Donald Trump is in the midst of another Tweet storm morning (ten tweets as of this writing), but it mostly boils down to, “Please, please, please Democrats, build my wall and avoid a government shutdown so that I can save face.” It’s not going to work. He doesn’t have the votes in the Senate, and either he’s going to cave, or there’s going to be a shutdown, one which he threatened would be “very long.”
Nobody wants your goddamn wall, Trump. Even after preemptively taking full blame for shutting down the government, Trump is now trying to put it back on Democrats, even though the Democrats and Republicans had a budget for Trump to sign yesterday. He’s the one who bailed on it after many had assurances that he would sign it.
Senator Mitch McConnell should fight for the Wall and Border Security as hard as he fought for anything. He will need Democrat votes, but as shown in the House, good things happen. If enough Dems don’t vote, it will be a Democrat Shutdown! House Republicans were great yesterday!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 21, 2018
Trump to Dems last week: "I will take the mantle. I will be the one to shut it down. I won't blame you for it."— Peter Baker (@peterbakernyt) December 21, 2018
Trump this morning: "If enough Dems don’t vote, it will be a Democrat Shutdown!"
Mazie Hirono: "He's got some rightwing loud people yelling at him on Fox News and suddenly he says, 'well, I don’t think I'm going to sign it' … Any effort on his part to blame the Democrats will be such bullshit that, as I said before, I will hardly be able to stand it." @MSNBC— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) December 21, 2018
Goddamn, I love Senator Hirono.
But whatever, right? A government shutdown will hurt a lot of people. Many may go without paychecks. Certain non-essential services won’t get done. But we’ve had government shutdowns before. Many of them. Some of them lengthy. We survive.
Meanwhile, the stock market is flailing, the trade war with China has not been even a little bit resolved, and Trump’s fractured relationship with his fed chair probably isn’t helping matters. But hey! We muddled through the Great Recession. We’ll muddle through whatever Trump ultimately inflicts upon our economy.
The shutdown, the stock market, the wall … these are important matters, but a lot of that is political, and many of those on the left have enjoyed watching Trump bone himself over and over and over again this week. He’s very, very bad at politics, and why the GOP continues to stick by his side is a goddamn mystery, especially seeing where that got them in the midterms.
Oh really? No shit.
But this Mattis thing? Jesus Christ. This is bad. The Secretary of Defense just up and fucking quit on the President. The last “adult in the room” is gone, and even if he wasn’t actually an “adult in the room,” our allies perceived him as one. If you haven’t read Mattis’ resignation letter yet, do so, and then read between the lines, and the gist of it is basically: Trump is remaking America’s alliances. Germany, Britain, France? Fuck ‘em. We’re going to ally with Turkey and Russia and other autocratic nations. Why? Who the hell knows? Because Trump favors autocracies? Because Trump has a financial incentive to do so? Because these countries have leverage over Trump? Or all three. Whatever it is, Trump is destroying 70 years of international diplomacy, and while I’m not saying that our foreign diplomacy was great under Reagan, Clinton, two Bushes, and Obama, it’s obviously better than whatever Trump comes up with, on the fly, on a whim, on Twitter, based on the last person he spoke to, or whatever he heard on Fox News.
Pulling troops out of Syria seems so distant and remote to us. What the fuck do we care, right? Except that it’s exactly what Russia wanted. Except that it allows Turkey to come in and basically mass murder the Kurdish Democrats (Erdogan uses the word “cleanse” and “clean” a lot when referring to the Kurds, FYI). Except that it allows ISIS to regroup. Except that it puts Russia front and center on the international stage. And what does the United States gain from it?
Hell if I know.
This is bad policy. We may not understand why, exactly, but the people who do understand why say that it’s bad policy.
Scathing criticism of POTUS Syria withdrawal from Jack Keane, a top candidate to replace Mattis: “This is a huge strategic mistake that I hope the President will reconsider and if he does not, I believe with some degree of confidence that he will come to regret this decision.”— Jennifer Griffin (@JenGriffinFNC) December 21, 2018
It’s bad enough that McConnell pulled his head out of Trump’s ass, washed his face, and put out a statement disagreeing with the President.
McConnell makes it clear he shares Mattis’ world view, adds: “I am particularly distressed that he is resigning due to sharp differences with the president on these and other key aspects of America’s global leadership.” pic.twitter.com/nSyt2f4XT7— Seung Min Kim (@seungminkim) December 21, 2018
Anyway, I don’t know who Trump will call upon to replace Jim Mattis. I don’t know who — among those with a level head — would take the job. I do know, that as we head into Christmas week, that things are superf*cked right now, probably more so than at any other time during the Trump Presidency, and that is saying a lot.