Nothing says Christmastime like forcing thousands of government employees to work without pay! Not to mention the many thousands on furlough, who are neither working nor getting paid. There’s nothing like a giant looming uncertainty to ring in the new year, and I’m sure that American citizens are pleased to know that absolutely no one is in control. This is the third government shutdown since Trump took office. It should be no surprise to discover that Trump once acerbically inveighed against government shutdowns, saying they are solely the fault of the President in charge. of course, this was long before he took office, and while that mean old black guy was running the country with a measure of success and decorum.
I would be willing to “shut down” government if the Democrats do not give us the votes for Border Security, which includes the Wall! Must get rid of Lottery, Catch & Release etc. and finally go to system of Immigration based on MERIT! We need great people coming into our Country!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 29, 2018
Donald Trump has clearly bitten off considerably more than he can chew with this most recent government showdown. After insisting that he would “proudly” take responsibility for the shutdown, he executed an expert and predictable heel-face turn and blamed it on Congressional Democrats. Considering how truth-resistant Trump supporters seem to be, there’s likely to be little political penalty among his most die-hard supporters.
The Democrats now own the shutdown!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 21, 2018
Democrats have shut down our government in the interests of their far left base. They don’t want to do it but are powerless!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 22, 2018
Somehow, despite his party holding a majority in the House and the Senate while he sits in the President’s chair, Trump has managed to drive the country to shut down three times. If that’s not an utter failure of leadership, it’s hard to imagine what would qualify as a barometer of total ineptitude. There’s not a whole bunch going on in the brains of these fellas, I suppose, except for how to most efficiently enrich themselves.
Most embarrassingly, Trump has repeatedly mentioned how inept Presidents must be when they oversee a government shutdown. In one of his extended whining sessions on “Fox & Friends” in late 2013, he said the following on-air:
“Problems start from the top, and they have to get solved from the top, and the President’s the leader, and he’s got to get everybody in a room, and he’s got to lead. And he doesn’t do that, he doesn’t like doing that, that’s not his strength. And that’s why you have this horrible situation going on in Washington. It’s a very, very bad thing and it’s very embarrassing worldwide.”Donald Trump, “Fox & Friends” 20 September 2013
Since we’re all so thoroughly accustomed to Donald Trump contradicting himself, this probably rolls off you like water off a duck’s back. The curious question is whether Trump even realizes he’s contradicting himself. Does he even remember all the times he shit all over Obama for the sole purpose of making himself more famous? He spent years encouraging the pedalers of that stupid Obama birth certificate conspiracy. He ran with that stupid football of a theory solely on the grounds that Obama was black and had a weird name and was therefore inherently unamerican.
The strangest thing about this whole ordeal is that it’s utterly unclear what Trump thinks he will gain by this whole catastrophe. If he truly thinks that Congress will bend to his will during a lame-duck session, he’s out of his gourd.
Kicking people off payroll right before Christmas is the kind of business decision you expect from Scrooge McDuck, not the self-styled “greatest negotiator” in the Solar System. It would be great if we could see some of that negotiating savvy in evidence, but if you’ve got a clue, you know that’s all baloney anyway. You can’t muscle people to your will in politics and expect them to do you favors later, and Trump has never understood and will never understand that. He’s a strong-man, a brute, and a demagogue. The sooner we are rid of his kind, the better off we will all be.