Imagine being a business owner or retiree who has been a member of a Trump golf club — and now because the (former) owner is president, you’re the subject of an investigation:
By the mainstream media.
USA TODAY ID'ed 4,500 Trump golf-club members through social media & a website golfers use to track handicaps, then researched who they were https://t.co/5ExoctJrnS
— Susan Page (@SusanPage) September 6, 2017
“USA TODAY ID’ed 4,500 golf-club members through social media & a website golfers use to track handicaps, then researched who they were,” reporter Susan Page tweeted.
The paper’s original tweet called in an “investigation.”
According to the paper:
The review shows that, for the first time in U.S. history, wealthy people with interests before the government have a chance for close and confidential access to the president as a result of payments that enrich him personally. It is a view of the president available to few other Americans.
Among Trump club members are top executives of defense contractors, a lobbyist for the South Korean government, a lawyer helping Saudi Arabia fight claims over the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and the leader of a pesticide trade group that sought successfully to persuade the Trump administration not to ban an insecticide government scientists linked to health risks.
Members of Trump’s clubs pay initiation fees that can exceed $100,000, plus thousands more in annual dues to his companies, held in a trust for his benefit.
“Members of the clubs Trump has visited most often as president — in Florida, New Jersey and Virginia — include at least 50 executives whose companies hold federal contracts and 21 lobbyists and trade group officials,” according to the paper.
Buried in the middle of the story: “The arrangement is legal, and members said they did not use the clubs to discuss government business.”
So what’s the point, except to issue an implicit threat to Trump golf club members?
Now that USA TODAY has what they think is dirt, will they weaponized it, as CNN did against a meme creator.
The “news” network reported in July:
The Reddit user who initially claimed credit for President Donald Trump’s tweet that showed Trump tackling CNN issued an apology Tuesday for the video and other offensive content he posted — one day after CNN identified the man behind the account and attempted to make contact with him.
Reddit user “HanA**holeSolo” first shared the GIF last Wednesday of Trump pummeling a wrestler with CNN’s logo imposed on his face. CNN could find no earlier instance of the GIF. The GIF was later edited into a video with sound and tweeted by the President on Sunday.
On Reddit, “HanA**holeSolo” took credit for inspiring the tweet. Soon after, “HanA**holeSolo’s” other posts on Reddit, some of which included racist and anti-Semitic imagery, quickly circulated on social media.
Now the user is apologizing, writing in a lengthy post on Reddit that he does not advocate violence against the press and expressing remorse there and in an interview with CNN for other posts he made that were racist and anti-Semitic.
The apology came after CNN’s KFile identified the man behind “HanA**holeSolo.” Using identifying information that “HanA**holeSolo” posted on Reddit, KFile was able to determine key biographical details, to find the man’s name using a Facebook search and ultimately corroborate details he had made available on Reddit.
The network threatened to expose the man’s identity if he created another meme ridiculing the network.