Loyalty Is A One Way Street

Richard Nixon’s enemies list was secret but Donald Trump’s is right out there for everyone to see. If Trump does not like what you are doing, he will let everyone know in a tweet. Or fire you. Or both.

It doesn’t seem to matter whether or not the person is a Trump supporter. If Trump is upset with you, be prepared to be called on the carpet. Jeff Sessions was the first US Senator to support Trump, but he is now the subject of major presidential Twitter sniping. Reince Priebus supported Trump through the primaries to the dismay of the Republican establishment, which wanted any nominee but Trump. Priebus now has the distinction of losing his job faster than any Chief of Staff in history.

Both of these men were among the most solid Trump loyalists. But their experiences have shown that while Trump knows how to appreciate loyalty to himself, he has no loyalty to anyone else. It is all about “what have you done for me lately?”

Republican Washington is picking up on this. It will only get worse for Trump’s agenda as members of congress realize that he will sell them down the river in a New York minute if he doesn’t like something. Not exactly the Dale Carnegie approach, and it will likely fail sooner rather than later.

Gimme Camera 3. Wait, No, Camera 5

Watching the game and want to see that goal, catch, etc. again? You don’t have to wait for the replay. Anyone with a digital video recorder (DVR) like a Tivo has the ability to replay the action on their own, in slow motion if they like.

What about seeing the replay from a different angle? Well, that only comes from the broadcast, and you have to hope that the director sitting in the truck outside of the stadium plays back the angle you want to see.

But that could soon change.

Broadcasters are always looking for new revenue sources, and they will probably start charging extra for access to multiple cameras so you can see the game from whatever angle you want.

The technology is already there. The issues are likely bandwidth and business. Are the ‘pipes’ that transmit the video data large enough to handle the extra camera angles?  And even if they were (they are getting there fast), is the consumer equipment in place to use it and charge for it?

With the sports associations (FIFA, Olympics, NBA, etc.) looking for more and more money for broadcast rights, it is simply a matter of time before anyone with a few extra dollars can be their own director.

Movies will come next. Take a wild guess which kind of movies will be first.

It Wasn’t Supposed To Be This Way

Donald Trump must be wondering. Here’s a guy who acknowledges having been ‘raked over the coals (in public) for thirty years.’ He finally ascends to king of the hill, winning the presidency. It’s time for a little bit of respect, right?

But it is not working out that way. The press, which has never been friendly, is even worst to him. His political party cannot seem to get things done, which makes him look weak, which is the opposite of the strong presidential image he deserves.

Heck, he can’t even get respect from his own administration. The press continues to get plenty of leaks from the White House, which totally pisses him off unless of course he is the leaker. His press secretary doesn’t seem to be able to make him look good – he had to go. Even his attorney general won’t go to bat for him. This guy was one of his most loyal supporters and now he’s just ducking the hard stuff.

No, Trump must feel like he got the ultimate raw deal. Which may be part of the explanation for his tweets about pardoning. He may be thinking, “Screw it. I don’t care about the recognition and respect. I’m just gonna do what I want and if they want to come after me and my family they can. I’ll just pardon our way out.”

What The Dems Can’t Figure Out

Met up with some friends who were Democrats. When the conversation turned to politics, the ‘can you believes’ started flowing. “Can you believe what is coming out about Trump’s kids and Russia?”  “Can you believe Sean Spicer just resigned?”

The ‘can you believes’ are almost always followed by the ‘how cans’ and this was no exception. “How can anyone believe/support/vote for/trust Trump?”

Unfortunately for the Democrats, while this is exactly the right question, they just cannot figure out the answer. They feel that Trump supporters must be uneducated/hoodwinked/bigots or worse.

What they cannot figure out is that there are legitimate reasons for supporting Donald Trump. They are actually very similar to the reasons for supporting Bernie Sanders. A lot of Americans feels like they are getting a raw deal and the deck is stacked against them.

They are right.

Income inequality keeps rising in the US, and it seems like the techies, Wall Street and corporate America are taking over.

Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders were the only candidates really calling this out during the last election campaign. That message still resonates with at least 30% of the country, probably more. And they believe Trump can fix it because he has too much money to care about getting rich anymore (very not true) and he is not afraid to throw verbal bombs in normally reserved Washington to shake things up (very true).

They realize Trump has flaws, but they still see him as the only chance of changing the status quo. Until the Democrats have a message and leaders that resonate with the part of the country being left behind, Trump will remain the only game in town.

Follow The Money

Where does Trump Inc. really get its money? In his interview with the New York Times this week, Donald Trump shot himself in the foot again and told everyone it was none of their business. Of course, now everyone will be focused on that very question.

Trump said that the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election would cross a “red line” if it started looking into his finances. But the special counsel is apparently thinking of doing just that, if he hasn’t already. After all, any crime investigator knows that the first thing to do is follow the money.

Trump’s supporters think he has a point: the investigation was supposed to be about Russian interference and should not be side tracked.  These are also people who have no love for the Clintons and surely supported Bill’s impeachment. They should remember that the only reason he was impeached was because an investigation of Clinton’s business affairs got sidetracked to whether or not he lied about having sex with an intern.

Sex with an intern is not Trump’s style, but the investigation may find that his firm is financially in bed with a number of dubious characters and governments, which could have the same consequences.

Where’s Papa Bear?

So  far, Donald Trump has been uncharacteristically restrained in his comments about his son’s dealings with the Russians. One would have expected him to be very vocal about the attacks on his namesake. There are a number of possible reasons why Trump is holstering his Twitter handle on this one.

  • He knows it is bad and is hoping it blows over
  • He does not want to say anything that may later be proven to be a lie by his son
  • He is keeping his powder dry in case his son really gets into trouble
  • He is selling his son down the river to deflect attention from himself

It is hard to imagine that the last reason is valid considering the tight family circle that is Trump Inc. After all, Jared Kushner, Trump’s son in law, was also involved, and if it turns out illegalities were performed, the two of them might go down together.

No, it is probably a combination of the first three reasons, with the emphasis on the first one. Trump is smart enough to know that the issue has absolutely no chance of blowing over if he goes to the mat on it.

It likely won’t blow over though, so look for papa bear to come out swinging on behalf of his cubs when things heat up.