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Transition to Trump: Trump team succeeds through Creative Destruction of the establishment

Only a week has passed since Donald Trump was declared the winner of the 2016 presidential election, yet several personnel moves undertaken by Trump’s transition team have provided terrific clues into the nominee’s plans for his administration.

In general, they can be summarized as conservatives in, establishment out.

Donald TrumpWhile it’s true that Trump did name the figurehead of the Republican establishment, Reince Priebus, to be his chief of staff, several other actions appear to suggest the next president is serious about keeping campaign promises to “drain the swamp” and to forge a new direction for the country.

First there was last Friday’s announcement that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie was being replaced as head of Trump’s transition team by vice president-elect Mike Pence. Then Stephen Bannon was called on to be Trump’s senior advisor, a role that’s said to be comparable in authority to chief of staff.

Yesterday came word that Congressman Mike Rogers resigned from Trump’s transition team.

Andrew Restuccia of Politico reports, “Former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers has resigned from Donald Trump's presidential transition team…

“The news comes just days after Trump's team demoted New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who had been running the transition team for months, and several of his aides. The transition is now being led by Vice President-Elect Mike Pence, Sen. Jeff Sessions and others.

“Rogers said he is ‘pleased’ to hand off his work to Pence and Rick Dearborn, an aide to Sessions who is running the transition day-to-day.”

According to a report from Bloomberg, Rogers didn’t just resign – he was asked by top team officials to leave. Christie had added Rogers to the transition team months ago to work on national security policy. Rogers is widely-known as an establishment voice representing the old guard of Republican elites. Apparently there have been sharp disagreements between conservatives and establishmentarians as to who should be asked to serve on Trump’s cabinet.

CNN reported, “Sources tied to the transition team talking to CNN described the organization's internal disagreements -- mainly divided along the lines of establishment Republican operatives against more non-traditional influences on national security issues -- as a ‘knife fight’ on Monday.”

Rogers appears to be a casualty of that fight. Look for more establishment figures to fall by the wayside as conservatives secure their foothold in the new administration.

Donald Trump didn’t run for president in order to preserve the old Bush-Republican way of thinking on national security, foreign policy – or any policy. Trump has said many times that he wished the money that was wasted in waging war in the Middle East had been used instead on infrastructure improvements in the U.S.

The concept of “creative destruction” is at play here – or at least the capitalist version of it. In order to bring innovation to the new administration, the old order has to be replaced with newer and more current lines of thought. You can’t do the same thing over and over again and expect different results, right?

There’s no need to perpetuate policies that don’t work. If Rogers was one of those fighting to maintain the status quo, he had to go.

The contentious atmosphere in the Trump transition team was confirmed by a Politico report as well. Andrew Restuccia and Nancy Cook wrote, “Top Donald Trump campaign advisers who have taken charge of the president-elect’s transition team are casting aside much of the work on Cabinet picks that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and his aides put in place over several months — and leaving behind a far more chaotic operation dominated by Trump loyalists…

“Going forward, sources familiar with the team said they expect the operation to have a more top-down structure, with the president-elect’s closest advisers, such as Vice President Mike Pence, Sen. Jeff Sessions, newly named chief of staff Reince Priebus, political strategist Steve Bannon and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner bulldozing much of the former transition leaders’ existing work and making Cabinet decisions on their own, in consultation with Trump.”

Again, this is creative destruction. It’s like tearing down an old building before a shiny new one can be put up.

The media loves what it sees as infighting among Republicans. What should probably just be considered as the death throes of the party establishment is instead portrayed as a Republican-on-Republican “knife fight.” In reality, it’s more like conservatives finally being given a chance to assert themselves after over two decades of being exiled by the establishment.

There’s a new game in town under Donald Trump and the elites don’t like the way it’s being played, since the rules don’t favor them. They’re even complaining about a lack of a “code of ethics” and vetting of new administration personnel, basically implying that the transition is all about bringing in Trump loyalists and lobbyists and leaving capable people out in the cold.

Meanwhile, word has also leaked out that former New York Mayor and staunch Trump supporter Rudy Giuliani is likely to be Trump’s Secretary of State – if Giuliani wants the job that is.

Fox News reports, “Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani was the favorite to be secretary of state in President-elect Donald Trump's administration, a senior Trump transition official said Monday.

“The official told the Associated Press there was no real competition for the job and that it was Giuliani's if he wanted it. However, a second official cautioned that John Bolton, a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, remained in contention for the job.”

Giuliani apparently admitted he was under consideration to be America’s top diplomat the other night. With little foreign policy record as a guideline, it’s hard to say how Giuliani would handle the position. But the often confrontational former mayor is seen as a leading advocate of dealing harshly with ISIS and terrorism, so there would be a discernible change in tone from the current regime.

I don’t think Giuliani would be the least bit hesitant to say “radical Islamic terrorists” either.

Lastly on the transition rumors, it’s become clear that President-elect Trump’s children will not be serving in his administration. Anna Giaritelli of the Washington Examiner reports, “President-elect Donald Trump's transition team denounced a report that the incoming leader has requested top secret security clearances for his three adult children.

“A White House transition team member said Trump did not request that step be taken, as CBS News reported earlier Monday evening. In addition, the Trump children, Ivanka, Eric and Don Jr., have not filled out paperwork for the clearances and that action is ‘not something’ they are ‘expecting right now.’”

All of Trump’s adult children – including daughter Tiffany – appeared with the President-elect during his 60 Minutes interview on Sunday night. All were adamant that they would remain in New York and run the family business.

Trump’s critics have been quick to suggest that if he were elected president it would just serve as a publicity stunt to improve the Trump brand. Rather than take a successful businessman at his word, Democrats and the media imparted motives on Trump that have repeatedly been proven untrue.

If Trump’s kids don’t have security clearances, they will be walled off from the administration, something that is necessary to the highest degree.

Son Barron, age 10, will be living in the White House, however… are the critics going to question his involvement too?

Even the Democrats might be headed towards selecting new leaders

Speaking of creative destruction and the need for a new approach, House Democrats announced on Tuesday that they were going to hold off on choosing their leaders until after the Thanksgiving break.

Al Weaver of the Washington Examiner reports, “House Democrats on Tuesday convinced their leaders to delay a planned Thursday vote on leaders for the next Congress, in the wake of Hillary Clinton's shocking defeat to Donald Trump.

“House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., had resisted calls for a delay for the last several days. But a few dozen rank and file Democrats were pushing for a delay in order to assess the disastrous Nov. 8 election for Democrats, who were expected to win the White House and Senate, and possibly the House, but ended up with nothing.”

It’s funny how the media doesn’t report on any “knife fights” taking place behind closed doors in the Democrat caucus. Members of the minority party have been beside themselves with “grief” and “shock” ever since Hillary Clinton lost, but they’re never depicted as troubled or potentially mutinous.

For what it’s worth, some Democrat House members are saying the delay isn’t about a potential uprising to oust longtime loser Minority Leader and former Speaker Nancy Pelosi. They apparently consider her job safe even though she’s presided over historic Democrat losses and minority status for four elections now.

Left in charge, Pelosi will guarantee a Republican majority for years. You heard it here.

Pelosi was famous for saying back in July that Hillary Clinton was struggling to gain the votes of white men because of the “three g’s.”

From Fox News, “’I think that, so many times, white — non-college-educated white males have voted Republican. They voted against their own economic interests because of guns, because of gays, and because of God, the three G’s, God being the woman’s right to choose,’ Pelosi told PBS’s Judy Woodruff ...”

Yes, Nancy, you’re correct. There’s nothing else anyone could possibly dislike about Hillary and the Democrats, so white men just return to the same old crutch they always employ to prop up their hatred. At least Obama said it was just about guns and religion with these folks. Pelosi added that we’re all homophobes, too.

In clinging to Pelosi – and Harry Reid in the Senate, who is mercifully retiring after this term – the Democrats refuse to acknowledge that it’s their big government overreach and failed messaging that’s led to their electoral losses. When about half of their caucus is from just three states – California, New York and Massachusetts – you’ve got a party that isn’t competitive outside of the densely populated regions.

Democrats desperately need a new way of thinking… but I’m not going to be the one to tell them.

Republicans, on the other hand, are at peace with their new president-elect.

Susan Ferrechio of the Washington Examiner reports, “House Republican lawmakers, gathering for their first official meeting since sweeping the White House and both chambers in Congress, were greeted by Trump's signature ‘make America great again’ red baseball caps, which were placed on the chairs in a basement conference room where the group met.

“[Speaker Paul] Ryan told reporters after the meeting that the GOP is eager to work with Trump to fix the nation's problems, which include skyrocketing health insurance costs, a sluggish economy and regulatory red tape weighing down business growth.”

In his post-meeting talk, Ryan almost sounded anxious to work with Trump and his team. Maybe if Congress actually acts on the wishes of the voters, their approval rating might increase.

As for the media, they must be terribly disappointed that no “knife fight” broke out during the Republican gathering. Reporting on Republicans getting along isn’t nearly as entertaining as internal discord, backstabbing and personnel purges.

For those, they’d better look over at the Democrat side for the real action.

Evan McMullin isn’t aware that he’s the political equivalent of “Mr. Irrelevant”

With all eyes now focused on President-elect Donald Trump and his transition operation, it’s almost difficult to remember that there ever was such a thing as #NeverTrump and their golden boy independent candidate who failed to win anything – or even come close, for that matter.

The lack of accomplishment isn’t stopping Evan McMullin from commenting on Trump’s transition, however.

Mallory Shelbourne of The Hill reports, “Former independent presidential candidate Evan McMullin slammed President-elect Donald Trump late Sunday for appointing former Breitbart executive Stephen Bannon as his chief strategist.

“’Saying 'stop it' to racist attacks means little when you name white supremacist darling Steve Bannon chief strategist in the very same day,’ McMullin wrote on Twitter.”

I’m not exactly sure what McMullin hoped to gain with a dig at Bannon, but it does serve to keep his name in the news when practically everyone in America forgot about him the instant Trump was called as the winner of the election.

Who cares what Evan McMullin says anyway? He’s a nobody.

Every year in the NFL draft the final player selected is given the title “Mr. Irrelevant.” Far be it from me to mess with NFL tradition, but I think Evan McMullin is now much more deserving of the designation.

McMullin is unquestionably more irrelevant than any football player. I don’t know the statistics, but I’m guessing a reasonable percentage of the football “Mr. Irrelevants” still made their respective teams – or at least the practice squad. They still got paid.

In contrast, McMullin didn’t earn anything – not even the title of “Mr. Irrelevant.”

McMullin claimed he was going to lead a new conservative movement, but the only thing he’s in front of now is the unemployment line.

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