Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Ryan For The Defense

Amid reports which indicate that the President of the United States of America and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces probably is selling out his country,* Fox News has one simple message: it's the leakers, stupid. And it's quite clear they don't mean any appointees of President Trump, nor even holdovers from 44 sympathetic to 45.

Probably not coincidentally- especially given the love affair between the network and the President- the Speaker of the House is going that way, too.  Politico reports

House Speaker Paul Ryan urged lawmakers to be “sober” about swirling allegations that President Donald Trump asked FBI Director James Comey to call off an investigation into his national security adviser Mike Flynn.

“That is our job, to be sober, to be passionate … and to follow the facts wherever they may lead,” he said.

Being sober is inarguably a good thing, although some of the most passionate people I've known are quite clearly not sober. The article continues

“It is obvious – there are some people out there who want to harm the president,” he said. “We have an obligation to carry out our oversight, regardless of which party is in the White House. That means before rushing to judgment we get all the pertinent information.”

Here for Ryan is some pertinent information, albeit unconfirmed, about "some people."  Conservative blogger Erick Erickson, critical of Trump the candidate and President, evidently has a source(s) within the Administration who is skeptical of the boss' leadership style. Though fastidiously negative toward the left, Erickson on Tuesday morning wrote  "of these stories about the President"

What sets this story apart for me, at least, is that I know one of the sources. And the source is solidly supportive of President Trump, or at least has been and was during Campaign 2016. But the President will not take any internal criticism, no matter how politely it is given. He does not want advice, cannot be corrected, and is too insecure to see any constructive feedback as anything other than an attack.

So some of the sources are left with no other option but to go to the media, leak the story, and hope that the intense blowback gives the President a swift kick in the butt. Perhaps then he will recognize he screwed up. The President cares vastly more about what the press says than what his advisers say. That is a real problem and one his advisers are having to recognize and use, even if it causes messy stories to get outside the White House perimeter.

I am told that what the President did is actually far worse than what is being reported. The President does not seem to realize or appreciate that his bragging can undermine relationships with our allies and with human intelligence sources. He also does not seem to appreciate that his loose lips can get valuable assets in the field killed.

We read also in Politico that the Speaker "wants to know why the director 'didn’t take action at the time' Trump reportedly pressured him to halt the Flynn investigation."  When he's not battling the elderly and the middle class, the Speaker is an apologist for President Trump. When the story of these times is written, few people will be recognized as more villainous than Paul Davis Ryan Jr.

*in this case, not Russia.

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