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Thursday, October 26, 2017

Attacking the courts, press and Congress, Trump is poised to destroy the presidency

"The Remaking of the GOP" is how cartoonist Nate Beeler of The Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch sees President Trump's attacks on Republican members of Congress who don't do his bidding.

The Atlantic: He's bringing
 vital institutions down with him



President Trump is a "Frankenstein's monster of past presidents' worst attributes," The Atlantic magazine says in a hard-hitting cover story:
"Andrew Jackson's rage, Millard Fillmore's bigotry, James Buchanan's incompetence and spite; Theodore Roosevelt's self-aggrandizement; Richard Nixon's paranoia, insecurity and indifference to law; and Bill Clinton's lack of self-control and reflexive dishonesty."

"Will Donald Trump Destroy the Presidency?" is the troubling headline on the cover of The Atlantic's October issue, though I question the use of a question mark.

"He [Trump] disdains the rule of law. He's trampling norms of presidential behavior and he's bringing vital institutions down with him," Jack Goldsmith reports.

"Donald Trump is testing the institution of the presidency unlike any of his 43 predecessors," Goldsmith says:
"We have never had a president so-ill-informed about the nature of his office, so openly mendacious, so self-destructive, or so brazen in his abusive attacks on the courts, the press, Congress (including members of his own party), and even senior officials within his own administration."

At another point in the article, Goldsmith says:

"Trump, in short, is wielding a Soprano touch on American institutions: 'I'm fucking King Midas in reverse here,' Tony Soprano once told his therapist. 'Everything I touch turns to shit.'" 

Read the complete article here:

Cartoonist Adam Zyglis of The Buffalo (N.Y.) News calls the Harvey Weinstein sexual-harassment scandal, "No Country for Dirty Old Men ... Except if you're President." Go to Cagle.com for many more political cartoons.

The Record

My so-called local daily newspaper, The Record of Woodland Park, pulled out all the stops in covering the Yankees' bid to play in the World Series. 

Five days of front-page coverage ended in the Bronx Bombers, well, bombing or, as the headline on last Sunday's front page put it:

What a joke. In these perilous times, putting sports on the front page is a real disservice to readers.

College rapes

What was Editor Richard A. Green thinking when he allowed Columnist Mike Kelly to give a Page 1 platform in last Sunday's paper to a defense attorney for male college students who rape and commit other sexual violence against women on campus?

Freshman women are the favorite targets of these predators.

Kill the headline

Many readers noticed a headline over a fatal accident in Tuesday's section:

"Man killed by own car on Route 80"

But if they bothered to read the story on 3L in the Local section, they realized nothing could be farther from the truth.

Turns out a Pennsylvania man crashed his Honda sedan into a guardrail in Parsippany, and was standing alongside the vehicle in the center lane when an SUV hit the sedan, which hit the owner, causing the fatal injuries.

Police blotter

Wednesday's Local section had only four news pages, but carried eight crime, fire and court stories.

And the Business section on Wednesday promoted UNTUCKit, a company that sells short men's shirts meant to be worn outside the pants.

The shirt front "reaches mid-fly and is tapered on the sides to reveal the pockets," says Staff Writer Joan Verdon.

The shirts range from $68 to $98 -- meaning you'd be paying a lot more for much less material.

Local foodie?

Wednesday's Better Living section profiled Brigitt Early of Ridgewood, praising the 30-year-old woman's Instagram food photos, "which will make your stomach growl with hunger," says Staff Writer Laura Adams Stiansen.

Unfortunately, the overwhelmingly older readers of the print edition may react with heartburn or worse when they hear about Early's affection for doughnuts, S'mores, apple strudel filling "topped with crunchy bacon pieces" and nachos.

USA Today

After The Record was purchased by the Gannett Co., the daily became part of the USA Today network.

That means North Jersey readers get a lot of news that has no relevance to them, such as today's front-page story on a California trucking company that cheated drivers and now has evaded paying a state judgment of $8.7 million (1A).

Teterboro flights

A story on the Local front today promises long-suffering Hackensack residents the FAA will divert business jets and other planes headed for Teterboro Airport "as early as summer 2019" (1L).

The planes would avoid flying over Prospect Avenue high-rises and Hackensack University Medical Center.

This would be the second attempt to do so.

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