Friday, January 4, 2019

What did Donald Trump do today?

He said he thinks of the shutdown as a "strike."

Today was the fourteenth day of the government shutdown caused by Trump's refusal to sign any appropriations bill that did not include $5,000,000,000 for a wall on the Mexican border. During that time, some 800,000 federal employees have either been laid off, or working without being paid.

Trump has repeatedly insisted—with no evidence—that the very workers who are now going without paychecks are the ones who support him the most. This morning, in a meeting in which he repeatedly lost his temper and erupted in profanity, he said he prefers to think of the shutdown as a "strike."

It's not clear if Trump, who inherited nearly half a billion dollars, actually knows what a strike is.

At a press conference today, he suggested, in all apparent seriousness, that those unpaid workers would continue at their jobs for "months or years."

But CNN reported today that TSA workers—some of whom make less than $30,000 per year—are already calling in sick, in large numbers, to the jobs that they have been doing for two weeks without a paycheck. A union representative said that those employees are likely seeking other (paid) work.

How is this a problem?

  • A "strike" is something workers do to improve their pay and working conditions.
  • A president who can say with a straight face that employees will work for "months or years" for free is either a liar or too stupid to hold office.
  • Maybe someone who thinks the government doesn't need to exist for years at a time shouldn't be in charge of it.