Happy Loyalty Day
By The Wayne Madsen Report
This past Friday, President Trump proclaimed today, May 1, Loyalty Day. Trump urged all Americans "to observe this day with ceremonies in schools and other public places, including reciting the Pledge of Allegiance." He also requested "all government officials to display the flag of the United States on all government buildings and grounds on May 1."
Before everyone mounts the ramparts to decry what appears to be another dictatorial move by Trump, it should be noted that all of Trump's predecessors from Eisenhower to Obama, have proclaimed May 1 as Loyalty Day.
Loyalty Day, first celebrated in 1921 as "Americanization Day" and recreated during the anti-Communist Red Scare of the 1950s, was intended by Wall Street and its lap dogs in the American labor movement to be a rejection of the international workers' holiday of May Day. Instead, Americans and Canadians are forced to mark "Labor Day" in September, a day that does not really honor labor or workers but marks the commercial end of summer with a three-day weekend of store sales.
What passes for the American "Left" has gladly gone along every year, since 1958, with the celebration of the fascism-overtoned Loyalty Day. Rather than demand that May 1 be celebrated as a labor holiday as it is in France, Britain, Australia, Japan, India, China, Brazil, Jamaica, Bahamas, Hong Kong, Lebanon, South Korea, Denmark, Egypt, South Africa, Israel, Morocco, Poland, Ireland, and every other country in the world, minus Canada, the Democrats, Bernie Sanders's "independent socialists," the Green Party, and the American labor movement are happy to celebrate a holiday, with overtones of Nazi Germany, in lieu of international May Day.
Trump's pronouncement of Loyalty Day does come with some troubling baggage that is unique to his administration. On April 30, White House chief of staff Reince Priebus told ABC News that Trump was considering suing the news media for stories unfavorable to the president. This announcement, coming on the heels of Trump's congratulatory phone call to Turkish President Tayyip Recep Erdogan on the occasion of the passage of a referendum in favor of establishing a virtual dictatorship in Turkey and Trump's invitation to the dictator-like Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte to visit the White House, should have all Americans worried this Loyalty Day.
During the election campaign, Trump repeatedly said he would "open up our libel laws" in order to "have people sue you like you’ve never got sued before." Since libel laws are controlled by the states, Trump would have to amend the First Amendment of the Constitution to enable the president to sue the press. It might come as a surprise to Mr. Trump, that journalists are the only profession protected by the Constitution. Even the powers of the president are limited by the Constitution in word and spirit.
Around the world, May 1 is labor and workers' day. In the United States, it's Loyalty Day.
Threats of law suits by Trump and his surrogates will not stop this pocket of on-line journalism from continuing to investigate Trump's alleged past, bolstered by civil law suits, of the sexual abuse of female minors. A cardinal goal of independent journalism is to "comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable." Women now in their 30s who claim they were sexually assaulted and raped in 1994 by the very comfortable Trump, along with his very comfortable friend, convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, will continue to find a champion in this web site. Trump brought his personal baggage into the White House and that baggage will eventually be his undoing.
The corporate media can really blame itself for the sorry state it finds itself in. Rather than be confrontational with the Oval Office and West Wing, it has sought to curry favor with the Executive Branch. After all, criticism of the president means no invites to White House state dinners, special junkets on Air Force One's foreign trips, and may even result in forfeiting the all-important daily or "hard" press credential to the White House. Access over journalistic ethics has been the name of the game between the White House Press Corps and the Oval Office for years and under Trump, the situation has become graver than at any time in recent history, including Watergate.
Priebus's warning about Trump suing the press came the day after Trump boycotted the annual White House Correspondents' Association dinner in Washington, DC. It was the first time a president passed on attending the dinner since 1981, when Ronald Reagan failed to show. Reagan has a legitimate reason for not attending as he was still recuperating from a would-be assassin's bullet. Reagan did attend the remaining dinners during his term. So, the only president who stood up the dinner hosts out of pique was Richard Nixon, who failed to attend in 1972 and 1974, the bookend years for the Watergate scandal.
Rather than the usual paparazzi-attracting Hollywood celebrities attending this year's Trumpless dinner, most stayed away. They are fond of criticizing Trump, but rather than demonstrate a show of support to the press, they avoided the dinner, just like Trump. Had Trump and such recent media-crowned celebs as Press Secretary Sean Spicer, presidential aides Kellyanne Conway and Steve Bannon, Generals H. R. McMaster and John Kelly, the creepy and soon-to-be-sacked Hungarian Nazi adviser Sebastian Gorka, and Vice President Mike Pence been present at the gala, so, too, would have been the Hollywood crowd. Because in DC and Hollywood, the power of celebrity is a mutually-attracting force and the Hollywood types, no matter how "liberal," want nothing more than to have a "selfie" taken with a Bannon, Spicer, or Pence. For that reason, Defense Secretary General James "Mad Dog" Mattis broke ranks with the rest of the Trump Cabinet and attended a Friday night pre-party, along with the likes of Susan Rice and Obama body man Reggie Love, at the northwest DC home of the publisher of The Atlantic, a NATO- and globalist-friendly publication.
Leonardo Di Caprio was in DC for Saturday's climate change march. But he flew out of town after lunch. The usual Hollywood watchers at this year's dinner were disappointed, to say the least. Rather than Angeline Jolie, they had to settle for Madeleine Albright. There was no Will Smith, but there was Al Sharpton. This year's dinner did not attract the B List but something further down the totem pole, perhaps the "O" List, as in "over," or the "Y" List, as in "yesterday."
The normally star- and starlet-strewn red carpet at the Washington Hilton hotel, known locally as the "Hinckley Hilton" because President Reagan exited the revolving doors seen in this photograph before he was shot by John Hinckley, was idle at this years correspondents' dinner.
The White House Correspondents' Dinner is a true DC "navel-gazing" event. It is a must for those who want to see and be seen. But, with Trump threatening the independent press with law suits and other forms of intimidation on the eve of Loyalty Day, it would have been nice to see all those Hollywood celebs, who have an opinion about everything from vaccines and Darfur to manatees and blood diamonds, endeavor to make a show of support for the press at its gala annual event. They, like Trump, were no where to be seen.