I can’t wait until the Irish Times weighs in on this one, as they assuredly will. On Friday night Donald Trump fired Mick Mulvaney, who had been his acting chief of staff for a little over eleven months. That’s five months longer than Reince Priebus and five months less than John Kelly. Now in comes Mark Meadows to be Trump chief of staff number four, while Mulvaney ships out to become the U.S. Special Envoy for Northern Ireland, a post which is so crucial it has sat unfilled for the past three years. The position of Special Envoy was an idea that Bill Clinton had in order to resolve The Troubles in Northern Ireland. What I’m sure the Irish have already figured out, or they will when they wake up tomorrow and find out that Mulvaney is coming, is that their troubles have only just begun. Mulvaney will be as successful in the role of top diplomat as Oliver Cromwell was as public relations director back in the day. There are plenty of dumb micks messing up life in Northern Ireland and they don’t need the one named Mulvaney, but Donald Trump has spoken and that’s that. New York Times: Mr. Trump’s decision to push out Mr. Mulvaney came as the president confronted a coronavirus outbreak that has unsettled much of the country, threatened the economy and posed a new challenge to his re-election campaign. But the decision was seen as a long-delayed move cleaning up in the aftermath of the Senate impeachment trial as he shuffles his inner circle for the eight-month sprint to Election Day. […] The replacement was widely seen in the West Wing as a chance for the president to reinvigorate his staff, over which Mr. Mulvaney was seen as losing control. In Mr. Meadows, Mr. Trump will have an ally whom he has treated as a confidant and a bellwether of congressional conservatives for much of his term. Mr. Meadows takes over as Hope Hicks, the former White House communications director, returns on Monday in a new role working for Mr. Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner. The truth of the matter is that there is no chief of staff other than Jared and that’s always been the case. Mulvaney had Trump’s number in 2016 when he called him “a terrible human being.” He should have stayed with that opinion, he’d have saved himself a lot of grief. Let’s wish Mulvaney much happiness in his promotion to the Night Watch. It is cold at that latitude, take a warm coat.
Paranoia runs deep. Into your life it will creep. — Buffalo Springfield Donald Trump is sick and tired of disloyalty and so he’s taking action to eliminate it. Trump has found out the hard way that perfection in staffing is a relative concept. People who he blithely sent through the West Wing revolving door a year or two ago are now looking great in retrospect, next to the likes of Rex Tillerson who called him a “fucking moron” or H.R. McMaster who called him an “idiot” and a “dope.” Compared to that, having Reince Priebus, whom he once ordered to kill a fly, back on board is a comfort. Along with Priebus comes Sean Spicer and Hope Hicks, along with Trump’s former body man, John McInteen, who was fired by John Kelly because he had a gambling problem which led to a security clearance issue. McInteen is set up to head the Presidential Personnel Office, which will give him the power to hire everywhere in the federal government. Here we go with “only the best people,” fascist edition. Axios. Why it matters: Trump has increasingly become furious with what he sees as a federal government full of “never-Trumpers.” Administration officials tell Axios Trump feels he’s surrounded by snakes and wants to clear out all the disloyal people. Trump sees McEntee as the ultimate loyalist, and he has assigned him the powerful role of picking personnel across the federal government. What we’re hearing: Trump has been asking for names of people he should fire. Many on the outside are more than happy to oblige. He was furious about former D.C. Attorney Jessie Liu, who he had nominated to serve as the Treasury Department’s undersecretary for terrorism and financial crimes, after hearing from a number of people, including Rep. Louie Gohmert, that Liu was someone not to be trusted. This is looking like the beginning of Trump’s version of the SS. They were loyalists to Hitler and charged with ferreting out anybody who wasn’t and disposing of them. Let the purge begin.
Jared Kushner is the stereotype of a third-string Nazi in a low budget WWII film. They were portrayed as pasty-faced smarmy Aryan types, who sneered out their doctrine in a tone that flaunted their delusion of superiority and most of all their hubris. All Kushner needs is the uniform and a fake German accent and he’s there. He’s even got the perfect side kick in Stephen Miller. In all events, Kushner went on Fareed Zakaria’s CNN Sunday show and let everybody know that John Bolton, John Kelly, Jim Mattis and the rest who departed the White House did so because they were sorely lacking in the right stuff — at least the right stuff to make the grade in Trumpworld, and frankly, we believe him. Rudy Giuliani and Mick Mulvaney apparently have the right stuff, so that should tell you all you need to know about what substance you need to be full of to be right in Kushner’s eyes. CNN: Kushner went on to suggest that Bolton and other senior former officials, including former Defense Secretary James Mattis and former White House chief of staff John Kelly, didn’t have the chops to perform their jobs to the level needed. Asked why so many senior officials have left feeling that Trump has done “a lot of wrong things,” Kushner told Zakaria that, “What I have seen is that the cream has risen and — I’m not going to say what the word is — but that has sank.” No, what you have seen, Jared, is that the pond scum has risen and that’s all that is left at the White House. Even Sarah Huckabee Sanders oozed out the exit, that speaks volumes right there. If you had any experience in the real world you would know the difference between pond scum and cream. You’ve spent your whole life believing money makes the former into the latter, so it’s pointless to discuss lipstick on pigs and so forth. You have no idea about the true components of human worth, like intelligence, skill, talent, humor and character, because you haven’t got any of them. The same with human achievement, you think it’s something you buy. You got into Harvard because Daddy pledged $2.5 Million, not because you earned it. Kushner went on to say that Trump has “cycled out a lot of the people who didn’t have what it took to be successful here and a lot of the people who have come in and been excellent are not out there complaining and writing books because they’re too busy working.” You know what? Jared is absolutely right. Mattis, Bolton and Kelly don’t have what it takes to be successful in the White House, because they’re not married to Ivanka. Jared is. Point conceded, on to the next one. “Fifteen percent of the people who disapproved of Donald Trump as a candidate ended up voting for him,” Kushner continued without providing evidence, “so look, I think his base is strong and getting stronger.” – “The energy that I’m feeling today is stronger than what we felt at the end of the campaign last year,” Kushner continued, mentioning a recent Trump rally in Iowa. Trump is “strong, he’s getting stronger, the campaign is running well, his supporters are fired up and I do think this […]
This is certainly a curious development. Andrew Peek, who succeeded Fiona Hill and one other as the top Russia expert on the National Security Council was placed on administrative leave, pending a security-related investigation. Axios: Driving the news: Peek had been expected to attend the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland next week, where President Trump is expected to meet with a number of world leaders as the impeachment trial takes place back in the Senate. Why it matters: Peek’s responsibilities at the NSC, and before that at the State Department, touch on a number of sensitive areas. He joined the NSC in November after serving as a deputy assistant secretary at the State Department, where he focused on Iraq and Iran. He previously served as a strategic adviser to now-retired Marine Gen. John Allen when Allen was commander of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan. Well, that gig didn’t last very long. He started in November and it’s the middle of January. Bloomberg is reporting that he was escorted from the White House grounds and usually that is an indicator of something serious. NEW: The top Russia expert on Trump’s National Security Council, Andrew Peek, has left his post, just a couple months in, sources tell me, @nwadhams and @justinsink. That’s the Fiona Hill, Tim Morrison, Russia/Ukraine job. Peek was escorted from WH on Friday. Story out soon. — Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) January 19, 2020 Peek is the third person to have this job in the last year. He replaced Tim Morrison, who as you may recall, tesitifed at the House impeachment inquiry that Gordon Sondland told him about the quid pro quo of Ukraine’s aid delivery being conditioned on an investigation into Burisma. Morrison replaced Fiona Hill, then Peek replaced Morrison and who knows who’s going to replace him? The West Wing absolutely needs a revolving door, to keep out drafts, with this rate of turnover.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has filed a congressional ethics complaint against their counterpart, the National Republican Campaign Committee. Ethics complaints against Republicans have been on an upswing, after the Republican-held House buried almost...
No, this is not a joke. As a sop to agricultural conglomerates who are always eager to increase their profit margins, the Trump administration has modified Federal USDA rules governing the inspection of pork consumed...
Moscow Mitch McConnell might have found something out in the last 24 hours to make him more amenable to an investigation into just what the intelligence officer/whistleblower has to say about Donald Trump and...
You know, Der Gropinfuror really should stop calling it a “witch hunt.” At last check, small as it is, Trump still had a teenie-weenie, so he really should be referring to Mueller’s investigation as a “warlock hunt.” There’s no doubt about it, Robert Mueller is the #12 reason for soaked bed sheets in the Presidential bedroom, following incontinence. And I don’t blame Trump one little bit. After all, if Ruday Fhouliani and Jay Suckulow were my last line of defense against Robert Mueller, I’d be scared shitless too. But believe it or not, there is one person in Washington DC who is even more terrified of Robert Mueller than The Cheeto Prophet is. And that man is Mitch McConnell, Trump’s last, best chance of getting out of this mess with his ass unscathed. In McConnell’s case, it is perfectly admissible for him to use the phrase “witch hunt.” And that’s because, starting on January 3rd, Nancy Pelosi is going to be leading the coven, and that woman has one mean ass broomstick.Not only does McConnell no longer have a complaint co-conspirator leading the House, what he has instead is an opponent who knows the game and arcane rules every bit as well as he does, and she has a largely unified caucus behind her. “Bubble, bubble, toila d trouble,” asshole. The real problem for McConnell isn’t just that the Democratic led House committees are going to be holding fair, honest investigations, it’s that the ungrateful little bastards are going to hold them publicly. And it won’t be just Trump-Russia either, they’re going to be digging into Trump’s emoluments clause violations, Jared’s financial ties to the middle east, Trump’s ties to Saudi Arabia, Ivanka’s sweetheart patent deals with China, the list goes on and on. and Democratic House committee members will be overjoyed to go on CNN and MSNBC, and explain what it means to the rest of us in simple, easy to grasp terms.Which sucks for McConnell, because while, our bombastic rhetoric about “family values” notwithstanding, Americans have always been rather ambivalent about their President getting a little on the side, we still tend to draw the line at our President selling out the country to stuff his pockets. The 2018 midterms were McConnell’s worst case of night terrors, because of what it portends for 2020. Nevermind the House debacle, McConnell has worse smelling fish to fry. The Democrats posted record turnout numbers nationwide in a midterm, and thrashed the GOP by some 8 million votes. They flipped seven Governorships in 2018, including ruby red Kansas, putting upward pressure on any GOP incumbents running in those states. Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania are now blue states again, and North Carolina, Georgia and Texas are not going to be the walkovers they once were. The biggest problem GOP Senate incumbents face in 2020 is whether it’s worse to piss Trump off, and have him back a primary challenger from the right, or let him come and campaign for you, especially in states with large urban areas with adjoining former GOP suburban strongholds. Look, the GOP was solidly behind Nixon, right up to the point where it became untenable to do so. Forget about Trump-Russia for a minute. Trump is not only dishonest enough, he is sloppy enough to have left the democrats in the House a cornucopia […]
The ultimate outcome of the rush job of pushing the vote of Brett Kavanaugh through the confirmation process without exploring all avenues will be the slow leak of new corroborating evidence. Or maybe it won’t be so slow. Blasey Ford’s legal team has already released a statement from her friend Keith Koegler, who provided an […]
I am not sure if you heard, but some Republicans actually filed impeachment charges yesterday. Yes, they did their patriotic duty in filing articles of impeachment against Rosenstein. It is a known tactic, well-studied, that fascist governments overwhelm the populace with outrageous new behaviors and false news stories, all with the focused intent upon dulling […]