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PRUITT, TRUMP AND THE SWAMP

July 6, 2018

PRUITT, TRUMP, AND THE SWAMP

Pruitt has resigned but little has changed in matters environmental or the political environment in which his corrupted activities occurred. Trump is in charge of hiring and firing cabinet secretaries and no amount of corruption by his secretaries seems to get his attention. Today, the day after Pruitt’s resignation, Trump says he did not ask for Pruitt’s resignation, but why didn’t he, given Pruitt’s long list of wrongdoing which if he were working in private enterprise would amount to embezzlement and fraud and would subject him to indictment and jail?

He didn’t ask because he didn’t care; everything is for show in Trump’s Apprentice otherworld. Hard work, truth, and efficiency are secondary to what looks good. Trump has the same non-caring attitude in re the results of tariffs against Chinese goods effective today which will raise prices here against Chinese promises to instantly counter tariff some of our exports, notably their imports of shiploads of soybeans, which will devastate American soybean farmers in states Trump carried last election.

Never mind that GM has predicted a rise in price of $2,500 per car or that Harley Davidson is moving some of its production facilities to Thailand to avoid the EU’s counter tariffs on the 40,000 motorcycles Harley sells there each year or that foreign automakers in this country will be targeted by the Chinese on their exports to China or that our export industries in general will be adversely affected (and some devastated). It doesn’t matter; all that matters is that Trump looks good to his base with his simplistic insistence on tariffs in the very complicated world of international trade.

His tariff games have even aroused the ire of Wall Street, one of his strong backers because of his wholesale removal of rules and regulations and provision of weak regulatory governance of their operations, and for once I agree with Wall Street (though on different grounds). Trump seems to think that any company or sector (automotive, banking etc.) which disagrees with him has committed an act of personal disloyalty, which is an authoritarian response based on his narcissistic impulses but inapplicable in the real world of supply and demand, production, costs, free market theory etc., all as against a fiduciary duty of corporate America to its shareholders – not Trump – whose claim to be a free trader is undermined by his “government interference” in the “free market” via tariffs. Truth be told, he doesn’t know what he is, and bluster and insult are no substitutes for policy. We know he is anti-labor; now he is anti-business, and with his incredible ignorance and cavalier attitude toward result, he doesn’t even have a clue on how to construct his own swamp to fit in all of his base. His ship of state has no rudder. He simply doesn’t know what he is doing, and worse, doesn’t seem to care.

So has anything changed since Pruitt’s long-awaited goodbye? Not much. Trump, as usual, finds himself faultless in the criminal conduct of his secretary, just as he is faultless in the conduct past and present of other secretaries, notably his Secretary of the Interior, who awarded a giant contract to his two-man electrical contractor neighbor to patch up Puerto Rico’s electrical system after recent hurricanes (which they botched), and his Secretary of Commerce, former co-manager with a Russian friend of Putin of the Bank of Cyprus, a well-known and notorious money launderer. Both should resign, of course, as should Bolton, but all are too near the epicenter of power to voluntarily leave their roles in its exercise. Truth be told, their loyalty is not to Trump but to their own opportunistic desire to “be somebody.”

Ridding ourselves of Pruitt does not drain the swamp. It will not be drained until we rid ourselves of Trump, starting that formal process November 6. Meanwhile, we must resist – bigly.     GERALD         E

 

 

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