July 28, 2017 by gregrabidoux2013
Is this really any way to run a country?
Maybe ruin it is more like it.
For years politics was roughly divided into two arenas. The campaign to get the office and the governing that took place once you were in the office.
It was expected that the “campaign” would be at times colorful, rough, even no-holds barred. Digging up dirt on your opponent (more politely called opposition research) was expected and valued. During televised debates a more civil and ahem, “presidential” tone was adopted and smiling, praising your opponent and the obligatory handshake before and after helped reassure viewers and November voters that we all have a stake in this wonderful thing called democracy. It’s just that we just don’t agree on the specifics.
Nothing personal mind you, it’s just politics.
But the Trump Administration is setting new lows, seemingly on a daily basis.
Now, in the past, if you were the victor then a certain presidential tone was then adopted, at least in public. You’re the president for gosh sakes.
Now, don’t get me wrong. We have had our share of “rough riders” in the Oval Office…literally. Teddy Roosevelt often used colorful language behind closed doors, Andrew Jackson was known to curse, rather colorfully and often. He would often rant about Chief Justice John Marshall, calling him a” low-down, no good, Indian lover.” Abe Lincoln once referred to his entire cabinet as a “pack of sniveling jackals.” Even that PH.D scholar Woodrow Wilson was known to have a temper and once threw his newspaper down in a fit of anger at a cabinet meeting. I know, right?
In more modern times, of course as society became less buttoned-up our presidential public behavior increasingly became more “un-buttoned.”
Lyndon Baines Johnson once referred to South Koreans as a “bunch of little orientals with even smaller (ahem) biological organs (my cleaned up version) and often regaled reporters with graphic tales of his own bowel movements. He also referred to Kennedy staff-holdovers as “coddled mamas-boys who didn’t know how to pour piss out of a boot if the instructions were written on the bottom.”
Richard Nixon can be heard on the notorious Watergate Tapes using vivid racial and ethnic slurs to describe his rivals and critics and openly discussing (apparently, kidding) how he’d like this one or that one “wacked.” Jane Fonda seemed to get his ire up more than anyone. But then her posing on a N. Vietnam tank while we were at war with them sorta riled up a lot of folks back home.
But overall, there was still a sense at least in public, that there was the “candidate” and then there was “the President.” And while the two could meet up of course, they shouldn’t necessarily become one and the same for all time.
Beginning with Bill Clinton we began to witness what was referred to as “the continual campaign.” This was the notion that to rally votes and support for preferred presidential policy the president could and should be the “chief advocate” or “chief campaigner.”
Take the message to the people. Get out on the campaign trail. No filters. No smoke-filled, backroom deals. Force the politicians to bend to your will once they see what the people want and demand.
And being “presidential” never quite went back to what it once was historically.
Of course, good ol’ Billy infamously let “the dog off the front porch” and his staffers were known to litter the West Wing with delivery pizza and beer but then you can’t take all the “Little Rock” out of the president now can you?
While Donald Trump may have promised Melania that he “could be presidential when the time came” his staff may feel exempt from any such commitment.
Less than a week after being hired as the White House Communications Director (please note that title it becomes important in a moment) Anthony “Tony the Mooch” Scaramucci, apparently summoning the spirits of Anthony “Tony the Boss” Soprano went off on an expletive, vulgar tirade in an on-the-record interview. He called the current Chief of Staff Reince Priebus a “Paranoid, schizophrenic who is a little F#@,” described special WH advisor Steve Bannon as a guy “who sucks his own c%$@” and vowed to “kill all of his staff if he had to in order to stop WH leaks to the press.”
Nice. A smooth communicator that Scaramucci. I can see how he’d be qualified for the job.
After that outburst, newly promoted WH press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who along with Kellyanne Conway may actually be the only sane and grown-up adults in this Administration, had to clean up Scaramucci’s mess.
“His passion got the best of him,” she claimed with a straight face.
Sarah, if I ever screw up that badly I want you in my corner.
But maybe “the Mooch” was just mimicking what his mentor modeled. Donald Trump the candidate got into the office in large part by using language befitting a naughty 10 year-old and tossing barbs at his opponents like “he’s fat,” (Chris Christie) and “he’s a lying slob” (Ted Cruz) and “he’s little Rubio” (Marco Rubio) and “she’s ugly and stupid” (Carly Fiorina) and my favorite, “he’s an ugly liar who eats with his mouth open” (referring to OH Governor John Kasich).
And when candidate Trump became President Trump this very “un-buttoned down” communication style became, if you can believe it, even looser.
And if you believe that the one who sits in the Oval Office sets the tone then it seems just about everybody on both sides of the political aisle seem more than willing, giddy even, to join in the “presidential poopy party.”
Pelosi calls Trump a “lying loser.’ Schumer says he’s a “mentally unfit clown.” McCain says the president is “an unstable liar.”
And on and on. Perusing the daily news each morning is becoming more and more like just getting a quick update on the “insult-O-Meter.”
Perhaps, all this unrestrained venting is good for the soul. I don’t know.
Meanwhile, maybe not so coincidentally though, nothing appears to be really getting done.
The GOP despite having 7 years to prepare for this day simply cannot reform, replace, repeal, fix or even “skinnify” ObamaCare. Tax Reform now seems paralyzed. Infrastructure fixing is at a standstill. The notorious wall is yet to be started. When they are not demanding investigative committee hearings on each other the Donkey and the Elephant are counting the days and hours until recess. Maybe they can start throwing spit balls at each other on the congressional playground.
In short, the GOP can’t legislate, the White House can’t seem to stop insulting each other long enough to govern and the Democrats seem obsessed over all things Russia to such an extent they still don’t appear ready, willing or able to exploit all this mess and win an election.
But boy, they sure can insult each other with colorful language.
Doesn’t seem like any kind of way to run a country though.
What a bunch of blasted idiots.
Sorry, maybe it’s contagious.