Then press officers at the White House glance up from their desks, they are constantly reminded of their boss’s big day. On the wall, in thick dark frames, are photos: Donald Trump taking the oath of office, giving a thumbs up at his inaugural address, bidding farewell to Barack Obama, waving to the crowd during his… Continue Reading →
What irks me is, they know the majority of people don’t want a repeal of the ACA, only help with the premiums and co-pays. They have to know this will kill them in 2018, but they seem to be telling themselves they can talk their way around it. — Susie
Reprinted with permission from Alternet. Almost all congressional Republicans are scared of facing voters in town hall meetings over the long President’s Day weekend. Only 19 representatives and senators-a tiny number-will hold town meetings during the first recess of the current session of Congress, reports the Town Hall Project. But the group’s listing of these democratic… Continue Reading →
During the most bizarre presidential press conference I’ve ever witnessed, Donald Trump was asked a question about the ACA repeal. His response, as unintelligible as it was, was also very disturbing. “We’ve begun preparing to repeal and replace Obamacare,” he assured his questioner. “Obamacare is a disaster, folks. It’s a disaster. You can say, oh, Obamacare.… Continue Reading →
It’s hard to explain if you didn’t actually watch it, but he’s a nut. Seriously nuts. (It did change the topic from “what did you know and when did you know it,” which is what it was intended to do.)
Donald Trump has had a difficult week. His Labor Secretary pick withdrew, his National Security Advisor resigned, and his approval ratings are in the tank. What to do, what to do? I’ve got it! Ignore the job you have in front of you and hold a rally to get lots and lots of warm fuzzies from… Continue Reading →
As part of intelligence operations being conducted against the United States for the last seven months, at least one Western European ally intercepted a series of communications before the inauguration between advisers associated with President Donald Trump and Russian government officials, according to people with direct knowledge of the situation. Related: President Trump’s National Security Advisor… Continue Reading →
Via the Washington Post, a pointed question:
Yesterday was just the latest illustration of the chaos and dysfunction that plague the infant administration. Officials found themselves in an uncomfortable holding pattern for much of Monday, unsure about whether to defend Flynn and privately grumbling about the president’s indecisiveness.
“After Trump made it through a joint news conference with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau without being asked about Flynn, a group of reporters gathered outside Spicer’s office for more than 80 minutes,” Ashley Parker and Philip Rucker report. “Spicer twice declined to answer questions about Flynn. When chief of staff Reince Priebus walked by, he was asked whether the president still had confidence in Flynn. Priebus gave no answer. Then, a few minutes later, Kellyanne Conway, the counselor to the president, declared on MSNBC that Trump had ‘full confidence’ in Flynn. Yet a few minutes later after that, Spicer issued an official — and conflicting — statement, saying Trump was ‘evaluating the situation.’” A few hours after that, Flynn was gone.
Conservative columnist Michael Gerson, a veteran of George W. Bush’s White House, opens his column today with a damning anecdote: Last month, House Speaker Paul Ryan met with a delegation from the president-elect on tax reform. Attending were Priebus, Conway, Stephen K. Bannon, Jared Kushner and Stephen Miller. As the meeting began, Ryan pointedly asked, “Who’s in charge?” There was silence.
“It is still the right question,” Michael writes. “Former officials with deep knowledge of the presidency describe Trump’s White House staff as top-heavy, with five or six power centers and little vertical structure. ‘The desire to be a big shot is overrunning any sense of team,’ says one experienced Republican. ‘This will cause terrible dysfunction, distraction, disloyalty and leaks.’”
Why did Donald Trump fire Acting Attorney General Sally Yates? Was it because of her refusal to defend his indefensible executive order, or was it because she warned Trump and his senior staff that General Michael Flynn could be vulnerable to Russian blackmail? The Washington Post’s bombshell report tonight brings back Sally Yates again, this time… Continue Reading →
People who work in a good, well-run company take a lot for granted. They have clear goals, they generally get the tools they need to do the job, and they have channels in which to share their feedback. They have HR departments to make sure no one’s breaking the law.
You can tell you work for a well-run company if you don’t have to pry your white knuckles off the steering wheel before you make yourself go into the building.
Now, not all companies are good, and some are only good in certain areas. But it’s generally accepted that these are worthwhile practices.
Family-run businesses, on the other hand, tend to have practices that exist by tradition — or worse, whim. There is a person at the top, and everything is geared toward his or her approval. Promotions are too often made on the basis of blood, and there’s usually frustration on the lower rungs who know they will never have the same opportunities to rise.
It is an unusual family business that brings in a management consultant, and it is even more unusual when they actually listen to them, and implement changes. (It’s almost always a child of the owner, who sees the problems and wants to change them, who talks the parent into paying for a consultant.)
But they can’t make the owner accept change. It rarely happens.
And this is what I think about when I look at Donald Trump, and the anxious, approval-seeking children who surround him. They are not independent — each one of them is on a leash. Because when your business experience is based on a family dynamic, you never really learn how to follow best practices for a corporate environment. They’re afraid to leave, and rightly so. Their only recourse is to start their own successful business.
I think about this because when I was an executive recruiter, I would occasionally bring a resume to my boss where the recruit worked for a family business. “This one seems pretty good,” I’d say. My boss wouldn’t even look up. “Toss it,” he’d say. “No family businesses.”
I thought this was harsh, and overly general. But the older I get, the more I see the wisdom. I looked at George W. Bush’s resume (while he did not work directly for a family business, pretty much everything he did was through friends of the family, and not his own merit), and Donald Trump’s. This is a man who, for whatever reason (ADD, dyslexia, OCD, anxiety — who knows?) cannot function within a normal corporate structure. Even when his companies looked like they were functioning from the outside (I’m thinking of his Atlantic City casinos), they were falling apart on the inside.
So he’s created his companies in his own image, propped up by largely shady business practices where he simply ignores long-term outcomes and keeps things running with enormous loans that make him indebted to foreign interests.
And now this man’s at the wheel of the ship of state. God help us all.
It’s not just that he should be fired. He shouldn’t have been hired in the first place. We had a perfect candidate, and we deliberately picked the worst one.
Politico says that Donald Trump is grumpy: Being president is harder than Donald Trump thought, according to aides and allies who say that he’s growing increasingly frustrated with the challenges of running the massive federal bureaucracy. In interviews, nearly two dozen people who’ve spent time with Trump in the three weeks since his inauguration said that… Continue Reading →