Jared’s No Jewel…

While Jared Kushner, the Carlo Rizzi of the Tr**p family, spoke to investigators from the Senate committee looking into TrumpRussia today, and while that meeting was behind closed doors, his written statement was published by the Washington Post. He does not come off well. If there was collusion, the Russians are not getting their money’s worth. Like students at Trump University, we’re discovering what happens when you make a deal with Donald Tr**p: shoddy workmanship, passed off to underlings not trained to deliver the work promised.

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Mr. Bluth will see you now…

As you’d expect, the document is padded with Presidential venerations—how Donald Tr**p didn’t need any help from the Russians,  the campaign nimbly responded to new challenges, and that his father-in-law “had the right vision for America, and delivered his message perfectly.” All of which should let you know that either he has lost his short-term memory (because my memory was of a campaign that lurched from crisis to crisis, including getting into a shouting match with a Gold Star family) is lying, or is stupid enough to believe it.

After reading the eleven-page document, I’m going with the latter two. Because while President Father-In-Law was piling up the portfolios in Mr. Ivanka’s inbox (the Middle East! Innovation! ) he plodded along, a walking conformation of the Peter Principle.

With each new task, he told the Committee, he would “reach out to contacts…find the right person to manage the specific challenge, and work with that person to develop and execute a plan of action.” Sounds like Business 101, right? But even at that, Mr. Ivanka was overwhelmed. Why, he received nearly 200 emails a day during the campaign! From (approximately) 15 countries! How could he be expected to remember all the contacts he had with foreign representatives?

Not only that, he didn’t even know the Russian Ambassador’s name! How could he collude with someone if he didn’t know their name? Or know how to get in contact with them, even if he did.  That form he submitted about his foreign contacts? Well, he didn’t just leave off the Russians, he left off meetings with Jordan’s King Abdullah II, “Bibi” Netanyahu, and Mexico’s foreign minister. Doesn’t that make you feel better?

And, as for the  June 2016 meeting the Junior Don set up with that Russian lawyer at Tr**p Tower….let’s just say he didn’t “love it!”  as much as his brother-in-law. He didn’t even read the email.  It was “calendared,” and if iCalendar says to be somewhere, Mr. Ivanka goes. How many people were there, who they were, what the agenda was…all blank spaces in Mr. I’s memory. The one thing he does remember was that he was bored, and eventually asked his assistant to call him, so he could get out of there. Nothing to see here…

At the end of this document, which should fear in the heart of anyone who thinks that, regardless of party affiliation, government requires competent, able individuals, he writes, in bold text to you know he’s serious:

I did not collude, nor know of anyone in the campaign who colluded, with any foreign government. I had no improper contacts. I have not relied on Russian funds to finance  my business activities in the private sector. I have tried to be fully transparent with regard to filing my FS-86 form, above and beyond what is required .

He concludes by hoping this “puts the matter to rest.” Can’t imagine that will be the case.

 


Obscene Paragraphs: Minimize the Moocher Edition

Anthony “The Mooch” Scaramucci, Il Douché’s newest hire, and understudy for the part of  Tight-Lips” Louie in the inevitable live action Simpsons musical, made his debutante’s run of the Sunday morning chat shows this morning. It did not go well.

 

 

His appearances did little to assuage the sense that the reason he got the job was his willingness to repeatedly declare his undying loyalty to his Don (twenty times, according to the NYTimes).  Sure, he outed his boss as an anonymous source, first telling Jake Tapper “Somebody said to me yesterday—I won’t tell you who—that if the Russians actually hacked this situation and spilled out those emails, you would have never seen it, you would have never had any evidence of them.” When pressed by Tapper, he reacted like a cornered bully in a playground fight: “How about it was the president, Jake?” Not exactly a compelling comeback.

But, at heart, he’s just another one of Tr**p’s hedge fund buddies who thinks he knows how to “fix” government without knowing how it actually works. And while having a friendly coffee with the folks over on “Fox News Sunday,” After less then two days on the job, he already knows what the problem. It just happens to be his Don’s biggest concern: leaks. All those illegal leaks on “Fake News.” (Left unasked: if those leaks are illegal, then the information—and the reporting of it—can’t be fake. If someone tells you a fake story, they’re not a leaker—they’re a liar.)

And The Mooch knows just how to stop those “unprofessional” leaks. His solution:

Scaramucci on Sunday said he would “pare down the staff” to stop White House leaks, but made clear… that he wants to start anew. “As far as I’m concerned, there will be a new start for everybody on the team,” said Scaramucci, whose appointment as communications director forced the resignation of Sean Spicer, who had held that post.

 OK, the less people who have access to information, the less chance of it leaking (and it’s easier to find the leak). Only one problem: The Douché Administration is running with a historically small staff. Some of the agencies have only a single Tr**p appointee. And it’s not obstruction, at least not on the Democrat’s part. According to the Washington Post.

President Trump has a major staffing problem. He has been president for five months, and yet his agencies are severely understaffed at the highest levels. And, no, it’s not all Senate Democrats’ fault…Trump is way behind other Presidents in nominating people for the Senate to vote on.

Obscene Paragraphs: Tying One On Edition

Il Douché has joined forces with Ty Cobb. No, not that one, but a distant relation. Given the Georgia Peach’s love of sharp spikes and views on race, it’s amusing to entertain the thought that the connection appealed to Tr**p. But, if he was going to choose a new lawyer you’d think he might look to someone who doesn’t resemble a villainous Wilford Brimley.

But the facial hair of the Douché legal team (and if this Russia matter is a hoax, you have to ask why he needs real lawyers to manage it) is not the subject of today’s Obscene Paragraph, although it does come from today’s Times’ story on Cobb’s hiring. No, it’s the reason why  they need a new lawyer. The stress of being a Douché family consigliere has caused Marc Kasowitz to take on a hobby: threatening people who email him. That leaves him precious little time for actual legal work.

Not that if matters. If you believe Il Douché, being elected President has given him new, God-like, powers. As the Times puts it:

But Mr. Trump has flouted his own lawyer, bragging to people around him that no one can control his actions.

No one can control his actions. Let that sink in for a moment. This is a man who thought that simply being a “star ” gave him license to grope women— “they let you do it. You can do anything.” 

I’m beginning to think Il Douché is too kind. Maybe Kim Jong Il Douché is a better fit.

 

 


Obscene Paragraphs: Rasslin’ Wonk Edition

For a while I wondered why Sebastian v. Gorka, or Shere Khan from the Jungle Book given human form, had been allowed outside the hermetic right-wing media biosphere. He’s shown up on CNN, each time reciting what he claimed were their poor ratings, letting them know he felt it was beneath him to have to appear explain how the Junior Don was innocent of all wrongdoing on a channel whose numbers were lower than Nick at Nite. It must have taken all his restraint for Anderson Cooper not to roll his eyes.

It ends up that this is what Il Douché wants to see on all the TV he’s not watching.  A haughty  Neo-Nazi who will put that “Fake News” in its place. According to the semi-professional stenographers masquerading as White House Correspondents for Breitbart, Tr**p and his nationalist base see Gorka as “a rock star” (which makes you wonder what music they’ve been listening to lately).

Gorka is the rare wonkish television surrogate who can also, to use a rasslin’ term, cut quite the promo. His foreign accent makes him sound like he’s a bit of a heel, but Trump’s base sees him as their heel who is eviscerating Trump’s foes in the legacy media.

The Junior Don was so impressed he tweeted that “Gorka’s a SAVAGE!”

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Because savagery is what Tr**pism respects.  And they wonder why people hate them so.

 


Obscene Paragraphs: Michael, Fredo….and Eric Edition

Sure, a family that plays together is a good thing. It shows spirit, and Spirit. The Kennedys touch football games were part of their legend: the smiling, ruddy faces, tousled hair, and crisp New England light were a perfect vehicle to show their family loyalty and vigor. But does anyone really want to know that games the Tr**p family plays? Monopoly, with actual deeds (and, some people are wondering, actual jails)? The Game of Life, using real money?

Eric Tr**p, who must be seething that the Junior Don is now considered the least of the Tr**p progeny, decided to do something about it. And he turned to the family’s favorite form of communication—Twitter. Which leads to today’s Obscene Paragraph,  from this morning’s Washington Post:

Eric Trump, another son of the president, defended his older brother Tuesday night by retweeting a message from British politician Nigel Farage, who said Trump Jr. was under attack because he is “the best public supporter” of the president. Eric Trump tweeted: “This is the ­EXACT reason they viciously attack our family! They can’t stand that we are extremely close and will ALWAYS support each other.”

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Of course, like the rest of his family, Eric forgets the mountains of good press the Tr**ps received. In case Eric has forgotten, the Tr**p Organization even has a dedicated web page which lists them. Of course, when the “smart” son posts an entire email chain proving the campaign was, if not directly colluding with Russia, certainly knew that Russia was looking to meddle in the campaign and his response was “I love it,” that’s a kind of togetherness and support that attracts attention. From the press and special prosecutors.


Obscene Paragraphs: Stairway to the Starrett Edition

While the Junior Don is digging himself deeper every time he opens his mouth, apparently believing he can deflect any problems by insisting it was just a casual meeting. It was set up by an “acquaintance,” and he invited Jared and Paul to “stop by.”  Besides, she didn’t have any good dirt on Hillary, so what’s the issue?

While the left hand’s getting slapped, the right one is still out there grifting. Today’s Times has a story about a conflict of interest arising out of Il Douché’s stake in Starrett City, a massive housing development in Brooklyn, and a reminder of a time when governments were actually interested in helping the middle class. As you might expect, the owners get Federal subsidies, to the tune of $490 million since May 2013.

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Tr**p’s stake in small, only 4%, but two Democratic Congressmen, Elijah Cummings of Maryland and Hakeem Jeffries of New York, have questions about it. They worry that Il Douché’s representatives, or his good friend Ben Carson, the Housing and Urban Development Secretary, could “put a thumb on the scales” regarding rent increases, a possible sale , or refinancing. But that’s not what’s truly obscene. It’s this:

The men added that they also worry that Mr. Trump’s proposed budget would make steep cuts to many housing programs but “would leave the type of federal aid that flows to the owners of Starrett City mostly intact.”

So if you live in Starrett City, you might have to dig deeper in your pocket to pay the rent, but rest assured,  the bank balance of Donald J. Tr**p, 45th President of the United States, and your landlord, will not be adversely affected.


Obscene Paragraphs: It’s Not Me, It’s You Edition

I’ve decided to add another new feature: Obscene Paragraphs. Each day, I’ll post a single paragraph that condenses the utter awfulness of the Tr**p Administration.

Our inaugural entry comes from today’s NYTimes story on the highlights of Il Douché’s trip to Europe, including his first face-to-face meeting with his Kremlin handler (who calls our President by his SVR Codename: Malenky Rookie). He also discovered an unexpected plus side to his Make America Isolationist Again program:

The anger outside, they noted with relief, was mostly directed at globalism, the Group of 20 and European leaders, not at Mr. Trump.


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