Former star of "The Apprentice" and current President of the United States Donald Trump returns to primetime television tonight -- and coincidentally (or not) U.S. House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi also has her own TV special tonight (see No. 6 below). Easy prediction: The president will compare his ratings to Pelosi's. He will tweet about it ("Sad!"). The tweet will get retweeted and hearted tens of thousands of times. And Donald Trump will decide that he really, really likes being back on primetime TV.
1. The New York Times has a rare full-width headline on its front page this morning that screams "TRUMP FIRES JUSTICE CHIEF WHO DEFIED HIM." (The slightly longer headline on the web version of the story: "Trump Fires Acting Attorney General Who Defied Him.") Meanwhile, you saw this coming -- and Newt Gingrich delivered (in a badly/confusingly punctuated tweet):
Trump practiced "you're fired for years". Today he applied it to an insubordinate acting atty general. Congratulations.— Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) January 31, 2017
2. Speaking of Twitter, last night the company's VP-Engineering Ed Ho promised "long overdue fixes" this week to deal with Twitter trolls:
This week, we'll tackle long overdue fixes to mute/block and stopping repeat offenders from creating new accounts.— Ed Ho (@mrdonut) January 31, 2017
As we we roll out these changes, and other features that are new, we'll keep you updated. We want your feedback and we are listening.— Ed Ho (@mrdonut) January 31, 2017
3. Seattle-area tech giants are rallying against President Trump's immigration order. "Microsoft Corp said it has been cooperating with the Washington State Attorney General's Office, which is suing in federal court to stop President Donald Trump's order restricting immigration from several Muslim countries," Reuters' Stephen Nellis reports. And in a post titled "Amazon, Expedia back lawsuit opposing Trump travel ban," CNN Money's Chris Isidore reports that "Amazon says it has 49 employees born in the seven Muslim-majority countries included in the ban who are legally working for the company in the United States or elsewhere. Amazon says their work and travel could be disrupted. ... Expedia's motion describes potential damage to its travel business. It also mentions employees whose travel could be restricted." The companies join Seattle neighbor Starbucks in opposing Trump's move (see: "Message From Howard Schultz to Starbucks Partners: Living Our Values in Uncertain Times" on Starbucks.com).
4. Here's an unusually earnest behind-the-scenes video -- complete with stentorian voiceover ("everyone involved understands how critical this time can be") -- of Lady Gaga rehearsing for her Super Bowl LI halftime performance, via Pepsi:
5. Here's your abbreviated guide to what's on TV tonight:
I have made my decision on who I will nominate for The United States Supreme Court. It will be announced live on Tuesday at 8:00 P.M. (W.H.)— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 30, 2017
At then, at 9 p.m. ET: "CNN To Host Town Hall with U.S. Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi."
6. "With deceit and arrogance, Uber keeps finding new ways to shoot itself in the foot." That's the headline of a column this morning by Michael Hiltzik of the Los Angeles Times, who is not happy with Uber's response to a Saturday taxi driver strike at New York's JFK airport protesting Trump's immgration order. "The events of the weekend were not the only recent setback for Uber, whether in the court of public opinion or a court of law," Hiltzik writes.
7. Finally, here's The Onion's take on the current moment in presidential/U.S. history: "Trump Insists That Now, More Than Ever, Americans Must Stand Strong In Face Of Empathy."
Simon Dumenco, aka Media Guy, is an Ad Age editor-at-large. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco.