There’s A Lot That’s Good In America These Days: And Her Name Is Heather Heyer…Also, Bannon Talks!

“By Golly, If I Gotta Give Her Up, We’re Gonna Make It Count”

Heather Heyer’s mom (wearing purple, her daughter’s favorite color,) delivered a strong, remarkable eulogy. Her daughter was run down and killed by a Neo-Nazi in Charlottesville on Saturday.

We are linking to it in it’s entirety here. (It’s not long. It is wonderful):

Trump Tuesday said he would soon reach out to Heyer’s family, but that doesn’t appear to have yet happened. Instead, he offered a Tweet.

Trump Vows To Go Ahead With Campaign-Style Rally In Arizona

Because this is a great time for that, right?

Phoenix’ Mayor asked Trump to take a no-show. Trump has been hinting he’ll pardon former Sheriff Joe Arpaio at that rally. Arpaio was convicted of ignoring a federal court order to stop racial profiling. The rally, and the potential pardon, will certainly be lighting rods for pro and anti-Trump groups. In our opinion, that might also be a reason Trump insists on going ahead with it: if some anti-Trump protestors behave badly, that’ll give him fuel to rail against what he calls the “alt-left”.

Arizona’s an interesting backdrop for Trump. It’s home to the man who’s become the President’s #2 nemesis after Kim Jong-un, Senator John McCain AKA the man “who voted against us getting good health care”. At the same time, the state’s former Governor, Jan Brewer, stands out as one of Trump’s staunchest defenders.

CEOs Walk Away From Trump

We have been making a big deal all week about defections by big-name CEOs from the President’s business councils and panels. Trump showered them with insults as they streamed out the door. And vowed “grandstanders” would no longer be tolerated.

That all changed with the ultimate embarrassment: remaining CEOs dissolving what remained on their own. JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon saying very simply: “It is a leader’s role…to bring people together, not tear them apart.” Bloomberg has a good behind-the-scenes look at how it all went down.

The President then took to Twitter again, claiming that was his idea. But it really wasn’t.

The Atlantic argues dissolving the councils doesn’t make much difference, since they were largely for show and didn’t really do very much anyway. We would argue that’s not the point at all. The image of CEOs abandoning one of the most pro-business Presidents ever, with one damning statement after another, is as close to a no confidence motion as we are able to deliver in this country. And that’s why it is important. Crucially important.

Bannon’s Valedictory Remarks?

An extraordinarily odd story appeared in Axios, contending the President’s Chief Strategist saw both the disbanding of the President’s business councils and Trump’s wild news conference as big positives  because they represent the President abandoning “globalists” in favor of “his people”. The reason it struck us as odd, is even though it was sourced to “friends and associates”, it reads like a one-on-one interview with Steve Bannon.

The overall tone is that of a sensei who’s taught his prize student all he can. Either that or immense, unrelenting hubris. (We are not going to go out on a limb here: since speculation about Bannon’s longevity by others has been frequent. and so far always wrong.)

Then we discovered Bannon speaking, apparently on-the-record, with another news organization. Also odd because it’s a Left-wing publication, The American Prospect. Ostensibly, it was to praise that publication for its China coverage (as we’ve often seen on trade matters, Far-left and Far-right are not that far apart).

Here are some highlights:

• While not quite as crude as Anthony Scaramucci’s now infamous rant about Bannon et. al., Bannon brags he’s got his foes at the Defense, State, and Treasury Departments “wetting themselves”.

• He also (perhaps surprisingly) calls the fringe Far-right “a collection of clowns”.

• And he hurls a criticism at Democrats (that in our opinion is spot on): “the longer they talk about identity politics, I got ’em…. If the left is focused on race and identity, and we go with economic nationalism, we can crush the Democrats.”

Things Just Got A Lot Rockier For White Supremacist Website

Wired reports that Cloudfare decided to drop its protection of the Daily Stormer website, leaving it open to cyber attacks. At which point it was promptly attacked, and crashed. Cloudfare has a near-monopoly on protection against certain types of attacks, particularly so-called denial of service. The move is huge, because up until now, Cloudfare had a policy of ignoring the content it protected.

And PayPal banned several members after it found they took in money to fund White Supremacist groups, some of it related to Charlottesville. It further stated it would not allow users to “accept payments or donations to organizations that advocate racist views.”

Of course, as the Washington Post reports, non-mainstream, Far-right leaning service providers and fund raising sites are cropping up and will likely, eventually, fill the void.

Trump Lawyer Forwards Nutball Letter

This story doesn’t deserve much space, except for whom it involves. The New York Times reports Trump’s newly-hired personal lawyer, John Dowd, forwarded a letter to Right-wing news organizations which suggests talking points “validating” the President’s incendiary contentions about Charlottesville. Someone at one of those organizations then forwarded it to the Times. Dowd acknowledges his involvement, saying: “People send me things. I forward them.” The letter includes comments like “there is literally no difference” between General Lee and General Washington. It was written by a well-known conspiracy theorist.

If You Were Working In The Trump White House, What Would You Do?

That’s been the number #1 question of debate around here. (That and whether it’s totally fair to “out” White Supremacist marchers to their employers and schools. The answer to that is absolutely yes. BTW, we are not calling it “doxxing” since the people involved so far do not seem to be releasing non-public information.)

If you were one of the cooler heads in the White House, who is deeply and understandably offended by Trump’s remarks, do you resign in protest to make a statement, knowing that you’ll probably be replaced by a lunatic? Or do you stay on out of loyalty to the country, if not the President? What about if you are Jewish?

We don’t have a good answer to that. We can judge people for their lack of backbone, but we can’t really fault them. We don’t mean to sound like apologists. We would more freely question their decision to join the Trump Administration in the first place, knowing the high percentage chance of something like this coming down.

Certainly, the many former high ranking military officers in the Administration, all of whom served under several Presidents of both parties are used putting the interests of the country first (although are also strong adherents to chain of command.)

As for the others: many of us have power dreams. And for many currently in power in DC, Trump was their lucky break and once-in-a-lifetime shot. It’s hard to give that up.

Especially if you think this “blows over” as even Trump’s most outlandish attacks always have. What we do know is it is our responsibility to do whatever we can to make sure that doesn’t happen this time!

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