Trump's gone on a Twitter rant that's epic even by Trump standards

Donald Trump has threatened to go after North Korea if it threatens the US again.

By now, the world’s no stranger to Donald Trump’s preference for letting his views be known via Twitter. But the US President has just gone on a Twitter rant that is extensive, even by his own impressive standards.

Apparently furious over multiple recent embarrassments – the Washington Post‘s scoop about his legal team having sought info on whether Trump could pardon himself, the exit of his blundering press secretary Sean Spicer, and the continued pursuit of his son Donald Trump Jr over a clandestine meeting with Russian representatives – Trump has finally let rip on the social media platform.

Electoral rival Hillary Clinton, sacked FBI head James Comey, Amazon owner Jeff Bezos and newspaper The New York Times are the main targets of a series of Trump tweets, which fellow Twitter-users quickly delighted in proving incorrect or at least lacking in context.

Trump was quick to defend Spicer, who he said had taken “tremendous abuse” from the media but had a “bright future” ahead of him. Spicer’s short tenure as White House press secretary was marked by repeated gaffes, including one in which he said that the Nazis did not use chemical weapons. Spicer reportedly quit after Trump hired New York hedge funder Anthony Scaramucci to be the White House communications boss, over the top of Spicer.

That appointment in itself has been ridiculed, because Scaramucci was a critic of Trump even after the mogul’s campaign for the White House began. That was something Trump glossed over in his tweet rage.

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But Scaramucci himself appeared to be aware that he’d said some things that may be embarrassing in the context of his new role, because he personally tweeted that he was “deleting old tweets”. “Past views evolved & shouldn’t be a distraction,” he added, in a tweet that he said he’d posted in the interests of “full transparency”.

Unfortunately for the White House newcomer, plenty of Twitter users had screenshots of his past unflattering tweets about Trump, including journalist Josh Billinson, who retweeted Scaramucci’s comments about Trump being a “spectacle” and describing the now-president as an “odd guy” with “no judgment”.

Meanwhile, Trump blasted the Washington Post, which is owned by Bezos, over its story about presidential pardons, although he did not deny the truth of the report.

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On Friday, the Post wrote that Trump had asked his legal advisers about his presidential powers to pardon aides, family members and even himself in the context of a probe into his connections to Russia that’s currently being carried out by a special counsel.

Far from being cowed by the report insinuating that he may wish to use a presidential pardon to escape justice, Trump tweeted that everyone agreed that the US president had complete power to pardon anyone. 

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This, however, may not be a foolproof plan, as one Twitter user quickly pointed out.

Trump also claimed in a tweet that his son, Don Jr, had openly given his emails about the Russia meetings to the media and authorities, unlike rival Clinton, who Trump accused of “acid-washing” communications.

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Again, tweeters pointed out that this wasn’t actually the case, given that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) ran a lengthy investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was US Secretary of State – and investigation that even swung polls in Trump’s favour before the FBI belatedly said that it would not recommend criminal charges against Clinton just days before the nation went to the polls last November. 

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Others noted that Don Jr had in fact only released the emails relating to his meeting with Russian representatives who promised to have damaging information on Clinton during the election only after the New York Times obtained copies of the emails and was preparing to publish them.

Trump is understandably tense, though.

His son, his son-in-law Jared Kushner and his former campaign manager Paul Manafort are due to appear before Senate committees next week that are looking into Russia’s influence on the election Trump won.

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The President is also battling Republican senators who’ve failed to agree on how to scrap and replace predecessor Barack Obama’s Obamacare healthcare system – failed so badly even in a Republican-controlled senate that Trump has been reduced to threatening to dump Obamacare even without replacement healthcare legislation.

Repealing Obamacare was one of Trump’s central campaign promises, but some moderate Republicans are worried that it would leave millions of low-income Americans without medical coverage. 

What do you think of Donald Trump’s communications style? Do you think the shake-up in White House communications is a good thing?