The manipulation of journalism is perhaps Donald Trump’s only real talent. His career was created by deceiving the media into presenting him as a budding tycoon when he had done almost nothing in business. He used the media to reinflate his reputation repeatedly, after repeatedly driving the business he inherited into the ground, and expertly learned how to bully critics while courting sycophants.
It is not clear, however, that he has bothered to pass any of this hard-won expertise on to the next generation. Eric Trump has uncovered an email from Washington Post reporter David Fahrenthold, who has exposed a number of Trump Organization schemes, some of which are now under investigation. In the email, Fahrenthold politely offers his contact information to a Trump Organization employee. Eric is scandalized:
Of course, by publicizing the email, Eric is also helping Farenthold publicize the contact information he is attempting to get into the hands of Trump Organization employees. Given that a large number of them probably follow Eric on Twitter, he has done Farenholdt a huge favor.
The traditional Trump family response to having its secrets spilled to the public is to call the leaked information fake and insist the sources do not exist, while simultaneously denouncing the leakers for their treachery. But Donald Trump understands enough about the workings of journalism to loathe it and work to undermine it by discrediting it as “fake news” and cultivating propagandists who undermine its values. Eric just seems confused by the whole thing.