A lot of today’s journalists are too young to remember first-hand the days of the Soviet Union, and President Ronald Reagan giving his famous “Evil Empire” speech; instead, they recall Mitt Romney being ridiculed for suggesting that Russia was America’s No. 1 geopolitical foe. “Hey Mitt, the ’80s called …”

Today’s reporters face the difficult task of presenting President Trump as Putin’s puppet while at the same time avoiding Reagan-era trigger words like “evil.” Add the fact that Russia has been in the headlines for almost a year now, and writers are finding they need to get a little creative.

Maybe they’re getting a little too creative? The New York Times’ Glenn Thrush gave this a spin in describing Putin’s offer to provide the president transcripts of his meeting.

It was a good effort, though — if the press is going to cover the Trump-Russia connection exclusively, it’s inevitable that everyone is going to get sick of hearing the “R” word.

As Twitchy reported, TIME released its latest cover Thursday, and someone put a lot of effort into depicting the takeover of the White House by … something that’s not the Russian equivalent.

That’s how things work in a Cyrillic autocracy, not here in America. Besides, the fix wasn’t so difficult.

Dang … even the fact-checkers at MAD let this one slip past:

In other news, TIME reports that the president has misspelled “counsel” twice in ten days, so there.

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