Putting a Name on It

As you might have noticed by now, President Donald Trump loves putting his name on things. He’s put it on buildings, airplanes, golf courses, board games, bottles of vodka he doesn’t drink, magazines and books he doesn’t read, casinos and topless bars that somehow went bankrupt, and anything else he can find to spray paint his “tag” on. Now he’s going to put his name on the thousand dollar or so stimulus checks being sent to tens of millions of Americans.
The decision by the Treasury Department to have Trump’s distinctively illegible signature on the checks is unprecedented, or “unpresidented” as Trump might put it, as government disbursement checks have long been nonpartisan documents. Trump, as you might have noticed by now, cares little about such time honored traditions and cares much about self-aggrandizement.
Other than soothing his extraordinary ego, though, we don’t see what good this will do Trump. Even if people notice the extravagantly grandiloquent scrawl on the bottom left of the check and can decipher it as Trump’s name, few will be under the misapprehension that the money is coming from Trump himself.
The die-hard fans will be grateful to Trump for signing the staggering $2.2 trillion stimulus bill, which also provides a much bigger windfall for real estate developers such as Trump and the idiot son-in-law he’s put on the panel planning the probably premature opening of the economy, but the rest of the country will understand the bill wasn’t Trump’s idea and was passed by bipartisan majorities in Congress after negotiations with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, who was mostly interested in securing those windfalls for real estate developers. They might also read that Trump has already fired the inspector general who was to watch over how the freshly printed money was to be distributed.
Trump ran on the promise he’d eliminate the trillion dollar deficits the government had been running up for decades during Republican and Democratic administrations alike, but even in what he called the best economy ever he kept the debt at them rate as before, and his signature on all those checks will add to an unprecedented $4 trillion or so deficit.  A coronavirus Trump didn’t cause is the reason, but his illegible signature on all those checks is a reminder that despite his boastful claims he didn’t do everything right.

— Bud Norman

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