MSNBC's Melber: Is Trump 'Darth Vader’ or ‘the Worst Stormtrooper?'

Listen to the Article!

During a rare moment of clarity on Thursday’s The Beat, MSNBC host Ari Melber seemed to realize the contradictory nature of the liberal media’s dueling hyperbolic narratives against President Trump. “Is he Darth Vader or is he like the worst Stormtrooper,” Melber wondered. The question came while his guests were arguing about whether Trump was an all-controlling and murderous dictator or hopelessly incompetent.

The Senate was taking a break during their final day to ask questions of the Democratic House impeachment managers and Trump’s legal team, when Melber looked to Art of the Deal co-author Tony Schwartz for his insight and teed him up to comment on how “king-like” Trump was being.

Yeah, king-like, dictator-like, autocrat-like. You know, it's no different really than the kind of situation that Putin has or Kim Jong-Un has, or any other autocratic leader,” Schwartz proclaimed.

Schwartz cranked the crazy up to 11 and insisted that the lives of the people Trump “hates most” were at risk if he was reelected. And not only their lives, but shows and networks like MSNBC could go away:

I was just saying to Chris that thinking of, say, the 200 people who Trump hates most, many of which come through this building a lot of the time, none of whom are safe if Trump is re-elected. And I mean literally safe.

And it's easy for me to imagine -- I first started saying this in 2016 and people laughed at me. It's easy for me to imagine that this show can't happen after Trump is re-elected. I mean, all you need to do is look at what happens in countries run by autocratic leaders and all of that is very, very likely to happen if Trump is re-elected.

 

 

Ironic how he admitted people would laugh at him for his claims.

Chris Hayes, the host of MSNBC’s All In, was on hand and sought to temper Schwartz’s hyperbole, but his did it with his own. “I want to respond to that because I feel the tug of that kind of feeling sometimes,” he said. “It's also worth remembering, and this is a line that Ben Wittes has used about ‘malevolence tempered by incompetence.’ I mean, one of the reasons we're here is because the President couldn't fire his own ambassador.”

It was after Hayes dropped his lines that Melber stepped in and noted the conflict in theories about the President. “You both lay it out. When you say it it's compelling, some people might get scared. When you say it it's like wait, is he Darth Vader or is he like the worst Stormtrooper?

“To me that's why the -- what the precedent being set matters so much. Because it is bigger than the figure of Donald Trump. It really is,” Hayes continued to ramble. “And it's about the lessons people take about governance going forward and it's about the way the system is going to function or not function in going forward.”

Obviously, Melber’s reference hit on the fact that Stormtroopers had notoriously terrible aim, which was due to the change in armor design, particularly for helmets, following the end of the Clone Wars and rise of the Galactic Empire.

The transcript is below, click "expand" to read:

MSNBC’s The Beat
January 30, 2020
7:25:07 p.m. Eastern

(…)

ARI MELBER: Tony Schwartz, he is someone you worked with. Viewers may recall. You know him well. And you also broke with him, particularly as his political side emerged. What is your view watching now his demands of the people around him, of the government being not only normalized, that's the lightest word, trying to be codified into precedent on the floor of the Senate what many are calling some of the House managers are calling king-like demands of power?

TONY SCHWARTZ: Yeah, king-like, dictator-like, autocrat-like. You know, it's no different really than the kind of situation that Putin has or Kim Jong-Un has, or any other autocratic leader. I mean, he has now officially said, Dershowitz said it on his behalf, if Trump does it it's not illegal. And that is the place he's been wishing he could arrive since the moment he got to be president.

MELBER: And you're quoting Nixon's infamous interview. Of course, he said that after being run out of office.

SCHWARTZ: Exactly. And you know, this has been a very steady course, and I am completely with Chris that we are at a moment of unimaginable peril.

I was just saying to Chris that thinking of, say, the 200 people who Trump hates most, many of which come through this building a lot of the time, none of whom are safe if Trump is re-elected. And I mean literally safe.

And it's easy for me to imagine -- I first started saying this in 2016 and people laughed at me. It's easy for me to imagine that this show can't happen after Trump is re-elected. I mean, all you need to do is look at what happens in countries run by autocratic leaders and all of that is very, very likely to happen if Trump is re-elected.

CHRIS HAYES: Let me just -- I want to respond to that because I feel the tug of that kind of feeling sometimes. It's also worth remembering, and this is a line that Ben Wittes has used about malevolence tempered by incompetence. I mean, one of the reasons we're here is because the President couldn't fire his own ambassador.

I mean, we know from the record, from Lev Parnas, from Rudy Giuliani texts, that he said it was almost comical. The president was trying to get Marie Yovanovitch. They kept firing her four times. And someone was not executing the order. It took him months. In fact, think about --

MELBER: You both lay it out. When you say it it's compelling, some people might get scared. When you say it it's like wait, is he Darth Vader or is he like the worst Stormtrooper?

HAYES: But this is-- To me that's why the -- what the precedent being set matters so much. Because it is bigger than the figure of Donald Trump. It really is. And it's about the lessons people take about governance going forward and it's about the way the system is going to function or not function in going forward.

The immediate question is about this President's relationship to the Department of Justice, which I think is a really worrying one right now, particularly the fact that he's trying to get this other government to do an investigation when he could call William Barr and say, “why don't you look into this.” Right? The only thing stopping him is William Barr saying no.

(…)

NB Daily Campaigns & Elections 2020 Presidential Events Trump Impeachment Conspiracy Theories Labeling Cable Television MSNBC The Beat with Ari Melber Video Ari Melber Chris Hayes Donald Trump

Sponsored Links