Donald Trump has been on the TV again, maybe hoping to undo some of the ridicule that came after his disastrous HBO interview.
Perhaps that’s why he picked one-time ally and flagship Fox News show, Fox and Friends, for the nearly 60-minute meandering chat on Wednesday, in the hope they would give him an easier ride than Jonathan Swan.
Unfortunately, it involved Trump speaking so there were still plenty of ‘What on earth?” moments to be found.
Here’s 6 of the most shocking.
1. When he repeated false claims about how Black Lives Matter started
Donald has an uneasy relationship with the truth in that he doesn’t like or respect it if it doesn’t suit his narrative. Perhaps that’s why he repeated provably false claims about the origins of Black Lives Matter… again.
Speaking about one of his favourite topics – kneeling protests in sports – Trump began ranting about the supposed origins of BLM.
“Black Lives Matter – where did it start?” he said.
“Marching down streets screaming ‘Pigs in a blanket, fry ‘em like bacon.’ They were talking about policemen.”
“So all of a sudden, this has taken on this air of great respectability. Well, how does it start there? It’s a Marxist group. It’s a Marxist group that is not looking for good things for our country”.
A Communist threat and the smearing of a Black civil rights movement. How 1950s of him.
Black Lives Matter, in its current iteration, actually started in 2013, after the acquittal of George Zimmerman, who fatally shot unarmed teen Trayvon Martin.
2. When he couldn’t name a single thing he wanted to achieve in a second term
Yes, the pandemic has thrown all our goals off, but Trump’s inability to name a specific thing he wants to achieve if he gets re-elected doesn’t exactly bode well.
When asked what’s on the agenda for Trump 2021 and beyond, the president started talking instead about how great the US economy had supposedly been pre-Covid-19.
Once again, he claimed that the US had “never had anything like it [...] the best numbers we’ve ever had”.
Which isn’t actually true, according to fact checks.
But when it came to his top priorities, Trump just said that he wanted to “take it from that point and then build it even better”.
Clear as mud.
3. When he said children were “almost immune” from Covid-19
From the man who bought you “hydroxychloroquine cures coronavirus” and “injecting bleach is a good idea”, here’s another great theory: children don’t catch Covid-19.
Speaking about schools reopening he said:
Schools should be open. If you look at children – I would almost say definitely – they are almost immune from this disease.
Hard to believe, I don’t know how you feel about it but they have much stronger immune systems.
Hard to believe indeed because it’s not true; children are not immune from coronavirus. Their symptoms are often milder than adults but they are capable of transmitting the disease and some can suffer critical illness as a result.
What Trump said is so wrong that both Facebook and Twitter removed videos that featured the president’s remarks, for spreading misinformation.
4. When he spouted an antisemitic conspiracy theory
Trump also took the time to use an antisemititc theory to bash antifa. When asked “who finances them?” (no one, because antifa isn’t a specific organisation, it simply means participating in ‘anti-fascist action’), Trump immediately name-checked Jewish investor George Sorors.
“The Democrats. You have Democrats funding them. They say Soros and they say other people.”
Soros’s name is often used as a dogwhistle to mean ‘Jewish’ and plays into a antisemititc trope that a Jewish ‘cabal’ of rich people secretly control world events.
They don’t. And they certainly don’t fund antifa.
5. When he said he done ‘more for the Black community’ than any other president
Trump’s reaction to the demands of equality from BLM have mostly been one of hurt defensiveness. That was on show again here as he continued to claim that, as president, he’d outstripped all his predecessors – including Abraham Lincoln, who abolished slavery – when it came to serving the Black community.
“Nobody’s done more for the Black community,” he said. “I’ll give the one exception – Abraham Lincoln. And even that… But nobody’s done more than I have”.
He then went on to rant about kneeling protests, again. No wonder Vox reporter Aaron Rupar called his remarks "delusional".
6. When he said the USA was in “very good shape”
Trump defended the decision of (often Republican) governors to re-open states in the face of rising Covid-19 cases.
The country’s daily death toll now exceeds 1,000 again with spikes reported in states from Florida to Arizona. But Trump claimed the Democrats were preventing states from reopening in order to harm Republican prospects at the ballot box come November.
“The Democrats are standing in our way, they don’t want the states open, even if the state is in good shape. You know much of the country is in really good shape.
“We have our red spots, the Covid areas, but the country is in very good shape and we’re set to rock n’roll”.
Given that White House coronavirus co-ordinator Dr Deborah Birx warned that the virus was “extraordinarily widespread” on Sunday, it seems that Trump’s view of the crisis is not the consensus.
We live in fear of Trump's next media blitz.