Friday the 13th was a series of horror movies. Well, this week was a political horror movie of sorts. Was it for real? It’s too much to write about in one blog post, but I will go ahead and describe what was important to me.
► President Barack Obama gave his final address to the nation.
► An unverified dossier with salacious scandals was released this week about President-elect Donald Trump and his relationship with Russia, prompting continued hostility from the President-elect toward the intelligence community.
► The intelligence community (CIA, FBI) was also in hot water with the Democrats. It now appears that there may have been FBI investigations into the Trump campaign’s ties with Russia (we don’t know, it’s classified information), but FBI Director Comey made no mention of it in public. So did he apply a double standard when he broke protocol and talked publicly about the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified e-mails?
► There was the contentious press conference President-elect Trump had on Wednesday. Trump to CNN reporter: ‘You don’t get a question. You’re fake news’.
► Trump announced that he would not divest his businesses (let his sons run it), and that ‘I could actually run my business and run Government at the same time’. Whoah. That prompted the Office of Government Ethics to raise a big red flag, saying this falls far short of the ethics standards set for US Government officials and Presidents.
► The Republicans continued their moves to repeal the Affordable Health Care Act/ Obamacare. So no, I guess Americans cannot have affordable health insurance. In an über-capitalistic society it’s more important that the health-care industry make lots of money. Sadly, it’s very clear from interviews with people that many (most?) voters vote with their gut, and not with their brains. CNN had a cancer patient on that admitted he was very much against Obamacare, until he signed up for health insurance that saved his life. As for the President-elect : he apparently believes the massive health care law can be repealed and replaced at the same time – in a matter of weeks! – sort of at the stroke of a pen and a signature.
Forget about 2016. 2017 is going to be a banner year for political journalists.