On Wednesday afternoon, Donald Trump held another one of his all-access cabinet meetings where he invites the media to film him riffing and ranting on whatever pops into his “very large” brain.
One thing that’s worth noting right off the bat is that if the staff exodus continues, holding these events is going to get pretty embarrassing considering there won’t be enough people to fill up the chairs around the table.
To say Wednesday’s proceedings were a bizarre spectacle would be to grossly understate the case. Obviously, the nation is anxious to hear Trump’s thoughts on a variety of subjects including, but by no means limited to, Syria, immigration and, of course, the government shutdown.
You almost – almost – feel sorry for him. Because it is abundantly clear that the media is treating him like a circus attraction at this point. Sure, he invites everyone in, but the only reason anyone is interested is because the press knows he’s going to embarrass himself or otherwise say something (and probably a lot of somethings) insane.
Nobody seriously expects Trump to say anything meaningful about Syria or about immigration or about the prospects for reopening the government. We’re all just tuning in to laugh at him and he didn’t disappoint.
We’re going to run through these clips quickly in no particular order.
Here is Trump very matter-of-factly explaining how “they” say he’s “the most popular president in the history of the Republican party” before inexplicably pivoting to a story about how he called up OPEC “people” and told them to “let it flow” because gasoline (not oil) was at $83/bbl and it was “going to $125” – “Rick.” He also seems to suggest that he saved the world from a depression.
On Syria, Trump attempted to explain his strategy for pulling U.S. troops out. Asked about his timeline he referred reporters to something he heard from somebody else (“…somebody said four months”) as though he’s now just soliciting ideas from random people in the KFC drive through with Mattis gone. His assessment of Syria as a country is pretty straightforward: “It’s sand and death”, the President says. Watch this:
On Afghanistan, Trump launched into a drunk history of the Soviet invasion which was too stupid to believe – even for him. Once he finished explaining why “Russia is called Russia now”, he suggested India should invade Afghanistan.
Trump also explained that contrary to opinion polls, he might well be “the most popular person in Europe” and if he decided to, he could “run for any office he wanted” across the pond.
He also regaled the press with the sad story of his lonely Christmas at the White House where his only companions where men standing in the yard with machine guns.
Finally, here’s Trump explaining how, when he became President, he had a meeting with “lots of generals” who were “like, from a movie” and were better looking than Tom Cruise.
Believe it or not, you haven’t even heard the punchline.
The punchline to all of this is that he actually printed out the Game of Thrones-style “Sanctions are Coming” meme that he posted on Twitter last year, had it made into a poster and put it on the table in front of everybody.