In Mark Meadows, Donald Trump finally has a chief of staff as dense as he is
White House chief of staff Mark Meadows has been, from the start of his political career, a complete ideologue. A tea party darling, Meadows led the U.S. House Freedom Caucus—the crazy wing of the crazy party. Among his greatest hits was voting against Hurricane Sandy relief, leading the charge for the 2013 government shutdown, and providing the catalyst (via a resolution) for Republican House Speaker John Boehner’s resignation in 2015. And he was oh-so-loyal to Donald Trump from day one.
One would think, however, that being a back-bencher in a chamber with 435 seats was different than actually being in charge of staff. One would further think that once put in actual charge would lead one to behave more responsibly. But nope. In Meadows, Trump finally found someone as destructively stupid as he.
Exhibit A: There are lots of reasons Trump has f’d up the national response to the global mass death event wreaking havoc in our country. Turns out, Meadows is a big one. In one corner, you had Trump too afraid to lead, over his head, and stewing that the virus was so unfairly harming his reelection chances. In the other corner, you had ….
Casting the decision in ideological terms, Mr. Meadows would tell people: “Only in Washington, D.C., do they think that they have the answer for all of America.”
Funny. In South Korea, Seoul thought they had the answer for all of South Korea. And they got control of the virus in zero time flat. Same thing in New Zealand, where Wellington squashed the virus through their entire nation. Berlin took over in Germany, and new cases are just a handful of days and schools can safely reopen.
All over the world, federal governments have smartly decided to take control of the national response to a virus that knows no boundaries. It is only in the countries that have royally screwed things up, that states and other municipalities have been left to try and salvage what they can—places like the United States, Brazil, and Russia.
In other words, you have to be a special kind of asshole to think that the most powerful and best-resourced governmental institution should sit out a pandemic raging throughout the country. But, if you remember that Meadows voted against federal aid for disaster-struck Texas and Louisiana, well then, it makes more sense, right?
Exhibit B: This:
Some of Mr. Trump’s closest advisers are adamant that the best way forward is to downplay the dangers of the disease. Mark Meadows, the chief of staff, has been particularly forceful in his view that the White House should avoid drawing attention to the virus, according to people familiar with the discussions.
Mr. Meadows has for the most part opposed any briefings about the virus [...]
Guys, don’t draw attention to the virus. No one will notice this thing that is killing a thousand people a day. If we pretend it’s not there, then it disappears!
Gonna stress this again, because those words are so unbelievably stupid that it beggars the mind: Mike Meadows thinks that ignoring the virus will help Trump. He thinks that the thing that is the number one concern of voters will cease being a concern if only the White House pretends it doesn’t exist.
So Meadows’ grand plan is:
1. What virus?
2. Open schools.
Given that Trump systematically purged his team of any semblance of competence, it’s only fitting the chief of staff he finally settled on is as stupid as he. The only problem is that, with real power, he’s causing real damage to our nation. Something that is, unfortunately, true of every Trump official.