The Trump Cabal–God Help Us All

Yesterday, facing massive opposition, Trump’s nominee for Labor Secretary withdrew. But that was a minor victory; most of his ill-equipped nominees have been confirmed.

The most accurate one-liner about  the sorry lot that Donald Trump has assembled to run–or destroy– some of the nation’s most important agencies was by a Facebook poster who said he’d seen better cabinets at IKEA.

A more sober–and sobering–analysis has been made by a retired jurist and lifelong Republican, in a scathing guest column titled “It’s Time to Impeach Trump.”

The leader of the band of Mad Hatters occupying the White House has already insulted allied world leaders, issued illegal and badly written orders, impugned a “so-called” judge appointed by his own party, and appointed the least-qualified cabinet ever. The first secretary of state was Thomas Jefferson. Trump appointed a big-oil executive with close ties to Russia. The first treasury secretary was Alexander Hamilton. Trump appointed a former Goldman Sachs exec who got rich foreclosing on homeowners. The national security advisor lasted 24 days.

It isn’t just the Cabinet. People given important roles in Trump’s White House are even more troubling, to put it mildly. Steve Bannon is the most high-profile example of the white supremacist cabal surrounding Trump, but he’s hardly the only one: 

[Sebastian] Gorka’s name and views appear to have a higher profile among experts on Islamophobia than in the counterterrorism community.

Engy Abdelkalder, adjunct professor at Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service, noted that like Trump’s chief strategist Steve Bannon, Gorka has ties to anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist Frank Gaffney.

“He has frequently appeared on Gaffney’s radio program to further such fears and misconceptions about Islam and Muslims,” Abdelkalder told TPM in an email. “And what makes him particularly pernicious is his academic credentials and now, prestigious political appointment, extend an appearance of legitimacy to anti-Muslim bigotry and prejudice.”

Then there’s newly visible Steve Miller, described thusly by a story in the Grio:

If there was any question as to whether Donald Trump is running a white supremacist, authoritarian White House, Stephen Miller should erase all doubt.

Yes, Trump has more than one scary in-house Nazi adviser named Steve. We all knew about Steve Bannon, the white nationalist senior adviser who came to Washington via Breitbart with ideas about making America white again. Now there’s Stephen Miller, who is only 31 and on top of the world as the White House policy adviser behind Trump’s Muslim ban.

Given his incendiary remarks on last Sunday news shows, the subsequent media revelations about his background aren’t surprising, although the details are definitely chilling.

In high school, this angry little man complained about Cinco de Mayo celebrations, Spanish language announcements, an LGBTQ student club and a visit from a Muslim leader, as Univision reported. When Miller ran for class president, he was reportedly booed off the stage by 4,000 students. In his high school yearbook, he wrote: “There can be no fifty-fifty Americanism in this country. There is room here for only 100 percent Americanism, only for those who are Americans and nothing else.”

When Miller attended college at Duke University, his racial hatred continued. Miller was affiliated with extremists such as neo-Nazi leader Richard Spencer, white nationalist Jared Taylor and Islamophobic activist David Horowitz. Further, as Politico reported, Miller said that multiculturalism undermines American culture. He accused black students of racial paranoia. Although a practicing Jew, he decried the “War on Christmas.” He even went after professors who were registered Democrats, and hated Maya Angelou, calling her a “a leftist” full of “racial paranoia” and opposing her coming to campus for a keynote speech.

Miller later became a press secretary for Rep. Michelle Bachman and communications director for Sen. Jeff Sessions. During the 2016 campaign, Miller warmed up the crowds at the racially charged and violent Trump rallies. Now, he is writing Trump’s executive orders and speeches, including the Muslim ban and an inauguration speech laced with Nazi and antisemitic overtones.

Birds of a feather….

Judge Painter got it right.

We must admit we have elected a president who has immediately proved himself to be a grifter, a pathological liar, a mean-spirited bully and dangerous to American values. This not-ready-for-prime-time show is too dangerous to continue. America is at stake.


  1. Patmcc,

    And just where has Pence been since the Flynn/Russian story broke? No news conference, no press release of any substance, no appearances on TV talk shows, no apology to the public for being so naive and lying about Flynn… hiding in a closet no doubt.

  2. I think Pence was intentionally left out so he could give his faux-serious, furrowed brow assurance that Flynn had done no wrong. He might not have been as convincing if he had facts – like his exchange w George Stephanopoulus re: RFRA.

    Sheila, as you mentioned in a recent post, maybe the inertia of incompetence will be too great to overcome at some point – maybe after another month? No doubt that Trump is being manipulated into creating a dictatorship by his “staff”, and is apparently to distracted by his own hair to realize it.

  3. Is Pence resting up behind the scenes, quietly and secretly being prepared to become the true GOP president? Is the GOP nearing the end of their rope – or do they believe they have given Trump almost enough rope to hang himself, his family members, in-laws and his appointees (his CABAL) – and are readying his replacement? It will be little improvement but probably/possibly safer from violence on our streets as well as attacks by our enemies who are testing us by showing off their weaponry.

    Another reference to “Mandiba”; when, after hundreds of attacks and killing of blacks, members of the African National Congress asked Mandela why they were not using violence in return. His answer was,”We are not them!” Why have the millions of those during the past three weeks who are holding rallies, protests and marches been using non-violence? “Because we are NOT them!” Do any of you believe Trump’s threats, actions, confirmed appointees, Executive Orders, declarations, Russian connections, repealing protective laws, etc., is not a form of political violence? Trump’s cabal is practicing treasonous activities in front of our eyes; is treason not violence?

  4. I do not agree with those who say we should not march, show up at town halls, call our politicians out in person and on the phone. In this day and age of instant communication, such activities are symbols of discontent that are important for those who did not march or show up at town halls, who may finally get off the couch and defend our democracy and offend those who would remove it before we make out final descent into some kind of klepto-corporate world antithetical to all we hold dear as citizens in a free society. However, I don’t think we can equate what we know so far with treason, i.e., it may very well be treason when we have the evidence, but we don’t have the evidence yet and may get a politically whitewashed version of the evidence fed to us if such investigations are limited to House and Senate committees; we need an independent investigation of this Trump-Flynn-Manifort-Putin mystery armed with subpoena powers given to the investigators (free from Sessions’ oversight), and the way things are going in the White House (aka House of Liars), perhaps we should expand such a committee’s reach into other such “mysteries” on a semi-permanent basis (or at least until and including 2020 unless limited to a congressional term). If Trump is removed from office during the interim, I’m not sure that his replacement would be better, but I’ll take the risk.

  5. This is all information that should have been flushed out during the campaign. But the media were making too much money humoring 45 and cohorts. My suspicion is that some reporters knew at the time, but were (and are) sitting on crucial information waiting for a lucrative book deal. And now, let’s face it: Neo-Nazis are in charge of the White House and pretty much control Congress and seventy percent of the state legislatures. (Witness what happened in Indiana yesterday.) They’re trying like hell to add the judicial branch to their conquest – and might very well succeed. Satire and ridicule – and maybe the FBI? … we can only hope – are the only tools now left to turn public sentiment against them. We better use those if we want to save our sanity … and the country. SNL and the social media are doing a decent job, but is it enough?

  6. Let us remember, there ARE things we can look forward to: For example, next Monday, Feb. 20, will mark the passage of the first month of this administration and that means — YES! — only 47 more to go.
    Well, we’ve got to be positive about what we can be positive about — don’t we????

  7. The problem is, that impeaching the short-fingered vulgarian (or forcing him to resign) and installing Pence is no guarantee that he’ll replace any of the current kakistocracy. And I think that the GOP House and Senate will do nothing but continue to enable the s-fv and obstruct any deeper look into his likely misdoings- and it appears there are plenty. They know it will be hard to sweep them into the minority in two years, unless it becomes evident that they’ll lose the Senate by a wide margin. (One can only hope). Yeah, he really could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue, and not only would his voters stick with him, so would the moral eunuchs in Congress.

    I think they kept Pence in the dark to give him plausible deniability and make it less likely that he’d be flushed down the drain with the short-fingered vulgarian. But, how in the dark could he really have been? Surely he was aware of the contacts with Russian intelligence agencies throughout the campaign.

  8. As I have said from the beginning, Trump is the purified, distilled essence of today’s Republican. Any shock from the Establishment Republican Party at his election comes only from the fact they didn’t realize that someone so nakedly Republican could indeed get elected. They love him, never forget that. Proof of the point comes from their complete inability to muster even a tepid response to this monster who’s strangling America before all our eyes. And if you were Putin, when would you strike? When you have a weak, ignorant, leader. The next national march better be to impeach him. We have no time to waste.

  9. Trump has announced that he was to bring in an investment banker/hedge fund manager to reorganize the intelligence community who has absolutely no experience with the intelligence community. The republicans want to launch investigations into the leaking that is emanating out of the intelligence community in regard to General Flynn and the possible, likely very probable, connections between the president’s campaign and Russian intelligence officials. So instead of going after the Russian hacking of our political system and the election and its help to Trump and be elected were going after the people that are essentially standing up and saying there’s something very rotten in Denmark.

    This is just incredible and on top of that there is a survey that is out today that six out of every 10 Americans are dealing with if increasing levels of stress because of their concerns over what is happening to their country and its future.

    I’m sorry, but I think the only way we’re gonna be able to fight this Hydra that is trying to take over the country lock, stock, and barrel, is actually to fight fire with fire. Trump and Bannon’s game plan is to shock the system and what we’re dealing with is already a threat to the stability of this country but also the entire world. All of us and the millions just like us, including Trump supporters who are growing more restive about all of this every day, have to stand up and to quote the late Nancy Reagan, just saying NO in a very loud, raucous way.

    If that means we have to man the barricades, we man the barricades. We do so in a nonviolent but determined way to take this country back out of the hands of these neo fascist maniacs and the fool that brought them into the government, OUR GOVERNMENT, out of Washington out of government. Essentially, there is no time to waste particularly when our wonderful ‘Unified Republican Government’ is unwilling and unable to stand up to it and instead embraces it because they care more about being reelected than they do about their country its people, and its role in the world.

    What is happening is despicable and is only going to grow worse if we don’t stop it and ultimately that’s our job anyway. It’s us or we let the Russian Duma to it for us. The stakes our very high but they always have been and American cannot, ultimately, shirk our responsibilities as the ultimate authority for how this country is governed that we have done for so long. Right now that big margin of error that we floated in for decade after decade no longer exists. A longer we wait and sit on our hands politely the worse all of this is going to get.

  10. I think that effective resistance must be unified resistance, strategic resistance not scattershot.

    While certainly there are effective individuals in Congress resisting the fall of Washington, and effective demonstrations with various themes in various places there isn’t much focus. One reason is that there are so many issues and so many incompetent individuals to resist. Where to start?

    I assume that Democratic leadership will emerge but when? Who? How?

  11. Tom; you just stated clearly what is needed, I attempted to do so but gave up and deleted all of my comments. The current situation requires investigators to investigate the investigators who are investigating the protesters, marchers and those who are rallying for our rights. How can we expect an honest investigation by the government division whose director (Comey), ignored months of Trump/Putin/Russia entanglements and illegally posted a legally useless letter which lost Hillary the election? All within this current administration who would, under normal circumstances, be the ones to investigate this administration need to be investigated themselves.

    These circumstances are far beyond the norm; all normalcy was lost when Hillary conceded the election early on the morning of November 9, 2016, and has escalated at breakneck speed since January 20, 2017.

  12. The response of the Trumpet to Flynn receiving the sack, has been predictable – blame someone else in this case leaks and the media.

    Kellyanne Conway, just simplified the Trumpet’s Regime by coining Alternative Facts as a Standard Method of Operation. Two plus two can equal what ever you want to be.

    Voter Fraud charges no proof is needed by the Trumpet Regime.

  13. Oh, Pete. Would that there were such a thing as “Democratic leadership.” I think the scattershot, less than strategic demonstrations are all that we have for the time being. But some of those demonstrations need to be aimed directly at the current Dem leadership, such as it is.

  14. And now for a bit of good news… Rasmussen has Trump’s approval rating at 55% !!!
    Welcome to reality.

  15. “Much of our vitriol has been directed at Donald Trump. This is absolutely fair (even essential)—he’s an official elected to serve and remain accountable to the public.”

    Thomas; I copied and pasted the above quote from the Extra Newsfeed site you posted; which is from someone in the UK who may know why Trump was elected but is totally unaware of what he is actually doing to and against this country.

    Being totally unfamiliar with your term “agitprop” I looked it up in my Webster’s Dictionary. “agitprop: Russ. office of agitation and propaganda, also pro-communist propaganda promulgated especially in literature and drama.”

    If you have been paying attention to the “goings-on” here, especially Trump’s so-called news conference earlier this afternoon, you would be aware that your term “agitprop”, meant to be derogatory, actually describes what Trump has turned the American government into, an “office of agitation and propaganda” over a span of less than four weeks. His actions have crossed the border onto the dangerous side of everything resulting in the need to find solutions to the problems he has caused thus far and try to prepare for those he has planned for our future here.

    If you agree with the article on that site, go on with yourself; I will stick with the lemmings who read and understood the post from someone who is not living in our current outer limits of the Twilight Zone.

  16. Is Thomas that kook who was once on here with his ill will and is now using a new name? They sound the same.

  17. Becky – You’re right about the Rasmussen poll today. But here is some context provided by the NYT: [T]he poll is an outlier, giving Mr. Trump an approval rating several points higher than others in the field. Real Clear Politics’ average of approval ratings finds that 44.6 percent of Americans approve of the job Mr. Trump is doing, compared with 50.3 percent who disapprove.
    Gallup’s daily job approval tracker puts Mr. Trump’s approval rating at 40 percent, the lowest since he has taken office, and disapproval at 54 percent.
    Thirty-nine percent of respondents to a Pew Research Center poll released on Tuesday approve of Mr. Trump’s performance, while 56 percent disapproved.

  18. irvin; I Googled Extra Newsfeed which was described as “the same political rants you see on Facebook but better written”. Not a news source to put my trust in.

    Becky and Alphons; Rasmussen polls are a conservative site so would naturally find numbers to favor Trump. Another “news” source I don’t put trust in. Many are connected to white supremacist sources; I didn’t find that with Rasmussen but didn’t research further.

  19. Thomas:
    That link is just another broadside against “liberals” painted with the same broad brush. I certainly don’t think that Trump is capable of being president; I didn’t vote for him. I guess you have to be a liberal to conclude that his presidency thus far has been less than satisfactory by any standard. If you are willing to believe that he and his administration are focused on the best interests of all Americans, there is probably nothing more to be said to you.

    I don’t understand how people concluded that he was their better option during the campaign (w Comey, WiKi Leaks and all the rest) and I don’t understand the blind allegiance to a guy who promised, among other things, to “drain the swamp” and at least to the naked eye has done nothing but pack his cabinet with conservative ideologues, many of whom seem to be unqualified for the job they were selected.

    I guess we’ll see what the future brings, but it’s ugly so far.

  20. Although I am certainly concerned with some of Trump’s moves since his inauguration (his secretary of labor pick concerns me) there have been an astounding amount of arrests related to human trafficking since Jeff Sessions was sworn in. In fact, there have been over 1300 arrests for human sex trafficking on US soil since the inauguration date of President Trump. Many of the people rescued were children. So….though I agree that Trump is not the right person, who is the right person to help clean corruption out of our government? Though there is no lack of negative sentiment for the, legally elected, Donald Trump…………where is the liberal outrage for Hillary Clinton stealing the caucus from Bernie Sanders illegally? Where is the peoples out rage over the alleged money funneling and connections to child sex trafficking that the Clinton foundation has been the center of without a fair investigation? So…honestly who gives a shot about these nit picky foolish lines to destroy Trump? The real problem is a CIA and Mossad blackmail program of pedophilia which controls the global governances, including here in the US. So…..let’s all unite and get the pedophiles in prison or the electric chair where they belong and then let’s go after Trump.

  21. Elaine; what is your source for the sex trafficking arrests? I have not seen that information; I am not doubting you at all, simply asking where you found this information. It is something we should be aware of.

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