‘Morning Joe’ convened a giant panel on Thursday to break down the Democrat debates. Unsurprisingly, the conversation devolved into “orange bad man” quite quickly. Host and struggling musician Joe Scarborough compared Trump to “Fat Bastard” from the Austin Powers movies. He was so tickled by his own “genius” that he could not stop droning on about it until he was sure every person understood the brilliance of his comparison, and when it seemed there were some people on the panel who didn’t get it or didn’t think it was funny he didn’t let that stop him. Scarborough continued to beat a dead movie character until Donnie Deutsch screamed “Uncle!” and acknowledged the reference.
Although the topic was the debate stage, Deutsch could not resist the urge to compare Trump to a totalitarian despot. It’s become a fetish at this point.
You used the ‘Austin Powers’ rather light metaphor. I with all seriousness, the Mussolini, when Mussolini is standing up on the terrace like this, with a face like that, to me, the parallels with Trump in terms of that self-satisfaction at the chaos he’s creating, the parallels are stunning there. You know what’s so ironic? Coming off of, to me, pretty poor debates both nights for the Democrats, if Trump stood up and basically talked about the economy, talked about, ‘Hey, by the way, two benchmark Democratic strongholds, criminal reform and immigration, by the way, they brought up that Obama deported more people than I ever did. By the way, they were arguing about critical reform. I passed the most comprehensive Criminal Prison Reform Act.’ Stronghold Democratic benchmarks that he could own, of course he doesn’t go there.
Hysterical LITERALLY HITLER™ing aside, Deutsch’s statement is tragically indicative of the current state of the mainstream press. Although their job is to report on the mechanics of government (among other things) they are so feverish with Trump Derangement Syndrome that they can only report on what they think he said instead of what he is saying. If they actually ever listened to Trump instead of just reading their own headlines in one never-ending circle jerk they would know that he is constantly tweeting and talking about all those things. Every chance he gets he talks about how great his economy is, how he’s worked to pass criminal reform and done so successfully and how Obama was worse on all those policies than he is. Trump loves to talk about his own accomplishments…why Deutsch and company don’t know that is perplexing since they’re always complaining about how egotistical he is.
Do you know who else ignored facts in order to form their own narratives, Donnie?
TRANSCRIPT (video below):
SCARBOROUGH: “Did you see the Austin Powers movies? He reminded me at times of the Fat Bastard, it’s a character. It’s a character in ‘Austin Powers’. And he’s sniffing and looking around, he’s saying, ‘Thank you, thank you.’ I thought he was going to say ‘Get into my stomach’ at one point. He’s just really starting to take on this role of Dear Leader. And you can see it last night more than usual. He’s amping it up. He’s amping his audiences up, amping up his racial attacks and the demagoguery. This is a guy — he is, as David Brooks said this morning in ‘The New York Times,’ he’s a force, and the only way the Democrats are going to beat him is with an equal force.”
GEIST: “Well, I mean, we have become so numb to the way that Donald Trump behaves. And when you watch a rally like that, it’s worth pausing to recognize that the President of all the United States and all of these cities is trashing the cities over which he presides, whether it’s Los Angeles or San Francisco or Baltimore. But he knows politically he’s not going to win those places, so he’s made a calculation he can go after that to stoke up the people in that crowd and stoke up the people who voted for him last time. I think it’s also worth mentioning, Yamiche, how far the bar has been lowered for Donald Trump. When everyone was crossing their fingers and saying, ‘Let’s see if he asks the public, the group in front of him, or encourages the group in front of him to chant ‘Send them back’ about the United States citizens, about United States congresswomen. And when he does don’t that, everyone says, ‘Oh, good, okay, at least he didn’t do that.’ That’s the president of the United States and people are acting grateful that he didn’t let the crowd chant ‘Send them back.’”
BRZEZINSKI: “Good point.”
ALCINDOR: “In some ways this is what has made Trump to be able to survive scandals and controversies, because right when you think he’ll hit the lowest, President Trump pulls back just a little and says, ‘You know what? I won’t go for the racist chant of send her back. Instead, what I’ll do is make light for several minutes of the suffering of families and of American citizens all across this country in places like Baltimore and Chicago, which happened to have majority black cities and centers. But then not make — not talk about the suffering that’s going on in the state that he’s in, which is Ohio. I just came back from Ohio. There’s a place called Masonry, Ohio, and it’s nicknamed Misery, Ohio because people there are suffering so much between economic devastation and drug overdoses. And the President didn’t say anything about that. Abby Phillip of CNN had a really smart tweet, she said, ‘Can you imagine a president going on an extended riff about the opioid crisis and overdoses in rural areas across this country?’ And you probably can’t. And it’s true, you probably can’t imagine the President focusing on the counties that I visited, which are 95% white, 91% white in a lot of areas that went for him overwhelmingly in Ohio. He doesn’t want to talk about the struggles those places are facing because a lot of them are run by Republicans.”
SCARBOROUGH: “Yeah. When he’s walking around like that, Donny Deutsch, if I’m a little kid, I’m worried, I’m just worried. ‘Get in my stomach.’ It’s an ‘Austin Powers’ joke, we’ll show you the clips later. So, Donny, Jonathan Lemire and the Associated Press wrote an article this past week about how Donald Trump keeps lowering the bar. That every time you think he has gone as low as he can possibly go, which is of course over three years, has been a great deal. Even the most cynical White House observers before he started attacking Elijah and started attacking these women of color in Congress thought that Trump had gone as low as he could go. As Jonathan reports, a lot of reporters and people inside the White House were shocked that actually the frantic sort of management lifestyle has become even more detached and even more dangerous.”
SCARBOROUGH: “We don’t know where the bottom is. We do know that he continues to shock by the day.”
DEUTSCH: “You used the ‘Austin Powers’ rather light metaphor. I with all seriousness, the Mussolini, when Mussolini is standing up on the terrace like this, with a face like that, to me, the parallels with Trump in terms of that self-satisfaction at the chaos he’s creating, the parallels are stunning there. You know what’s so ironic? Coming off of, to me, pretty poor debates both nights for the Democrats, if Trump stood up and basically talked about the economy, talked about, ‘Hey, by the way, two benchmark Democratic strongholds, criminal reform and immigration, by the way, they brought up that Obama deported more people than I ever did. By the way, they were arguing about critical reform. I passed the most comprehensive Criminal Prison Reform Act.’ Stronghold Democratic benchmarks that he could own, of course he doesn’t go there. The scary thing for me, and Joe, you and I talked about this last week, as him being a transactional ideologue, is he’s going to keep lowering it, keep digging, digging into the base, and then some time around April or May of next year pivot and start acting somewhat normal. And to your whole premise of the segment, that because —“
BRZEZINSKI: “This is normal.”
DEUTSCH: “So, so low. That when he starts just giving a Normandy speech and talks about why don’t we relook at health care a little bit, people are go wow. A mad irony that worries me. He’s going to keep going there. I think I should’s the — I think it’s top it is, I think he’s going to dig and dig and then Pivot and then be tough to beat.”
SCARBOROUGH: “He’s not proven himself capable of being disciplined for more than a day or two. He can give the Normandy speech and then give an interview on Fox News with the crosses of the dead from D-Day behind him and launch the most inflammatory, terrible political attacks against people in the United States. So he can’t — he’s incapable of doing that. I will say the thing that last night’s rally showed — it was a great — I think it was a great comparison with what the Democrats were doing. It showed here is a guy that strutted across the stage. He was — he was being a demagogue. Picking at racial resentments and then you go like the previous two nights you have Democrats going, you know, I have looked at subsection three of page 487 of your Medicare for all plan and I fear that after the third deductible that the coverage may not be as satisfactory if you are in Medicare zone three instead of Medicare zone one. Of course you have to weigh that with a Brookings — I could go because the Democrats went on all night.”
BRZEZINSKI: “They did.”
SCARBOROUGH: “They never — there’s not a Democrat on the stage that understands how to take it to a higher level, that understands the bigger things. I think most importantly, something that Trump understood from the very beginning they need to get you don’t have to play by the rules. If CNN or MSNBC sets up a question to say, senator Harris, Joe Biden is a jerk and he thinks you’re a jerk. How do you respond? You know what? They don’t have to play by the rules. They can go I think Joe Biden has served this country well. Very proud of everything he’s done and I stand with Joe Biden. He stands with me. Now let’s talk about the man who is changing America for the worst. Donald Trump. They don’t have to take the bait, but they always do. And there doesn’t seem to be a Democrat that understands where we are right now in history against this man.”
KAY: “Yeah. I was laughing, so I’m glad — I got lost in the whole health care debate too. At one point I was thinking do I not know my health care policy enough, if I don’t understand this, I’m covering this every day, what are the voters making of this? You’re right. Look, if they’re going to try to go high as a party in a sense these debates are certainly not the best opportunity to take on Barack Obama as you have been saying, Joe, over the last couple of days the most popular living Democrat at the moment and they don’t need to do that game of taking on each other. That’s why that second night in particular of the debates was so dissatisfying and why it makes the field look so weak. I struggled by the end of that three hour long second debate to see Joe Biden up against Donald Trump on a debate stage. I mean, Donald Trump will change the facts, ignore the facts, reverse himself. But he’ll do it with the phenomenal bluster and confidence the whole time through. And against that if Joe Biden with the nominee were to put in the performance he was looking tired and not in control. The only reason that Biden is ahead in the pack is because people think he can win that belief can disappear pretty fast. Once it does what are the Democrats left with?”