The Micturian candidate


In the hullabaloo about the recent allegations of Donald Trump’s wet and wild activities in Russia and whether the reports can be verified or not, we’re in danger of missing a couple of things — firstly, the opportunity to refer to him using an amazing pun: “The Micturian Candidate”.

It’s a play on words, borrowing from:

  • The Manchurian Candidate: From the book and films (the first in 1962, and the 2004 remake) of the same name, which are about a presidential candidate who is unknowingly being programmed and installed by adversarial governments, and
  • micturate: Another word for “urinate”. (See? I just added another word to your vocabulary!)

More importantly, the thing we should be really worried about is that the reports are about a cache of memos circulated about the intlleigence community that appear to show communications between officials in Vladimir Putin’s government and Trump’s campaign, the Russian government’s possession of “highly compromising” material on Trump, and Trump having been “cultivated” by Russian intelligence. The “golden showers” thing is just silly; if true, the signs that a capricious, narcissistic president-elect and his team are too chummy with, and possibly beholden to, a very aggressive, authoritarian, anti-democratic, and unfriendly regime are the real problem.

There’s another problem: If false, any reports of real wrongdoings by Trump and company — which are quite likely, given his connections and track record — could be all-too-easily dismissed.

Worth reading

I’m with Lawfare on this one: before reacting to the story — aside from taking advantage of an opportunity to come up with clever puns — slow down and take a deep breath.

As put in their blog:

We shouldn’t assume either that this is simply a “fake news” episode directed at discrediting Trump or that the dam has now broken and the truth is coming out at last. We don’t know what the reality is here, and the better part of valor is not to get ahead ahead of the facts—a matter on which, incidentally, the press deserves a lot of credit.

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