November 2, 2018

Could Danielle Pletka and Chuck Todd be any more dismissive? Less than an hour after Dear Leader used the Roosevelt Room to declare that under his orders, the military was ordered to open fire on any members of the migrant caravan that threw a rock at them, Pletka and Todd were calling for us to not worry about the language he was using.

Less than an hour after the fraud who stole the office of the presidency (with the help of a murderous autocrat in Russia) declared that rocks were the same as rifles, pundits on MSNBC were off-handedly suggesting we dismiss the power of his words. Thank the Flying Spaghetti Monster that Howard Fineman was there, at least, call them on it. First, he had to set Danielle Pletka straight, as she tried to make it sound as if there is a chance "MOBS" might actually BE pushing across the borders. She tried to make it sound as if trump actually had a point.

PLETKA: Hang on a second. Let's set aside trump's language, when I think we can all agree is intended to be inflammatory, intended to excite his base, not intended to reach across to the center, I totally agree with you about that. On the other hand, this is actually an issue that cuts across parties because Americans do want borders that are defensible. They don't want mobs pushing across. America isn't an idea. America is a country ruled by laws.

FINEMAN: Wait a minute, the fact is, they're NOT open borders. Okay? The borders are not open. That's a conceptual thing he wants. The words being everything.

Sahil Kapur tried to support the importance of this by talking about the troubling conflation of legal and illegal immigration, and the fact that mechanisms already exist for our government to detain people who enter the country illegally. That wasn't good enough for Chuck Todd, and he felt the need to dismiss the emphasis on language again.

TODD: We're all debating the facts on this. He doesn't care about the facts. He's not trying to paint a factual picture. He's trying to paint a dark picture, to get people he's not interested, this isn't about, oh, is it about asylum seeking or not.

FINEMAN: The worst possible way to analyze this is to say his words don't matter. donald trump knows exactly what he's doing rhetorically. He's got an instinct for it, and he's got advice from the Steves, still, Bannon and Miller, and others on how to do this.

Thanks for trying, Fineman. I don't know how many other ways to say that WORDS MATTER. If Pletka and Todd care to have their minds opened about it, I'm sure a few mourners in Pittsburgh would be willing to enlighten them as soon as they're finished sitting shiva.

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