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Trump tweet-scoffs at Schwarzenegger's 'Apprentice' ratings

Commentary: The show now hosted by the Terminator gets lower premiere ratings than when Donald Trump was at the helm. Trump carps on Twitter and Schwarzenegger hits back.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.

He's been attacked by the Terminator. It's so unfair.

Ricky Carioti, The Washington Post/Getty Images

You can bet he was watching with a critic's eye.

It's not easy to hand your reality TV baby to someone else. Even if that someone else is a Terminator.

So when "The New Celebrity Apprentice" launched on Monday with Arnold Schwarzenegger at the helm, Donald Trump must have feared that its ratings would beat his own when he was the host.

What a relief for him, then, that the show managed a mere average of 4.9 million viewers, rather than the exalted level of 6.5 for his 2015 premiere.

Naturally, Trump took to Twitter to offer Schwarzenegger encouragement.

In two tweets, he mused: "Wow, the ratings are in and Arnold Schwarzenegger got 'swamped' (or destroyed) by comparison to the ratings machine, DJT. So much for being a movie star -- and that was season 1 compared to season 14. Now compare him to my season 1. But who cares, he supported Kasich & Hillary."

Some might find themselves swamped, or even destroyed, by the idea of a president who speaks about himself in the third person.

They might also think that describing himself as a machine was an alluring reference to Schwarzenegger's sci-fi past.

But these are times when everything is like a blockbuster movie. The characters are large and the ideas a touch smaller. A little like the "Celebrity Apprentice," in fact.

Schwarzenegger wasn't going to let this tweet-slap pass by without comment. So he, too, took to Twitter with a couple of tweets of his own.

First: "There's nothing more important than the people's work, @realDonaldTrump."

Some might translate this as: "What the hell are you doing tweeting about TV ratings when you should be thinking about governing the country?"

Schwarzenegger's second message had a touch more snit about it: "I wish you the best of luck and I hope you'll work for ALL of the American people as aggressively as you worked for your ratings."

NBC may not have expected yuge ratings. No one can out-yuge Trump. More disturbing for the channel was surely that one of the show's own executive producers publicly derided those ratings.

Donald Trump is an executive producer of "Celebrity Apprentice."