Trump Is Meeting With Kim Jong Un! Wait, Maybe Not. Wait. Yes He Is.

Michael Reynolds/CNP via ZUMA

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There are a bunch of headlines today suggesting that Trump is backing off his promise to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. At first this seems like a strained reading of something Sarah Huckabee Sanders said at today’s press briefing, but if you read farther in the transcript someone finally asks a follow-up question that made it very clear what she was saying:

Q: Sarah, you said they promised to denuclearize. Did they promise to denuclearize or did they promise to talk about denuclearizing?

SANDERS: The understanding, the message from the South Korean delegation is that they would denuclearize. And that is what our ultimate goal has always been, and that will have to be part of the actions that we see them take.

Q: Is that before or after the meeting?

SANDERS: We’d have to see concrete and verifiable actions take place.

Q: Before the meeting?

SANDERS: Yes. Yeah.

Sanders is clear they want to see verifiable denuclearization before the meeting. Not that they would talk about denuclearizing, but that they’d actually start doing it before the meeting could take place. But a little later there was this:

In other words, who knows what’s going on? As usual, the Trump White House is a well-oiled machine.

POSTSCRIPT: You know how live TV shows are delayed a few seconds so that censors have time to bleep out bad words? Maybe we need a new rule like that about Trump: Nothing he announces should be reported for 48 hours. After that, if he hasn’t changed his mind, it can be printed or broadcast. How else do you deal with a serial dissembler like Trump who routinely says stuff just for the headlines?

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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