Now President Trump has created a new reality show

President Trump held a press conference on Thursday afternoon. In the doing he created a new reality show that Americans are just going to love over the next four years.

The name of the show? Beat the Press. Webster’s Dictionary defines the word “beat” in several ways, but the two most relevant here are “to strike forcefully” and “to overcome, as in a contest;defeat.” The President did both at his press conference.

There he stood, Trump in the lion’s den as it were. Calmly, methodically he called on reporters all over what the President and his staff see as the hostile media landscape. There was CNN’s Jim Acosta, sharply reprimanded weeks ago at a presser by the then president-elect, now recognized and engaged in a back and forth. (Full disclosure, I am a CNN contributor. As a former Reagan aide these Trump/Acosta matches seem increasingly to remind of President Reagan’s famous duels with ABC’s Sam Donaldson. They are definitely “get the popcorn” moments.) There was a scolding for Jake Turx, Ami Magazine’s White House Correspondent, who seemed to be suggesting that Trump was anti-Semitic. Turx later said Trump’s impression was not true, that he was merely trying to get the President’s thoughts on a rash of anti-Semitic bomb threats and other actions. Be that as it may, Trump would have none of it.

And so it went.

As it wound down, speaking directly to the CNN coverage he sees as biased but really addressing the larger issue of media bias he said: “…the public sees it. They see it. They see it’s not fair.” The President is correct about the public’s view of the media writ large. As was noted by a Gallup poll released last September in the middle of the presidential campaign confidence in media fairness had “dropped to its lowest level in Gallup polling history…”.

Make no mistake. President Trump is one of the savviest media watchers ever to occupy the Oval Office. Raised both personally and professionally in New York City, the media capital of not just America but the world, he has played the media for decades as if he were a world class violinist working his equally world class Stradivarius.

The real question here is not “how did he do?” The answer to that is simple. His critics hated his performance and his supporters will love it.

Answer? The President is famously a watcher of the newscasts. He saw the headlines. His antagonists had ignited a media firestorm with hot if vague stories about shadowy Russian dealings with his campaign and turmoil in the White House. There were leaks of classified material.

The instinctive fighter and counter-puncher in Trump had him quite instinctively doing what he always does— take the fight directly to his opponent of the moment. This time the opponent wasn’t “Low Energy Jeb” Bush or “Little Marco” Rubio or “Lyin’ Ted” Cruz or “Crooked Hillary” Clinton. This time— and not for the first time — the opponent was the media itself.

Thus Trump walked calmly into the East Room of the White House, looked his opponents straight in the eye – and let them have it. Launching Beat the Press, a brand new reality show starring President Donald Trump and the White House press corps.. And unlike the ups and downs of television shows dependent on nightly ratings?

This time the star and his new show have an iron clad four-year contract.