Top 6 Falsehoods Embraced by new WH Chief of Staff John Kelly

By Juan Cole | (Informed Comment) | – –

John Kelly will get a lot of good will from having fired the foul-mouthed Anthony Scaramucci. But should he? At least Scaramucci had been gunning for Steve Bannon, the scary far, far right wing white nationalist who serves as White House strategist. You have a sense that while Kelly is just very, very conservative, there are lots of things about Bannon he is comfortable with. That isn’t a comforting thought.

1. Kelly thinks we are under siege:

“We are under attack from failed states, cyber-terrorists, vicious smugglers, and sadistic radicals. And we are under attack every single day. The threats are relentless.”

As Michael Cohen wrote in response at the Boston Globe, “Cyber-terrorists have never killed an American citizen, no failed state threatens America and more Americans are killed by lightning strikes than sadistic radicals.”

2. Kelly said that construction on Trump’s border wall would begin by the end of this summer. It won’t.

3. Nor is the wall needed or wanted by a majority of Americans. Kelly is almost delusional about US immigration enforcement: “Nothing’s been done in the past eight years to to enforce the border rules and regulations, not to mention many of the immigration laws inside of the United States…”

Fact: The Obama administration deported at least as many people as the Bush administration had, if you use the same definition for deportations in both administrations. By sheer reported numbers, Obama deported some 2.5 million people during his 8 years while Bush deported 2 million. They probably actually deported about the same number. Kelly’s bizarre notion that the laws were not implemented since 2009 is flat wrong.

4. Kelly wanted to prioritize deportation of undocumented people who use marijuana on the circa 1910 grounds that it is a “gateway drug.” It is not, or Colorado would be nothing but heroin addicts. Legalization of marijuana tracks with lower crime rates.

5. Kelly said of reports that Jared Kushner had met with the Russians during the campaign, before these reports were confirmed, that “any channel of communication” with Russia “is a good thing.” .

6. Not to mention Kelly’s bizarre performance during Trump’s first attempt at a Muslim ban, when he gladly acted without any regard to the US constitution and claimed to have authored the policy (Bannon and Miller sprang it on him). The most dangerous thing of all is that Kelly is a good soldier and will do as he is told by Trump.

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Related video:

The Young Turks: “Why The Media Worships John Kelly”

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12 Responses

  1. The “government of the barracks” is now almost complete. Being a weak person, President Trump has a great fascination for the military. All that is needed is to replace Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who is clearly uncomfortable in his job with General David Petraeus whom Trump had earlier considered for the post and the line-up will be complete. In fact, it may make more sense to move the office of the president to the Pentagon and then we will have real hard discipline and a government of tough men “to make America great again”.

  2. “…Steve Bannon, the scary far, far right wing white nationalist”

    I misread this and stumbled into a deeper truth: Steve Bannon, the scary far, far right wing white nihilist.

    As to being under siege, the most dangerous besieging force is several million gun-toting Trump supporters. They are more deluded and less susceptible to reason then the North Korean regime.

  3. John Kelly might be a very distinguished ex Military official, but however patriotic he may feel, I cannot understand why, on watching and looking at how Trump operates, speaks, insults, and tweets, he would accept this position. Nothing is going to change with John Kelly there, as long as Trump remains. John Kelly is not going to be a miracle worker, as he tries to make sense in the Trump and Family unlimited White House. You cannot repackage a dud product and put a new ribbon on it, and try to convince the world it is a fine product. Unfortunately, John Kelly is going to find out the hard way.

  4. Kelly might be able to stop leaks coming out of the West Wing but that leaves the special prosecutor’s office, friends of the “Beleaguered” AG, the CIA and FBI both having been belittled by our arrogant accidental game show host president, the senate and house (Both parties), and the entire so called Washington establishment….aka…the “Swamp!”

    I predict the next year will be a period of award winning journalism for WAPO….thanks in no small part to leakers.

  5. Thank you Prof Cole. You’d think from a lot of the media coverage that more order in the White house is good thing.
    Since the GOP/ Republicans/ Tea Party/ Charles Koch control congress, the only thing that slows the Trump/Bannon agenda down is the disorder. And that’s a good thing.

  6. Ah, but he’s tall, and just look at those cheekbones.

    Unlike Trump and many others of his crew, I sense an ability to get things done.

    Administrative competence, in this case, is what I find scarey.

  7. Those who haven’t already ought to see the film, “Conspiracy”.

    link to imdb.com

    May be a good time for all of us to see it, again. There are good guys and bad guys, likeable Nazis and unlikable Nazis in the film. The whole thing seems so…ordinary.

    That’s how it’s done. That’s how we commit the most appalling crimes as a society. We normalize it.

    All this media speculation and gossip about Trump’s appointees and the whole White House soap opera is just a form of entertainment that is preparing us for future crimes against humanity of the most appalling sort. We are the normalizees. For what will be truly unspeakable crimes. Soon. Very soon.

    • Nope, not soon.

      The team of prosecutors looking into the crimes against our country by the Trump Cartel has hired Greg Andres, who served in the Justice Department from 2010 to 2012. He is a former deputy assistant attorney general in the criminal division, where he oversaw the fraud unit and managed the program that targeted illegal foreign bribery. Bad news for the First Family.

      Andres will be the 16th attorney to join the team to oust the Trump pestilence from our White House.

      link to reuters.com

      Will General Kelley be the next General Haig?

      link to washingtonpost.com

      The loyalty of John Kelly . . . . .

  8. This great movie with a splendid cast is one of several Nazi narratives containing prophetic lines and characters. Downfall is one of the best. Without exaggeration, its script puts Hitler’s words in Trump’s mouth.

  9. All the fawning by the punditry over Kelly aside, I figure that anyone with any integrity and self-respect would avoid trump’s snake pit. All who enter are forever diminished. I predict a short tenure.

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