Friday, August 25, 2017

Why The Swamp Is Not Yet Drained: Shock and Awe 2.0

Trapped?
If President Trump is to save his Presidency and Make America Great Again, he must immediately fire all of his top advisors (including son-in-law, Jared Kushner) and every member of the White House staff who was in place when he arrived. Moreover, as much as he loves his daughter, he must ignore Ivanka's political opinions which appear to be uniformly wrong-headed and destructive.

The President is being systematically controlled and isolated by the very people he brought in to support him. Consider this incredible action by the White House staff to limit information available to the President which was publicly (and arrogantly) revealed yesterday in Politico.
It’s a quiet effort to make Trump conform to White House decision-making norms he’s flouted without making him feel shackled or out of the loop. In a conference call last week, Kelly initiated a new policymaking process in which just he and one other aide — White House staff secretary Rob Porter, a little-known but highly regarded Rhodes scholar who overlapped with Jared Kushner as an undergraduate at Harvard — will review all documents that cross the Resolute desk. 
The new system, laid out in two memos co-authored by Kelly and Porter and distributed to Cabinet members and White House staffers in recent days, is designed to ensure that the president won’t see any external policy documents, internal policy memos, agency reports and even news articles that haven’t been vetted. [Emphasis added]. Kelly’s deputy, Kristjen Nielson, is also expected to assume an integral role.
The "Kelly" alluded to in the Politico article is General John F. Kelly, Trump's newly-appointed Chief of Staff. Prior to his appointment, General Kelly served as Director of Homeland Security. And who is Kristjen Nielson, the staffer who is "expected to assume an integral role" in controlling the information that reaches the President? She is, among other things, Chair of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Risk and Resilience. In other words, Kristjen Nielson is a thorough-going Globalist. All of the people named in the Politico piece (as well as many other key administration appointees) are integral parts of "The Swamp" that Trump promised to drain and they have a mission.

This White House Fifth Column's ill-concealed goal is to destroy Trump's relationship with the people who elected him by creating anger and a feeling of resigned hopelessness. The tactic has the potential to be spectacularly successful. I'm embarrassed to offer in evidence as Exhibit "A" my own initial reaction to Trump's Afghanistan speech (see my last blog post). 

Regular visitors to this page know that I have been a Trump supporter from the start of his campaign. Whatever his imperfections might be, I liked him because he was NOT an Establishment politician. He promised to "drain the swamp", ridding us of the corrupt revolving-door network of professional politicians, bureaucrats, judges, contractors, and lobbyists that robs us blind as it systematically demolishes what little remains of our constitutional republic. Trump's commitment to ending senseless, unwarranted and frequently illegal military interventions around the world was important to me.

Just to be clear on this last point, I am emphatically not a pacifist. I served this nation under arms for five years as a member of the 1st Cavalry Division, the 7th Infantry Division, and the XVIII Airborne Corps. I did two tours in Korea. Close friends of mine have died in combat. Two of my sons are retired career military men who served in war zones stretching from the former Yugoslavia to Iraq and Afghanistan. I believe that defense of the nation and her people is among Washington's most important responsibilities. I also believe that sending brave young Americans off to die in worthless wars is among its most egregious failures.

“The destructive cycle of intervention and chaos must finally come to an end,” Candidate Trump proclaimed, promising that the United States would be pulling back from conflicts around the world that are not in America’s vital national interest. Then came the President's disastrous August 21st speech announcing what was billed as a "new" approach to win the war in Afghanistan, completely reversing his anti-interventionist campaign promises.

On cue, just as planned by the White House Fifth Column, I and many others reacted with fury to the President's Afghanistan policy speech for the reasons outlined in David Stockman's brilliant article. Stockman is two-term former Congressman who served as Director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Reagan. As he passionately (and accurately) asks:
...for crying out loud – don’t these fools recognize that it is their bombs, missiles, drones and door-busting troops which have created most of the world’s terrorists? And that until Washington stops raining death from the sea, sky and land, the supply of fanatical young men in black turbans toting lethal weapons or wearing suicide vests will not diminish.
The President's apparent failure to understand the linkage between cause and effect was not the most troubling aspect of the speech. Its text was filled with misinformation, disinformation, half-truths and outright lies, all obtained through the advisors who have gained control of the Administration's military and diplomatic machinery and are now driving the nation into disaster at high speed.

On this blog, the day after the speech, I accused the President of betraying the millions of Americans who had voted him into office and theorized that there were only four possible explanations for his behavior:
  1. The President has grown in office and learned that his campaign promises were wrong.
  2. The President is being blackmailed.
  3. The President and/or his family are being threatened with physical harm.
  4. The entire Trump drama was fraudulent from the beginning, a fiendishly clever Deep State "black op" intended to demoralize public opposition to Globalism.
I wrote that I was going with number 4 because of Occam's razor. "The simplest explanation is usually correct."

Upon reflection and further investigation, there is a fifth possibility, one that provides an even more likely explanation. Like most successful executives, Donald Trump achieved his success as a delegator, not a hands-on "doer". Successful executives surround themselves with the most qualified experts they can find and rely upon them to make day-to-day decisions and to formulate decision options for the executive's consideration at the policy level. As his critics are quick to point out, Donald Trump had no previous experience in government as an executive. Understandably, he decided to apply the same formula that worked so well for him in the business world to the Presidency; hire the best possible experts and put them to work.

Trump's problem was that he needed experts in complex and unfamiliar fields of federal government policy. He instructed his campaign team to find those experts and, as this article explains, "Trump Team's Go-To Vetting Process Was 'A Quick Google Search'". Not surprisingly, Google's "best possible experts in the fields of federal government policy" all turned out be denizens of "The Swamp".

This would be funny if the result was not so tragic. While the fifth possibility does not put us or the world in a better situation, it does at least offer some hope that Donald Trump is simply an honest man who has been trapped by his decision formula and dishonest advisors. Unfortunately, the explanation does not provide a clear path to a peaceful solution.

If you agree and love our nation, please forward a link to this post to everyone you know.

FJB

This site is not affiliated with any political party. Its goals are to advocate for individual liberty, traditional morality, and domestic peace and to resist all forms of tyranny and statism. It reflects the point of view of a life-long constitutionalist and recovering Republican. If you are among the millions trying to understand what has happened to the GOP, please visit "Who Killed the Republican Party?" If you agree with the content of this post, please feel free to print and distribute it or forward the link to your political representatives at the state and federal level Thank you for your interest.