, lies!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 6, 2017
This seemingly cryptic tweet came as a result, we can only guess, of a piece in The New York Times that suggested that president trump signed the executive order naming Steve Bannon to the National Security Council’s principals committee without reading it. The Times piece suggested that trump was unaware that the order he signed was placing Bannon on the NSC, and that trump was angry with Bannon when he found out.
This revelation has led to speculation from some that trump might be illiterate, and evidence of such a claim surfaced in the form of a deposition video in which the president is asked to read part of a contract. trump’s attorney immediately objects, and trump complains first that what he’s being asked to read is too long, followed by a complaint that he can’t read it because he forgot his glasses.
The revelation also brings up the alarming suggestion that the president isn’t reading the executive orders he’s signing. It suggests that Bannon is well aware of the president’s antagonistic relationship he has with the written word, and exploited this quirk to give himself governmental power he has no business possessing.
Whether or not the accusation that he’s illiterate is true, what should also be sounding ear-piercing klaxons is the notion that if the president can read, he’s making a conscious decision not to. What else might unscrupulous power-seekers-slash-trump-hangers-on place into executive orders to be signed by an intellectually incurious boob?
Perhaps it’s time we require our president to read any executive order he intends to sign out loud and in full view of the press and the cameras before his or her signature validates it. It will force everyone to be fully aware of what the president is signing before it is signed. It might also have the added benefit of letting us know if we’ve elected a member of the Illiterati to negotiate our future.
Meanwhile, in news that doesn’t matter…
Kanye West has apparently deleted all of his trump-defending tweets. What could have possibly gone wrong between them? Will we ever know?