The Trump presidency is one month old — 47 (or 95) more months to go. So what has President Trump gotten most right and most wrong? After talking to dozens of officials inside and out of the White House, VandeHei and I came up with this list:
N.Y. Times 2-col. lead, "Trump Associates Push Backdoor Ukraine Plan," by Megan Twohey and Scott Shane: "A week before Michael T. Flynn resigned as national security adviser, a sealed proposal was hand-delivered to his office, outlining a way for President Trump to lift sanctions against Russia. ... Michael D. Cohen, the president's personal lawyer, ... delivered the document."
For a decade, everything in online media was about clicks. But Sara Fischer, Axios' media-trends reporter, says the click referral is becoming an idea of the past. The new-new thing: "content exposure," which drives you to click something, instead of the click itself.
Another tale of sexism and unacceptable workplace behavior in Silicon Valley, Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva writes. This time it's at Uber, according to an explosive blog post yesterday by former company engine Susan Fowler Riggetti, who accuses Uber of ignoring multiple complaints of sexual harassment. Her attempts to use emails to document bad behavior were turned against her, she says.
Reached for comment, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick told Axios first: "I have just read Susan Fowler's blog. What she describes is abhorrent and against everything Uber stands for and believes in. It's the first time this has come to my attention so I have instructed Liane Hornsey our new Chief Human Resources Officer to conduct an urgent investigation into these allegations."
Uber board member Arianna Huffington tweeted: "Just talked w/ Travis & as a representative of Uber's Board I will work w/Liane to conduct a full independent investigation starting now."
Financial Times second front, "Bill Gates calls for income tax on robots: Microsoft co-founder suggests money should be used to retrain people replaced by robots," by Richard Waters in S.F.: "It is an idea that until now has been associated more with European socialists than tech industry leaders, and puts him in the unusual position of explicitly arguing for taxes to slow the adoption of new technology."
Gates told Quartz: "It is really bad if people overall have more fear about what innovation is going to do than they have enthusiasm ... That means they won't shape it for the positive things it can do. And, you know, taxation is certainly a better way to handle it than just banning some elements of it."
Although today is widely known as Presidents Day, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management kicks it old-school: "This holiday is designated as 'Washington's Birthday' in section 6103(a) of title 5 of the United States Code, which is the law that specifies holidays for Federal employees. Though other institutions such as state and local governments and private businesses may use other names, it is our policy to always refer to holidays by the names designated in the law."
After Breitbart provocateur Milo was announced Saturday (the day after his bro-out with Bill Maher) as a speaker at CPAC -- the Conservative Political Action Conference, which opens Wednesday -- the self-described "virtuous troll" got hit with fatal oppo on the Twitter feed of the Reagan Battalion:
"Video surfaces of Milo Yiannopoulos defending pedophilia, ACU board reportedly not consulted on CPAC invite," by The Blaze's Chris Enloe: "'We get hung up on this sort of child abuse stuff,' Yiannopoulos is heard saying in a video ... 'In the homosexual world, particularly, some of those relationships between younger boys and older men — the sort of "coming of age" relationship — those relationships in which those older men help those young boys discover who they are and give them security and safety and provide them with love and a reliable, sort of rock, where they can't speak to their parents.'"
"'It sounds like molestation to me,' an unnamed person tells Yiannopoulos in reply, likely an interviewer."
Milo replies on Facebook: "A note for idiots (UPDATED): I do not support pedophilia. Period. ... If it somehow comes across (through my own sloppy phrasing or through deceptive editing) that I meant any of the ugly things alleged, let me set the record straight ... "
The board of the American Conservative Union, which stages CPAC, includes Kellyanne Conway, John Bolton, Grover Norquist, Becky Norton Dunlap, Ron Christie, José Cárdenas, etc.
Chances Milo speaks at CPAC, with hundreds of young attendees: zero.
Also today ... WashPost Style cover story, "Breitbart: A new force in the Trump era? Stephen Bannon is now a White House power. What's next for the website he used to help elect a president?" by Manuel Roig-Franzia and Paul Farhi: "Already there have been indications that Bannon's former organization might enjoy something akin to most-favored media status, even as the White House wages a very public verbal war with mainstream media outlets."
"In the hours after the president announced financing plans for an expanded U.S.-Mexico border wall, Breitbart.com was offering to sell a special product to its readers on its homepage: a 'Breitbart Border Construction Co.' T-shirt."
New Yorker staff writer Vinson Cunningham profiles Rep. Keith Ellison in his progressive bid to beat the establishment candidate, Tom Perez, for DNC chair: "The race for the chair has often echoed the acrimony and confusion of the Presidential primaries."
Ahead of Sunday's ceremony, Michael Schulman goes inside the Academy for The New Yorker, finding angst and pushback over the "plan to diversify the voting body quickly by aggressively recruiting new members while shifting others to 'emeritus status'":
"Can 2 fried chicken festivals coexist in North Carolina?" -- Front page of today's Raleigh News & Observer, by Chris Cioffi: "Legislation to recognize a Fayetteville celebration as the state's official fried chicken festival has caused some involved with Rose Hill's longstanding North Carolina Poultry Jubilee [73 miles away] to cry foul. Both eastern North Carolina towns have deep ties to the state's large poultry industry."
"Bill McMillan said he suggested the Fayetteville festival as a fun event and fundraiser. He said he did not know that Rose Hill had a poultry-themed festival dating to the 1960s and wasn't trying to cause trouble."