I think it’s fair to say that no holiday is safe from President Donald J. Trump’s displeasure with whomever he’s displeased with at the moment.
He’s a mirthless creature who must explode lest he implode, thus each day must provide a fresh whipping boy, so step right up, Chief Justice John Roberts.
The two got into on Wednesday when The Associated Press asked Roberts to comment on Trump’s continued harping on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals for thwarting his immigration policies.
It was actually Judge Jon Tigar of the San Francisco District Court who ruled that migrants seeking asylum must be heard regardless of where or how they entered the United States, not the Ninth Circuit. But hey, when you need a whipping boy, you needn’t be bothered with pesky details. Tigar was an “Obama judge.” To which Roberts replied:
"We do not have Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges. What we have is an extraordinary group of dedicated judges doing their level best to do equal right to those appearing before them. That independent judiciary is something we should all be thankful for."
Trump wasn’t about to let this go, and he was still going on about it on Thanksgiving Day, on Twitter and in a teleconference with military leaders.
Dude, help yourself to another scoop of ice cream, pull up a chair and watch some football with Barron this weekend, will ya?
But, no, no, the Ninth Circuit, Tigar: They’re no good. But Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, whom the CIA has now linked to the murder of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi, he’s great, right? Trumplandia has deemed the self-styled MbS too big to fail, thanks to a U.S.-Saudi arms deal that Sen. Rand Paul said shouldn’t be equated with a jobs program, low Saudi oil prices, the unending obsession with counterbalancing Iran, the need to buck up Israel and – dare we mention -- El Presidente’s business dealings with the Saudis.
In this scheme of things, Khashoggi’s ghastly death in the Saudi embassy in Istanbul, captured on audio tape, means nothing, nor, I guess, does the horror of the U.S.-Saudi involvement in Yemen or the possibility that someone could be murdered someday in an embassy on American soil. In mean, if we won’t stand up for Turkey’s sovereignty, why should anyone stand up for ours?
(Now Trump wants the Roberts court to bypass the Court of Appeals and hear a challenge to his transgender military ban. The Supremes don’t like to take up cases that haven’t been heard by a federal appeals court. What are the chances that Roberts is going to do Trump a favor? Slim and none.)
The only good news in the Saudi Arabia story is that the Rafael Nadal-Novak Djokovic showdown that was slated for Dec. 22 there is a no-go, thanks to Nadal’s minor ankle injury. It would’ve been better had Rafanole taken a principled stand against the Saudi murder immediately, but these days we have to be grateful for small favors.