The NY times has published this User Manual for Republican presidential wannabes. It is based on the latest edition of a GOP office holder and the behavior of same. The bar has been lowered so far that we need to pause and take stock of each and every point. This can be substituted for the next State of the Union address:
THE REPUBLICAN'S GUIDE TO PRESIDENTIAL ETIQUETTE
BY THE EDITORIAL BOARD
JAN. 20, 2018
When the editorial board published the first edition of the Republican's Guide to Presidential Etiquette last May, we hoped to provide a helpful reminder to those morally upright members of the G.O.P. who were once so concerned about upholding standards of presidential decorum. Remember the hand-wringing when Barack Obama wore a tan suit or tossed a football in the Oval Office?
Yet even as the current occupant of the White House continues to find new and shocking ways to defile his office, congressional Republicans have only lashed themselves more tightly to him. The examples come so fast that it's easy to forget that the last one happened just four days ago, or just this morning.
As part of our continuing effort to resist the exhausting and numbing effects of living under a relentlessly abusive and degrading president, we present, for the third time in nine months, an updated guide to what Republicans now consider to be acceptable behavior from the commander in chief. As before, these examples, drawn from incidents or disclosures in the last three-plus months, do not concern policy decisions — only the president's words and actions.
And no, we're not even opening that Michael Wolff book.
IF YOU ARE PRESIDENT, YOU MAY NOW:
Imply, without evidence, that a television anchor was involved in a murder
Question the authenticity of a recording of you bragging about sexual assault, even though you previously admitted it was real
Say the F.B.I.'s reputation is "in tatters — worst in history" and call members of the intelligence community "political hacks"
Retweet inflammatory and fake anti-Muslim videos from an ultranationalist British group
Call the American justice system a "joke" and a "laughingstock"
Have your lawyer pay $130,000 in hush money to a porn star with whom you had an affair while your wife was at home caring for your new son
Ask, in a meeting with lawmakers on immigration policy, "Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?," referring to Africa, and "Why do we want people from Haiti here? Take them out."
Make fun of a military flag ceremony
Retweet a doctored photo of yourself with the name of a national news organization splattered on the bottom of your shoe
Continue to call for a criminal investigation of your former political opponent, whom you call the "worst (and biggest) loser of all time" a year after the election
Exploit a White House event honoring Native American veterans to mock a senator with a racially charged slur
Change a critical element of your explanation for firing your national security adviser
Shut down a bogus voter-fraud commission because "Democrat states" refuse to turn over necessary information, even though states with both Democratic and Republican leadership did, and for good reason
Tell your rich friends after your tax bill passes, "You all just got a lot richer"
Boast that you have a higher I.Q. than your secretary of state, who fails to deny that he called you a "moron"
Defend your mental competency by saying that you are "like, really smart" and a "very stable genius"
Tell your attorney general not to recuse himself from overseeing an investigation into your campaign, then when he does anyway, call it "a terrible thing"
Falsely claim that your predecessor failed to contact the families of fallen soldiers, and then exploit the death of your chief of staff's son to defend yourself
Threaten to take away a TV network's broadcast license for reporting on your deliberations about the nation's nuclear arsenal
Threaten to use federal tax law to punish a professional sports league for letting its players express political opinions
Tell reporters that "It's frankly disgusting the way the press is able to write whatever they want to write, and people should look into it"
Warn American citizens in Puerto Rico, only weeks after a catastrophic hurricane, that the federal government can't help them out "forever," even as you tell victims of a hurricane in Texas, "We are with you today, we are with you tomorrow, and we will be with you EVERY SINGLE DAY AFTER, to restore, recover, and REBUILD!"
Spend one-third of the first year of your taxpayer-funded presidency visiting your own golf courses or properties
While debating policy with lawmakers on live television, accidentally agree to a deal that is the opposite of what your party wants, get corrected by the House majority leader, and then release an official White House transcript that omits the exchange
Insult people, places and things constantly
Say that your former White House adviser and campaign chief has "lost his mind," after another former adviser and campaign manager is indicted on money laundering and other federal charges
Claim that a new tax bill you support will "cost me a fortune," even though it will probably save you millions, but who knows since you refuse to release your tax returns
Fail to grasp the basic science of climate change
Take credit for the fact that no one died on a domestic commercial airliner during your first year in office
Tell attendees at a rally to be "happy you voted for me," and that they are "so lucky that I gave you that privilege"
Continue to mock foreign leaders by implying that they are, among other things, "short and fat"
After helping to negotiate the release of college athletes arrested in China, say "I should have left them in jail" after the father of one of them — whom you call "the poor man's version of Don King" — doesn't express proper gratitude
Get in a Twitter fight with a senator of your own party, during which you mock his height
Praise the delivery to Norway of fighter planes that exist only in a video game
Call for the firing of a journalist who mistakenly tweeted about crowd size at your rally
Decline to invite Jewish Democrats in Congress to the annual White House Hanukkah party
Say that you're "very frustrated" that you cannot tell the Justice Department what to do, but also claim that "I have absolute right to do what I want to do with the Justice Department."
Try to stop the publication of a book that says critical things about you and your administration
Tell more than 2,000 lies in a year, or roughly five a day
Tell your advisers that the 15,000 Haitians sent here in 2017 "all have AIDS," and that Nigerians who saw America would never "go back to their huts"
Blame a domestic terror attack on a senator of the opposing party, and then undermine the prosecution of the attacker by calling publicly for his execution
Falsely claim a rise in British crime is due to "radical Islamic terror"
Accuse an F.B.I. agent of treason without evidence
Watch four to eight hours of cable television a day, mostly the channel that feeds you self-serving propaganda
Say a female senator of the opposing party "would do anything" for your campaign donations
Choose for federal judgeships nominees who cannot identify or explain basic legal concepts, and who were rated "not qualified" by the American Bar Association
Falsely claim that you have signed more legislation than any first-year president, when in fact you have signed less than any post-World War II president
Taunt a foreign leader who claims he has nuclear weapons by saying your "nuclear button" is "a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!"
Criticize a law that your party firmly supports, then, two hours later, reverse yourself
Mock an investigation into whether your campaign colluded with a foreign government to swing the election as a "phony cloud," a "total hoax," "fabricated and politically motivated," a "witch hunt" and an "artificial Democratic hit job" that "makes the country look very bad"and serves as "an excuse for losing an election that they should have won" — oh, and also claim that the Democrats were the real colluders
THAT'S ALL IN ADDITION TO BEING ABLE TO:
Mock a foreign leader with a demeaning nickname and threaten his country with nuclear annihilation over Twitter
Call for the firing of "son of a bitch" athletes who choose to exercise their right to free speech
Refer to the White House as "a real dump"
Spend the weekend golfing at your private club while the mayor of an American city wades through sewage-filled water to help citizens after a catastrophic hurricane, then accuse that mayor of "poor leadership" when she criticizes your administration's slow response to the storm
Criticize victims of that hurricane still living without drinking water or electricity by saying they "want everything to be done for them"
During a visit to some of those victims, throw rolls of paper towels at them and tell them they should be "very proud" that only 16 people have died so far, unlike in a "real catastrophe"
Attack a senator battling terminal cancer
Pick nominees to the federal bench who call a sitting Supreme Court justice a "judicial prostitute" and refer to transgender children as part of "Satan's plan"
Campaign hard for a Senate candidate; then when he appears likely to lose, say "I might have made a mistake" and later delete your tweets supporting him
Behave so erratically and irresponsibly that senators of your own party resort to saying you're treated like someone at "an adult day-care center" to keep you from starting World War III
Spend one of every three days as president visiting at least one of your own properties
Publicly and privately humiliate your own attorney general for recusing himself from an investigation into your campaign
Say nothing when a foreign leader's bodyguards brutally attack peaceful protesters in the streets of Washington, D.C.
Tweet GIFs of yourself violently attacking the media and your former political opponent
Encourage police officers not to be "too nice" when apprehending criminal suspects
Help draft a misleading statement about the purpose of a meeting between your son, other top campaign aides and representatives of a rival foreign power intent on interfering in the election
Deliver a speech to the Boy Scouts of America that includes mockery of a former president and winking references to sexual orgies, and then lie by claiming that the head of that organization called and told you it was the best speech ever delivered in Boy Scout history
Hang a framed copy of a fake Time magazine cover celebrating your business acumen in your golf clubs around the world
Mock a female television anchor's appearance, saying the anchor was "bleeding badly from a face-lift" at a holiday gathering at your private resort
Force your cabinet members to take turns extolling your virtues in front of television cameras
Welcome into the Oval Office a man who threatened to assassinate your predecessor, whom he called a "subhuman mongrel," and who referred to your political opponent as a "worthless bitch"
Continue to deny that Russia attempted to influence the presidential election, despite the consensus of the American intelligence community — and yet also blame your predecessor for not doing anything to stop that interference
Grant temporary White House press credentials to a website that, among other things, claims that Sept. 11 was an "inside job" and that the massacre of 20 schoolchildren in Newtown, Conn., was a hoax
Block people who criticize you on Twitter
Claim that an investigation into your campaign's possible collusion with a foreign power is "the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!"
Pressure multiple intelligence chiefs to state publicly that there was no collusion between your presidential campaign and the Russian government
Without consulting anyone at the Pentagon, announce a new policy barring transgender soldiers from serving in the military
Pardon a former sheriff who was convicted of criminal contempt of court for refusing to obey the law
Continue to repeat, with admiration, a false story about an American military general committing war crimes
Mock the mayor of a world city for his careful, sober response to a terrorist attack
Tell Americans that a march of torch-carrying white supremacists and neo-Nazis includes "some very fine people" — and when one of those marchers murders a peaceful counterprotester, condemn violence on "both sides"
Run an administration whose ethical standards have, in the words of the federal government's top ethics enforcer, made the United States "close to a laughingstock"
Hide data that don't support your pre-existing policy preferences
Admit to trying to intimidate a key witness in a federal investigation
Continue to leave hundreds of executive branch positions unfilled
Profit off the presidency, accepting millions of dollars from foreign government officials, businesses, politicians and other supporters who pay a premium to patronize your properties and get access to you — while also attempting to hide the visitor lists at some of those properties from the public
Promise to drain the swamp, then quietly grant ethics waivers to multiple former industry lobbyists who want to work in your administration
Tell a lie, on average, more than five times a day
Call for criminal investigations of your former political opponent, seven months after winning the election
Appoint your family wedding planner to head a federal housing office
Shove aside a fellow head of state at a photo-op
Attack private citizens on Twitter
Delegitimize federal judges who rule against you
Refuse to take responsibility for military actions gone awry
Fire the F.B.I. chief in the middle of his expanding investigation into your campaign and your associates
Accuse a former president, without evidence, of an impeachable offense
Employ top aides with financial and other connections to a hostile foreign power
Blame the judiciary, in advance, for any terror attacks
Call the media "the enemy of the American people"
Demand personal loyalty from the F.B.I. director
Threaten the former F.B.I. director
Accept foreign payments to your businesses, in possible violation of the Constitution
Occupy the White House with the help of a hostile foreign power
Intimidate congressional witnesses
Allow White House staff members to use their personal email for government business
Claim, without evidence, that millions of people voted illegally
Fail to fire high-ranking members of your national security team for weeks, even after knowing they lied to your vice president and exposed themselves to blackmail
Refuse to release tax returns
Hide the White House visitors' list from the public
Vacation at one of your private residences nearly every weekend
Use an unsecured personal cellphone
Criticize specific businesses for dropping your family members' products
Review and discuss highly sensitive intelligence in a restaurant, and allow the Army officer carrying the "nuclear football" to be photographed and identified by name
Hire relatives for key White House posts, and let them meet with foreign officials and engage in business at the same time
Promote family businesses on federal government websites
Tweet, tweet, tweet
Collude with members of Congress to try to shut down investigations of you and your associates
Threaten military conflict with other nations in the middle of news interviews
Compare the U.S. intelligence community to Nazis
Display complete ignorance about international relations, your own administration's policies, American history and the basic structure of our system of government
Skip daily intelligence briefings
Share highly classified information with a hostile foreign power without the source's permission
Patriotism is not a short and frenzied outburst of emotion but the tranquil and steady dedication of a lifetime.
- Adlai Stevenson
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