‘Government by the Least Qualified or Most Unprincipled Citizens’
Ryan Lizza, the Washington correspondent for The New Yorker magazine, has given new definition to the phenomenon sweeping the American government as the Trump transition team and incoming administration struggle to get organised. Lizza has labeled it, â€œKakistocracy,â€ which, is defined as, “government by the least qualified or most unprincipled citizens.” The American Heritage Dictionary gives the origin of kakistocracy as from the Greek word, kakistos, worst, superlative of kakos, bad.
Lizza’s description is extremely apt given absolute chaos surrounding the president-elect and his advisors. Any semblance of an orderly transition now seems on the verge of collapse as each day brings a new revelation that questions Trump’s ability to maintain control or even properly direct his apparently unwieldy staff.Â
From the outset it was readily apparent that Trump and his team were unprepared to take control of the American government. As one White House staffer told NCRM confidentially, the first warning that the transition was in serious trouble was the president-elect’s first visit with President Obama. None of the aides who accompanied Mr. Trump seemed cognizant of the fact that outside of White House service personnel, such as ushers, kitchen staff, et cetera, for example, the military aides, and of course the U.S. Secret Service personnel, that they would need to replace folks in the West Wing and the two Executive Office buildings, responsible for smooth operations of the Executive Branch. They seemed, as the staffer put it, “shell-shocked.”
Then, as reports filtered out from Transition Headquarters in Trump Tower, which were first described as a palace coup after New Jersey Governor Chris Christie was replaced by Vice-President-elect Mike Pence, White House sources noted that requisite paperwork to allow the current administration staff to communicate directly with incoming Trump staff was not executed which ultimately causes delays and lack of communications necessary for a smooth handover of power.
The Christie ouster came as no shock to people close to the campaign who have said privately that the Trump campaign team, which had been led by Jared Kushner, Trumpâ€™s son-in-law, was merely â€œrepaying a debtâ€ as the New Jersey Governor, when he was a U.S. attorney, was involved in the prosecution of Kushner’s father, Charles Kushner. The elder Kushner was sentenced to prison in 2005 on 18 counts of tax evasion, witness tampering and making illegal campaign donations.
There still has been no real public comment offered by the folks surrounding the President-elect and the transition team other than Trump spokesman Jason Miller, who deflected the issue regarding the alleged purge telling journalists that reports of Jared Kushner’s involvement,Â “couldnâ€™t be further from the truth,â€ but that the younger Kushner is someone whom â€œobviously the president-elect seeks and respects his counsel very much.”
Yet this past Wednesday came word that Kevin Oâ€™Connor, himself a former United States Attorney and who had headed up the Justice Department transition team, is now out. Christie and Oâ€™Connor, friends, had been U.S. attorneys at the same time, Oâ€™Connor in Connecticut from 2002 until 2008 during the period that Christie was serving in New Jersey.Â
Outside of The White House and its environs is the rest of the Federal Government, of particular concern being the Defense Department and the American Intelligence community. Last week NCRM reported, â€œIn what is being seen as a warning to the Trump transition team to move faster in building a national security team, the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, tendered his resignation Wednesday night.â€Â
Sources inside the Pentagon are also expressing deep concerns to NCRM regarding the lack of information or flow of communications from the Trump Transition Team. Trump himself had drawn criticism prior to the election by a cabal of military officials who spoke on background to the various media outlets that there were limitations on â€œabuse of powersâ€ possible from a President Trump that the military would be tolerant of.
In a poll released Friday by the Military Times/Institute for Military and Veterans Families (IMVF) Survey, nearly one quarter of Americaâ€™s active-duty troops expressed worry about what orders that President Trump will issue. Twenty-seven percent of service members polled said Trump would negatively affect their jobs or missions, and then one in five troops â€“Â including a majority of those who voted for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton â€“Â said Trump as commander in chief would make them less likely to re-enlist.
U.S. troops are also skeptical that Trump can end the 15-year conflict in Afghanistan during his presidency, according to the poll, with 28 percent saying he can achieve that but 34 percent saying he can’t.
Perceptions are also building that the relationship between the president-elect and Kushner and Trump’s adult children will create potential for conflicts of interest between him and his familyâ€™s business ventures. Reports have emerged as recently as last week that foreign governments were booking reservations at Trump owned hotels and properties for their diplomatic as well as government officials. According to one official at the U.S. State Department, who asked to not be identified:
â€œThe fact that foreign governments are patronising Trump’s hotels, coupled with the fact that Trump has not moved his business interests into a blind trust, instead leaving daily operations of his business empire to his children, with whom he has close relationship, can leave the impression that these foreign governments at the least are currying favour while at the same time putting money in Trump’s pockets.â€Â
Sue Fulton, a 1980 West Point graduate and former U. S. Army Captain, who helped found several LGBTQI military service organizations, including SPARTA, Knights Out and OutServe, noted:Â
“If you were uncomfortable that a donation to the Clinton Foundation – which no Clinton was paid by, and which went to lifesaving drugs in developing countries – might (never proven) have led to a meeting with the Secretary of State, I want to hear your outrage about this.
“Trump will be dealing with foreign governments who he is in business with, with his hotels and other holdings. Every decision he in dealing with a foreign government, every tax or budget proposal to Congress, every appointment to the IRS or law enforcement agency, can be contingent on how it helps the Trump business.Â
“Welcome to kleptocracy. If you think enriching the Trump fortune won’t be a condition of Presidential action, you haven’t paid attention to what Donald Trump has done his entire life.”Â
The idea of potential conflict of interest if not outright flaunting of long established protocols and procedures and was further reinforced when a photograph was distributed Thursday evening, that showed Kushner and his wife Ivanka, were both present for at least part of a meeting between the President-elect and the prime minister of Japan.
The press corps were barred from covering the meeting, Trumpâ€™s first with a foreign head of state, and no summary was provided afterwards detailing what was discussed. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters after the meeting that he had a â€œvery candid discussionâ€ with Mr. Trump, although he also did not elaborate on the topics discussed nor commented on who else attended the meeting.
With public outrage already building in progressive and liberal spheres over Trump’s selection of former Breitbart Editor Steven Bannon, to his White House inner circle, given Bannon’s track record of anti-Semitism and racist statements along with his misogynistic behavior, Trump’s pick to be U.S. Attorney General, Alabama Republican U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions, has Democrats in the Senate further inflamed vowing to oppose Sessions.
Democrats and progressive and liberal human rights group list Sessions’ anti-immigrant, anti LGBTQI Equality Rights senatorial track record as more than adequate reasons to reject him as U.S. Attorney General. Sessions voted against both the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act and expanding hate crimes to include sexual orientation, gender and disability. He voted against repealing â€œDonâ€™t Ask, Donâ€™t Tell.â€ His statements regarding immigrants, particularly those from Central America have been categorised as xenophobic and racist by some political observers and journalists.Â
In an email statement Friday, Illinois Democratic Congressman Luis GutiÃ©rrez said:Â
â€œIf you have nostalgia for the days when blacks kept quiet, gays were in the closet, immigrants were invisible and women stayed in the kitchen, Senator Jefferson Beauregard Sessions is your man.â€
The first time Sessions faced a Senate confirmation, he was nominated to a federal district judgeship in Alabama in 1986 by then President Ronald Reagan, Sessions was soundly rejected by the Republican-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee after multiple witnesses came forward to report his history of racist comments and hostility to civil rights groups.Â There are Washington insiders who have told NCRM that there are questions as to whether or not in this go around, in another GOP held Senate, would offer a similar result.Â
Lending a further impression that Trump is building a Kakistocracy in the federal government are his choices for National Security Adviser, retired U.S. Army Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, a man who has publicly stated said he doesnâ€™t believe that all cultures are â€œmorally equivalentâ€ and once described Islam as “a cancer.” Also, Kansas GOP Representative Mike Pompeo, a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and Harvard Law School. Pompeo was pointedly asked during an appearance on the NBC News Sunday Morning Talk Show â€œMeet the Pressâ€ in late 2015 why his committeeâ€™s inquiry into the 2012 attacks on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, had dragged on longer than the Watergate investigation. His immediate response to NBC’s moderator Chuck Todd was, â€œThis is worse, in some ways.â€
Pompeo, an unyielding critic of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, is a supporter of the National Security Agencyâ€™s controversial bulk data collection program and sought to restore the agencyâ€™s access to the data it had already collected under the Patriot Act from its inception through late last year.
The New York Times wrote in a profile piece published Saturday, that, â€œIf confirmed by the Senate, Mr. Pompeo would become one of the most overtly partisan figures to take over the C.I.A. â€” a spy agency that, at least publicly, is supposed to operate above politics and avoid a direct role in policy making.â€
As the transition team struggles with selection of cabinet and agency heads, filling routine positions in the White House Staff has apparently been left to application via the transition’s webpage and or according to one source, email blasts and text messages. Critical liaisons between the incoming administration and other Federal Departments and agencies has also been limited or nonexistentÂ leaving some federal personnel worried that critical programmes will grind to a halt until the new administration catches up.Â
On Saturday, as if to illustrate a misplaced sense of priorities by the President-elect, an angry tweet to the cast of a popular Broadway musical over Vice-President-Elect Michael Pence being booed upon entering the theater, and then a public plea post performance directed at him, seemed to further define the clueless tone of the Trump team.
â€œThe Theater must always be a safe and special place. The cast of Hamilton was very rude last night to a very good man, Mike Pence. Apologize!â€ â€” Donald J. Trump
If anything though, the short speech delivered at Pence by Brandon Victor Dixon, the actor portraying Aaron Burr in the acclaimed musical about the life of Alexander Hamilton, seems to capture the fears of many Americans about this new administration.
â€œVice President-elect Pence, welcome,â€ Dixon said, on behalf of the production. â€œThank you for joining us at â€˜Hamilton: An American Musical.â€™We are the diverse America who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our planet, our children, our parents, or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights. We hope this show has inspired you to uphold our American values, and work on behalf of all of us. Thank you.â€
Brody LevesqueÂ is the Chief Political Correspondent forÂ The New Civil Rights Movement.
You may contact Brody atÂ Brody.Levesque@thenewcivilrightsmovement.comÂ
Enjoy this piece?
… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.
NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.
Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.
‘These Are Our National Secrets’: Democrat Slams GOP for Ignoring Trump Classified Documents Found ‘In the S——’
U.S. Rep. Jasmine Crockett (D-TX) blasted House Republicans for ignoring the hundreds of classified documents photographed on stage and “in the s——” at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort and residence, while going after President Joe Biden who she said not one witness at Thursday’s impeachment “inquiry” had identified what crime he allegedly committed.
“As I prepared,” Rep. Crockett told members of the House Oversight Committee Thursday, “I said, ‘What is the crime?’ Because when you’re talking about impeachment, you’re talking about high crimes and misdemeanors, and I can’t seem to find the crime and honestly, no one has testified of what crime they believe the President of the United States has committed.”
“But when we started talking about things that look like evidence, they want to act like they blind, they don’t know what this is,” Crockett said, waving photographs of boxes allegedly containing classified and top secret documents on stage and in a restroom at Mar-a-Lago.
“These are our national secrets, looks like in the s—— to me,” she said, as NBC News described her remarks. “This looks like more evidence of our national secrets, say on the stage at Mar-a-Lago. When we’re talking about somebody that’s committed high crimes it’s at least indictments, let’s say 32 counts related to unauthorized retention of national security secrets, seven counts related to obstructing the investigation. Three false statements, one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States, falsifying business records, conspiracy to defraud the United States, two counts related to efforts to obstruct the vote certification proceedings, one count of conspiracy to violate civil rights, 23 counts related to forgery or false documents statements, eight counts related to soliciting, and I could go on because he’s got 91 counts pending right now.”
“But I will tell you what the President [Biden] has been guilty of. He has unfortunately been guilty of loving his child unconditionally, and that is the only evidence that they have brought forward and honestly, I hope and pray that my parents love me half as much as he loves his child. Until they find some evidence we need to get back to the people’s work, which means keeping this government open so that people don’t go hungry in the streets of the United States, and I will yield.”
Congresswoman Crockett’s remarks quickly went viral, with just this video getting 4.6 million views in just four hours.
Watch below or at this link.
Omg wow this pic.twitter.com/fnYcAXzcNf
— Acyn (@Acyn) September 28, 2023
‘He Knows I’m Right’: Democrat Mocks ‘Scared’ McCarthy and Blows Off Chairman Comer in ‘Very Unserious’ Hearing
During House Republicans’ impeachment “inquiry” into President Joe Biden, U.S. Rep. Maxwell Frost (D-FL) detailed Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s transition from refusing to allow a vote for an impeachment inquiry to ordering his top Chairmen to initiate an impeachment “inquiry” in the span of just twelve days.
Congressman Frost, the youngest member of the House, called the Speaker “scared,” before turning his attention to the GOP’s witnesses who he said “are not giving us any basis or giving us any evidence or anything,” angering Republican Oversight Chairman Jim Comer, who interjected, “That’s not true.”
Rep. Frost refused to allow the Chairman to interrupt him, and shot back, “Reclaiming my time.”
“These these witnesses are not giving any answers. They’re just asking more questions,” Rep. Frost continued.
While challenging the credibility of the GOP’s witnesses, Frost said there was “one witness who has a lot of questions .. one witness who knows something about accounting but has no real involvement,” and then accused the third witness, the well-known attorney and commentator Jonathan Turley, of “stopping here on his way to his next Fox News hit.”
Gen Z Congressman Maxwell Frost brilliantly sums up the hypocrisy, the fraudulence, and the illegitimacy of every single GOP witness that spoke today. And check out the startled reaction of that old angry Republican woman at the end. More of this!
— Dash Dobrofsky (@DashDobrofsky) September 28, 2023
Frost noted that had McCarthy put an impeachment inquiry on the floor for a vote, it “would lose on the House floor and be another embarrassment in the long list of embarrassments in this Congress for the Speaker of the House.”
He added that far-right Republicans threatened “to shut down the government, something that will happen in just two days.” He also noted, “this is the one that really got to [McCarthy], they said you, you’re about to lose your job and they said we will remove you as Speaker of the house.”
“And that scared him so much that Kevin McCarthy, the Speaker of the House, the United States House of Representatives, third in line to the presidency, completely caved due to the threats of people within his own caucus.”
Pointing to Chairman Comer, Frost on social media said, “He had to interrupt me because he knows I’m right. They say that this isn’t an impeachment, it’s an impeachment ‘inquiry’ to get answers. Then they call up witnesses that are just asking more questions and not providing any answers or evidence. This hearing is very unserious.”
Watch the videos above or at this link.
‘All Those Biden Towers’ Where ‘Influence Was Used’: Democrat Turns Tables and Mocks Republicans in Sarcastic Q&A
U.S. Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA) turned the tables on Republicans during the House Oversight Committee’s first impeachment “inquiry” into President Joe Biden by sarcastically referring to “all those Biden towers all over the world where foreign partnerships were formed and influence was used here in the US,” forcing the witness to correct him and point out he actually meant ex-President Donald Trump.
The hearing, chaired by Rep. Jim Comer (R-KY) was widely seen as another failed effort by House Republicans against President Biden. It took a turn when Republicans’ own witness, law professor and Fox News media contributor Jonathan Turley told them he saw no evidence that warrants an impeachment of the President.
Meanwhile, Congressman Connelly’s scathing remarks quickly spread across social media, garnering hundreds of thousands of views views in just hours.
“Um, well let’s see,” Connolly began, slowly, “I’m looking at, um, I heard again, um, I think it was professor Hurley talk about – – because he’s not prejudging of course, but he’s just suggesting that maybe we want to look into criminal activity like obstruction, fraud, and abuse of power.”
“So let’s take fraud. So shouldn’t we be concerned that a New York judge just found President Biden’s organization committing fraud every year for the last 10 or 15 years,” Connolly continued, “and that, under the Martin law, that Biden organization is now subject to dismemberment and dismantlement because of the fraudulent activity?”
“That should be of concern to Mr. Trump,” the witness, Professor Michael Gerhardt, replied.
“Mr. Trump again!” Connolly sarcastically exclaimed, feigning surprise. “And in this case, we’re not speculating, a judge actually made that ruling?”
“Yes sir,” Gerhardt replied.
”Should we be concerned about the personal – I mean, while we’re at it, while we’re loading on – shouldn’t we be concerned about the personal behavior of the President, for example, President Trump or President Biden, being found guilty of sexual assault and defamation associated with that activity, again in a civil court?”
“We should be concerned as it related to Mr. Trump,” Gerhardt again replied.
“With Mr. Trump again?” Connolly again said mockingly.
“I just think that one of the reasons we’re here is because somebody has been indicted in four different locales, on four different sets of concerns, with I think 81, 91 actual counts, and has been found guilty in two civil proceedings, one involving sexual behavior and one on actual corporate fraudulent activity. And we don’t want to talk about any of that. We want to speculate about discredited testimony from discredited witnesses,” Connolly added.
Brilliant stuff here from Connolly pic.twitter.com/F3rZlBmUe8
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 28, 2023
“Distract, deflect, dissemble,” Connolly added. “I think this hearing’s all about ‘look over here, not over there.’”
“I’ve heard concerns about ‘branding,'” Connolly continued. “So, shouldn’t we be concerned about all those Biden towers all over the world where foreign partnerships were formed and influence was used here in the United States? I’ve seen these towers in Indonesia, in the Philippines, in Turkey. I even saw one in Chicago. Shouldn’t that be a source of concern of this committee in terms of influence, both foreign and domestic, when Biden became president?”
“If there were such things as ‘Biden building,'” Gerhardt said.
“Well, was there anyone who did have them?” Connolly asked. “Well, could you tell us? Just give me the name.”
“I think we’re talking about Mr. Trump,” Gerhardt replied.
“So, when President Biden appointed his son to manage U.S. foreign policy, both in the Persian Gulf and the Middle East peace, by the way, a son who couldn’t qualify for getting a security clearance, but President Biden apparently granted it to Hunter anyhow – and then, after leaving the White House, getting a $2 billion deal … shouldn’t that be of concern to us that maybe a sweetheart deal occurred with the blessing of the president, with foreign money, and shouldn’t we look into Hunter Biden for that, given the fact that the handled Middle East peace in the White House?”
“It should have been a concern with President Trump and his son-in-law,” Gerhardt said.
“Oh Trump. I got that wrong again,” snarked Congressman Connolly.
Connolly: “Shouldn’t we concerned about all those Biden towers all over the world where foreign partnerships were formed and influence was used here in the US? I’ve seen these towers in Indonesia, in the Philippines, in Turkey. I’ve even seen one in Chicago.” pic.twitter.com/U10K2K5JSQ
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 28, 2023
Watch the videos above or at this link.
- News2 days ago
House GOP Shutdown Demands Include Gutting Billions From Dept. of Education, Costing Over 200,000 Teachers Their Jobs
- News1 day ago
McCarthy Blocks Bipartisan Bill Approved by 77 Senators to Avoid Shutdown as He Moves to Pin the Blame on Democrats
- News2 days ago
Trump Goes on Wild Rant Targeting Judge and Attorney General After Being Found Liable for Fraud
- News2 days ago
Trump Organization Given ‘Corporate Death Penalty’ and Ordered Dissolved by Judge After ‘Persistent Fraud’: Legal Experts
- News1 day ago
‘Jaw Dropping’: Democratic Senator Slams Tuberville’s ‘Open’ Talk About ‘White Supremacy’
- News2 days ago
‘Fire Sale Prices’: Biographer Predicts Trump ‘May Soon Be Personally Bankrupt’ and Could See His Assets ‘Liquidated’
- News2 days ago
McCarthy Now Blaming Likely Shutdown on Fentanyl, President Biden, and His Own House Republicans
- News12 hours ago
‘Flying Monkeys on a Mission for the Wicked Witch’: Raskin Rips Republicans Over Impeachment ‘Inquiry’