For all its problems, the world is at least a calmer place since Donald Trump was effectively silenced on social media by Facebook and Twitter bans a year ago.
For 12 years and in 57,000 tweets, Trump continued to throw his digital grenades, which he saw as an essential tactic in his advance to political power.
Even after entering the White House and becoming the most powerful figure in the world, he continued to tweet at a rate of 36 posts a day.
Why would Kim Jong-un insult me by calling me old, when I would NEVER call him small and big?, the then US president asked his supporters, reinventing the diplomatic convention of the Oval Office in 2017.
Trump versus Biden
Trump was equally belligerent in using social media to target domestic rivals. Crazy Joe Biden is trying to act tough, he tweeted in 2018.
In fact, he is weak, both mentally and physically, and yet he is threatening me, for the second time, with physical assault. He doesn’t know me, but he would come down fast and hard, crying the whole way.
Social media was Trump’s direct line to his base. This allowed him to rail against the mainstream media, which became addicted to exposing his digital diarrhea, keeping him in the public eye at all times.
It’s tempting to see Twitter as Trump’s oxygen supply and to believe that now the valve has been closed, his political career is over. Yet it is far from clear that the gag of the 45th president has been to his detriment.
When I recently spoke to Robert Moore, the Washington-based senior correspondent for ITV News, he opined that tech platforms were helping Trump by saving him from his own digital gaffes while supporting his narrative of being tough do.
It’s not clear to me that Big Tech, by throwing him off their platforms, did him much harm, Moore said. In fact, maybe in some ways they sanitized him, we can’t read his incendiary, incendiary tweets anymore and that may have done him a favor. To some, he now looks more like a martyr at Mar-a-Lago than a wild-eyed political fugitive.
Moore is a keen observer of American politics. He was the only reporter in the crowd that stormed the Capitol after a Trump rally in Washington on Jan. 6 last year. Within 48 hours, Facebook banned Trump indefinitely and Twitter permanently blocked him, claiming he broke the rules by questioning the legitimacy of the election and glorifying violence.
It was also dumped from YouTube. Moore was onto something. Last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that Trump’s lack of social media presence had boosted his support. WSJ reporter Michael Bender said: What Trump advisers tell me is that people seem to like the former president [more] the less they hear of him. One adviser said of the ban: I don’t know a single person in Trump’s world who regrets that this happened.
Trump’s approval ratings with Americans have improved over the past year (but only to 9 out of 20) while he was not on social media. Bender described this as a very good swing for Trump.
Perhaps because Trump was hushed up, many people in the UK seem to assume he is gone from American politics for good. In fact, he is the strong favorite to win the Republican nomination for the 2024 election and it is likely that this year’s midterms will strengthen his party’s position by giving him control of Congress and the House of Representatives. .
Meanwhile, Trump is pursuing legal action against Facebook, Twitter and Google for blocking him, and plans to launch his own platform, Truth Social. It claims to have $1 billion in investor backing, although a plan to raise more by merging with a publicly traded company is being investigated by US authorities and the Washington Post says the launch could be delayed for several months.
One way or another, we’ll hear from The Donald soon.
I can’t say I can’t wait to read more articles like Obama’s wind turbines killing 13-39 million birds and bats every year! save our bald eagles, symbol of our nation! or if the morons who killed all those people at Charlie Hebdo would have waited, the magazine wouldn’t have folded any money, no success! or freezing and snowing in New York, we need global warming!
But if voters hear more about Trump, they may like him less.
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