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Visiting the landfill.

September 12, 2017

Someone asked why there was no commentary yesterday on Steve Bannon’s CBS interview or the heavily politicized Miss America pageant.

Because neither was really worth watching, that’s why. Two minutes into “60 Minutes”  it was obvious that it was better to record the segment. Pageants and award shows are not really something this blog does, given that they are guaranteed to present a single point of view.

First of all, the “60 Minutes” program was not an interview.  It was a debate between a liberal media propagandist and Steve Bannon and it wasn’t even that well done as a debate. It was really more of a barroom argument.

Mr. Rose is what he is, and he came across as exactly that. No surprises or unmet  expectations there.

And then there was Steve Bannon. This is probably the first time most Americans ever actually saw the guy speak for more than ten seconds at a time, so he had something to prove.

There is a vast chasm between just being a crude ass, and being an emissary for good but unpopular ideas to make the country better. It’s not clear that Mr. Bannon defined himself as the latter.

He made some good points, particularly about the animus of the political establishment. He gave those points back by rising to the bait on the Catholic church. That’s like dropping your guard and getting hit with a roundhouse right.

The comment on Comey was just weird. So, in order to forestall the Democrat’s  smear campaign that was already well underway, the President should have bought Comey off by letting him keep his job?  Gee, do you really think no one would have noticed that?

On the threat to “primary” some sitting members of Congress; that one has more credibility, since a good share of the voting base is not happy with Congress already.

The danger is that just any old change is not necessarily a good change. Having stink-bomb throwing wild-eyed challengers could be as harmful to Trump’s agenda as re-electing some of the current drones.

To a casual observer, Mr. Bannon and Hillary Clinton have something in common. Neither seems to have quite accepted that the world doesn’t revolve around them.

But it really doesn’t matter. What is important is that America did not elect Steve Bannon President. If all Donald Trump had going for him was Steve Bannon, then we would be in a world of hurt.

Strangely, some of the President’s best campaign moments on camera as regards his economic vision came before Bannon took over the messaging.  About the time the Bannon star became ascendant is when the President seemed to lose his central message of Making America Great Again.

It became all about punching back, sort of the political version of “he said, she said.” That’s the least effective form of gutter politics and eventually you get too arm-weary  to punch. It’s a waste of energy.

So what’s the take-away from the Bannon segment?

He has a right to his opinions. Some may be valid in certain circumstances, some clearly are not.

What he does not have is the right to try to influence the White House into enforcing only his vision for the country.

In the end it doesn’t matter if he quit or was fired. Mr. Bannon doesn’t seem to understand that being the President and running for the job are two different things. Once you win, there are things like back-to-back hurricanes and crazy dictators with nukes to contend with, not just the politics of Nancy Pelosi or Mitch McConnell.

Maybe the President just outgrew him.

From → op-ed

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