Vail Daily column: What about the non-silly issues? |

Vail Daily column: What about the non-silly issues?

I did not want to write about this subject today.

In fact, I tried my best to write about something else — anything else — but no matter how many attempts to shift my mental focus elsewhere I kept being sucked back into this proverbial pit of petty petulance now known as President Trump.

First official day as leader of the free world, and the man’s focus is squarely on jobs, the economy, tax reform, immigration, national infrastructure, etc.

No, I’m kidding of course, his focus is on the size of his hands.

No, wait, I mean the size of his electoral college win.

No, I mean the size of his bank account.

No, dammit, I mean the size of his adoring sheep during the inauguration.

Yep, that’s the ticket.

His “American Carnage” speech, which highlighted our great nation as a wasteland of crime, drugs and rusted-out factories, was exactly what we all needed to hear, but only if our national goal is complete societal collapse.

Makes me wonder if he was describing or predicting.

But then he sent out, for the very first official time, his White House Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, whose job is to express the thoughts of the president while answering questions from the press.

Spicer, with pursed lips and angry scowl, announced that this was the “largest audience to ever witness an inauguration — period — both in person and around the globe.”

He should have used a comma instead.

After a few more unsubstantiated remarks he retreated from the podium, refusing to take questions from the press.

Again, his job is to take questions from America’s free press, whether he wants to answer them or not.

The very next day, counselor to the president, Kellyanne Conway, called Spicer’s comments “alternative facts” and refused to directly answer why her boss’s fragile ego was so damaged by reality.

“Alternative facts” is a phrase best described as “making stuff up to fit a narrative,” such as Aspen declaring they have more skiable acres than Vail. Say it enough times and they’d probably book a few hotel rooms from suckers, but eventually reality wins the war and Aspen leaders would be replaced.

In fact, try using that phrase in front of Judge Buck Allen sometime and let me know how it works out.

Look, yell at the TV and post in all caps on Facebook all you want. Fight and scream that the press is unfair to Trump or Trump is unfair to the press, I don’t care either way.

I don’t give a rat’s patootie how many frozen bodies attended the inauguration or what some celebrity said or how many protesters were arrested or whether Melania shows more class than Michelle.

What I do care about, and what should be on every non-Orwellian mind in America is: If the Trump administration can so carelessly spin falsehoods about a highly superficial subject, then how can they be trusted to be honest with serious issues?

From fake news to fake press conferences about fake attendance numbers, this xenophobic approach to unity is not a left versus right issue and should not be an issue at all.

So, come on Donald, it’s time to put on the big boy pants and be president.

To paraphrase one of your tweets: Hoping!

Richard Carnes of Edwards writes weekly. He can be reached at