By Jon Bauer
Aside from fond remembrances for a Senate maverick and the Queen of Soul, it was a slow news week; we are, after all, chasing stories about President Trump googling his name and complaining about the search results.
Elsewhere in the week that wasn’t:
Survey says: A new Washington Post-ABC News Poll shows that President Trumps disapproval rating has hit a new high point of 60 percent, with 36 percent expressing approval for the job the president is doing. That leaves 4 percent who said they had no opinion.
Well, they had an opinion, but nothing we can share in a family newspaper.
Sir, that’s “Safe Search”; leave that on: Tweeting that Google search results were “RIGGED … so that almost all stories & news is BAD,” President Trump said his administration would look into regulation of social media to correct an apparent bias against Trump and conservative voices.
There’s an easy fix. If Trump goes into “Search Settings,” he can look to see if the “FAKE NEWS” filter’s box is checked.
Ask Rick Santorum about googling his name: Google pushed back the next day, protesting that it doesn’t “rank search results to manipulate political sentiment.” Officials with the company said that results are ranked based on the most relevant responses to a page.
Google explained there could be other reasons Trump isn’t getting the search results he wants: “It could be Russia, but it could also be China. It could also be lots of other people. It also could be somebody sitting on their bed that weights 400 pound, OK?”
Trump’s tie, however, flew at full length: In remembrance of U.S. Sen. John McCain, who died last Saturday, the U.S. flag at the White House was lowered to half-staff on Sunday, but then flown at full-staff on Monday, bucking recent custom to keep the flag lowered until the honored person’s burial. Later Monday, following criticism — in particular from veterans — the flag was again flying at half-staff.
Trump, still harboring ill will toward McCain, flew the flags at full mast on his fleet of battleships that evening while taking a bath.
That’s a hat trick, isn’t it? After the state Supreme Court issued a split decision regarding whether to put an initiative on the November ballot, respondents on one side of the issue asked the court to reconsider, and justices responded by requesting a briefing on how the justices’ various opinions should be interpreted — from initiative promoter Tim Eyman. The court sided with Eyman’s take.
There you go, Tim. Without having ever run for office, you have effectively dictated actions in all three branches of state government.
Better call Saul: Noting recent and expected departures among White House attorneys and communications staff, aides for President Trump are raising concerns over a “brain drain” that could leave the White House ill-prepared as midterms approach and Robert Mueller’s probe of Russian interference in the 2016 election draws closer to an end.
We don’t know how you top Rudy Giuliani as your top legal mind, but we have a suggestion to fill out the communications posts in the press office: As they’re already doing the Trump messaging work, just hire the couch surfers at “Fox & Friends.”
Ma’am, could you, like, pass the cheez doodles: As the recreational marijuana industry seeks mainstream legitimacy, it’s eager to leave behind the stereotypes of stoners and slackers. The CEO of one cannabis company, Lit.Club, is marketing a sleek and stylish vape pen with inspirational slogans like “Light a Path” that are packaged in a way “that won’t embarrass you at the opera.”
Dude. If you’re blazing at the opera, sucking on a vape pen won’t be half as embarrassing as asking if Laser Pink Floyd starts after the fat lady is done singing.
Don’t know much about history: On Aug. 30, 1963, the “Hot Line” communications link between Washington, D.C. and Moscow first went into operation.
Technology advances have since replaced the direct phone line. Now President Trump can quickly show his reaction to Russian President Vladimir Putin with a thumbs-up, a beating heart, a laughing face or an angry face.
Jon Bauer: email@example.com.