Steve Bannon is gone from his position as White House Chief Strategist. He joins a whole parade of people who have been hired and shortly thereafter fired or who resigned before they were pushed. People like the following:
The only two original senior members of the White House team that remain are Trump himself and Vice President Mike Pence and there are all sorts of legal steps required to get rid of them.
And now the history rewrite is occurring but you have to wonder what Bannon went. Was it because of the utter confusion and absurdity of the President’s response to the Charlotsville crisis? Bannon has claimed that he tendered his resignation before the riots occurred but you have to wonder.
Because like everything else Trump’s handling of the crisis was both terrifying and inept at the same time. To continue to achieve this status week after week after week requires a special skill.
The terrifying aspect of it all is that Trump did not come out straight away and say that Nazism is an appalling evil movement and should not be tolerated under any circumstances. The absolute best that a Nazi can expect in a free society is permission to talk quietly about the subject on the basis that free speech should protect all speech no matter how vile and hateful.
But to allow mass rallies and idiots dressed in military outfits brandishing semi automatic weapons should not be something that a tolerant society should ever do. And all strength to those who stood up and opposed the Nazis. That one of them was killed protesting is appalling. This is the sort of a crisis a President would consider sending the National Guard in.
But how did Trump respond? Initially by saying that nazis and those opposed to the nazis should share the blame. Somehow both groups were responsible for what happened. A more stunning example of false equivalence I am sure you will never seen.
Then a couple of days later he was forced begrudgingly to make a clarifying statement. From the Guardian:
Donald Trump has bowed to overwhelming pressure and directly condemned the Ku Klux Klan, neo-Nazis and white supremacists, two days after violent clashes left one woman dead.
“Racism is evil,” the US president said at the White House. “And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”
The explicit remarks came after a storm of criticism – some from prominent figures in his own party – over Trump’s decision not to criticise head-on the white supremacist groups that targeted Charlottesville, Virginia, at the weekend.
He returned to Washington from his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, on Monday and discussed the tragedy with attorney general Jeff Sessions and new FBI director, Christopher Wray.
Reading from a teleprompter, Trump then confirmed that the justice department has opened a civil rights investigation into the car attack that killed one woman and injured 20 others. “To anyone who acted criminally in this weekend’s racist violence, you will be held fully accountable,” he insisted. “Justice will be delivered.
“As I said on Saturday, we condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence. It has no place in America.”
So far so good. But Bannon must have got to him because two days later he reverted back. Again from the Guardian:
Donald Trump has once again defended far-right protesters at the Charlottesville rally, saying they were not all neo-Nazis and white supremacists and laying the blame for the violence equally on what he called the “alt-left”.
The remarks – made during a rowdy press conference in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York – were Trump’s latest switch in stance since Saturday, when the civil rights activist Heather Heyer died after a white nationalist allegedly drove his car into a crowd in the Virginian city.
The US president was fiercely criticised for failing to condemn white supremacists in his initial response to Charlottesville, when he blamed the violence “on many sides”. On Monday, after a chorus of disapproval, he gave an apparently reluctant statement denouncing racism as evil.
But on Tuesday he reverted to drawing a moral equivalency between the far right and the counter-demonstrators.
“I’m not putting anybody on a moral plane,” he said. “You had a group on one side and group on the other and they came at each other with clubs – there is another side, you can call them the left, that came violently attacking the other group. You had people that were very fine people on both sides.
“Not all those people were neo-Nazis, not all those people were white supremacists. Many of those people were there to protest the taking down of the statue of Robert E Lee. So this week, it is Robert E Lee. I noticed that Stonewall Jackson is coming down. I wonder, is it George Washington next week? And is it Thomas Jefferson the week after? You know, you really do have to ask yourself, where does it stop?”
Trump also said that Steve Bannon is not a racist. Remember this guy holds the nuclear codes.
The alt right is trying to say that Bannon going will give him greater power to attack Trump’s enemies. As if.
It looks like Trump’s family, who are venal but at least have somewhat human characterists are now in power. The world might be a little safer with Bannon’s resignation.