Former President George W. Bush has reportedly found the silver lining in Donald Trump's presidency. Bush has been overheard remarking that Trump's run in the White House is going poorly and makes him look good as a result, the National Journal's contributing editor Tom DeFrank reported on Monday. "Sorta makes me look pretty good, doesn't it?" Bush often says of Trump's presidency, according to the National Journal.
Oh, Ivanka. Her livelihood is as opaque as her full-coverage foundation, but she plays a critical role in her father's administration -- and in the broader danse macabre of corruption and legitimacy. The so-called first daughter proves that "laundering" applies to more than money. She washes and gilds just about everything she touches. Consider her warehouses upon warehouses of petroleum-based separates, many of them sewn for poverty pay in sweatshops. When you call this schmatte smorgasboard the Ivanka Trump Collection it does brisk business -- if not on Rodeo Drive, then in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. t's impossible to keep track of all the gangsters Ivanka has palled around with. But what's truly damning are the shady real-estate projects she has made rise and go forth.
President Trump's lawyer complained to friends following the 2016 election that he had not been reimbursed for his payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday. Michael Cohen paid Daniels, whose legal name is Stephanie Clifford, $130,000 as part of a nondisclosure agreement that ensured she would not speak about an alleged 2006 affair with Trump. Cohen last month acknowledged that he made the payment, and denied it violated any campaign finance laws.
Chaos here, backlash there, shock everywhere. And in Washington and around the globe another gasping chorus of WTF commentary: reckless, not normal, reality show run amok. And so on, et cetera, et cetera, for the one-hundredth-and-can't-remember time of the Trump Era. But there is something different about this week's spasm of sudden policy lurches, graceless personal insults, oozing scandal news, and ceaseless West Wing knife fights. That's left many in Washington and beyond wondering what happens in the inevitable moments -- every modern president has faced them -- when outside events take over, and the government has to deal with a major military confrontation, a major natural disaster or some other catastrophe.
Inside the White House, aides over the past week have described an air of anxiety and volatility -- with an uncontrollable commander in chief at its center. These are the darkest days in at least half a year, they say, and they worry just how much farther President Trump and his administration may plunge into unrest and malaise before they start to recover. As one official put it: "We haven't bottomed out." Still, Trump's friends are increasingly concerned about his well-being, worried that the president's obsession with cable commentary and perceived slights is taking a toll on the 71-year-old. "Pure madness," lamented one exasperated ally. Retired four-star Army general Barry McCaffrey said the American people -- and Congress especially -- should be alarmed. "I think the president is starting to wobble in his emotional stability and this is not going to end well," McCaffrey said.