President-elect Donald Trump has said he might do away with regular press briefings and daily intelligence reports. He wants to retain private security while receiving secret service protection, even after the inauguration. He is encouraging members of his family to take on formal roles in his administration, testing the limits of anti-nepotism statutes. And he is pushing the limits of ethics laws in trying to keep a stake in his business.
In a series of decisions and comments since his election last month -- from small and stylistic preferences to large and looming conflicts -- Trump has signaled that he intends to run his White House much like he ran his campaign: with little regard for tradition. And in the process of writing his own rules, he is shining a light on how much of the American political system is encoded in custom, and how little is based in the law.If Trump refuses to honor tradition, how can he expect his critics to do so? One such practice is referring to the chief executive by the honorific. Keith Olbermann suggests:
Not using one word can be just as forceful as perpetually using another. Never address Trump as President. He is Trump. Just Trump. Never president. The title of President, that we must protect for a happier and more honest time.