Axios

Trump, on Sunday: "Whenever you see the words 'sources say' in the fake news media, and they don't mention names, it is very possible that those sources don't exist but are made up by fake news writers. #FakeNews is the enemy!"

Trump, on Tuesday: Retweeted a Fox News article citing anonymous sources to claim that Jared Kushner had not suggested a communications channel with Russia in a meeting, which goes against most of the reporting on the subject.

Why it matters: Back in January, Axios asked Trump if he was worried that calling the media "fake news" would cause problems down the line when he needed people to believe a piece of reporting. At the time, Trump replied: "I hadn't thought of it that way, no."

Why reporters use anonymous sources: They're often the only way journalists can get important, insider information that the public should know. Sources aren't likely to put their career or safety on the line to provide a scoop. But in an age of rampant mistrust of the media and fake news sites, unnamed sources don't help media companies secure trust.

The caveat: Trump has proved that he doesn't need the media's positive coverage in order to win over a significant portion of the country. For many voters, Trump's Twitter is the only media source they trust, and they'll stay that way no matter what.

Go deeper

There's little consensus on TikTok's specific national security threat

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

TikTok has become a Rorschach test for how U.S. politicians view China, with little consensus on the specifics of its threat to homeland security.

The big picture: Much of what D.C. fears about TikTok is fear itself, and that's reflected in President Trump's executive order to ban the app by Sept. 20 if it's not sold by parent company ByteDance — alongside another focused on Chinese messaging app WeChat and its parent company Tencent.

U.S. sanctions Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam

Photo: Anthony Kwan/Getty Images)

The Treasury Department on Friday placed sanctions on Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam, following months of tension as she has allowed continued overreach by Beijing to subvert Hong Kong's autonomy.

Why it matters: It's the toughest sanction yet imposed on China for its destruction of Hong Kong’s relatively free political system.

GM's high-stakes electric move

The Cadillac Lyriq. Image courtesy of Cadillac

Cadillac on Thursday unveiled the Lyriq, the luxury brand's first all-electric model and GM's first consumer electric vehicle unveil since the Chevy Bolt several years ago.

Why it matters: It's the first reveal by GM of an electric vehicle that will use the company's new modular platform and Ultium battery system — technologies meant to underpin the 20 electric vehicles that GM plans to launch by 2023.