Republicans

You can give a man an education, put him in a good suit, and give him a decent haircut – but you can’t make him smart. Take Donald Trump Jr. A product of the Ivy League – and dressed like a “Wall Street” extra – he was given the tools to be a success – except God failed to bless him with brains.

This week has been a particularly brutal commercial for the son’s incompetence. First, he couldn’t remember a meeting. Then he said it was about adoptions. Then he released emails that confirmed it was about Russian interference in elections. Then he didn’t reveal that a Russian agent was there. And now it turns out that there was along with two others.

And in his mindless braggadocio, the little Trump reveals his desperate need to be just like Dad. But while the father has the native cunning that allows arrogant, stupid men to prosper – if only temporarily – Junior has only the arrogance and stupidity. Let his release of the email chain stand witness.

Junior felt that if he preempted the New York Times revelation of the same emails, he could lay claim to ‘transparency’. The better strategy – and surely the one Senior would have used  – would be to let the NYT publish whatever it wanted and accuse them of being part of a liberal plot falsely reporting fake news.

Never admit anything is Trump pere’s modus operandi. And – as he likes to point out – he’s President, and you’re not.

But Trump Sr’s fortune is fraying. His in-house media organ, Fox News, is showing an independent, critical streak. He still has his fawning morning chorus at “Fox and Friends” balanced by his evening toadies – most notably Sean Hannity. But in the meat of the day, when Fox ventures into real reporting, Shep Smith, Mike Wallace and Chris Stirewalt have questioned the administration’s credibility and even its media strategy.

The GOP seems to be standing behind their man – even as he puts his hand in their pocket. But consider these two facts. One, Trump’s shenanigans employ a lot of lawyers. Two, Trump is always looking for others to pick up the check. So naturally, he has suggested that the RNC pick up the legal tab. Republicans are against handouts, and surely this raid on their kitty goes against all the fiscal stringency they hold so dear.

And talking of lawyers, Trump’s leading voice on the Russian brouhaha is a charming specimen of aggressive inebriate, whose specialty is fraud and divorce defenses. Mark Kasowitz has the hair of a patrician but in an email responding to a heckler he revealed the persona of a bar drunk – telling his correspondent, “I’m on you now.  You are fucking with me now Let’s see who you are Watch your back , bitch.” 

The house, the plane, and protocol have given the Presidency a veil of respectability and gravitas. But whether they can survive the poor choices of the occupant and the machinations of his heir remain to be seen.

 

 

 

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