Tuesday, September 28, 2021

The five stages of Trump

We will not be shut of Trump in the foreseeable future, even if a giant sinkhole opens under whatever course he's playing and he falls into the earth's core.  We might as well settle in for the duration.  Kubler-Ross's five stages are denial and isolation, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance, and it's possible to cycle through them all in one afternoon.  

For anger I recommend the three stooges he imposed on the Department of Veterans Affairs based on their qualifications as paid-up members of Mar-a-Lago:  Ike Perlmutter, chair of Marvel Entertainment; Marc Sherman, lawyer; and Dr. Bruce Moskowitz of Palm Beach.  Their writ:  to "straighten out" the DVA.  Their scheme:  monetize the patient database of some nine million veterans by making it available to Johnson & Johnson, CVS and Apple.  This comes not from another gossipy book but from documents released by the House Committees on Veterans' Affairs and on Oversight and Reform, suggesting the "Mar-a-Lago Council" and VA Secretary David Shulkin violated the Federal Advisory Committee Act at the very least.  Luckily their own incompetence prevented it going much farther.

In the area of bargaining Arbitrator T. Andrew Brown threw out the non-disclosure agreement Trump says Omarosa Manigault Newman violated when she published Unhinged in 2018.  Brown also ruled that the Trump campaign has to pay her legal costs.  "People who signed these NDAs should sleep better and speak more freely," her attorney wrote.  If he's right that's good news for Mary Trump, who's being sued by her crazy uncle. 

But Newman and her book are old news.  Today's revenge tome comes from Stephanie Grisham,  the press secretary who never held a press conference even to hurl vitriol at reporters.  Hence the amusing title I'll Take Your Questions Now.  She was using all that extra time to store up juicy inside dope:  How Trump told Putin, "I'm going to act a little tougher with you for a few minutes.  But it's for the cameras..."  How Trump was "distracted" when Putin brought an especially attractive female interpreter along to their meeting in Osaka.  How Trump called Grisham from Air Force One to stress that his penis is not mushroom-shaped as Stormy Daniels had written.  How the staff had to conceal a plan to use the plane to transport the casket of George H.W. Bush:  "Dead bodies, death, sickness -- those things really seemed to creep him out."  None of this is surprising but the Trumps are spitting nails so it's all good.  One bombshell:  According to Grisham he cuts his own hair.  I thought the kid with the lawn mower was involved.

Joe Biden is the President of the United States, having won Arizona more times than any Democrat in the last hundred years.  And Joe Biden could invoke executive privilege to withhold phone records and other evidence of what Trump was up to last January 6 from the House select committee investigating the coup attempt.  Will he?  That's a no.  Normally presidents give their predecessors a pass on every known abomination (see Ford, Gerald R.), so this is a break with precedent Trump should find alarming.  He forgot to insist Biden sign a non-disclosure agreement.

Acceptance?  Never.  "Agitate.  Agitate, agitate," as Frederick Douglass said.  I wonder if Trump is still hearing good things about him.



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