You must admit, Donald Trump, at 71 years old, is older than most of us, and there are many insights that come with age, so it was difficult to know what to title this article. Can you outfox and old Fox, Bannon & Trump’s Clever Plan, or Don & Steve’s Excellent Adventure, all were considered. Some of the news pundits want us to believe that our president was moved by the events in Charlottesville to purge his administration of the influence of Steve Bannon, but based on what we have seen from Trump since he announced his candadicy, he is not moved to change by nay-sayers. Judging from the recent headlines, Trump believes Bannon to be a great guy, and a great friend.
It does appear that the violent events at the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, VA, have shown Trump that there are a good many loud voices on every side that will protest scenes like that. The media exposure of the violence that erupted, and many, many on-scene, live-action videos that were quickly uploaded, have served to enlighten the whole nation to the savage nature of face to face confrontations, when several groups, in fear of being marginalized, confront each other without respect to the right of the other person to have the equal right to free speech. But there is so much more we can learn from these events.
It turns out that Trump cannot publicly champion Bannon’s Alt-Right cause without parts of his base becoming disenchanted. Considering that some of his base carry torches and automatic weapons, it seems prudent for Trump to be less provocative. But how can he move forward with the intended agenda with these new restraints in place?
For the last 7 months there have been rumors and leaks about disharmony between Trump’s top 3 advisors, Steve Bannon, Ivanka Trump, and Jared Kushner. Bannon is a leader in the Alt-Right universe, while Ivanka and Jared are Jewish Democrats, but being such a fan of diversity, President Trump loves all of them.
It is clear that Bannon has Trump’s confidence, and Bannon may be a more forward thinker than Trump. He strikes me as the kind of guy who is playing the long game. Trump wants to play the long game too, but maybe he wants someone else to write the outline for him, and the thesis statement, and provide some quotes.
Bannon is good at providing content and rhetoric. He gave an interview mocking his White House colleagues and claimed, after it aired, that he’d though it was off the record. Rumors spread that Trump suspected Bannon of leaking things and that Trump wasn’t happy when Bannon contradicted him publicly over his North Korea threats. Trump had made tough threats to Kim Jong Un, before Bannon stated publicly, “…there is no military solution there. They got us.”
According to someone who leaked something, it is said that Trump and Bannon had agreed on Bannon’s departure during the week before the events of Charlottesville occurred.
Some of Bannon’s first comments after his ouster were to mock other White House staff members, and declare, “The Trump presidency that we fought for, and won, is over. We still have a huge movement, and we will make something of this Trump presidency. But that presidency is over. It’ll be something else. And there’ll be all kinds of fights, and there’ll be good days and bad days, but that presidency is over.” Then, as a means to redirect the audience’s attention, Bannon began to explain why he thought the more important topic is the economic war with China.
By contrast, some of Trump’s first comments after Bannon’s ouster were about what a great guy and a great friend Trump believes him to be, and how he wishes Steve the best as he returns to Breitbart, even encouraging him to get back to work because the ‘fake news’ needs the competition. I guess that is accurate enough. There’s no danger that Bannon will compete with any of the ‘real news’ media.
Trump’s bidding him a public farewell, and Bannon’s proclaiming that the originally intended Trump agenda is over, though he still vows to make something of this Trump presidency. That sounds like the beginning of a black op. What do you do when your plan is thwarted by the outcry of the masses? You go under cover. Do you believe that Trump is giving up on his original agenda? Do you believe Trump is leaving his friendship with Bannon for the sake of the nation’s good? You may have been outfoxed by an old fox.