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Robert Lipsyte: Hail to the Duffer in Chief
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Think of Donald Trump as the plutocratic id loosed in the White House. And who hasn’t noticed the results? Civil war and uproar in Washington with bodies regularly carried out of the Oval Office. There are the constant tweet assaults on his attorney general, Jeff Sessions. There’s his disgruntled secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, taking some “personal time” six months into office. (Think of it as his own private Rexit.) There was (with an emphasis on “was”) Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, under siege for months, only to be frontally assaulted last week by Anthony Scaramucci, the president’s new communications director — sayonara Sean Spicer — who accused him of being a leaker, smeared him as a “fucking paranoid schizophrenic,” and compared their relationship to that of Cain and Abel. (And you know how that brotherly duo ended up). Priebus was soon a goner, replaced by one of “my generals,” retired four-star John Kelly, until recently head of the Department of Homeland Security. And no slouch, Scaramucci also clobbered the president’s chief strategist, Steve Bannon, accusing him of trying to “suck his own cock.” Oh, and then he threatened to fire his whole staff to take care of the problem of White House leaks before, of course, getting axed himself on a day on which the president tweeted “No WH chaos!”

Meanwhile, National Security Adviser General H.R. McMaster, the other general in the White House, seems to be on the outs (with White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders ominously saying there’s “no reason” to think Trump lacks confidence in him). Secretary of Defense James Mattis was reportedly caught totally off guard when the president tweeted his decision to ban transgender troops from the armed forces. Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, a key figure in what passes for foreign policy, has at times been at loggerheads with Bannon and, threatened with charges of political collusion with Russia during the 2016 campaign, has fallen back on a plea of total, utter, and abysmal ignorance of more or less everything foreign or Russian (even the name of the Russian ambassador to the U.S.). This bizarre list only grows by the day and by the tweet as the bodies begin to pile up.

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All that’s left, in true mafia style, is “the family” and “the business,” hardly the usual definition of the imperial presidency. And yes, it couldn’t be more poisonous, but keep in mind why Donald Trump won the presidency in the first place. As I wrote during the election campaign last year, parts of the white working class were “ready to send a literal loose cannon into the White House… willing, that is, to take a chance on the roof collapsing, even if it collapses on them.” He was, in this sense, their own suicide bomber in Washington, how they planned on giving the finger to the political system they felt had pushed them to the edge of some cliff. They voted — and it was no mistake — a certified bad boy into the White House. He called himself a “businessman,” but that was the least of what he was. And as their bad boy, he’s having a blast, as at the Boy Scouts Jamboree where he offered a classic Trumpian tirade to 40,000 12 to 18 year olds and attending adults, lecturing them on the “hottest” people and cocktail parties in New York, getting them to boo Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, and using the word “hell” (“Who the hell wants to speak about politics when I’m in front of the Boy Scouts?”) in a non-religious sense, surely a first not just for the president but for anybody addressing such a crowd.

In short, it was glorious. What more could a bad boy ask for than to be reprimanded by the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the chief scout executive for the Boy Scouts of America in the same 24-hour period?

As Robert Lipsyte, TomDispatch’s jock culture correspondent, points out today, Donald Trump has just one thing in common with past American presidents: golf. And they merely played the game in their spare time. He’s brought what Lipsyte calls the sport of plutocrats — the business and the profits — right into the Oval Office. Don’t count on Donald Trump for normal Washington politics, alliance making, deals, or loyalty. Think of him instead as the bad-boy president of chaos. Fore!

(Republished from TomDispatch by permission of author or representative)
 
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Donald Trump 
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  1. ” Even the Gods despair in the face of stupidity”

    The author of this article is a fool beyond redemption so any rational discussion is impossible and the attempt thereof a gigantic exercise in futility.

    As far as “duffers” are concerned : All Democrats who have ever held political office regardless of level, BC, JC, BO, HRC, they were all misinformed , uneducated “Duffers”; charlatans, without an iota of wisdom, or insight, the Republicans were a slight bit better, but not much.

    Authenticjazzman “Mensa” society member since 1973, airborne qualified US Army Vet and pro Jazz musician.

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  2. I only click on Tom Engelhardt articles to see him get cuffed around in the comments.

    I don’t understand why he’s even published here anymore.

    The man is a complete and total loser.

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  3. Think of Donald Trump as the plutocratic id loosed in the White House.

    I’d prefer not to think of the plutocratic id(iot), but if I must, I think it’s all great fun and if the clown can’t control the WH, which is supposedly packed with “really, really, beautiful” people, then how the (bleep) can the clown expect to drain the swamp or rule the world?

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  4. TheJester says:

    Tom,

    I hope you realize that you are a sacrificial animal on the Unz Review. Ron really tries to provide balance. I mean … he features iSteve and you on the same website.

    What’s really going on in Washington …?

    You have the Democrats, also known as Progressives. These are euphemisms for Cultural Marxists (the cultural half of the Leninist agenda) and, if you are a Berniest (the economic half of the Leninist agenda) … a full blown Communist.

    Then, you have the Romney “Chamber of Commerce” Republicans. They agree with the Democrats that new immigrants (legal and illegal) are in such numbers that they are “king makers” in any election. Besides businesses wanting low-cost scab labor, they align with the Democratic agenda to import millions of new voters and workers. It’s a race to see who can bribe the new citizens (at least they vote like citizens) with the most “gibsmedats”.

    Then, there are the Neocons … Trotskyite globalists (the Jewish ex-Communist legacy from the implosion of the Soviet Union) who continue to seek a venue to escape Nature and create the New Soviet man and woman. They insist on the police powers of the state and brute military force to accomplish these dystopian goals.

    Then, you have us Deplorables who put Trump in the White House. We figured out that we have an empire and that the empire is run from the two megacities centered in New York and California. These two population centers are “Blue”; rest of the country is “Red”. We also figured out that the United States has been bribing imperial possessions for decades with uneven trade agreements that have transferred our wealth to them in return for their loyalty. This benefits only the financiers, banksters, and the military-industrial-Congressional complex centered in the megacities. It makes paupers of everyone else.

    So, how do people outside of the two megacities reclaim their liberties and way of life? They BREAK the empire. Trump is doing an excellent job of BREAKING the empire.

    BTW: Hell has no fury compared to the consequence of the imperial Deep State successfully impeaching Trump. That will likely be the end of the United States as we know it (and, in any case, most of us would welcome California (The Land of Fruits and Nuts) seceding from the union). But, at the end of the day, we will have BROKEN the empire and recovered our freedom and our liberty.

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  5. Stogumber says:

    I didn’t know that it was taboo to say “what the hell” in the presence of Boy Scouts. I mean, we all know that the Soviets were prissy – but this modern kind of Western Bolshevists tops even the Soviets.

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