The Sydney Morning Herald isn’t playing around when it comes to saying what it really thinks about the American president.
Editor’s Note: Samuel Warde is the editor-in-chief of Liberals Unite (recently re-branded as The Art of Living) as well as a contributor to Mindy Fischer, Writer. The opinions expressed in this commentary are his own. You can view a list of his articles here.
The Sydney Morning Herald, the oldest continuously published newspaper in Australia and a national online news brand, published a blistering article titled: “Trump’s not just incompetent but shockingly out of touch.”
As one might guess, the topic was Trump’s disastrous government shutdown.
“There is a moment in every political crisis when the balance tips and a certain outcome becomes, if not inevitable, much more probable,” The Sydney Morning Herald began. “The US government shutdown reached that point on Thursday, and by Friday it had come to an end.”
“Why the abrupt turnaround?” The Sydney Herald asked.
Answering their own question, they responded: “A series of comments from President Donald Trump and his administration on Thursday dealt a deadly blow to his position, because they showed the administration isn’t just incompetent – it’s shockingly out of touch.”
Trump’s failed promises
Continuing, The Sydney Morning Herald explained that: “Americans have historically wanted strong, successful leaders still grounded in the realities of everyday life. Presidents could be wealthy, but they still had to be able to connect with the common man.”
After discussing the performance of past presidents, The Sydney Morning Herald tore into Trump reporting that “his unconventional presidency has been built on a very conventional approach to economic empathy.”
- He promised steelworkers he would reopen plants;
- He promised coal miners that he would save the industry;
- He promised the “forgotten people” that he was on their side;
- He promised that his destruction of NAFTA, the imposition of tariffs, and the war on immigrants would bring a lasting era of economic prosperity.
However, as The Sydney Herald pointed out, “he will almost certainly never make good on these economic promises.”
Irreparable harm to the Trump administration
The article concluded, stating that Trump may very well have “irreparably” harmed his presidency through the failure of his administration to be able to connect with ordinary working Americans – “not just with independents, but with his base.”
And while Trump supporters were unlikely to side immediately with furloughed government workers over their President, they too were feeling the effects of the shutdown, which is harming farmers, small business owners, veterans, and travellers, as well as dragging down the overall economy. That’s why in recent weeks, Trump began losing support not just with independents, but with his base.
Presidents can get away with a lot – the Trump administration has provided ample evidence of that. But one thing they’ve never been able to get away with is an empathy deficit. In exposing that deficit, the shutdown has injured, perhaps irreparably, the Trump presidency.
The Syndey Morning has ripped Trump before
As a side note, this isn’t the first time The Sydney Morning Herald has taken on Trump’s failed presidency. May 2018, The Sydney Herald tore into Trump over his efforts to undermine the Iran nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action with Iran.
In one particularly disturbing passage, The Sydney Morning Herald discussed European efforts to dissuade Trump from blowing up the deal.
Emmanuel Macron visited Trump [in April 2018] as part of a broader European effort to convince Trump not to blow up the deal. As he departed Macron lamented to journalists, “My view – I don’t know what your president will decide – is that he will get rid of this deal on his own, for domestic reasons.”
This suggests that the French president believes the world is a step closer to a potentially catastrophic war because the American president is distressed about revelations that he paid off a porn star to cover up an affair.
Of course, this pattern of dishing out “shock and awe” distractions has become Trump’s trademark. So, it is likely that we haven’t heard the last from The Sydney Morning Herald regarding Trump’s failed presidency.