The Trump Staff is Putting on Their Life Vests, and Heading for the Boats

by Murfster35 –

Der Untergang der Titanic

It’s an old mantra in politics. When a political campaign goes down badly, especially a Presidential campaign, the backstabbing and anonymous whining starts as staffers try to prove that they did their job, somebody else screwed up. But usually, this starts on the day after the election, not two weeks before.

Gabriel Sherman decided to see if he could get an early start on this little exercise, and boy did he get a start! He has been quietly speaking to insiders, both former and current for weeks now. And while normally speaking anonymously for their own protection, they are opening up. And they’re not sniping at each other, they are very politely laying the blame for the shattered campaign directly at the feet of the Boss.

The ARTICLE. set to appear in New York magazine on Monday is available online today. It is a long but satisfying read. The feeling you get from the staff in reading the article is not so much anger as it is disappointment, they felt that they could have run a tight, successful campaign if only they had been allowed to. The constant recurring mantra was “If only he had listened to me!” But Trump listens to no one but himself. Trump’s campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway summed up the real problem perfectly. She told Gabe Sherman;

The key to managing Trump, she told me, is to let him feel like he is in control — always. “It all has to be his decision in the end,” she said. A Trump donor explained it this way: “Trump has the following personality: NIH-NFW, meaning ‘If it’s not invented here, not invented behind these eyes, then it’s no fucking way.’

This would be one thing if it was coming from a lifelong, successful, experienced politician like FDR or Bill Clinton, but even they listened to advice when it mattered. But for a political newbie, with no experience or political instinct to take this course? I have to wonder how he got anybody to work for him when the eventual outcome was set in stone on day one.

A perfect example of this is the way Trump managed to erase whatever small bounce he got from his pathetic convention in world record time. The Clinton convention wasn’t even over with yet, and Trump was busy building her post convention bounce from a rubber ball into a Super Ball by picking a fight with the Khans, who’s son had died a hero in Iraq. An advisor immediately tried to caution him about what he was doing;

“You do know you just attacked a Gold Star family?” one adviser warned Trump.

Trump didn’t know what a Gold Star family was: “What’s that?” he asked.

To Trump, Khizr Khan and his wife, Ghazala, were enemies who had said something mean about him, just like Rosie O’Donnell and any number of people who had gotten under his skin over the years. Wasn’t it his right to respond?

All I can say is that’s just a good thing for him that this tidbit didn’t surface weeks ago, or Hillary Clinton and her surrogates would have battered Trump over the head with this. How can a man so totally insulated and socially ignorant ever be elevated to the job of the Commander-in-Chief for this country? He has no respect for the Khans or any other Gold Star family simply because he lives in a  childlike ignorance as to the incredible sacrifice involved for these people. They live on a different planet than his spoiled and pampered one.

But make no mistake. Whatever Trump himself may believe or not believe, no one else intimately involved with the campaign is under any illusions. Two weeks from now, they’ll be unemployed, and it won’t be to go into jobs in a Trump administration either. And it’s hard to find a way that this becomes a shining reference point on their resumes. It’s gotten to the point that senior staff are even beginning to use the “Hitler Bunker” comparison we’ve been using for days now;

When I asked one senior Trump adviser to describe the scene inside, he responded: “Think of the bunker right before Hitler killed himself. Donald’s in denial. They’re all in denial.” (As Times columnist Ross Douthat put it, in a tweet, “In Trumpworld as Hitler’s Bunker terms,” the FBI investigation is “like when Goebbels thought FDR’s death would save the Nazi regime.”)

While his loyal supporters are dancing in the streets about this last second “Hail Mary pass”, and some down ballot candidates may be latching onto this dental floss as a lifeline to get out from under the Trump flood, senior aides know this is much too little, much too late. All they’re left with now is the wistful dreams of “what could have been”. It’s a long article, but if you have the time, it’s well worth the read.

 

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos