Speaking at a press conference in Ise City, Japan on Thursday, President Obama said that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump was causing a lot of consternation among world leaders. Answering a question about Trump at the G-7 Summit, Obama said many international leaders were “surprised” by some of the billionaire’s comments in recent months.
“They’re rattled by it,” Obama said, “and for good reason. Because a lot of the proposals that he’s made display either ignorance of world affairs or a cavalier attitude or an interest in getting tweets and headlines instead of actually thinking through what it is that is required to keep America safe and secure and prosperous, and what’s required to keep the world on an even keel.”
Now, the left-wing press is regarding this as some monumental moment in American history. The sitting president of the United States, on foreign soil, taking shots at his potential successor that question his very competence? Even for presidents who regularly blur the line between professionalism and partisanship, this was a rare break with tradition. It must show just how deeply Obama is concerned about a President Trump.
“President Obama’s public disparagement […] obliterated the now-quaint political convention that partisanship stops at the water’s edge,” wrote the New York Times. “It also revealed a stark truth: The world is worried about Trump.”
Did it, though? Notice the subtle bias here. President Obama merely said something, and yet the nation’s most respected newspaper jumps to the conclusion that he “revealed a stark truth.” No he didn’t. He revealed an opinion. He may have even lied. But when it comes to this president, the media assumes everything out of his mouth is God’s holy truth.
On the other hand, let’s give him the benefit of the doubt. Because based on what several world leaders have said publicly, Obama is probably telling the truth. There certainly does appear to be some worry from the leadership in Mexico and the UK, to name a couple of obvious examples. So fine. World leaders are “rattled.”
Isn’t that precisely what Trump is aiming for?
“When you rattle someone, that’s good because many of the countries in our world have been absolutely abusing us and taking advantage of us,” Trump said in North Dakota. “So if they’re rattled, in a friendly way, we’re going to have great relationships with these countries.”
Trump, remember, isn’t just trying to put Republicans back in the White House. He’s trying to change the paradigm of American – and international – politics. His entire platform boils down to: We can’t afford to keep doing things the way we’ve always done them.
Of course that rattles the world.
That’s the whole point.