Believing Your Own Bullshit

This cracks me up:

President Trump’s chief strategist Stephen Bannon sought to use the healthcare vote this week to make an “enemies list” of lawmakers who would vote “no” on the GOP initiative, The New York Times reported Saturday.

A Hill GOP aide involved in last-minute negotiations told the Times that Bannon and White House legislative affairs director Marc Short pressured the president to let the House vote on the ObamaCare replacement bill.

And that is on top of this:

When the balky hardliners of the House Freedom Caucus visited the White House earlier this week, this was Steve Bannon’s opening line, according to people in the conference room in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building:

“Guys, look. This is not a discussion. This is not a debate. You have no choice but to vote for this bill.”

They, of course, said “fuck you.”

The problem with all these little Hitlers in the Trump administration, including Trump himself, is that these pocket authoritarians are used to being in charge of minions who offer complete obeisance. Bannon in the military where people HAVE to do what you say, and then running Breitbart, where everyone there is such a suck-up and toadie that the virgin Ben comes across as a profile in courage.

With Trump, it’s basically everyone he’s ever encountered his entire life, and this was reinforced by all the yes men throughout his campaign who never once tried to tether him to reality and always had Fox news to feed his delusions.

And so when they go in all sure of themselves, flinging the bombast that has worked with weaker folks or people not in positions to resist, they look like idiots. Steve Bannon may think he is the Sith lord, but the Freedom caucus looked at him and saw this:

A fat retirement age alcoholic in rumpled clothes stinking of yesterday’s gin with bloodshot eyes, a mean streak a mile wide, who has one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel.

There are pockets in this country where believing your own bullshit and being the legend in your own mind is rampant (DC obviously, with Silicon Valley a close second, but also Hollywood, Wall Street, upper levels of corporate America, the Catholic church, and upper levels of academic administrations), but when you come slinging a piece of shit and people see you for what you are, you get laughed out of the room.






176 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    There are pockets in this country where believing your own bullshit and being the legend in your own mind is rampant (DC obviously, with Silicon Valley a close second, but also Hollywood, Wall Street, upper levels of corporate America, the Catholic church, and upper levels of academic administrations),

    And Balloon Juice!

  2. 2
    mb says:

    what is it with the multiple shirts?

  3. 3
    rikyrah says:

    On my way to see Beauty and the Beast with Peanut 😄😄😄

  4. 4
    chromeagnomen says:

    another sick burn that Obamacare will cover for them.

  5. 5
    narya says:

    I think another piece of this is that Cheetolini has never worked a day in his life. And by that I mean, in particular, working a shit job, for shit pay, because otherwise the rent doesn’t get paid. Waiting tables; doing maintenance work; working a cash register or counter–whatever. I have reached a point in my life where I don’t entirely trust someone who hasn’t ever had to have a job like that.

  6. 6
    amk says:

    why only one banana peel? let’s not be mean here.

  7. 7
    Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes says:

    OT – Binge watching “Crazy Ex Girlfriend” on Netflix.

    Adorable, cringeworthy at times – it is a wonderful diversion, lots of talented actors and a very funny plot line.

  8. 8
    Scott says:

    Military people are not like Bannon for the most part. I’m sure he was a suck up/punch down type of officer. They usually get theirs.

  9. 9
    waspuppet says:

    It’s almost as if being a “brilliant” businessman* isn’t a superpower, or the be-all and end-all of human endeavor, and there are other skills required to successfully run a government.

    But that can’t be, can it?

    *Yeah, I know Trump isn’t even that, but I’m making a point here.

  10. 10
    MattF says:

    And, Bannon has big hands. Trump will never forgive him for that.

  11. 11
    Yarrow says:

    No one over 35 in the Trump administration looks healthy.

    There are pockets in this country where believing your own bullshit and being the legend in your own mind is rampant (DC obviously, with Silicon Valley a close second, but also Hollywood, Wall Street, upper levels of corporate America, the Catholic church, and upper levels of academic administrations),

    One of my deepest wishes is that the Trump scandal leads to people questioning the dogma of the last 40 years that businessmen are somehow so much better and smarter at everything than anyone else. And that CEOs are godlike creatures who, if we’d just let them, would solve all our problems. Plus the “run government like a business” bullshit. I doubt all of that will happen but if even some of it does it’ll be a good thing.

  12. 12
    NorthLeft12 says:

    How the hell do they know who was actually going to vote against it? Seems like Deadbeat Donald and his acolytes did not have the balls to force the Fascist Caucus to vote against their own party….and him and Ryan.

    As usual, Repubs are all bs and blowhard talk. They will always blink, it just remains to be seen which clique is the most cowardly and spineless.

  13. 13
    Another Scott says:

    @mb: Looks like just some different colored (what’s it called?) basting or something to me. Not like (when was it?) the 1990s where the designers tried to push some “trend” with young men wearing about 4 Polo shirts at the same time… (groucho-roll-eyes.gif)

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  14. 14
    waspuppet says:

    @Scott: Maybe he should’ve shown them some pictures of the inauguration crowds.

  15. 15
    Mike J says:

    Art of the deal.

    Did you see the reports of Trump meeting with moderate Rs? When one told Trump he was voting no, Trump asked, “why am I even talking to you?” If the congressman had had the guts to walk out of the Oval at that point, Trump might have learned something.

  16. 16
    Doug R says:

    @mb: We had a guy called “Beer Bottle Bill” who we used to see around the neighborhood when I was a kid. He used to wear about 6 shirts at once, but he was a bottle picker and probably homeless.

  17. 17
  18. 18

    All those stories about B, being Sauron, I have read it here in the comments too. My theory is that they are all planted by SB himself. I have no doubt that he wants to be the evil mastermind puppet master. Wanting something is not the same thing as being.

  19. 19

    @EriktheRed: I am repulsed.

    ETA: As a woman, I would make sure that I am never alone in a room with him.

  20. 20
    randy khan says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    Well, apparently he lacks Sauron’s power to bend the minds of men towards him. But I consider that a plus.

  21. 21
    Corner Stone says:

    @NorthLeft12:

    How the hell do they know who was actually going to vote against it?

    I know this is going to be hard to believe, but what Trump said about it being “very close, a very close vote” was not, in fact, accurate.
    They were about to get blown out of the water with some reporting indicating more than 60+ R members voting No. And that, my Canuckistanian friend, is a hell of an enemies list to start compiling.

  22. 22
    Baud says:

    @EriktheRed: He read on the internet that Plan B leads to abortions.

  23. 23
    Yarrow says:

    @Mike J:

    Trump might have learned something.

    I do not think it is possible for Trump to learn anything at this point.

  24. 24
    MattF says:

    @EriktheRed: “Look, all I want you to do is empty your pockets– put everything on that table over there. OK?”

  25. 25
    trnc says:

    … who has one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel.

    I was thinking rake instead of banana peel, but yeah.

  26. 26
    ruemara says:

    I, personally, can’t wait for Bannon to fall into a wood chipped or some other Russian accident. I have no idea why he’s still in the White House.

  27. 27
    Corner Stone says:

    I can’t decide who I want to see perp walked more for refusing to take a deal. Roger Stone or Paul Manafort? I think Flynn has already flipped and Carter Page looks like he’s one small push from turning into Humpty Dumpty.

  28. 28
    Yarrow says:

    @ruemara:

    I have no idea why he’s still in the White House.

    Why wouldn’t he be? Of course in a normal administration he never would have been allowed through the gates, even on a tour, in the first place. But given this disastrous administration, why would he be let go? What’s he done that would upset Trump and Jared enough that they’d get rid of him?

  29. 29
    Mike in NC says:

    @mb: Bannon has been photographed wearing multiple layers of clothing as a possible attempt to disguise his body odor. He’s like one of those old movie cowboys who came to town once a month for a bath and a bottle of whiskey.

  30. 30
    WereBear says:

    The key problem of surrounding yourself with kissasses. You lose all touch with reality. In fact, it is the job of your entourage to keep your feet off the ground at all times.

    One of the Eddie Murphy roles in the incredible Bowfinger is portraying a powerful celebrity who can be convinced of anything, no matter how nonsensical, because he has been in this artificial world for so long he has lost the ability to evaluate the input of his senses, or use logic and experience. He is now an artificial creature.

    And very vulnerable, though he does not realize it.

  31. 31
    XTPD says:

    Bannon looks like a older, uglier Mirrorverse version of Patton Oswalt or Stephen Root.

  32. 32
    Biscuits says:

    Cold meatloaf. Bannon looks like he smells like cold meatloaf. Gross.

  33. 33
    Amaranthine RBG says:

    Alcoholism is a disease and Bannon being fat doesn’t do anything to hurt other people.

  34. 34
    laura says:

    @rikyrah: Word on the street is that “it’s a tale as old as time.”
    Have fun and too much popcorn. Please consider sharing the Peanut’s critique of this version over the animated one, that would be fun.

  35. 35
    WereBear says:

    @Yarrow: One of my deepest wishes is that the Trump scandal leads to people questioning the dogma of the last 40 years that businessmen are somehow so much better and smarter at everything than anyone else.

    It was always a con. But I agree it is past time for it to be exposed as such.

  36. 36
    Butthurt Jordan Trombone (fka XTPD) says:

    Also, changing username.

  37. 37
    Tilda Swintons Bald Cap says:

    Nice post ! Republicans are always getting high on their own supply.

  38. 38
    Goku says:

    “A fat retirement age alcoholic in rumpled clothes stinking of yesterday’s gin with bloodshot eyes, a mean streak a mile wide, who has one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel.”

    Beautiful, John

  39. 39
    Suzanne says:

    @Yarrow: No one could ever learn anything with such an ego in the way.

    Seriously, these people are all such fantasists. During the campaign, Dampnut talked about governance in such a way that anybody with half a brain should have realized that he had absolutely no conception or clue of how to actualize any of his goals. Experience matters in this job. I don’t know why a segment of the population wants to imagine the presidency as a job for any common dumbass. It reminds me of the people I know who watch HGTV and then consider themselves interior designers. The real interior designers I work with hate that shit. So much.

  40. 40
    Barbara says:

    @Corner Stone: WaPo was at around 51 no or leaning no as of Friday afternoon and they were updating all day. If it had been close I think they would have proceeded and twisted arms on the floor.

  41. 41
    germy says:

    @XTPD:

    Bannon looks like a older, uglier Mirrorverse version of Patton Oswalt or Stephen Root.

    He looks like the brother Russell Crowe doesn’t talk about.

  42. 42
    pamelabrown53 says:

    @Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes: #7.
    I started watching “Crazy ex-Girlfriend” and also thought it cringeworthingly delightful. Thanks for the reminder. I could use a diversion. So many of the Netflix binge shows are too dark for my current mood.

  43. 43
    WereBear says:

    @Mike in NC: Bannon has been photographed wearing multiple layers of clothing as a possible attempt to disguise his body odor.

    Augh! This so has the ring of truth! Thanks so much for enhancing my multi-media experience of evil, there.

  44. 44
    West of the Rockies (been a while) says:

    @Yarrow:

    Yes, few of the upper echelon Trumplings look healthy. I can almost smell the cholesterol and liver cirrhosis wafting from Bannon.

  45. 45
    amk says:

    #BREAKING Merkel's party wins German state vote by large margin: TV— AFP news agency (@AFP) March 26, 2017

    Thanks Obama donnie dick.

  46. 46
    amk says:

    Incredible to watch Republicans (tom cotton) now praise the process by which Obamacare was passed pic.twitter.com/3iJ2ZlZ1n7— Sam Stein (@samsteinhp) March 26, 2017

  47. 47
    Ruckus says:

    @narya:

    I don’t entirely trust someone who hasn’t ever had to have a job like that.

    The only way I trust anyone that hasn’t had a job like that is after they prove themselves. And after that I always keep one eye out for treachery and bullshit.

  48. 48
    brendancalling says:

    @mb: in case he pukes on himself.

  49. 49
    misterpuff says:

    @trnc: Bannon is Sideshow Bob? I like it.

    Drumpf is, of course, a fat Burns and Reince is his Smithers.

    Release the [Russian Wolf] Hounds!

  50. 50
    Chet Murthy says:

    @Amaranthine RBG: You’ll be taken seriously when the Rs stop attacking women for being women, blacks for being blacks, and LGBT for being LGBT. Until then, this is just special pleading.

    Until then, he’s a disgusting pile of evil masquerading as a human being. Every failing of his is fair game. Every one. Just like his sock-puppet, and just like his sock-puppet’s complicit spawn (and SIL).

    ETA: “complicit” means “not barron, not tiffany”

  51. 51
    WereBear says:

    @Suzanne: I don’t know why a segment of the population wants to imagine the presidency as a job for any common dumbass.

    It’s part of their own mythology: that their pouty “common sense” will always beat knowledge and intellect.

    And yet, who do they see if they want their appendix out or their taxes done? Do they throw the captain of their plane into coach and let Cousin Bubba get them to Branson?

    Hypocrites.

  52. 52
    NorthLeft12 says:

    @Corner Stone: I don’t doubt that a lot of Repubs were saying that they would vote no, but they have proven time and time again that they will throw their constituents and country under the bus if it somehow benefitted their party and the people who finance them.

    Would have been interesting to see if they had gone on record against their president and party.

  53. 53
    Hoodie says:

    While your depiction of Bannon/Trump is accurate, the reason the house goopers said nein is not because Brannon was ordering them around. They all wanted that bill to fail for their own preservation. That 24 mil losing health insurance would cause a shitstorm, and it’s easier to try to push responsibility on to the dems by tying up the congress in a staged ideological food fight that conveniently allows than to continue to evade responsibility. Barton gave that away with the fantasy football remark. Most of these guys are just hucksters, not true believers, and they’re too timid to put a bullet in grandpa’s head.

  54. 54
    What Have the Romans Ever Done for Us? says:

    An enemies list isn’t all that effective if people want to be on it, which is where this is heading. This is how things are going down: people say Faux News will never turn on Trump, but I’m not so sure. My guess is if he keeps sucking, and he will, and is proven to be a failure to the point where even Faux News can’t hide it from their viewers, the Faux News anchors will start saying he was never really a conservative. He’s more of a centrist and maybe even leans Democrat. Everyone who was on the bandwagon will start saying they never really liked him – rewriting their personal histories the same way Trump rewrites promising to repeal Obamacare quickly out of his. Then they will look for a new conservative hero because conservatism can never fail, it can only be failed.

    Maybe this would be too big a rewrite even for Faux News to pull off but that’s the way they’ll turn on and dump him if they do…it’s the only avenue available for them to turn on a Republican president so if they have to it’s the avenue they’ll take.

  55. 55
    germy says:

    @Suzanne:

    people I know who watch HGTV and then consider themselves interior designers. The real interior designers I work with hate that shit.

    Not HGTV, but I remember seeing a show where two young ladies travel around and help people redesign their homes.
    One home had an old door. About 100 years old. Beautiful wood. But the newlyweds wanted to “lighten up” the place. The young ladies told them the door should be painted a nice bright color. The wife was hesitant: “But it’s an antique door!”

    In the end, they painted the door a light, bright purple. Completely covered the old wood. Definitely lightened up the room. That was the last time we watched that show.

  56. 56
    Feebog says:

    @Corner Stone:

    They were about to get blown out of the water with some reporting indicating more than 60+ R members voting No.

    There at 37 members of the Freedumb caucus and most of them were “no”. Additionally, the press had publically identified 10-12 moderates like Charlie Dent who were also “no”. Who knows how many more who didn’t come out publically but had told the whip they were a “no”? So, yeah, they were going to get their asses kicked if they held a vote.

  57. 57
    Goku says:

    Anybody in favor of forevermore referring to Breitbart as Brainfart? Childish, yes, but it’s funny.

    Calling the Freedom Caucus, the Fascist Caucus, is also both insulting and accurate. Kudos to the above commenter (who I’m too lazy to look up) who said it.

  58. 58
    tobie says:

    @amk: Yup. It was the state election in Saarland. Merkel’s CDU Party did much better than expected; the SPD held on; the Greens unfortunately didn’t make the 5% threshold and are out of the state govt. Unfortunately the AfD–the anti-immigrant, ethno-nationalist party–did cross the threshold with 6% of the vote but I gather that was much less than expected. Yes, Cheeto Donnie has made Merkel popular again.

    EDIT: The front page of the FAZ has an article on the defeat of Trump’s healthcare plan with a picture of Paul Ryan and the headline, Paul Ryan, Scapegoat. So good to see the world separating the US from the GOP.

  59. 59
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @mb: No one knows…

  60. 60
    MattF says:

    @What Have the Romans Ever Done for Us?: Particularly if Trump starts offering to ‘cooperate’ with Democrats. Lil’ Reince has already said a word about that. I sincerely hope that Dems have already figured out that wouldn’t be a terrific idea.

  61. 61
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Scott: He made it to Lieutenant Senior Grade (O3) in the Navy. The most important assignment he had was as an aide, but not the aide de camp, to an admiral at the Pentagon. Basically he was in charge of getting coffee.

  62. 62
    LurkerNoLonger says:

    @misterpuff: Trump is Ralph Wiggum. Bannon is Barney Gumble.

  63. 63
    MattF says:

    @Feebog: It was going to be either a very narrow win for Ryan or a huge loss.

  64. 64
    SFAW says:

    @Yarrow:

    One of my deepest wishes is that the Trump scandal leads to people questioning the dogma of the last 40 years that businessmen are somehow so much better and smarter at everything than anyone else.

    Get off it, will you? Everyone knows that celebrity “businessmen” cannot fail, THEY CAN ONLY BE FAILED.

  65. 65
    Butthurt Jordan Trombone (fka XTPD) says:

    @Goku: Shakezula and the LGM commenters favor Breitshart and Reichfart, both being more euphonious.

  66. 66
    West of the Rockies (been a while) says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    I believe that Bannon will find that having is not so pleasing a thing as wanting… it is not logical, but it is often true.

  67. 67
    Ruckus says:

    @Scott:
    My take on the military officers that I saw was that a few of them are very good, a somewhat larger number are complete fucking assholes, and the balance are meat in a uniform. IOW about normal distribution for the population at large. It just seems like there are more complete fucking assholes because they make life painful for every one around them.

  68. 68
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Another Scott: Actually its the 90s, multiple shirt thing. He apparently seized on the look and isn’t letting go.

  69. 69
    Goku says:

    @Amaranthine RBG: LEAVE BRITANNY ALONE!!!!!

    Pretty please, comrade?

  70. 70
    Amaranthine RBG says:

    @Chet Murthy:

    You’ll be taken seriously when the Rs stop attacking women for being women, blacks for being blacks, and LGBT for being LGBT. Until then, this is just special pleading.

    I don’t think I am going to let R’s set the standard for decent conduct.

  71. 71
    Yarrow says:

    @narya: The concept of working one’s way up in an organization, after starting somewhere like the mailroom or on the factory floor, is pretty much gone. We’d do well to bring it back. If more CEOs had real life experience we might be better off.

  72. 72
    germy says:

    @Amaranthine RBG: Also, Ruth is old.

  73. 73
    misterpuff says:

    @LurkerNoLonger: BELCCCCCHHHH! You win.

  74. 74
    Barbara says:

    @tobie: His loser stink has gone international. Being allied with Putin can’t be helping the neo-nationalists.

  75. 75
    amk says:

    Ted Koppel to klannity: You are bad for America

  76. 76
    Amir Khalid says:

    That photo of Bannon hurts my eyes. Thanks a lot, John Cole.

    After seeing a Republican-dominated Congress make war on Obama for six straight years, how did Trump take office not understanding that he isn’t the boss of Congress? Obama would have mentioned this fact at at least one of their transition meetings, Shirley.

  77. 77
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Mike J: And that’s the problem. The President says he’s a transactional guy. Everyone says it about him. But he also makes it clear that he understands everything as having a zero sum outcome. There is a clear winner and everyone else looses. This is not how we teach either the strategy or the tactics of negotiation within the US military or for the diplomatic corps/foreign service officers. We teach that part of one’s strategy is to have a BATNA – best alternative to a negotiated agreement – and to be prepared when conducting a negotiation (tactical application) to get to it. Often the strategy is to make what you actually have to have, and may also actually want, as the BATNA. To negotiate down to what you have to have. And we also teach to make sure that achieving that best outcome doesn’t occur in a way where your interlocutors feel like they’ve lost disastrously.

  78. 78
    Chyron HR says:

    A fat retirement age alcoholic in rumpled clothes stinking of yesterday’s gin with bloodshot eyes, a mean streak a mile wide, who has one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel.

    And no mustard.

  79. 79
    MattF says:

    @Barbara: Hmm. Maybe, at some point, Putin will decide to dump the Trumpites. It could happen.

  80. 80
    Barbara says:

    @MattF: So long as they are continually fighting a rearguard action to take away benefits from as many people as possible there is no room for Democrats to work with them. That is the bottom line.

  81. 81
    D58826 says:

    Man if I was walking down the street with my young kids and saw that guy approaching, I would cross the street to protect them from the flasher

  82. 82
    Corner Stone says:

    @LurkerNoLonger:

    Bannon is Barney Gumble.

    You take that back! Barney had a beautiful singing voice! Bannon has zero redeeming qualities. He probably kicks puppies and trips elderly ladies in crosswalks. Then steals their change purse.

  83. 83
  84. 84
    Just one more canuck says:

    @Biscuits: I disagree – cold meatloaf can be warmed up and become edible and therefore useful. Bannon just looks like a dried-up old dog turd that’s been sitting in your backyard all winter

  85. 85
    bemused says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    I don’t believe anyone who says the creep has charm appeal. They are either lying, just going along to get some benefit from him or have unbelievably bad character judgement. It should be easy to see he is a smarmy smoozer and complete phony. That so many people can’t see it or don’t care is horrifying.

  86. 86
    Chet Murthy says:

    @Amaranthine RBG: Politics ain’t beanbag, Dems ain’t his friends, and you’re preaching unilateral disarmament. Try harder, Boris.

  87. 87
    Ruckus says:

    @mb:
    That’s not multiple shirts, just a bad photo of an asshole in a rumpled, filthy one. @Doug R: is right, it’s homeless people that have to wear all the clothes they have, to stay warm at night, to provide a bed between them and the concrete, and to keep them from being stolen.

  88. 88
    Corner Stone says:

    @MattF:

    Particularly if Trump starts offering to ‘cooperate’ with Democrats. Lil’ Reince has already said a word about that. I sincerely hope that Dems have already figured out that wouldn’t be a terrific idea.

    God no. NO! NO! NO!
    Everything Trump touches turns to shit. He would absolutely ratfuck the D’s on any deal they agreed to work with him on. He would lie to them and then lie to the public about them. He would do everything he could to turn any D that works with him into Chris Christie v 2.0 and make them look like they are fetching fast food for him.

  89. 89
    Louise B. says:

    In my experience, truly good business people – and there are some out there – are honest as the day is long, and succeed not by issuing orders, but by giving power to their co-workers and leading them to take pride in what they do. In stark opposition to the tactics of the Trump regime.

  90. 90
    amk says:

    Revising my prison bracket:1) Flynn (reduced time w/deal)2) Manafort 3) Page4) Stone 5) TrumpIf Flynn gives up goods, #5 possible… https://t.co/iGdS0KPja5— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) March 26, 2017

  91. 91
    bemused says:

    @D58826:

    Truth! He always looks like he crawled out of a dumpster.

  92. 92
    Goku says:

    @amk: Gives a whole new meaning to “March Madness”

  93. 93
    PIGL says:

    @Amaranthine RBG: Yes, both valid points. Followup Q: how sure are we than SB really is an alcoholic? I ran some photos by a friend in the programme and she figures you can’t tell from appearances.

    Myself, I am think he’s into a thing or two beyond booze; my money’s on cocaine. Is there any actual evidence of this that anyone knows? A quick google turned up something much more than substantial than my own suppositions.

  94. 94
    Amir Khalid says:

    @rikyrah:
    I’m going to see it next week. After getting yelled at for their narrow-mindedness and pettiness by just about everyone here in Malaysia, the censors caved and passed the movie without any cuts.

  95. 95
    Cain says:

    @rikyrah: I saw it yesterday! It was good although I felt that Belle was mis-cast and the song sequences were a tad too busy for me, couldn’t even hear the words. Would love to hear your opinion!

  96. 96
    debbie says:

    @Corner Stone:

    He’ll be too drunk to keep the names straight.

  97. 97
    Eric S. says:

    @Ruckus: This goes back years, but I was in a meeting about massive regulatory changes for my industry, public utilities. We were going over new rules governing how we are able to deal with customers designed as low income. The lawyer in the room commented how when he paid bills he always rounded his checks up to the nearest dollar to make his bookkeeping easier. There were a dozen people in the room and most were nodding and murmuring in agreement. I challenged them back. Had they ever struggled to make a bill payment? Have you ever been down to the last $15 in your checkbook and been a week away from payday? I had. These people aren’t skipping or skimping on their gas bills because they bought a new iPhone. They are spending that money on cereal and cans of soup. I don’t think it really sunk in.

  98. 98
    Ruckus says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    Bet he fucked that up.

  99. 99
    Barbara says:

    @Corner Stone: My take is that Trump will sign anything, so if he says he wants you to give him a bill then you have complete freedom to give him the bill of your dreams. That’s what Ryan did except that he did not bother checking with his fellow Reps to make sure it could pass. And really, they just are not sufficiently unified at this point to take things away from their constituents versus opposing giving them those things to begin with in 2010. The fact that Obamacare passed and went into effect moved the discussion on health care to the left. Let that be a lesson for us all.

  100. 100
    Josie says:

    A fat retirement age alcoholic in rumpled clothes stinking of yesterday’s gin with bloodshot eyes, a mean streak a mile wide, who has one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel.

    OMFSM, John Cole, if I wasn’t already head over heels for you, that description of Bannon would do it for me.

  101. 101
    WereBear says:

    @Adam L Silverman: So… not that successful, eh? Or did he leave at 25?

  102. 102
    West of the Rockies (been a while) says:

    @PIGL:

    I agree that fat shaming is not cool, not when “they” do it and not when we do it. On the other hand, Bannon is an atrocious bully, so polite rules of engagement fade in importance. Of course, we’re not actually engaging with Bannon here, just venting. As a rule, I prefer to go high-road. But Bannon is such a toad whose goal is to hurt people. F him.

  103. 103
    debbie says:

    I’m surprised that Trump, who sees himself as CEO Numero Uno and is so corporate, is okay with Bannon being so disheveled. Makes me think Bannon is literally the boss in the Oval Office.

  104. 104
    different-church-lady says:

    This is one of the things I meant the other day when I said nobody will be afraid of Trump anymore. I didn’t think it would come this early, but basically when the Brits said “Hey, fuck you fantasy boy, and by the way your people are going to give us an apology” it was the equivalent of Toto pulling the curtain back on The Great Oz.

  105. 105
    Baud says:

    @Amir Khalid: Haha. That’s like us stopping Trumpcare. Excellent.

  106. 106
    Pogonip says:

    @Eric S.: I round up too, now. But there was a time I wouldn’t have been able to, because I had to keep track of every penny.

  107. 107
    Mike in Arlington says:

    @Amir Khalid: I’ve been asking myself the exact same question. I am completely stumped. Add on top of that how Trump himself treated Obama for years, and he didn’t expect people to show the same lack of respect to him? The lack of basic self awareness on display here is mind boggling.

  108. 108
    Hungry Joe says:

    Re “The problem with all these little Hitlers in the Trump administration … ”

    “Two little Hitlers will fight it out until / one little Hitler does the other one’s will.”
    — Elvis (of course) Costello

  109. 109
    Barbara says:

    @debbie: It is striking given the rumors about him rejecting people for important positions because they don’t look the part. His track record so far in giving Trump strategic wins is zero so who knows how long he will be around.

  110. 110
    LurkerNoLonger says:

    @Corner Stone: You’re right, I apologize to Barney who I believe was on the wagon for several years and is highly educated: Five years of modern dance, six years of tap.

  111. 111
    lollipopguild says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Could you run for President?

  112. 112
    David Anderson says:

    @Barbara: yep, it was either going to be a close pass or a blow out loss as a lot of hope yes want to vote no people started to bail on Thursday and Friday morning

  113. 113
    Barbara says:

    @Mike in Arlington: White skin can be amazingly thick and yet at the same time amazingly thin. I say that as a white person.

  114. 114
    narya says:

    @Eric S.: When I was in grad school–so not “poor” in the same way as many others, but still not much money to be had–I would go to the grocery store with a fixed amount of money and a list, with some wiggle in it (e.g., if something was on sale), and add in my head as I went through the aisles. I was usually within less than a dollar when I checked out. And one of the great pleasures in my life was when I could finally go to the grocery store and not have to do that; what a luxury.

  115. 115
  116. 116
    debit says:

    @Just one more canuck: I grew up with alcoholics. Not charming Mad Men three martini lunch type alcoholics, but guys who, when they ran out of the hard stuff, went to the corner store and bought all the 3.2 beer and drank that until they passed out, and then either pissed themselves, or puked up whatever fast food crap they’d eaten earlier. They were guys who had moisture stained porn magazines openly displayed in their bathrooms, who wore jeans that had turned brown and crusty with filth, who would sneeze over their breakfast plate, and if a booger landed on their food, would keep eating. I look at Bannon and see a snot covered plate of over easy eggs.

  117. 117
    Ruckus says:

    @Eric S.:
    I met one of the Ford family, he was helping a competitor that he sponsored with his equipment. Didn’t mind getting his hands or clothes dirty every time I saw him. Him I sort of trusted. I’ve also known lawyers who worked shit jobs at shit wages to put themselves through college and law school. Them I trust. And I’ve met the same type of people you have, that have no actual idea of the value of money, because they always had enough. Maybe not far more than enough, but enough. But it isn’t even so much the value of money, rich people put a large value on money. It’s the sweat and all that one has to give to earn probably barely enough or maybe not quite enough. Most of the wealthy have never had to sweat over food or rent money or making a decision on which to go with today. That’s a far more humbling decision than, can I afford, this year’s iPod because mine is so last year.

  118. 118
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @WereBear: He did his contracted obligation as an officer: 7 years. Made it to O3, then separated on time and left the Navy. Went to grad/professional school then to Goldman Sachs. I’ve never seen anyone report on why he felt the need to join the Navy, but he did. Did his service without seeming incident, and moved on with his life.

  119. 119
    Woodrowfan says:

    @Scott: Military people are not like Bannon for the most part. I’m sure he was a suck up/punch down type of officer. They usually get theirs.

    Fragged by his own troops in Vietnam??

  120. 120
    bemused says:

    @debit:

    Andrew Brietbart looked clean-cut and wholesome compared to Bannon.

  121. 121
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @West of the Rockies (been a while):

    I agree that fat shaming is not cool, not when “they” do it and not when we do it.

    It’s fine in this case. Bannon fancies himself a member of the master race, so any and all comments that point out how far removed he is from racial supremacy he is are fair game. Even if it’s stuff you wouldn’t say about other people.

  122. 122
    What Have the Romans Ever Done for Us? says:

    Also…the folks they’re putting on this ‘enemies list’ are erstwhile allies. Seems like a guy facing credible treason charges might want all the allies he can find. If I were an R on this list, I’d be inclined to start looking into the Russia connection a little harder. And I wouldn’t be inclined to be forgiving if I found something damning.

  123. 123
    Woodrowfan says:

    @narya: I’ve noticed that among my more right wing students. Other than those that were vets, they’re spoiled assholes who idea of hard work was they once had to cut their Dad’s lawn by themselves.

  124. 124
    Ruckus says:

    @Barbara:
    I’d bet that some of the pressure came from a rather large portion of the population calling, writing, arriving in person to complain about their health care insurance and the politician’s chances of reelection next time. Not all of them are die hard assholes, some of them just don’t see things the same way as we do. But they can see the way the wind is blowing, and if it’s blowing them off the stage, they understand that.

  125. 125
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @PIGL: @West of the Rockies (been a while): They’re not a healthy looking group, whatever the cause. I’m either the same age (46) of a couple of these folks, older than some (Miller), younger than many. All of them, including the 31 year old Miller look older than I do. And that’s with my widow’s peak being a little peakier than when I was 26 and a bit thinner than when I was 36! Would I love to loose 10 or 15 lbs? Without a doubt. Do I look unhealthy? Nope.

    And the important thing to remember is that these are not low stress jobs. The hours are long. Food is snagged on the run, when you have a spare minute. Unless you go out of the way to make time to eat well – not perfect, just well, get at least 45 minutes of exercise three to four times a week, and get at least 7 hours of sleep a night you will not fare well.

  126. 126
    WereBear says:

    @Yarrow: It’s the MBA mindset.

    “We give you a set of tools that let you run any business!”

    This is ridiculous on its face; what people need to learn in a theatrical talent agency (kiss their ass) is not what you learn in an accounting firm (be blunt about the penalties they face for trying that.)

  127. 127
    West of the Rockies (been a while) says:

    @debit:

    Oh, wow. It sounds like you’ve been through some shit. Cyber hug, brother/sister. Do better for your kids.

  128. 128
  129. 129
    Blueskies says:

    @Adam L Silverman: But sadly for us, he had big, big plans.

  130. 130
    Ruckus says:

    @Mike in Arlington:

    The lack of basic self awareness on display here is mind boggling.

    Why? It’s not like he just forgot or is getting senile, he’s been this way for his entire adult life.

  131. 131
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @lollipopguild: Technically? Yes. Would or should I? No. First off, had the President, at the time a candidate, made a statement about my Mom to my face at a globally televised primary debate, I’d have bounced him around like a basketball for everyone to see. My first response to any question Wolf Blitzer asked me would be: “why are you always screaming? Is your hearing aid set wrong? Do your teeth hurt? To Chuck Todd: I have trouble taking anyone who bailed out of a bachelors in polisci before having to take the basic stat course as a quant, what exactly within your limited expertise would you like to discuss? You don’t even want to know what would happen when I have to go on Fox.

  132. 132
    CarolDuhart2 says:

    @Josie: I he wasn’t Bannon with a badge, the nearest guard would have run him off the property. Double if he was a visitor; the other visitors would have slunk away from him to avoid his creepy stink.

    To me, that Bannon is even part of the staff, let alone a close advisor, is really the tell-tale of Trumps’s loser stink. Usually the new Administration draws on experienced people from the last one or talented up and comers to staff. It’s easier to get up to speed that way and they are usually already vetted and just need an update. But none of the pros want anything to do with him.

    So Trump draws on whomever he can get. And none of them are.

  133. 133
    WereBear says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Thanks. Though he doesn’t look like Goldman Sachs material in that picture, any more than he looks ex-military :)

    That is, for values of people who took such things seriously.

  134. 134
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @sukabi: It got its own post. Please keep up with the rest of the tour group.

  135. 135
    Woodrowfan says:

    @sukabi: small correction, since 2002, not 2012 from the story I read.

  136. 136
    Jinchi says:

    @Mike J:

    When one told Trump he was voting no, Trump asked, “why am I even talking to you?”

    You would think the answer would be obvious.

  137. 137
    amk says:

    @Adam L Silverman: You should definitely run, man. We can start a fundraiser right here.

  138. 138
    Woodrowfan says:

    @Adam L Silverman: You don’t even want to know what would happen when I have to go on Fox.

    Actually I would, and would pay good money to watch.

  139. 139
    Ruckus says:

    @debit:
    Those charming Mad Men three martini lunch type alcoholics just haven’t fallen out of the tavern enough times to not give a shit or to be unable shower and start all over every day. They will at some point hit their bottom and sober up or end up like the basic bottom rung drunks you mention. They also have managed to hang on to a job that pays them enough to get their suits dry cleaned and buy new shirts, while the other end of the scale is buying that 3.2 beer, because it’s that or cheese on white bread for dinner. And who gives a shit about dinner when there is alcohol? Yes I’ve seen my share of these as well.

  140. 140
    Ruckus says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    See, this is why we like you.

  141. 141
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @amk: No. Once I do that I cannot go back to the work I do.

  142. 142
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Ruckus: I think I posted it here in real time in a comment when the President did this to Governor Bush at that debate, and I’m paraphrasing from memory: Jeb should’ve demanded an apology while walking towards. When the apology was not forthcoming he should have hit him square in the face. That would have been the end of the President’s candidacy and would have immediately sealed the nomination for Bush.

  143. 143
    Corner Stone says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Trump would have pissed himself and fallen off the stage pinwheeling backward away from Jeb! before he got within feet of him.

  144. 144
    Barbara says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Apparently hanging out in the gym gave Obama’s staff a reasonable chance of running into him and probably kept more than a few of them in decent condition. There is a different dynamic going on now.

  145. 145
    debit says:

    @West of the Rockies (been a while): Thank you and I did. My dad has actually been sober now for a very long time. I’m incredibly proud of him.

  146. 146
  147. 147
    Ruckus says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    So one more thing we can add on the bill that the Bush family owes everyone. Jeb could have nipped this shit in the bud but didn’t have the stones? Hell I would have donated a whole dollar to his defense fund.

  148. 148
    Svensker says:

    @WereBear:

    One of the Eddie Murphy roles in the incredible Bowfinger is portraying a powerful celebrity who can be convinced of anything, no matter how nonsensical, because he has been in this artificial world for so long he has lost the ability to evaluate the input of his senses, or use logic and experience. He is now an artificial creature.

    One of my favorite movies, ever. Cinema nouveau!

  149. 149
    zhena gogolia says:

    @lollipopguild:

    I’m hoping for a Schiff/Silverman ticket.

  150. 150
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Steve in the ATL:

    Good point.

  151. 151
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    I smell a landslide.

  152. 152
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    What did Trump say about Jeb’s momma? I forgot.

  153. 153
    lollipopguild says:

    @zhena gogolia: What about Baud? Baud for Secretary of State.

  154. 154
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @zhena gogolia: He made some crack about her. When Jeb said his mother was the finest woman he knows, the President responded with: “maybe she should be running”.

  155. 155
    lollipopguild says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Ted Cruz should have walked up to trump on stage and punched trump’s lights out.

  156. 156
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @zhena gogolia: I would gladly work for Congressman Schiff in any capacity he would require. In the House. In the Senate. If he was President. I, of course, have no connections or ability to make any of that happen.

  157. 157
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @narya: I don’t beloeve he’s done any actual work on any level. He has carried the titles anf his “people” did the actual work, trying to follow his absurd orders and still not blow the place up. Actually, there might be a few who survived being a Trump employee who would be better than he is at the job he’s pretending to do now.

  158. 158
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @lollipopguild: Over both the stuff about his wife and his dad. I do not disagree. Those types of things would have tickled all the GOP pleasure centers.

  159. 159
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @waspuppet:

    It’s almost as if being a “brilliant” businessman* isn’t a superpower, or the be-all and end-all of human endeavor, and there are other skills required to successfully run a government.

    More to the point, what does that have to do with Trump – he started out rich, lost it and then got mobbed up. Trump doesn’t even measure up to Andrew “Not above murdering his own employees” Carnige standards of success or ethics.

  160. 160
    Older says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Actually, you sound like exactly the candidate I would support, and canvass for, and send money to. Go for it!

  161. 161
    dc says:

    A fat retirement age alcoholic in rumpled clothes stinking of yesterday’s gin with bloodshot eyes, a mean streak a mile wide, who has one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel.

    The best thing I will read all week, if not longer.

  162. 162
    Seth Owen says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Due to the rank structure in the Navy, he evidently didn’t even have the experience most Army or Marine O-3s get of being a commander of something. I doubt his Navy experience taught him anything useful at all. He’s allegedly well-read in History, too, with likewise sparse evidence it taught him anything.

  163. 163
    The Pale Scot says:

    @Suzanne:

    I don’t know why a segment of the population wants to imagine the presidency as a job for any common dumbass.

    H. L. Mencken covered this:

    The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.

    Edit:

  164. 164
    Pluky says:

    Is Bannon an alcoholic? Well, looks can be deceiving, but get me within sniffing distance. I’ll know.

  165. 165
    RepubAnon says:

    @Mike J: Trumpski’s used to one-shot deals, where you either get the deal done, or walk away forever. He’s now in a realm where one is negotiating multiple deals with the same folks, over and over again. Brag about “winning” deal 1, or really taking advantage of the other side’s weakness, means they’ll be returning the favor in deals 2,3, 4,… or simply laugh and walk away.

    It’s like selling auto parts to a repair shop – if they don’t trust you to give them a decent deal for both sides, they’ll go somewhere else- and if the shop can’t be trusted to pay on time, nobody will sell to them on credit.

  166. 166
    danielx says:

    Bannon looks in the mirror and sees this guy, everybody else sees a well-heeled derelict.

    Given Trump’s predilection for photogenic people surrounding him, one wonders how the hell Bannon slithered into his inner circle.

  167. 167
    J R in WV says:

    @mb:

    what is it with the multiple shirts?

    I suspect the multiple shirts are an attempt to hold in the smell of unclean alcoholic armpits. No doubt doomed to fail…

  168. 168
    psychobroad says:

    @Goku: I really thought so too!

  169. 169
    J R in WV says:

    @Amaranthine RBG:

    @Chet Murthy:

    You’ll be taken seriously when the Rs stop attacking women for being women, blacks for being blacks, and LGBT for being LGBT. Until then, this is just special pleading.

    I don’t think I am going to let R’s set the standard for decent conduct.

    Nor are we going to pay any attention to your bleating about propriety and decency. You know nothing about anything so far as I can tell. History, strategy, how things work, nope, no idea.

  170. 170
    J R in WV says:

    @PIGL:

    I guess he could be a casual user. The folks I have known in the distant past who were big into coke were all really skinny people. Not healthy active skinny looking, but skinny somehow looking. Not as bad as the meth-head tweakers, but not good either.

    Who knows…

  171. 171
    Tehanu says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    how did Trump take office not understanding that he isn’t the boss of Congress? Obama would have mentioned this fact at at least one of their transition meetings, Shirley.

    Dump’s spent his entire life being deferred to by ambitious and/or fearful minions, so he thinks he’s the boss not only of Congress, but of everybody in America. We’re his lowly employees, tasked with saying “How high?” when he says “Jump!” The up side of this, of course, is that everybody in America is now perfectly entitled to retort, “You’re not the boss of me!” and not be derided as petulant middle-schoolers.

  172. 172
    Tehanu says:

    @Jinchi:

    When one told Trump he was voting no, Trump asked, “why am I even talking to you?”

    You would think the answer would be obvious.

    Well, sure, it’s obvious if you’re in politics. I’d be willing to bet that the reason for Dump’s dumb remark was that he’d just seen the Seinfeld episode where Jerry and George are in the Friars’ Club. George says something to the comedian they’re talking to (whose name I forget) and he replies, “Are you in show business?” George: “Uh, no….” Comedian: “Then why am I talking to you?”

  173. 173
    MoxieM says:

    I’ll just note that Reince is a nickname for Reinhard. (Fun facts to know and share.) So Obvious Anagram Reince Priebus (HT Charlie Pierce), is Reinhard Priebus. huh.

  174. 174
    jl says:

    Bannon drinks? I like gin. About the only hard likker I can drink without gagging. If I sip carefully.

  175. 175

    […] There are pockets in this country where believing your own bullshit and being the legend in your own mind is rampant (DC obviously, with Silicon Valley a close second, but also Hollywood, Wall Street, upper levels of corporate America, the Catholic church, and upper levels of academic administrations), but when you come slinging a piece of shit and people see you for what you are, you get laughed out of the room. […]

  176. 176
    rbb3 says:

    @narya: I always felt that every member of Congress should work a month in retail as a qualification for the job. Preferably at Christmas.

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  1. […] There are pockets in this country where believing your own bullshit and being the legend in your own mind is rampant (DC obviously, with Silicon Valley a close second, but also Hollywood, Wall Street, upper levels of corporate America, the Catholic church, and upper levels of academic administrations), but when you come slinging a piece of shit and people see you for what you are, you get laughed out of the room. […]

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