Media freaks as Trump calls Putin better leader than Obama

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Published by: Dan Calabrese on Thursday September 08th, 2016

Even though they understand perfectly well what he means.

Remember how John Kerry, when he was running for president, used to complain that there wasn't enough "nuance" to George W. Bush? He was too much of a black-and-white, straight-talking cowboy, Kerry would say. There is nuance to things. There are shades of gray. Everything isn't always so this or that.

And at the time, his media allies trumpeted Kerry's plea for more nuance and less simple-mindedness in statements by leaders.

They didn't mean it. How do I know? Because of the way they cover Donald Trump. It doesn't matter what Trump says or how easy it is to grasp his context, the media always go for the simplest and most unflattering understanding of whatever Trump says. A case in point is Trump's oft-repeated comments about Vladimir Putin as an effective leader of Russia, especially when compared to the leadership of Barack Obama here.

Trump said it again yesterday during an event in which he appeared back-to-back (but not together) with Hillary. Watch:

Now just in that 30-second clip, Trump offers more than enough explanation and qualification that anyone can see he is not a) praising Putin as a virtuous leader; b) endorsing Putin's approach; or c) naively expecting Putin to become some sort of U.S. ally. The point is that Putin is more effective at pursuing the interests of Russia - at least as he sees them - than Obama is at pursuing the interests of America.

In fact, that's the problem with Obama. He doesn't pursue the interests of America. He uses his position as president of the United States to pursue a global left-wing vision, which usually involves weakening America's influence on the international stage and tilting the balance more in favor of nations like Iran, Cuba, Russia and China.

But none of this matters to the media, which presents this as Trump-praises-bellicose-butcher-Putin. No. Trump believes the president of the United States should be a strong and effective counterforce against Putin, and right now that is not the case because Putin marches on in pursuit of Russian dominance while Obama gives away the store on behalf of America.

That is not hard to understand, by the way. The media do not fail to understand it. They simply ignore what they know he means so they can present it to you in a way that suits their agenda, then hammer him on the far-less-defensible meaning that they, not he, created.

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