A succession of frantic staff conference calls

Words and meanings. So slippery.

Like, the things that people who work for Trump say when reporters ask about the wiretap tweets.

“I don’t know anything about it,” John F. Kelly, the homeland security secretary, said on CNN on Monday. Mr. Kelly shrugged and added that “if the president of the United States said that, he’s got his reasons to say it.”

Well yes, of course he has his reasons to say it – but are they good reasons? Reasons can be anything. His reasons can be that he’s an angry petulant narcissistic little man who hates and resents Obama because Obama is so much better than he is on pretty much any dimension you can think of. His reasons can be that he’s a loathsome malevolent racist shit who hates Obama for loathsome malevolent racist shitty reasons. His reasons can be that he’s totally fucking up his presidency and he’s angry about that and he felt like lashing out.

His poor staff though. He does these things and they have to jump as if electrocuted.

Mr. Trump’s Twitter posts, viewed with amazement outside the West Wing bubble, often create crises on the inside. That was never truer than when Mr. Trump began posting from his weekend retreat at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida shortly after sunrise on Saturday.

His groggy staff realized quickly that this was no typical Trump broadside, but an allegation with potentially far-reaching implications that threatened to derail a coming week that included the rollout of his redrafted travel ban and the unveiling of the Republican plan to replace the Affordable Care Act.

It began at 6:35 a.m. with a Twitter post reading: “Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my ‘wires tapped’ in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!”

Three other posts quickly followed, capped by a 7:02 rocket that read: “How low has President Obama gone to tapp my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!”

That led to a succession of frantic staff conference calls, including one consultation with the White House counsel, Donald F. McGahn II, as staff members grasped the reality that the president had opened an attack on his predecessor.

Aw. There they were, sleeping late on a Saturday morning, and wham they had to jump up and have a bunch of conference calls. Nobody wants to wake up that way, especially on a Saturday.

Mr. Trump, advisers said, was in high spirits after he fired off the posts. But by midafternoon, after returning from golf, he appeared to realize he had gone too far, although he still believed Mr. Obama had wiretapped him, according to two people in Mr. Trump’s orbit.

Wow. He was all happy about it for hours. He’s that thick. It took him nearly all day to realize you actually shouldn’t accuse a former president of a felony with no evidence. On Twitter.

People close to Mr. Trump had seen the pattern before. The episode echoed repeated instances in the 2016 presidential campaign.

During the primary contests, Mr. Trump seized on a false National Enquirer article that raised a connection between the father of Senator Ted Cruz of Texas and John F. Kennedy’s assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald. Later, Mr. Trump justified it to skeptical campaign aides by saying, “Even if it isn’t totally true, there’s something there,” according to a former campaign official.

I guess that’s his much-vaunted (by him) skill at “negotiation”? He puts out a flaming lie as a starting point and then bargains down so that he’s left with a smaller lie? As if that’s what truth is, something you can negotiate?

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