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Thread: “INSANITY,” “FURIOUS,” “ON HIS OWN”: TRUMP’S POST-MIDTERMS BLUES ARE VEXING HIS STAFF

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  1. #1
    MW
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    “INSANITY,” “FURIOUS,” “ON HIS OWN”: TRUMP’S POST-MIDTERMS BLUES ARE VEXING HIS STAFF

    “INSANITY,” “FURIOUS,” “ON HIS OWN”: TRUMP’S POST-MIDTERMS BLUES ARE VEXING HIS STAFF AND ROILING THE WHITE HOUSE

    He’s lashing out at aides and press and foreign leaders, and threatening to roll West Wing heads—but at least he didn’t get his hair wet at the Belleau Wood memorial.




    BY


    NOVEMBER 14, 2018 5:54 PM





    Trump responds to a question from the media prior to boarding Marine One, November 9, 2018.

    By SHAWN THEW/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock.

    As Donald Trump’s West Wing careens through one of the most turbulent weeks of his presidency, White House officials are struggling to understand the source of the fury fueling the president’s eruptions. “This is a level of insanity I’ve never seen before,” one former West Wing staffer told me. Current and former officials are debating different theories for Trump’s outbursts, ranging from his fears over his son Don Jr.’s legal exposure to the prospect that House Democrats will unleash investigations in January. “He’s under a tremendous amount of mental stress,” one prominent Republican close to him told me.

    What’s surprising to some advisers about how bad the past week has been is that Trump initially seemed to take the midterm losses in stride. Last Tuesday, he was in high spirits as he watched election returns come in with about a hundred friends at the White House. Trump told people that his barnstorming rally schedule had mobilized his base and held Republican losses to historical lows, while increasing Republican gains in the Senate. “He really thought he won the midterms,” a prominent Republican who spoke with Trump said.

    But by Wednesday, after hours of commentary about the suburbs’ distaste for him and with seat after undecided House seat slipping toward the Democrats, his mood slid, too, hitting bottom in a bizarre and combative press conference. “He was furious about the narrative. He said, ‘Look, I went to all these states and now people are saying Trump lost the election,’” the Republican who spoke with him recalled. Within hours, Trump forced out Attorney General Jeff Sessions and replaced him with Matt Whitaker,who’d been a frequent cable-news critic of the Robert Mueller investigation. Next, Trump directed his press office to revoke CNN reporter Jim Acosta’s press pass, something he’d wanted to do for months but had been talked out of by aides. “This is a matter of the president now being on his own without any countervailing force whatsoever,” a person close to Trump said. “It’s just 100 percent Donald Trump doing what Donald Trump wants.”

    Trump remained in a dark mood during his weekend trip to France to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I. As The Washington Post reported, he got into an argument with British Prime Minister Theresa May during a phone call on the flight across the Atlantic on Friday. On Saturday morning, Trump skipped attending a rain-soaked ceremony at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery to honor the Battle of Belleau Wood. When his absence became a scandal, the White House said the decision had been made because Marine One reportedly could not fly in the rain, and Secret Service did not want Trump traveling by motorcade. One Republican briefed on the internal discussions said the real reason Trump did not want to go was because there would be no tent to stand under. “He was worried his hair was going to get messed up in the rain,” the source said. “[John] Bolton and everyone was telling him this was a big mistake.” A former administration official said Trump hates being outside in wet conditions. “What I honestly think? He woke up and said, ‘It’s pouring rain. This is a joke and I’m not doing this.’”

    Trump’s absence from the ceremony became the dominant headline from his trip. Perhaps as a gambit to change the subject, Trump fumed on the flight back to Washington that he was ready to fire embattled Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, whom he has clashed with over the uptick in border crossings. A move against Nielsen would be, in many ways, a chance for Trump to finally force Chief of Staff John Kelly, her closest administration ally, to quit. According to a source, Kelly told White House counselor Johnny DeStefano that he would resign if Trump fired Nielsen.

    Kelly’s resignation would be a big victory for Trump. For months, Trump has been reluctant to fire him, partly because he’d have to do it personally, and partly because he doesn’t want to make Kelly a potent enemy on the outside. “Kelly has decided to hang in there and get humiliated day after day,” a person close to Trump said. Trump recently told a former official that he was worried Kelly would campaign against him in 2020 if he fired him, a person briefed on the phone call said. But Trump may be getting over those concerns. According to two sources, Trump and Melania had a conversation on election night last week about the chief of staff position with Nick Ayers, Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump’s top choice to replace Kelly.


    Ayers, politically gifted but conspicuously ambitious, and with questionable loyalty to Trump, would bring his own baggage to the job. “Half the West Wing told me they’d walk out,” a Republican close to the White House said. A Washington Post correspondent reported that Kellyanne Conway told friends she’d quit if Ayers got the job. (Conway told me that the suggestion was “silly.”)

    As if the possible defenestration of two Cabinet officials and the replacement of the chief of staff weren’t enough of a sign of extreme dysfunction, yesterday Melania’s office issued an unprecedented statement attacking the deputy national security adviser, Mira Ricardel, who had reportedly clashed with the First Lady’s staff on her tour of Africa last month. A source said the president approved the First Lady’s statement and supports Ricardel’s firing. “The president called Johnny DeStefano today and said, ‘Get the bitch out of here or you’re gone,’” a source briefed on the conversation recalled.

    Fear of Trump’s rage has spread throughout the Cabinet. According to one Republican, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross has told people he’s afraid to visit the White House because he doesn’t want to be fired.


    The White House did not respond to a request for comment.

    https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2018...he-white-house


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  2. #2
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    Why Trump's French rain no-show excuses are weak

    by Tom Rogan
    | November 13, 2018 03:48 PM





    President Trump on Tuesday offered weak excuses for not attending Saturday's memorial ceremonies in France to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.


    While both excuses have slight merits in that Trump is almost certainly honest in saying that the Secret Service did not want him to attend the events, neither excuse ultimately passes full muster.





    First off, it should be obvious that the HMX-1 U.S. Marine Corps squadron that flies the president has numerous aircraft capable of navigating harsh weather. The squadron's pilots are also some of the finest in the military, trained in combat aviation as well as VIP transport. But in specific terms, the Blackhawk helicopters and Osprey tiltrotor aircraft that form part of the HMX-1 complement are designed to fly under enemy fire in the exact harsh conditions that existed on Saturday. Indeed, they are designed to fly in even harsher conditions. Using an array of terrain mapping, advanced GPS, and other measurement and identification instruments, the president's pilots could have got him to his destination at very low risk. Absent countervailing excuse or some evidence of specific threat, had Trump insisted that they take him, they would have done so.

    Neither is Trump's motorcade excuse particularly compelling. For a start, many other world leaders took the same route to get to the Saturday ceremony. That means the route was secured and had been screened for explosives or other threats. While the Secret Service often requests rolling roadblocks of a much greater magnitude than other global protective agencies, it could have got Trump to his destination without them. This is exactly what happens when a U.S. president travels to London, for example. Even then, considering standing Secret Service protocols, we can also assume that plans were in place for motorcade travel to the speech site: The Secret Service always has multiple plans using multiple methods for presidential movements. The French authorities also maintain strong links with their U.S. counterparts and are keenly aware of domestic terrorist threat levels.

    Yes, some might point at the protesters who ran into Trump's motorcade route on Sunday and suggest that those incidents are evidence of Trump's concerns being justified. But they are wrong. It is always possible that unarmed protesters will interfere with a motorcade. Security issues only arise if the motorcade is forced to stop or if an approaching individual is armed. In Sunday's case, the nakedness of the protesters in question suggested otherwise! Had they posed a threat, the Secret Service would have contained them. As shown in the inauguration training video below, the Secret Service act on the assumption that unarmed protesters are diversions for attackers and will thus stay close to their protectees, allowing police officers, as in France, to arrest the unarmed individuals.

    Regardless, the simple truth is that Trump could have made it to Saturday's ceremonies had he really wanted to.

    https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/o...cuses-are-weak



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    MW
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    Regardless, the simple truth is that Trump could have made it to Saturday's ceremonies had he really wanted to.
    Of course he could have and should have! As a retired military member, I find this rather disappointing.
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    Trump made the absolute right decision not to take the risk of riding through Muslim-Terrorist, Globalist-Infested Paris. He can't even trust Macron at this point who puts the US in the same category as Russia and China and is so jealous of Trump it's turned him from just another crazy globalist into a real live Dangerous Wack-O-Doodle.
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    I am also concerned for Melania's safety.

    As far as I am concerned, I hope she stays on US soil. No more trips Melania!

    Visit our Veterans, our homeless, our Seniors', our ravaged states that have suffered fires, mud slides, volcanos, hurricanes, tornados. We are NOT the dumping ground or ATM machine for the world.

    Visit OUR people who need help!

    No more foreigners breaching our borders, no more refugees, asylum, TPS, illegal aliens! Our own are suffering!

    Visit our inner cities...spend your energy on making our inner cities great again. Develop programs for responsible birth control, education, bring the Trades back into our schools.

    MELANIA...AMERICAN'S FIRST! GET THEM OFF WELFARE AND INTO JOBS.

    WE ARE NOT THE WORLD'S POLICE, WE ARE NOT THE WORLD'S DUMPING GROUND, WE ARE NOT THE WORLD'S ATM MACHINE!

    NO MORE MONEY, NO AID AND NO OATMEAL!

    THESE COUNTRIES NEED TO GET ON BIRTH CONTROL AND TAKE CARE OF THEMSELVES! STOP BANKRUPTING THE AMERICAN TAXPAYERS!
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    STAY HOME AND BUILD AMERICA ON YOUR SOIL

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    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Honestly, I worry about them all, but especially Trump. So many people hate him because he's putting his foot down, changing the world's balance of power and money by putting America First and American Workers First on everything, whether it's oil prices, regulations, interest rates, trade deals, tariffs, immigration changes, training, felons, foreign policy ... whatever it is, he leverages to get something for US, every day. There will never be another Trump, if we as Americans don't make the most of this opportunity, then we all failed ourselves and each other.
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    Trump Fails His Rendezvous in France

    A century after thousands of Americans laid down their lives, the president of the United States absented himself from the ceremony commemorating their sacrifice.

    NOV 11, 2018



    Eliot A. Cohen
    Professor of strategic studies at Johns Hopkins University


    CHARLES PLATIAU / REUTERS

    Donald Trump decided, it would appear, to skip attendance at a ceremony honoring American war dead because of rain. The site was the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery, where lie the remains of 2,289 American soldiers and marines. The occasion was intended to commemorate the end of World War I and, among other things, the Battle of Belleau Wood in June 1918.


    That epic fight is commemorated chiefly by the U.S. Marine Corps, which had a brigade in the fight, but the U.S. Army had two divisions present. It cost the Americans nearly 10,000 dead and wounded. During it, Sergeant Major Dan Daly famously urged his men on, shouting, “Come on, you sons of bitches. Do you want to live forever?” He became one of fewer than 20 who have won the Medal of Honor twice.

    This was not the first battle of World War I that Americans took part in. Even before the official American entry in the spring of 1917, young Americans had volunteered to serve with the British and French forces, and many of them paid the ultimate price.

    To Trump’s decision to stay away because of rain from a solemn occasion to honor these dead, none of us living today can offer an adequate response. So perhaps it is best to let one of the more famous of those early volunteers, Alan Seeger, deliver a rebuke from beyond the grave.

    I have a rendezvous with Death
    At some disputed barricade,
    When Spring comes back with rustling shade
    And apple-blossoms fill the air—
    I have a rendezvous with Death
    When Spring brings back blue days and fair.

    It may be he shall take my hand
    And lead me into his dark land
    And close my eyes and quench my breath—
    It may be I shall pass him still.
    I have a rendezvous with Death
    On some scarred slope of battered hill,
    When Spring comes round again this year
    And the first meadow-flowers appear.

    God knows ’twere better to be deep
    Pillowed in silk and scented down,
    Where Love throbs out in blissful sleep,
    Pulse nigh to pulse, and breath to breath,
    Where hushed awakenings are dear …
    But I’ve a rendezvous with Death
    At midnight in some flaming town,
    When Spring trips north again this year,
    And I to my pledged word am true,
    I shall not fail that rendezvous.

    Seeger, a Harvard graduate, had shortly passed his 28th birthday when he died serving in the French Foreign Legion. There is a monument honoring him at the Place des États-Unis in Paris, and honoring other Americans who fell defending our oldest ally. He was not the only son of privilege who served—there are many names on the walls of memorial chapels in America’s finest universities to confirm that.

    But the main thing is those two last lines: “And I to my pledged word am true / I shall not fail that rendezvous.”

    Alan Seeger and the soldiers and marines of Belleau Wood were young men; Donald Trump is an old man. They took a pledge to serve faithfully, even at the risk of their lives; Donald Trump took a pledge to discharge the office of commander in chief, a similarly unlimited oath.
    They faced shot and shell; Donald Trump faced damp. They dutifully made their rendezvous; to his eternal shame, Donald Trump failed his.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/ar...u-wood/575575/


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