On Friday January 20, Donald Trump will be inaugurated as president of the United States. On that day, the Donald Trump tweets will cease to exist. Do I mean that he will no longer tweet? Somewhere, I doubt it. But they no longer will be Trump tweets. They will be White House tweets, if they still exist. He decided to refuse the @POTUS handle of the president of the United States and keep his personal handle. He is wrong if he believes that it changes anything to his presidential liability.
The Trump tweets as we know them
Over more than a year, the Trump tweets were a way for an individual to express himself. Should anyone have decided to be offended by him, it would have been a private dispute between two individuals. The fact that Donald Trump was a candidate or a president-elect did not confer his tweets official value. He could even have invoked his right as a citizen.
The Trump tweets have damaged his reputation in the country and around the world. They will be used against him. By being irresponsible, he has not only made himself a damaged good entering the White House, but he has weakened his Presidency by attacking anybody who might dare to disagree with him.
He has attacked Mexico, Europe, and China and many other countries while lauding Brexit, Russia, Bashar Al Assad. He has insulted heads of State and governments. He has defended his sexual harassment. He has threatened nuclear wars. He treated women like slaves or objects. He has announced that he would sue his opponent, Hillary Clinton, and "lock her in". He insulted journalists. He attacked countless individuals, the last one being John Lewis, a veteran of the Civil Rights movement.
It remains a mystery to me that he could get away with it and not be sued by offended parties. He has already weakened the international reputation of the secret services of the country by justifying the Russian interference in the election through the weakness of the services.
The Trump tweets become White House tweets
The man who wrote those aggressive and insulting tweets will not change. He is a psychopathic narcissist, a mental health disease that can only be cured by serious treatments he will never submit himself to. He is a drug addict of his own tweets. He needs more of it and he needs his daily dose. He is running a show.
The legal nature of his tweets will be an expression, not of Donald J. Trump, but of the executive branch of the United States of America. It means that whatever he says will no longer be treated with disdain as a sick man's behavior. Every single of those words will express the view of the leader of the free world.
His attitude at his first press conference sets the tone. Will he respect the fifth amendment of the United States constitution he will swear to defend on Friday? So far, he has given no indication that he might even consider himself subject to the Constitution and the Laws of the country.
In one word, he will become accountable for his tweets, and unless he is suicidal, he will have either to accept the screening by the White House lawyers or refrain from tweeting. They will be subject to the oversight of the judicial branch: whatever he believes, the Courts and the Supreme Court will hear cases against some of his potentially erratic behavior.
What will the legislative branch do? With an absolute majority of Republicans who are going to follow the party line, what will it take for the Gross Obstructive Party to become a party of government, law and order and dignity? So far, the worst tweets have been ignored. Even the worst candidates for the key administration jobs have been approved.
Many of his tweets have been lies. Is a President authorized to continue to lie? In this post-truth world, trust has gone.
The tweets are only the tip of the iceberg.
Behind the collection of his tweets lies a much more gruesome reality: an uncontrollable man who will consider that he is above the law. He announced how he intends to manage his business: a son-in-law who negotiates in China insulted by his father-in-law, is an advisor to the President and will be among the family members who will "manage" his businesses. Will have access to the most important secrets of the nation and use them for business? Conflicts of interest have already polluted the Presidency. He takes American people for idiots. Does he really believe we can be convinced that they will never discuss business in this closely-knit family? His intention to continue to run a TV show proves the point. He is willing to enjoy the presidency, play it like self-gratifying show and will not consider that he is accountable for his actions.
With the prospect of a narcissistic Presidency, the interests of the country and its people will play second fiddle. It will fundamentally be Moi, Moi and Moi. He will use all possible means to satisfy his appetite for publicity and show.
With an administration of billionaires, former generals and Goldman Sachs operatives, the consensus of the Cabinet will become an impossible task. It will be a noisy Presidency, but a cacophonic one. It will hurt the leadership of the United States in the world and open an era of protectionism. It will make America weak, and not great.
As someone who travels around the world, I can testify of the anxiety of business and political leaders around the world. Everybody is downgrading his or her opinion of America. They never thought that the country could ever elect such a questionable individual.
Running a country is not a TV show: it is a terribly complex and arduous job: it is not a TV show. So far we only had the show. Is he willing to learn? Will we ever see a Presidency? Part of the peculiarity of Mr. Trump's tweets is that he tweets like a celebrity, not a politician or a businessman