It’s time to Break It Down!
A week ago yesterday Donald Trump’s Chief Economic Adviser, Gary Cohn exited TrumpWorld. Yesterday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was fired-by-tweet. There are many reasons that could have prompted the President to unceremoniously terminate Tillerson’s employment, ranging from his alleged reference to his boss as an “effi’n (full spelling) moron,” (which he subsequently refused to deny), to his opposing opinion about the efficacy of proceeding with plans for Trump to meet directly with North Korea’s Kim Jung-un. In any event, while that was indeed the main event, there was both a bonus, and a double-bonus that were also pretty good; I suppose that’s why they’re called bonus and double bonus.
In addition to firing Tillerson, the administration also fired his top spokesman, Steve Goldstein. Shortly after Trump’s morning tweetocide of Tillerson, Goldstein noted that Tillerson had not spoken directly to the President about the move. He said:
“The Secretary had every intention of remaining because of the tangible progress made on critical national security issues. The Secretary did not speak with the President this morning and is unaware of the reason, but he is grateful for the opportunity to serve, and still believes strongly that public service is a noble calling and not to be regretted.”
Goldstein, it appears, did not get the memo. It’s true Donald Trump appreciates loyalty. However, the complete thought is, Donald Trump appreciates people who are loyal to him. Mr. Goldstein’s display of allegiance to Tillerson, who’d already been dismissed, was clearly a deeply misplaced gesture, from Trump’s perspective. Nevertheless, Goldstein took his own termination with high honor and nobility. He said in his lengthy post termination statement:
“I was proud to speak on behalf of the Secretary of State to the American people and allies throughout the world and this has been the honor of a lifetime.
It’s within the purview, you are appointed by the administration and you are appointed for the time being. That is what is listed on your commission and it is determined by the White House who they want in these roles.
I don’t have regret, other than you always want to try to do more, but I feel proud of what we achieved and I am so impressed by the Secretary of State. He is a truly great man.
I look forward to getting more rest and hopefully winning an indoor rowing competition.”
In yesterday’s final Trump firing – strike three as it were, Trump’s ‘body man’ John McEntee was fired abruptly, and escorted from the White House for security reasons, according to the Wall Street Journal. Representative Elijah Cummings, Democrat – MD wrote about McEntee’s firing:
“This recent report about President Trump’s personal assistant is just the latest indication that the process for vetting White House employees for security issues is seriously flawed.”
Last week, Trump said there is no chaos in the White House, just lots of great energy. Inexplicably, his supporters agree. I do not. I cannot. Full stop!
As 2016 Donald Trump said repeatedly, “Drain the swamp.” That, of course, was the thrust of last week’s post, (https://thesphinxofcharlotte.com/2018/03/07/draining-the-swamp-one-former-trump-appointee-at-a-time/). In a not so surprising way, it’s as though this week is a déjà vu all over again, a “Groundhog Day” the movie, kind of week. The thing is that has quickly become the legacy of TrumpWorld.
A great deal has been made of the tumult, turbulence, and turmoil that unfold on a regular basis, almost solely as a result of the fact that the current occupant of the White House…is the current occupant of the White House. He claims he is ‘Making America Great Again,” and that he is the only one who can. His supporters and spinners insist that he is unduly targeted and unfairly attacked because of his “unconventional” tactics and unfiltered comments. The other 60+% of Americans, including the more than three million more who voted for his opponent rather than him, argue that his rhetoric is crass, demeaning, and filled with hateful flourishes, while his policies are designed to segment and separate groups into competing, often near-warring factions.
George Orwell warned in his dystopian novel, “1984,” that authoritarianism begins with language. In that setting, “newspeak” was language twisted to deceive. From the very onset, Team Trump attempted to use news and language to deceive Americans. Trump’s first Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, alleged on his first day on the job, in his first instance behind the podium, that Trump’s Inauguration was the largest ever. That was a deception, a claim that if made by anyone not representing President Trump, would simply have been called a lie. The administration would go on to double down on this fanciful misrepresentation when Counselor to the President, Kellyanne Conway, characterized Spicer’s depiction as “alternative facts. A rose by any other name, or in that case a lie euphemistically framed.
The President hired Spicer and Conway, so it is understandable that they shill for their guy. After all, they owe him their loyalty, which he unabashedly demands, and their jobs, from which he has been known to threaten to dismiss staffers. However, day before yesterday, the House Intelligence Committee opted summarily to end its Russia investigation. They declined to even consult with the Democrats on the committee before doing so. In explaining the rationale for their decision, spokesmen for the committee said they found no evidence of collusion by the Trump Campaign with the Russians, and that despite the findings of the U.S. intelligence community that the Russians endeavored to help Donald Trump’s campaign, while simultaneously working to undermine Clinton’s, the Committee concluded that the intelligence agencies were simply wrong on that singular point.
Unlike Trump’s appointees, the House members on this committee are elected, and have taken an oath to represent and take actions that reflect the will of the people who sent them to Washington. I suppose they either believe they were elected by the 38% (Trump supporters), and surely some of them were, or that they to are obligated to render fealty to Trump, just as his appointees seem to feel they must do. But, I digress. This brief edition is about the Tillerson imbroglio.
Remember last may when James Comey discovered he was fired from TV, while talking to a group of FBI Agents in Los Angeles? Well, Tillerson’s episode yesterday reflected the next phase, direct from Trump’s favorite social media platform…his Twitter Account. “Another Week, Another Swamp Denizen, or Two, or Three, Drained!”
I’m done; holla back!
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