Today is February 1. (How’s that for late-breaking news?) In 13 days it will be Valentine’s. Two days after that, the Congressional Continuing Resolution expires. Uh oh.
Unbelievably, Donald Trump, who infamously said, “I will be proud to own the government shut down!” and proceeded to shepherd the longest in history, is contemplating another. (Putin must be thrilled!)
In looking back, apparently the “Art of the Deal” means to make 800,000 federal workers, and much of the country, suffer for 35 days and then settle for what was on the table from day one. The U.S. economy lost $11 billion over his vanity border wall for which he’s still demanding $5.7 billion. (And let’s not forget, Trump once essentially turned down $25 billion for the wall in a deal involving DACA.)
Trump had two years of a subservient GOP House and Senate to get his “big beautiful concrete wall” and didn’t. What does that tell us? Even the GOP doesn’t want the damn thing. So Mr. Negotiator waits until the Democrats control the House to demand it. And now, interrupting any post-shut down relief, he’s threatening to do it again. (Did I mention Putin was thrilled?)
Given Sunday is the Super Bowl and the L.A. Rams are in it, I probably should be writing about that. But Trump’s insanity (and criminality?) compel me to vent about the madness he’s inflicting on us on a daily basis. (That said, check tomorrow’s Snide World of Sports “Can the Rams Beat the Brady Bunch?” in the Daily Press.)
To be honest, I’m still reeling from the remarkable lack of empathy from the Trump administration. When told that federal employees were standing in food lines reminiscent of the Great Depression, billionaire Commerce Secretary Wilbur (“Mr. Excitement”) Ross was shockingly unsympathetic.
Famous for falling asleep during cabinet meetings, Ross observed, “I can’t understand why they don’t get loans.” (Yeah, Wilbur, banks are just dying to lend money to people who don’t get paychecks.)
Trump’s daughter-in-law, Laura Trump, cavalierly said to federal workers, “I know you’re going through a little pain but this is bigger than you.” A “little” pain? I’d love to see her standing in a food line. Trump actually suggested that landlords and grocers would “work” with the federal workers, i.e. defer payments for rent and food. (As if he ever did that for his tenants.)
Meanwhile, on the news, we saw tearful federal employees pawning wedding rings; staging garage sales; and contemplating imminent evictions. (How does Trump sleep? The answer is he doesn’t, that’s why he tweets at all hours.)
The Trump administration and the Trump family apparently lack the empathy gene. They’re so incredibly self-centered and heartless they make Marie “Let Them Eat Cake” Antoinette look like Mother Teresa.
For a guy who brags about how tough he is, Trump is actually a world-class wimp. Prior to the shut down, he had a deal with Congress for the budget with no shut down. BUT Rush Limbaugh and Anne Coulter harshly criticized him and poor little Donnie can’t bear that. But 35 days later he caved. (Google “He caved” and Trump comes up.)
Now, with the clock ticking, Don the Con is saying he, ”won’t take another shut down off the table.” He’s also threatening to declare a national emergency. After two long years of historic incompetence and scandal, not to mention criminality which hopefully will get him impeached and or prosecuted after he leaves office, it’s obvious to two thirds of the country he’s the national emergency.
Evidence of that came on Tuesday, when the highly-respected U.S. Intelligence chiefs, all appointed by Trump, presented their annual Worldwide Threat Assessment to the Senate Intelligence Committee. Shoulder to shoulder, they concluded ISIS remains a serious threat; North Korea probably won’t give up nuclear ambitions and Iran isn’t building a bomb.
Those assertions directly contradict Trump’s hollow declaration of victory over ISIS; claim Kim Jong-un agreed to denuclearize; and pressuring Tehran with increased sanctions. (Keep in mind, Trump doesn’t even bother to read Intel briefings!)
Noticeably absent, the spy chiefs didn’t mention threats to the U.S. from undocumented immigrants at the southern border. They did, however, warn about past and future Russian interference in our elections. Whatever Putin has on him, the next day, Trump childishly tweeted, “They “should go back to school.” (What school, Trump University?)
Only Trump could lecture people about going back to school and make a grade-school grammatical error in the tweet. (He obviously doesn’t know the difference between “there” and “their.”)
In defending her boss, Press Secretary, Sarah Sanders, whom I affectionately refer to as the “female Baghdad Bob,” claimed, “God wanted Trump to be president.” I don’t know about the Almighty, but Putin certainly did.
Jack is at: facebook.com/jackneworth, twitter.com/jackneworth and email@example.com