Some Cream for Your Covfefe?
Good Morning. Let’s begin with a moment from Commander Bunnypants:
Tonight’s pool report: Trump responded to questions about today’s collision of the USS John S. McCain: “‘That’s too bad,’ he said.”
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) August 21, 2017
…and one lowly spitballer replied:
“I prefer ships that don’t collide,” Trump didn’t add. https://t.co/OrALj50j04
— Tengrain (@Tengrain) August 21, 2017
With that out of the way, we turn a jaundiced eye to this report from USA Today:
“The Secret Service can no longer afford to pay hundreds of agents it needs to carry out an expanded protective mission – in large part due to the sheer size of President Trump’s family and efforts necessary to secure their multiple residences up and down the East Coast. Secret Service Director Randolph ‘Tex’ Alles, in an interview with USA TODAY, said more than 1,000 agents have already hit the federally mandated caps for salary and overtime allowances that were meant to last the entire year. The agency has faced a crushing workload since the height of the contentious election season, and it has not relented in the first seven months of the administration. Agents must protect Trump – who has traveled almost every weekend to his properties in Florida, New Jersey and Virginia – and his adult children whose business trips and vacations have taken them across the country and overseas.”
Note that it is the law that requires this level of protection, the Secret Service cannot lower the coverage on its own. But how is it possible that they could be out of money so quickly?
Trump starts his day at Trump Nat’l Golf Club in N.J.
This is his 58th day at a golf course, 75th day at a Trump property as president.
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) August 20, 2017
…and it’s going into Comrade Preznint Stupid’s back pocket. Grifters Gotta Grift.
Mike ‘Payola’ Allen writing the Axios morning email thingie goes behind the scenes at the White House to find out why people are not quitting in droves:
So why do the others stay? We talked to a half dozen senior administration officials, who range from dismayed but certain to stay, to disgusted and likely soon to leave. They all work closely with Trump and his senior team so, of course, wouldn’t talk on the record. Instead, they agreed to let us distill their thinking/rationale:
- “You have no idea how much crazy stuff we kill”: The most common response centers on the urgent importance of having smart, sane people around Trump to fight his worst impulses. If they weren’t there, they say, we would have a trade war with China, massive deportations, and a government shutdown to force construction of a Southern wall.
- “General Mattis needs us”: Many talk about their reluctance to bolt on their friends and colleagues who are fighting the good fight to force better Trump behavior/decisions. They rightly point out that together, they have learned how to ignore Trump’s rhetoric and, at times, collectively steer him to more conventional policy responses.
- “Trump’s not as evil as portrayed”: All of them talk up the president as more reasonable off Twitter and TV than on it. This gives them hope (though almost all increasingly say it’s fleeting hope) he will listen to his better angels, or at least the pleas of Ivanka.
- “We like the power”: Well, no one comes out and say it this blatantly. But working in the White House, even this one, is intoxicating and ego-stroking. They have enormous say over regulations and rules, invites and implementation, government jobs and access to the Oval. They also know they are one step away from an even bigger job in government, so it’s hard to just walk away.
And for those of you who see larger pictures, one of the possible outcomes of Hair Führer’s Fourth Reich could actually be that it forces Corporate America to have a moral conscience.
Again, Axios alerts us:
The cover story of the N.Y. Times Business section quotes Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation and a board member at PepsiCo., as calling the forthright engagement of executives in the debate ignited by Charlottesville “a seminal moment in the history of business in America.”
…A related piece runs atop the WashPost Business front, “Trump pulls off a rare feat: Inspiring C-suite moral courage,” by Steve Mufson: “In earlier generations, businesses have been slow to join in defending rights, from segregated lunch counters in the United States in the 1950s to multinationals … that kept doing business in apartheid South Africa through the mid- to late 1980s.”
So what’s good for America is good for General Motors?
Now THAT is not normal!