Speaking in Texas on Thursday, Trump laid into Amazon. “I have respect for Jeff Bezos, but he bought the Washington Post to have political influence. And I gotta tell you, we have a different country than we used to have. We have a different… He owns Amazon. He wants political influence so that Amazon will benefit from it. That’s not right. And believe me, if I become president, oh do they have problems. They’re gonna have such problems,” he said.
A quick check of news coverage failed to turn up a complete text of his remarks, so for the help of the non-native English speakers I have copied the text below, following the video:
“I’ll tell you what, I think the media is among the most dishonest groups of people I’ve ever met. They’re terrible. The New York Times, which is losing a fortune, which is a failing newspaper, which probably won’t be around that much longer, but probably somebody will buy it as a trophy, keep it going for a little longer. But I think The New York Times is one of the most dishonest media outlets I’ve ever seen in my life. The worst, the worst. The absolute worst. They have an agenda that you wouldn’t believe. And they’re run by incompetent people. They are totally incompetently run.”
“Washington Post, I have to tell you, I have respect for Jeff Bezos, but he bought The Washington Post to have political influence and I got to tell you, we have a different country than we used to have. We have a different — He owns Amazon. He wants political influence so that Amazon will benefit from it. That’s not right. And believe me, if I become president, oh, do they have problems. They’re going to have such problems.”
“And one of the things I’m going to do, and this is only going to make it tougher for me, and I’ve never said this before, but one of the things I’m going to do if I win — and I hope I do and we’re certainly leading — is I’m going to open up our libel laws so when they write purposely negative and horrible and false articles, we can sue them and win lots of money. We’re going to open up those libel laws.”
“So that when The New York Times writes a hit piece, which is a total disgrace, or when the Washington Post, which is there for other reasons, writes a hit piece, we can sue them and win money instead of having no chance of winning because they’re totally protected. You see, with me, they’re not protected because I’m not like other people but I’m not taking money. I’m not taking their money. So we’re going to open up those libel laws folks and we’re going to have people sue you like you never got sued before. We have many things to do. We have many, many things to do.”
(found via The Passive Voice)
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It’s hard to tell whether he is serious or simply telling the crowd what they want to hear, but either way what Trump is proposing amounts to censorship by the government.
We haven’t seen the likes of Trump since McCarthy. Think back to how much damage HUAC did to our country, and then multiple it be the power of the presidency.
That’s what Trump could do, if he wins. And that should frighten everyone.