Tag Archives: visiting

As a foreign reporter visiting the US I was stunned by Trump's press conference

As a foreign reporter visiting the US I was stunned by Trump's press conferenceDespite being subjected to a daily diet of Trump headlines, I was unprepared for the president’s alarming incoherenceNot normal: Donald Trump addresses the press at Otay Mesa, California. Photograph: ReutersAs a regular news reader I thought I was across the eccentricities of the US president. Most mornings in Australia begin with news from America – the bid to buy Greenland, adjustments to a weather map hand-drawn with a Sharpie or another self-aggrandising tweet. Our headlines and news bulletins, like headlines and news bulletins everywhere, are full of Trump.As a political reporter for most of the last 30 years I have also endured many long and rambling political press conferences with Australian prime ministers and world leaders.But watching a full presidential Trump press conference while visiting the US this week I realised how much the reporting of Trump necessarily edits and parses his words, to force it into sequential paragraphs or impose meaning where it is difficult to detect.The press conference I tuned into by chance from my New York hotel room was held in Otay Mesa, California, and concerned a renovated section of the wall on the Mexican border.I joined as the president was explaining at length how powerful the concrete was. Very powerful, it turns out. It was unlike any wall ever built, incorporating the most advanced “concrete technology”. It was so exceptional that would-be wall-builders from three unnamed countries had visited to learn from it.There were inner tubes in the wall that were also filled with concrete, poured in via funnels, and also “rebars” so the wall would withstand anyone attempting to cut through it with a blowtorch.The wall went very deep and could not be burrowed under. Prototypes had been tested by 20 “world-class mountain climbers – That’s all they do, they love to climb mountains”, who had been unable to scale it.It was also “wired, so that we will know if somebody is trying to break through”, although one of the attending officials declined a presidential invitation to discuss this wiring further, saying, “Sir, there could be some merit in not discussing it”, which the president said was a “very good answer”.The wall was “amazing”, “world class”, “virtually impenetrable” and also “a good, strong rust colour” that could later be painted. It was designed to absorb heat, so it was “hot enough to fry an egg on”. There were no eggs to hand, but the president did sign his name on it and spoke for so long the TV feed eventually cut away, promising to return if news was ever made.> In writing about this not-especially-important or unusual press conference I’ve run into what US reporters must encounter every dayHe did, at one point, concede that would-be immigrants, unable to scale, burrow, blow torch or risk being burned, could always walk around the incomplete structure, but that would require them walking a long way. This seemed to me to be an important point, but the monologue quickly returned to the concrete.In writing about this not-especially-important or unusual press conference I’ve run into what US reporters must encounter every day. I’ve edited skittering, half-finished sentences to present them in some kind of consequential order and repeated remarks that made little sense.In most circumstances, presenting information in as intelligible a form as possible is what we are trained for. But the shock I felt hearing half an hour of unfiltered meanderings from the president of the United States made me wonder whether the editing does our readers a disservice.I’ve read so many stories about his bluster and boasting and ill-founded attacks, I’ve listened to speeches and hours of analysis, and yet I was still taken back by just how disjointed and meandering the unedited president could sound. Here he was trying to land the message that he had delivered at least something towards one of his biggest campaign promises and sounding like a construction manager with some long-winded and badly improvised sales lines.I’d understood the dilemma of normalising Trump’s ideas and policies – the racism, misogyny and demonisation of the free press. But watching just one press conference from Otay Mesa helped me understand how the process of reporting about this president can mask and normalise his full and alarming incoherence.



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Gingrich on Tlaib visiting Israel, Trump's New Hampshire rally, 2020 Democrat polls

Gingrich on Tlaib visiting Israel, Trump's New Hampshire rally, 2020 Democrat pollsFormer House speaker and Fox News contributor Newt Gingrich talks the news of the day on 'Fox & Friends.'



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The powerful pro-Israel lobby and leading Democrats tear into Trump for pressuring Israel to bar Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib from visiting

The powerful pro-Israel lobby and leading Democrats tear into Trump for pressuring Israel to bar Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib from visitingBoth Democrats and Republicans condemned the Israeli government's decision to bar Democratic Reps. Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib from entering Israel.



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89-year-old Florida woman battles and kills 6-foot snake after it eats visiting birds

89-year-old Florida woman battles and kills 6-foot snake after it eats visiting birdsAn 89-year old Tallahassee woman killed a six-foot snake in her backyard yard after it ate most of her birds in three weeks.



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Trump insulted Ohio Democrats after visiting Dayton shooting victims, and mistakenly thought one had run for president

Trump insulted Ohio Democrats after visiting Dayton shooting victims, and mistakenly thought one had run for presidentTrump falsely accused Sen. Sherrod Brown and Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley of "totally misrepresenting" his trip to a Dayton hospital to visit victims.



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Boy thrown from London's Tate Modern is French tourist visiting UK

Boy thrown from London's Tate Modern is French tourist visiting UKA six-year-old boy thrown from a tenth-floor viewing platform at London’s Tate Modern gallery is a French national who was visiting the British capital with his family, police said Monday. The boy is no longer in a life-threatening condition, according to London’s Metropolitan Police, who appealed for further witnesses to the Sunday afternoon incident to come forward. “This is being treated as an isolated event with no distinct or apparent motive,” senior investigating officer DCI John Massey said in a statement, adding there was no known link between the victim and the teen arrested.



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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Honored New Zealand Victims By Visiting The New Zealand House In London

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Honored New Zealand Victims By Visiting The New Zealand House In LondonThe terror attack on a mosque in Christchurch may have occurred thousands of miles away, but Meghan Markle and Prince Harry made sure to honor the 50 victims of the tragedy on Tuesday by visiting New Zealand House in London and paying their respects.



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Russia Offers Warm Words, Little Cash to Visiting Venezuela Ally

Russia Offers Warm Words, Little Cash to Visiting Venezuela AllyRussia will continue to provide “legitimate humanitarian assistance” to Venezuela, which faces a “cynical campaign” by the U.S. and its allies against President Nicolas Maduro’s government, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said after talks with Rodriguez in Moscow on Friday. There are no discussions “at the presidential level” about financial help for Venezuela, said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, adding that President Vladimir Putin has no time in his schedule to meet with Rodriguez.



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Trump Avoids Visiting Troops In Harm’s Way, Talks To Them From His Country Club Instead

Trump Avoids Visiting Troops In Harm’s Way, Talks To Them From His Country Club InsteadFor the second straight year as president, President Donald Trump chose not to



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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Is Totally Geeking Out While Visiting The U.S. Capitol

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Is Totally Geeking Out While Visiting The U.S. CapitolCongresswoman-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — the 29-year-old who made



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