In one of the uglier episodes of the Presidential campaign, Donald Trump threatened Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos with lots of anti-trust problems after the Bezos-owned Washington Post ran duly skeptical stories.
The orange-haired ex-reality show host has negatives aplenty, such as the Trump University lawsuits and a refusal to release his tax returns, both continuing issues.
Just the other day, however, Bezos tweeted his congratulations to The Donald over winning the 2016 Presidential election.
Congratulations to @RealDonaldTrump. I for one give him my most open mind and wish him great success in his service to the country.
Perhaps that will suffice. Remember how Putin endeared himself to Trump with a little sweet talk?
But I’m not so certain the Bezos tweet will do the job. Even TeleRead congratulated Trump, and we meant it. Let’s hope that Trump succeeds in positive ways such as getting a huge infrastructure program going to fix our roads and bridges and create jobs for the blue-collar workers who have fared so badly under trade agreements.
So no big deal about the congratulatory tweet. It’s just that it probably is not enough. Jeff might want to do a little follow-up. Maybe three times a day? It wouldn’t hurt. What’s more, let’s consider something else.
Although @realDonaldTrump is a heavy Twitter user, he’s in fact an Old Economy guy who reportedly isn’t even at home on a desktop computer. He is into real estate, after all. With all the business Amazon has taken away from brick-and-mortar stores that pay rent, Bezos must come across as Satan. Trump would love to see Amazon socked with more taxes, and meanwhile he claims Bezos bought the Washington Post to lobby for favorable treatment on taxes and other issues.
Trump and the Amazon-CIA connection
For now, Amazon’s shares have taken a nasty hit. Still, you never know what deals can happen between The Donald and Bezos to either the advantage or disadvantage of the latter. Guess who even now provides major IT services to the CIA. U.S. intel agencies love Amazon’s cloud. In the interest of national security, not to mention fairness, I’d hope The Donald wouldn’t and in fact couldn’t yank away the $600 million contract. But in today’s surrealistic Washington, anything can happen. Ego first?
Of course, another issue remains regardless of the number and nature of tweets from Bezos to Donald Trump. With Trump in the White House, will Amazon be more likely to turn over lists of people’s ebook purchases and other tidbits when the feds come calling? Will a Trump administration even use ebook-related snooping, social media postings and other material to compile mass enemies-lists? I warned of that very possibly some months ago in The Georgetown Dish, and unfortunately, I may be right in time. The U.S. News site reports:
What does President-elect Donald Trump have in common with Santa Claus?
He’s keeping a list – and probably checking it twice.
Trump campaign surrogate and head of African-American outreach Omarosa Manigault told the Independent Journal Review on Tuesday that the campaign has been keeping a list of his enemies.
“It’s so great our enemies are making themselves clear so that when we get in to the White House, we know where we stand,” Manigault said. “I would never judge anybody for exercising their right to and the freedom to choose who they want. But let me just tell you, Mr. Trump has a long memory and we’re keeping a list…”
How long a list, if it exists? How many on it? And will it turn into a mass list of enemies just like those of yore in East Germany and the Soviet Union—perhaps with help, however reluctant, from Amazon and other e-commerce sites?
Related: Worried about the NSA under Trump? Here’s how to protect yourself, from the Guardian. Of course, even TOR isn’t absolutely safe.