Rick Wilson does his usual colorful savaging of Trump’s SOTU address, before getting to Trump channeling his inner Nixon, possibly the only moment of color in a predictably boring speech, certainly the only moment worth revisiting, let alone contemplating. Daily Beast:
Because Trump is bleeding politically, and under rising legal pressure from every quarter, last night’s State of the Union speech contained his usual pastiche of Trumpian paranoia about the border, dick-waving braggadocio, outright lies, and movie-script ideas passed off as intelligence reports. Coyotes! Duct tape! Mad Max caravans!
Then to the Nixon channeling, the moment Trump “set the Wayback Machine to 1974.”
That was the year that Richard Nixon stood in the same spot Donald Trump stood on Tuesday night and made a last gamble to save his presidency. Nixon, a man orders of magnitude smarter and more astute than Trump could ever dream of being, rolled the dice that night and lost. Pinned down by Watergate, Nixon used what would turn out to be his final State of the Union in a failed attempt to leverage the majesty of the moment to pry off political peril… “I believe the time has come to bring that investigation and the other investigations of this matter to an end. One year of Watergate is enough.” […]
“An economic miracle is taking place in the United States and the only thing that can stop it are foolish wars, politics, or ridiculous, partisan investigations. If there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation. It just doesn’t work that way,” said Trump, consciously or unconsciously echoing Nixon’s fateful remarks.
“Nice country we’ve got going here. Either Mueller gets it, or the economy does.”
Trump can tout economic miracles, but the plain fact of the matter is that his followers are going to be either receiving less income tax back in their refund checks, or having to pay more to the government. That’s the event that they’re going to recall in a concrete and personal way, not Trump spinning fables of infrastructure and job creation, that have as much tangible reality as his wall. At the rate that Trump’s going, he may be seen not only as Nixon redux, but as a combination of Nixon and Hoover.
Bottom line, Trump’s ticky tacky administration barely functions at all, and while he’s busy touting an age of economic miracles, (which presumably he has wrought) there’s nothing to say that a new economic crisis isn’t on the horizon, and it may not devolve along the same lines as the 2008 crisis; in which case that playbook won’t do us a damn bit of good. Financial News:
But what if the next crisis is completely different, resulting from say, a severe cyberattack, or an unexpectedly rapid rise in global real interest rates, which rocks fragile markets for high-risk debt?
Can anyone honestly say that US President Donald Trump’s administration has the skill and experience to deal with a major collapse? It is hard to know, because the only real crisis the United States has experienced so far during Trump’s presidency is, well, Trump’s presidency.
US Federal Reserve chair Jay Powell and his team are first-rate, but who will be the other adults in the room if an externally generated financial crisis threatens? The Fed cannot begin to do everything on its own; it needs both political and financial support from the rest of the government.
In fact, the Fed has less room for manoeuvre than it had in 2008, because the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reforms sharply restricted its ability to bail out private institutions, even if the entire system might otherwise collapse. Will a gridlocked Congress deliver?
Or perhaps Steven Mnuchin, who produced Hollywood movies prior to becoming US Treasury Secretary, can use insights from his acting role in the 2016 movie “Rules Don’t Apply”.
Just by the by, Gary Hart predicted in an interview on “The Front Runner” that the next terrorist attack on domestic soil would be a cyber one. What exactly would be Donnie Two Thumbs qualifications for dealing with that?
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