Just when you think we’ve reached Peak Derangement, along comes evidence that it’s still a ways off.
Slate had an article on Tuesday, 28 August, focused on reports from White House correspondents Maggie Haberman (New York Times) and Tara Palmieri (ABC News) that Trump doesn’t use a computer.
This was after Trump tweeted about skewed Google search results and Google suppressing conservative content. (Note: this is not the TOTD. That’s further below.)
….results on “Trump News” are from National Left-Wing Media, very dangerous. Google & others are suppressing voices of Conservatives and hiding information and news that is good. They are controlling what we can & cannot see. This is a very serious situation-will be addressed!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 28, 2018
But, my goodness (the chorus of MSM reporters rushed to point out): Trump doesn’t use computers!
As New York Times White House reporter Maggie Haberman reminded us via Twitter, actually, Trump does not use a computer at all, meaning a staffer must have Googled on his behalf.
Says Slate’s Heather Schwedel:
[C]ritically, this once again raises the question of whether the president of the United States knows how to use a laptop, and the answer seems to be “nope.” This is hardly the first time Trump’s tech habits, or lack thereof, have been talked about. As recently as 2016, it was reported that Trump rarely uses a computer: He preferred to read paper newspapers and magazines and to have emails printed out for him.
“Critically.” Well, sure. There’s a bit more, but the whole thing culminated in a classic visual-parody tweet (our TOTD).
— Slate (@Slate) August 30, 2018
Tweeps have been rushing in to highlight the presence of the, you know, laptop computer in the smoking-gun image of the IT-challenged president. But of course that’s a lowbrow reaction; the higher-brow point is that the laptop may be sitting there, but it’s lonely and untended in the hands of our critically computer-nope president.
I’m not sure where the brow falls on the even more critical point, with which I will conclude. Top executives don’t have to use computers (although Trump clearly knows how to do a few things with his iPad). Using computers is what you have staff for.
In fact, the nosebleed-level executive shouldn’t sit around hunched over computers. At that level, your purpose is people, vision, and decisions. Get out and walk. Draw crude maps and strategy vectors in your head. Have a color vision of the big picture going up there. Look people in the eye. Talk to me, Goose.
Jimmy Carter famously used to pore over official documents, meticulously correcting format and syntax. Not an example you want to follow. If Trump has staffers run Google searches for him, and report out the results, that’s the opposite of a problem. It sounds to me like an appropriate use of everyone’s time. The president has to talk about and make decisions about a lot of things he doesn’t do hands-on. That’s what chief executives do.
That’s why we have them.