Price, Pruitt & Mnuchin Preaching Prudence but Living Large On the Taxpayer’s Tab.

by Pitt Griffin on September 20, 2017 · 0 comments

in Trump presidency

Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price is a deficit hawk. As a congressman, no aspect of government waste was beyond his lash. Now he’s revealed — and is anyone surprised? — as a hypocrite of the highest order. In one three-day stretch, he took five private jets on the taxpayer’s nickel — $60,000 worth by an industry estimate. His office excused this profligacy as necessary because there were no available commercial flights.

Stop. Just stop. Price flew from DC to Philadelphia. If he couldn’t get a plane, there’s a train. No train? He could drive.

I suppose once or twice might pass the smell test. But this Marie Antoinette of the GOP has flown in regal fashion scores of times.

He’s not the only populist ‘too good’ to fly with the hoi polloi. Scott Pruitt, EPA administrator — which is like appointing Dracula to run your blood bank — also jets (privately) around the country to meet the common folk. Except in Pruitt’s case, most of the common folk seem to live in Oklahoma — his home state. Let’s just say sweet commute.

However, Price and Pruitt are run of the mill mountebanks. Prince among thieves is Steve Mnuchin – whose grasping is enhanced by a wife dedicated to advancing his grift. This government employee took a government plane to watch the solar eclipse from the top of Fort Knox – did the gold need checking on? Imagine a movie starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. You expect it from Hollywood, but not public servants in a democratic republic.

And then, determined to enshrine herself in the Clueless Hall of Fame, Mrs. Mnuchin – better known as Louise Linton, the actress who rocketed to notice in the role of ‘skin care consultant’ in the movie “Lions for Lambs” — hashtagged herself into infamy with an enumeration of her designer adornments while dismounting the jet. And then salted the wound by regaling a critic on Instagram with tales of her financial superiority.

But wait — there’s more. It turns out that Mnuchin and the new missus thought it a spanking good idea for the taxpayer to underwrite their honeymoon and requested a $25,000 per hour government jet for the trip to Europe. It took wiser heads at Treasury to cut the wings off that idea.

But even the Mnuchins’ flimflam pales in comparison to the chutzpah of the conman-in-chief. Donald Trump has no superior when it comes to using other people’s money. To give one example: His charity, entirely funded by others, buys paintings of himself for display in his clubs.

Now he finds himself in legal jeopardy and lawyers don’t come cheap. But his hand is not in his own pocket. It’s the RNC who’s being importuned.  So far they have ponied up $427,000 to pay Trump’s legal team. And then there’s the $200,000 paid to help prep Donald Jr. for his testimony before Congress.

Trump’s fans point at his rejection of the presidential salary as an example of his civic-mindedness. But left unsaid is the taxpayer cash flowing to Trump as he uses his properties to conduct business.Consider that the secret service has spent $60,000 on golf cart rentals alone — and extrapolate the total cost.

And let’s not forget the millions spent in his hotels etc. by those hoping for favorable attention from America’s chief executive. To paraphrase Woody Allen: “The most expensive President is a free one”

(In case you were wondering, Allen’s original quote was: “The most expensive sex is free sex”)

DC’s Marie Antoinettes



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