Boston Globe attacks Trump with fake front page

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Donald Trump’s presidential campaign has the Boston Globe in a tizzy. On Sunday, the paper published a fake front page with “news stories” from a day-in-the-life of America under an imagined Trump presidency. The page, published as part of the paper’s Ideas section, appeared to be an attempt by the paper to scare the public about the prospects of a Trump presidency.

The top story bears the headline: “Deportations To Begin” and says that “President Trump” has called on Congress to triple the number of federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents in order to create a “massive deportation force.” The lead article goes on to say that federal agents have rounded up migrant strawberry pickers in California and sent them to a detention center to await prosecution and deportation.

The page also includes a story about markets crashing as a result of an impending trade war and a report about resistance by rank-and-file soldiers to a White House order to kill family members of ISIS militants.

An Editor’s note in the lower left corner of the page describes it as an example of “Donald Trump’s America,” and claims that the stories on the page are “what might happen if the GOP front-runner can put his ideas into practice, his words into action.”

Although parts of the fake page present as an effort to create a realistic prediction of life under a President Trump, other parts are clearly an attempt at satire, sarcastically mocking Trump and those associated with the real estate mogul. One teaser of a story that supposedly appears on the inside of the paper, reads: “Japanese Emperor Akihito formally censured Ambassador Kid Rock for a speech calling on US allies to ‘Let the [expletive] business guy run the [expletive] country like a [expletive] business.'”

Another reads: “Education Secretary Omarosa Manigault [a former contestant on The Apprentice] summoned PBS officials to Capitol Hill to discuss remaking ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ using hand puppets.”

And a passage in the top story on President Trump’s deportation policy states, “[Trump] did not immediately offer details but said he intends to flesh out the policy with special adviser George Papadopolous just as soon as the 2009 college grad returns from a preplanned Model UN session in Geneva.” Papadopulous, whom Trump lists as an adviser to his campaign, is in fact a 2009 DePaul University grad whose LinkedIn page boasts that he was a 2012 representative to the Geneva International Model United Nations.

Kathleen Kingsbury, the editor of the Globe’s Ideas section, told National Public Radio Sunday that the staff had fun with the project but also tried to take Trump at his word.

“His violent mix of intimidation, hostility to criticism and explicit scapegoating of minorities shows that there is a real political movement taking hold in America and that’s a movement that we find deeply disturbing, one that we felt we needed to comment on,” Kingsbury told NPR.

Although Kingsbury’s remarks suggest that the mock page was intended to be a scare tactic,  Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post notes that the effect will more than likely backfire, as it will provide Trump with “yet another talking point” about mainstream media bias.

“In that regard,” Cillizza writes, “the fake front page will embolden Trump’s ardent supporters, who believe that the media, the Republican Party establishment and, well, everyone who is not them are unfairly targeting Trump in this campaign.”

And, indeed, conservative media critics, were quick to condemn the Globe.

“Can anyone imagine the outrage that liberal media pundits would have had if say, The New York Post or The Washington Times had created a fake page predicting that President Obama would force people off the insurance they wanted to keep, and food stamp use would soar by 70 percent?” asked Tim Graham, director of media analysis for the Media Research Center, a conservative press watchdog. “Imagine those complaints and transfer them to this: A serious newspaper doesn’t satirize the news. It leaves it to The Onion.”

Predictably, Trump supporters were not impressed:

For his part, the GOP front-runner dismissed the attack and mocked the Globe in characteristic Donald Trump fashion.

“How about that stupid Boston Globe? It’s worthless,” Trump said in a rally Sunday in Rochester, New York. “The whole front page is a make-believe story, which is really no different from the whole paper.”

Ideas Trump Front Page