Opinions on Donald Trump incite passion on both sides of the spectrum. Never before have I seen a figure so polarizing and so much at the root of blind emotion. If you hate him, he can do nothing right and things that are ‘normal’ take on sinister overtones when it involves Trump. Conversely, Trump said during the campaign that he could shoot someone in broad daylight and not lose certain voters. Little could we imagine that he was right.
If you dislike Trump (and ‘dislike’ is too mild a word for many), the comments below will do nothing to change your opinion. If you like Trump (and ‘like’ may also be too mild a word for his fans), then I would ask for a few moments that you think of Trump, the man and the policies, as two different things. For a few moments, let’s realize that they are two different things. What a man says he wants to do, and who a man is, are not always the same.
Events of the last two weeks, if you follow the news, have been stunning even in a world that has left us stunned often in the last few months. Bluntly, there is chaos in the Trump Administration and, again bluntly, it all started with the President himself.
While trying to figure out what to do with the failed effort on healthcare reform and how to get tax reform passed, the President has taken to the media to publicly criticize his Attorney General, Jeff Sessions. And it hasn’t been a one-time thing, as Trump has repeated the criticism a number of times since. In addition to the question of why you would attack a member of your own staff through the media, there are other strange aspects to this. One obvious one is that Jeff Sessions was the first senator to endorse Trump for President, long before anyone else. So the loyalty that President Trump says is top on his list of things he looks for in people, clearly does not go both ways. Additionally, the Attorney General works for the President. So if the President thinks he’s doing a poor job then why doesn’t he fire him and get someone better? Why complain about his employee publicly, seemingly go out of his way to humiliate him, and then refuse to do anything about it?
About the time that confusing episode got off the front pages, Trump announced the hiring of a new Communications Director. Anthony Scaramucci was on the job roughly a week and already had done enough that it would ordinarily get him expelled from most junior high prep schools in the country. In his short time on the job, he called a reporter and then went on a rant that, if the transcripts are true, can’t help but make you wonder if he was drunk or high. In the interview, the brand new member of the Trump team went on a profanity laced tirade against other members of the Trump team with whom he has to work daily. He made an very vulgar remark regarding Trump’s Chief Strategist, while also going after Trump’s Chief of Staff, calling him a ‘paranoid schizophrenic’ who he announced would be fired shortly (and he later was). When he finally ended the interview, Scaramucci (who likes to be called ‘Mooch’) told the reporter he needed to go “…because I’ve gotta start tweeting some s*** to make this guy crazy.” Nice start with co-workers after a week on the job.
And the day after his tirade attacking his co-workers, describing one of them as doing things to himself that I think are actually physically impossible and using equally vulgar and profane to describe another and saying he was deliberately trying to drive him crazy, he tweeted out asking people to pray for his family as they go through some difficult times (because a ‘piety’ act makes it all better).
And all this from an adult, surprisingly. However, unsurprisingly, this was not out of character for Scaramucci. On the birth of one of his children, dear Anthony celebrated by sending a text message to his wife in the hospital to congratulate her and then met his newborn child four days later.
BUT, the movie didn’t stop there. Just as Thinking Man sat down to write this piece came word that not only had Reince Preibus, Trump’s Chief of Staff who was the object of Scarmucci’s stupor induced rant fired, but Preibus’ replacement as Trump’s Chief of Staff immediately fired Scarmucci (be careful what you ask for)! So, exactly ten days after his hiring was announced, Scaramucci was fired. And actually, the announcement of his hiring was effective Aug. 15 so he was actually fired before he had even started his job!
So, in the space of roughly two weeks, Trump announces that he should never have hired his Attorney General (but doesn’t fire him), Trump’s Press Secretary resigns because of the new Communications Director, Trump’s Chief of Staff is fired and then the Communications Director is fired before he even officially starts his job. And all of this in his first six months in office!
For a moment, let’s see the difference between some of the policies of the Trump Administration, a number of which Thinking Man can agree with, and the actions and maturity of Trump himself?
I get it. Trump got elected because people were tired of an Administration that worried more about transgender friendly bathrooms on military bases than military readiness of US combat units. Tired of a Secretary of State who said that rising sea levels was the biggest threat to national security while ISIS launched terror attacks around the globe that killed hundreds. And tired of colleges that spent money creating ‘safe spaces’ so young adults wouldn’t have to hear something they didn’t like but can’t find a way to address skill shortages in science, engineering and technology. But, surely, there can’t be many who really want a President (who by law has to be an adult, at least 35 years of age) that acts like ours. Can’t we hope for both: a President whose policies we like, AND a President who we would allow to be around our children? Is it too much to hope that he begins to realize that he isn’t on a reality TV show any more?