Friday, October 13, 2017
Donald Trump is like those pop-ads that keep appearing in the margins of the web page. No matter how many times you press the X button to get rid of them they just keep reappearing. The guy certainly knows how to keep himself in the news.
Having failed to get any legislation passed regarding health care, Trump is now going after the ACA by executive order, cutting subsidies and making it that much more difficult for low-income families to have access to health insurance. For a man who said that Obamacare was killing itself, he sure is going out of his way to speed up the process.
Of course, the Donald doesn't think of any of this on his own. He has a core of advisers preparing these executive orders for him to sign, notably Stephen Miller. Tom Price is no longer around to guide him on health care, not that the president had very much interest in it anyway. Trump simply wants to undo everything Obama accomplished in his eight years as president.
He badly wants to pull the US out of the Iran nuclear agreement, but got enough pushback from his top military advisers that he has apparently retreated from his earlier hardline position. He was notably upset over this but it seems in some little corner of his tiny brain something triggered him to follow the advice of his Secs. of Defense and State. I'm sure Miller was pushing him the other way.
For whatever reason, Stephen Miller remains in the White House. I thought he would have gotten swept out with Bannon and Gorka, but he has not only clung onto his position as policy adviser, but appears stronger than ever. In many ways he is more dangerous than Bannon because he has managed to earn a small piece of respect within Washington for his dogged determination. It also helps that he has Jeff Sessions backing him.
This is a guy who came up through the Tea Party, working as press secretary for Rabid Republican Representatives Michelle Bachman and John Shadegg before endearing himself to Sessions. He is only 32 and is working hand in hand with Jared Kushner to shape Trump's major policy statements. However, Miller moreso than Jared is keeping Trump to the hardline positions that won him the White House.
I guess the best way to look at Stephen is as a young Richard Nixon. He comes from California, where he found himself constantly at odds with his liberal classmates at Santa Monica HS and plotted his revenge. He has had an astonishing rise in politics, virtually unheard of until Trump became President and named him as one of his top advisers.
It was Miller who helped shape the first "Muslim ban," which caused pandemonium in airports and was quickly struck down by federal courts. It seems his black heart was in the right place but he just didn't find the right language to get the ban to carry any weight. The ban was subsequently revised and to some degree implemented, much to Trump's chagrin who was much more comfortable with the first ban. After all, a Muslim is a Muslim, whether he has a green card or not.
Miller is a psychopath able to channel his killer instinct. As such, he represents the cold, calculating determination to dismantle government as we know it so that all those effete liberals in California won't have any government goodies anymore, like health care. They will have to pay for it like everyone else. He doesn't give a fuck who lives or who dies in the process.
This is what makes him so dangerous. Miller wins whether Trump loses or not. He has been able to stick to his core ideology and endear himself to the conservative hard right. He knows exactly how to address the press in the most blunt terms so as to gain maximum effect. Jim Acosta could only look on in disbelief as Miller turned Emma Lazuras' famous poem into a feeble inscription on the Statue of Liberty. This is a guy who has no time for the "huddled masses."
He is Donald Trump's id. He pushes all those primal instincts within Trump's bicameral mind, making it hard for Kelly, Mattis and Tillerson to exercise reason. We have to wait until Trump's speech today to see if he actually will certify the Iran nuclear agreement.