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So Just What “Trump News” Is It That Donald Trump Is Mad About?

Donald Trump speakerphone Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto

Donald Trump woke up this morning firing off tweets about how mad he is that Google search results for “Trump News”—a phrase that no one with any passing familiarity with the internet has ever Googled—turns up mostly bad news about him. (To be fair, nothing good has ever come of Googling yourself at 6am.) Often, the Twitter rants Trump uses as “distractions” are about important issues in themselves that shouldn’t be overlooked, but this one feels particularly like a paper-thin smokescreen.

Why? Well, this morning, before Trump’s tweets, a search for “Trump News” might have directed you to, say, Vanity Fair piece on how last week’s unusually bad Trump news sent him off the rails and made him dig his heels in even harder, like the stubborn toddler he is. The report even mentions that he declined to take a meeting from a bunch of his cronies who wanted to set up an “intervention” with him, because … well, why would he let them do that? Everyone gave him all the power and then expected him to get more reasonable and open to criticism?

Anyway, the “Trump is now more unhinged than ever!” stories have been flying around for a long time. Seriously, a search for “Trump isolated” turns up results at least as far back as September 2017. Every time, it’s the same story. He’s really lost it this time, and he won’t listen to reason, and things are going to go out of control! And things have been continually out of control, but the news around him has also been getting continually worse, and it’s worth paying attention to.

But now, most of what comes up when searching for Trump is news about his ridiculous Google tweets, wherein he falsely complains that Google is rigged against him and conservatives. Meanwhile, Google runs on a complicated algorithm that determines the best search results, and Trump would probably do better to sit back and think about why it is that he only tends to get positive coverage from outlets that are ranked as lower in quality. Unfortunately, introspection does not really seem to be his thing.

There’s plenty of other news he’s probably happy to have buried under a pile of stories about his inane ravings, like how childishly he behaved about Senator John McCain’s death, or the fact that he’s poking around to get a sense of whether he can pardon his former campaign char, Paul Manafort, who was recently convicted of fraud. That pardon would certainly be one more step off the rails, and wow are Republicans likely to shake their heads sternly as the president abuses his powers to let his friends get away with their crimes and send the message that they’re safe from the Russia investigation as long as they don’t snitch.

Or maybe he’s upset about the list that Republicans are reportedly passing around that details all the investigations Democrats will likely launch if they win back the U.S. House of Representatives in November, restoring a basic sense of oversight to the federal government? Maybe it’s that he became an anthropomorphized baby boomer joke when he failed at using speakerphone on television.

Whatever the case, he can claim that he hates Google and the way it portrays him all he wants, but he’s certainly more than happy to use it to substitute his own talking points when he doesn’t like where the conversation is going.

(image: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

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Dan Van Winkle (he) is an editor and manager who has been working in digital media since 2013, first at now-defunct Geekosystem (RIP), and then at The Mary Sue starting in 2014, specializing in gaming, science, and technology. Outside of his professional experience, he has been active in video game modding and development as a hobby for many years. He lives in North Carolina with Lisa Brown (his wife) and Liz Lemon (their dog), both of whom are the best, and you will regret challenging him at Smash Bros.