Trump must really hate that sweet sweet Prime shipping.
This week, Big Daddy Trump has been up in arms about retail giant Amazon. He’s mostly mad about Amazon’s alleged abuse of the Postal Service, claiming the company pays too little tax and takes advantage of the USPS. He also claims that Amazon, with one of the largest third-party seller programs in the world, is putting True American™ small businesses out of business.
I have stated my concerns with Amazon long before the Election. Unlike others, they pay little or no taxes to state & local governments, use our Postal System as their Delivery Boy (causing tremendous loss to the U.S.), and are putting many thousands of retailers out of business!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 29, 2018
Hilariously, this is totally wrong. As Axios puts it: “It’s been explained to him in multiple meetings that his perception is inaccurate and that the post office actually makes a ton of money from Amazon.”
This isn’t the first time Trump has gotten all pissy at Amazon. Twice in 2017 he tweeted invective, but it was so lost in the storm of cranky old man tweets that the poor capitalization barely got noticed, let alone the atrocious comma placement or frankly dull content.
Amazon is doing great damage to tax paying retailers. Towns, cities and states throughout the U.S. are being hurt – many jobs being lost!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 16, 2017
Why is the United States Post Office, which is losing many billions of dollars a year, while charging Amazon and others so little to deliver their packages, making Amazon richer and the Post Office dumber and poorer? Should be charging MUCH MORE!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 29, 2017
Things are different, this time, however: Trump’s hissy fit has actually caused Amazon’s stocks to take a tumble soon after his tweet, and I can’t imagine Jeff Bezos is feeling very charitable about that. I have to imagine that when he asks Alexa what the weather is, she just purposefully gives him wrong information out of spite. That would at least partially explain his hang up.
One way to settle this Old White Man Fight? Gladitorial combat. Winner gets both Amazon and the United States Presidency. Jeff Bezos wears aviator sunglasses AND a vest when it’s sunny, so my money’s on him. Plus he’s totally cool about not having hair, while Trump wears the evidence of his hair-based insecurity right on his head.
What did Amazon ever do to Trump?
Why does Trump hate Amazon? We could just as easily ask why does Trump does any of the nutty stuff that we barely even notice as out of the ordinary these days. Mostly it’s out of a naked desire for approval and a sad desire to be worshipped. But specifically, why is he picking a bone with Amazon? Is he really so heartbroken by the sad state of our nation’s true hero, the Post Office?
Considering Trump’s fetishistic veneration of the myth of 1950s American life, it’s not that surprising to see him rail against Amazon: he sees the world in terms of physical assets, like real estate and newspapers. It’s doubtful he truly understands how a company like Amazon makes money, which is mostly off of their web services like S3 and AWS. Or maybe he’s just intimidated by Amazon owner Jeff Bezos’ cooler look and general respect in the business community.
No, but really
Most analysts believe it’s due to the Bezos-owned Washington Post’s honestly restrained coverage of his batshit administration. The Post, which changed it’s header image to read “Democracy Dies in Darkness” soon after the election, has been a self-diagnosed thorn in Trump’s side for a while. And Trump, obviously ignorant of how stupid he looks to lobbyists and laymen alike when he attacks a newspaper as respected by Republicans and Democrats as the Post, has let everyone know on more than one occasion.
When he’s not busy railing against the very idea of truth or objectivity, Trump is smashing TV news from CNN and NBC for being “FAKE NEWS” and “biased.” He doesn’t mention the Post as much, mostly because he has to actually read to be reminded of its existence. He much prefers it when Fox and Friends just tells him the news while he eats his morning taquito. But when he does remember them, he’s definitely not pleased. It’s well known that criticism frightens Trump, so it’s no surprise that he’s scared of the Post.
The #AmazonWashingtonPost, sometimes referred to as the guardian of Amazon not paying internet taxes (which they should) is FAKE NEWS!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 28, 2017
(Sidebar, your honor: what the hell are “internet taxes?”)
Isn’t this rage a tad misdirected?
If you’re curious about why the President should hate on Amazon, of all the big tech companies, you’re not the only one scratching your head. He’s not mad a Facebook for allowing Cambridge Analytica to steal a mountain of user data. He’s not mad at Twitter for briefly shutting him down last year. Heck, he’s barely mentioned Google, but that’s understandable: his favorite search engine, once Ask Jeeves, is now Ask an Underpaid Staffer Then Ignore Their Response.
It takes but a moment to come up with several other, worthier corporate targets for Trump’s rage. Take Equifax, which not only routinely spy on and stores data about every adult American, but also allowed the largest consumer financial security breach to happen last year thanks to lax security. Nah, better erode consumer financial protections. Or what about cable companies banding together to get long-standing Net Neutrality rules revoked, despite constant, unified and vociferous resistance from a metric ton of Internet users? I sleep.
But stop the presses, oh man, the Post Office is getting a raw deal? GET THEE TO A PILLORY AND REPENT THINE CRIMES.
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