We watched Donald Trump’s fourteen-minute on Tucker Carlson Tonight so you don’t have to, and picked out the Bay Area bits about homelessness and Trump's continued canard that Twitter is silencing him.
President Trump appeared on Tucker Carlson Tonight Monday, and we’re relieved to say that he at least did not openly call for journalists to be murdered, brag about committing sexual assaults, or offer muffin baskets and free arsenals of nuclear weapons to North Korea. But he did touch on San Francisco’s homelessness crisis and his alleged silencing at the hands of big tech.
The entire 14-minute interview is available for free on YouTube, which does not exactly jibe with Trump’s claim that Google is trying to silence him. But we’re talking about Donald Trump and Tucker Carlson here, so whole-cloth arguments galore are pulled from both gentlemen’s asses throughout the exchange. Here’s a sampling of the dumbest, most ill-informed remarks.
Past the midpoint of the interview, Carlson tosses out that “Some of our cities, but New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles — they've got a major problem with [Trump interrupts: It's very sad.] With filth. Why is that?”
Trump responds with the boilerplate conservative grievances, demonstrable falsehoods, and verbal Möbius loops you’ve come to expect from this sitting president. “It's a phenomena that started two years ago. It's disgraceful,” he says, clearly with no idea what he’s talking about. “I'm going to maybe and I'm looking at it very seriously, we're doing some other things that you probably noticed like some of the very important things that we're doing now. But we're looking at it very seriously because you can't do that.”
Does he get any more coherent when specifically calling out San Francisco? He does not!
“When we have leaders of the world coming in to see the President of the United States and they're riding down a highway, they can't be looking at that,” Trump continues. “They can't be looking at scenes like you see in Los Angeles and San Francisco. San Francisco, I own property in San Francisco, so I don't care except it was so beautiful. And now areas that you used to think as being, you know, really something very special, you take a look at what's going on with San Francisco, it's terrible.”
As the Washington Post points out, overall homelessness nationwide has actually dropped significantly in the last decade. And as we at SFist have pointed out, SF's own homeless population actually peaked in 1999 or so, and has not reached that level since.
The president adds a little more Bay Area hate when discussing Silicon Valley, or what Carlson calls “Big tech and it’s strangulation of some of our most basic freedoms.” Trump has words for Twitter in particular, despite CEO Jack Dorsey’s doormat subservience to the president’s behavior on the platform.
“They don’t treat me right,” Trump complains. “I know for a fact, I mean, a lot of people try and follow me and it's very hard. I have so many people coming up that they say, ‘Sir, it's so hard. They make it hard to follow.’ What they're doing is wrong and possibly illegal. And a lot of things are being looked at right now.”
To clarify, following Donald Trump on Twitter merely requires clicking the Follow button on his profile page, and his Twitter following has increased ten-fold since January 2016, from 5.5 million followers to 61 million followers. But who's actually counting?
All of this bonehead outrage and nutjob fallacy is funny, until you remember that these fools are currently in position to put children in concentration camps, convince half the nation of crude and obvious falsehoods, and sell out our national security in exchange for a golf course or hotel deal. There is some comfort in knowing his claim “We may do something” about San Francisco homelessness means he’ll do nothing about San Francisco homelessness, but it also means our distractible commander-in-chief will find something else to do that further destroys the fabric of this nation.
Happy Fourth of July, everybody.