I'm Right Again Dot Com
A new commentary every Wednesday - August 2, 2017
Old Marine Generals Don't Fade Away. They start cleaning out the stables at the White House
I must have been channeling President Harry Truman when I wrote the following. Early Monday, I had titled it "The White House Circus: Send in the Clowns" Then, about mid-morning, My wife called from her desk "General Kelly is taking over as over as Chief of Staff," she told me. "Trump has fired his old buddy and major domo of the month, Anthony Scaramucci, who had served all of ten days."
I was seized with a 72-year flashback that caused me to dissolve into a protracted fit of hysterical laughter that I couldn't control. I had to lie down, for my diaphragm was in spasm from laughing so hard, He said WHAT? And Trump did WHAT?
You probably know that your olfactory (sense of smell) nerves have a fantastic memory. Monday morning, my nose recalled the unmistakable smell of strong soap, acrid lye and steaming water. It was as if I was standing in the hallway outside the closed doors of the Oval Office and it had been announced by Mrs. Huckabee that General John Kelly had ordered up a "G.I. Party" his first day in office, after being asked to move from Secretary of Homeland Security to Chief of the White House Staff. Tony the Mooch was Toast. The charge: Terminal Potty Mouth.
I am sure General Kelly had quietly but sternly insisted on parameters he felt necessary in order to be effective. Have you seen all of the ribbons on his chest? This Marine has been tested under fire. He will not flinch in the face of another chaotic turf spat between factions, many of which were encouraged by Trump. The big test will come when the President refuses to let Kelly do his job; get the herd of cats under his control.
Remembering the G.I. parties to which I was invited by Master Sergeant Felty in 1944 (I never learned his given name), we new recruits "policed-up" the area and disposed of the trash, usually in 50-gallon barrels. Then, we returned to the floor under the squad tents and scrubbed them down with soap, lye and plenty of scalding-hot water.
While things were bubbling up on the computer screen Monday, I finished my first draft of my weekly diatribe. "Some politicians," I noted, "are guilty at times of using obscenities in private conversations with close acquaintances and bartenders." Harry Truman and Richard Nixon were noted for doing this with subordinates and reporters when provoked—which was often.
However, the string of expletives uttered publicly by Scaramucci last week had an inventive aspect of Sicilian Mafiosi depravity about them that exceeded anything yet conceived (for heaven's sake, don't ask) by normal cursers.
If ever it had been reported that Tony the Mooch had used this sort of language while describing any of the people with whom I was raised, or served with in the military, he would have soon been engaged in a cage fight with the objects of his derision—minus the cage.
I listened to Ryan Lizza, of New Yorker Magazine, who recorded the tawdry interview with Scaramucci, state more than once that at no time did the onetime Wall Street Fund Speculator say, "this is off the record," "don't record this," or "Please don't repeat my 'colorful' language. Scaramucci knew who Lizza is and where he works. Scaramucci saw that the reporter was holding a smartphone and making a recording, so I he didn't think he had a case when he tried to blame the blowback about the profane outburst on the reporter. There's a career awaiting The Mooch's return to Wall Street as a server for The Soup Nazi.
NOT FAKE NEWS: Maybe now the powers that be will get some things done about a whole number of pressing problems. Leaders of both parties were in constant deadlock, even when asked to compromise on the setting on the thermostats for the air conditioning in either legislative houses.
To the great delight of many Democrats, it appeared that the wheels were coming off the Trump Train. The in-fighting between factions has been chaotic, to say the least.
I can't help commenting that so far, a job in the White House hasn't offered a lot of job security. Trump had a revolving door installed on the Oval Office. No one has ever seen anything to compare with it since the closing days of the Nixon era.
God, help us. Maybe, now things will begin to change. Just maybe.
-Phil Richardson, Observer of the human condition and storyteller. "He goes doddering on into his old age, making a public nuisance of himself." - Joseph L. Mencken
The life of a narcotics trafficker for one of Mexico's brutal drug cartels. Available in paperback or for any computer, including Kindle eReader—Only from http://www.amazon.com (Enter "miguel: narcotraficante" in the Amazon.com search window). Sample it free.
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