Trump World Grab-Bag--A Collection

Thursday, January 4, 2018

The Wolff at the Door

Needless to say, the very measured and restrained Chief Executive Donald Trump, handled the Steve Bannon "treasonous" comments with his typical easy-going good humor--HA! What he had to say was pretty much what you might expect he would have to say:

Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my Presidency. When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind. Steve was a staffer who worked for me after I had already won the nomination by defeating seventeen candidates, often described as the most talented field ever assembled in the Republican party.

Now that he is on his own, Steve is learning that winning isn't as easy as I make it look. Steve had very little to do with our historic victory, which was delivered by the forgotten men and women of this country. Yet Steve had everything to do with the loss of a Senate seat in Alabama held for more than thirty years by Republicans.

And so on. Basically, he's saying Bannon was just a staffer who didn't do or know anything, and besides that, he's nuts. (Did he mostly fetch coffee, one wonders?)

It gets better--there's also now a cease and desist letter from an attorney advising Bannon that he should stop disparaging the President and his family and also that he's violating an NDA. So Bannon should stop saying things because they are mean, but he should also stop saying them because...they are true? This seems like two fairly stupid points to try to make.

I'm not sure the problem is what Bannon continues to say, because the offending quotes came from a book that's already been written and has quotes from lots of other people in and around the White House (many of whom probably signed the same sort of agreement). The excerpt of Michael Wolff's book that I have read from New York Magazine makes me think it's a real humdinger, and probably other sources of quotes in that book could be liable to get the same treatment Trump is siccing on his former Campaign CEO and White House Strategist.

I don't know that this particular avenue of trying to shut up inconvenient stories would actually have the effect of, you know, shutting them up.

There are also additional pitfalls as I see it--successfully make an NDA case and basically everything that got said in the book gains a little credence. And the book makes the Trump White House seem like a shambles.  Or, as a very public figure, the NDA is voided and one of the ways Trump has been leveraging silence for years goes out the window. Also, it sounds like the White House itself didn't put any clear brakes on what Wolff was allowed to print, so he got dish from people who just didn't really what they should or shouldn't have told him was "on background". This was (ill-advised? what they deserve?)...typical. Anyway, Wolff might have taken some advantage of the situation--but they should have expected that.

I don't really know. And I'm not anti-Trump enough to be pro-Bannon. I'm just....amused.

1 comment:

Harry Hamid said...

ABC is reporting that Trump's folks have sent Bannon a cease and desist letter related, in part, to "a non-disclosure agreement which required all staff, according to campaign sources, to refrain from any disparaging comments against the candidate, his family or the Trump campaign and organization."

Hopewfully, Bannon can get riled up enough to cut loose with some truth while he's, you know, testifying...