Amateur Hour, US Comedy

I took a few days respite from social media and news to re-calibrate. Checking back in it looks as if Washington has become a new reality show—Amateur Hour. I can’t believe what I am seeing.

Policy without professionalism. Enacting an immigration ban, temporary or not without engaging legal council for advice or input is amateurish. No coordination with Homeland Security. No consultation with the experts, the professionals, to fill in details, add coherence and coordinate between departments. The very people who will have to defend and enforce the policy were left out of the process completely. Foreign Policy experts are in disagreement saying it will make us less, not more safe. Results are all over the news. First a Green Card isn’t OK, then it is. People already holding approved visa being turned back, and the order itself under legal challenge within hours of the attempted implementation. Not to mention the attacking and mocking being done by Mr Trump.

Without getting into analysis, the reasons given so far are questionable. I’ve heard talk of getting ahead of threats and deterring potential threats. What is that, a potential threat? You? My Hispanic neighbor? Me? Or could this broad use of “potential” be a step to identify groups and turn the public against them? I don’t have an answer, but keeping your (my) own government professionals out of the loop is suspect from the beginning. And then the threat from the spokesman: If you can’t get with the agenda you should resign. Agenda? Just what agenda has become the most obvious question.

But it looks like this is just the start. Amateur hour also extends to talk of forcing Mexico to pay for the wall through import tariffs. Five to 20 percent were numbers tossed around. Except for who pays import tariffs? That would be the consumer. You, me, and other Americans. Huh? The argument and strategy ignores the most basic economic tenants.

Next up we have Steve Bannon on the National Security Council and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs off. What? White Nationalist, Fake News-Alt-right advocate with no experience.

Bannon is the precisely wrong person for this wrong role. His national security experience consists of a graduate degree and seven years in the Navy. More troubling, Bannon’s role as chairman of, with its racist, misogynist and Islamophobic perspectives, and his avowed desire to blow up our system of government, suggests this is someone who not only has no business being a permanent member of the most powerful consultative body in the world — he has no business being in a position of responsibility in any government.

Worse still, it is a sign of other problems to come. Organizing the NSC this way does not reflect well on national security advisor Michael Flynn — whether the bad decision is a result of his lack of understanding of what the NSC should do or because he is giving in to pressure from his boss.”

My goal in starting this site was to focus on issues over politics. But can’t not address this. Yes I did hit on the economic issue of tariffs, admittedly because of the unsupportable argument out of the White House. But the question of the day remains. Just what the heck is going on? Whether we agree with the policies or not, it is clear these folks are amateurs, day after day failing to consult with experts, or trust the competence and demonstrate confidence in many of their own choices for department heads. So sad. Embarrassing my country.

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