By ilana mercer
In itself, criminal justice reform for non-violent offenders is not anathema to Trump’s libertarian supporters (check).
For what it symbolizes in the broader political context, however, the passing of the First Step Act—as the criminal justice reform bill is called—is a bit of an abomination.
Good or bad, the First Step Act is Jared Kushner’s baby. And Kushner, Trump’s liberal son-in-law, should not be having legislative coups!
Yes, Jared and Ivanka are on a tear. The midterm congressional elections of President Trump’s first-term have culminated in a legislative victory for an anemic man, who provides a perfect peg on which to hang the ambitions of the forceful first daughter.
In no time at all have Jared and Ivanka Trump moved to consolidate power. This, as intellects like Steven Bannon and Stephen Miller were either fired, or confined to the basement, so to speak.
Today, Bannon is just a flinty glint in Ivanka’s eyes. But by January, 2017, the president’s former White House chief strategist had already “assembled a list of more than 200 executive orders to issue in the first 100 days. The very first EO, in his view, had to be a crackdown on immigration. After all, it was one of Trump’s core campaign promises.” So said Bannon to Michael Wolff, author of Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.
Many a pundit has suggested that Trump give a kick-ass rah-rah address to explain immigration to the nation.
Nonsense on stilts. The Make America Great Again (S.O.S.) agenda needed to be explained daily and repetitively by someone with a brain. It should have been MAGA every morning with Miller, or Gen. John Kelly or Kirstjen Nielsen. Instead, we got stumblebum Sarah Huckabee issuing a meek, meandering daily apologia.
About that promise to put in place only “the best of people”: Ice princess Kirstjen Nielsen is super smart with a cool temperament and looks to match. Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen had been brought into the Trump Administration by retired United States Marine Corps Gen. John Kelly, formerly White House chief of staff. Nielsen might not be optimal in her current position. But she would’ve made a great MAGA mouthpiece.
It’s quite clear that President Trump’s promise to hire only “the best” ought to have begun with firing The Family. Instead, Mr. Kushner‘s national security portfolio has expanded in a manner incommensurate with his skills. It now includes, I believe, China, Mexico, Iraq, Israel and Saudi Arabia.
The same can be said of Ivanka, who was soon briefing the South Korean president on sanctions against North Korea. That Ivanka lacked a permanent security clearance was the least of the country’s worries, given Steve Bannon’s assessment of her cerebral acuity: “as dumb as a brick.”
Alas, political connections ensured that two branding experts beat Braveheart Bannon of the mighty Breitbart.com! “’The Trump presidency that we fought for, and won, is over,” he lamented, in August of 2017.
If Breitbart.com is to be believed—and it should—Ivanka was the one to give Bannon the boot (or, rather, the Choo): “Trump’s daughter Ivanka pushed Bannon out because of his ‘far-right views’ clashing with her [recently acquired] Jewish faith.” (Funny that, because my own rightist views clash not at all with my Jewish faith.)
“Jarvanka” (the Jared-Ivanka organism) were also said to have orchestrated the ousting of the last of the old MAGA Guard, John Kelly, aforementioned, a most excellent man. Kelly took his role as chief of staff seriously. He was a hardliner who limited Ivanka’s access to Pater.
One of Trump’s superb personnel choices, Kelly’s fate, however, was sealed when he stated how sick-and-tired he was of the first daughter “playing government.” The Goldman-Sachs wing of the White House, commandeered by the Kushners, had always wished him away. So, Kelly got the Choo, too.
Of former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, archconservative Heather Mac Donald observed the following: Sessions was “the only member of the Trump administration who was absolutely staunch in speaking up for the right of Americans to determine what the character of their country should be.”
It takes a strong woman (Mac Donald) to recognize a scheming one. Mac Donald has recently expressed “‘no confidence’ that the president will stop being advised by his daughter, Ivanka Trump, on the issue of immigration.”
Following the midterms, the not-so-sleepy sleeper cell of leftist social climbers in the Trump administration moved to pack the court. It was out with the old (Kelly and Sessions), and in with the Nauert, the reference being to the “nomination [to the UN] of former Fox anchor and State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert.”
Again, the reason for selecting Ms. Nauert, a former “Fox & Friends” host, was that she is “telegenic.” The order came from “Ms. Trump and Mr. Kushner [ who declared Nauert] ‘a favorite and pushed for her selection.’”
Telegenic, too, is 36-year-old Nick Ayers. He was slated to replace Gen. Kelly. Why? Because he “had the endorsements of Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump.”
It so happened that Ayers chose not to play. A trial balloon was quickly floated, but was punctured just as fast. The idea that Jared would be chief of staff was just too preposterous. But oh, the audacity of that fleeting experiment!
So, here we are. The promised land (America) is without the promised Wall. But, liberal legislation in hand, the “Honorable” Kushners (so listed) are off to hobnob at the World Economic Forum in Davos, in January of 2019.
First Lady Melania has been shoved aside, or ceremonially shivved, to use prison parlance. The first couple in-waiting will get to press flesh with local and global elites, while flashing their liberal credentials: criminal justice reform.
Oh how fun it is to schmooze the gilded globalists, rather than to woo Trump voters.
Ilana Mercer has been writing a weekly, paleolibertarian column since 1999. She is the author of “Into the Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America From Post-Apartheid South Africa” (2011) & “The Trump Revolution: The Donald’s Creative Destruction Deconstructed” (June, 2016). She’s on Twitter, Facebook, Gab & YouTube
A basic mistake is to involve your own children and family members in sophisticated, complex and multi-faceted business or professional affairs otherwise than on the basis of merit. As President, Trump is not overseeing a hotel or a corner shop, where you do involve family, maybe in the hope of passing it on. The presidency is not supposed to be a dynasty. And at least when JFK appointed RFK as Attorney General, he was appointing somebody with the correct qualifications and some relevant experience to perform a specific role.
Ivanka isn’t ‘dumb as a brick’ – she has a degree in economics from Wharton. While we shouldn’t place too much stall in credentials, dumb people don’t earn economics degrees from top universities. If he really had to involve her, I would have preferred that Trump give Ivanka a junior role in some agency – something safe that can’t be messed up – and risk being accused of nepotism. Better that than give her his ear at the White House.
A bigger mistake is to involve women in public matters at all. And frankly, if he can’t stand up to his own daughter, what does that say?
But in blaming Ivanka, aren’t we close to letting Trump and his backers off the hook here? Let’s see what major headline promises Trump has failed to deliver:
(i). The Southern Border Wall remains unfunded and unbuilt. Trump also said that Mexico would “pay for the Wall.”
(ii). To my knowledge, there has been no organised mass deportation of illegal or even criminally-convicted migrants.
(iii). Trump promised to appoint a special prosecutor to look into Hillary Clinton, but he abandoned the pledge immediately on taking office.
There are other promises that Trump has fulfilled – I am not suggesting his presidency is an abject failure – but the above promises were major planks of his campaign and they are all within the innate powers and privileges of the presidency itself. Trump does not need Congress to build a border wall. He could have done it under executive order and invoked a draft lottery, if necessary. Trump also does not require congressional approval for deportations if the relevant individuals are in the United States illegally. There is that quirk of America’s codified system that some immigrants may be illegal but at the same time constitutionally-protected, but Trump could have deported them anyway and ignored the courts. The GOP had one of the largest House majorities ever and a comfortable Senate majority and Trump could have built mass support around an ‘America First’ agenda. Instead, he backed down and the opportunity has now been lost.
And why did Trump abandon (iii)? Is it because he has something to hide himself?
Sorry but Trump has to carry the can.
Talking about unwanted immigrants, Ilana Mercer, should be deported back to South Africa, Israel, South-Africa (again), Canada, or anywhere else where she’s been an immigrant in the past and spent her time lecturing the locals on where they’ve been going wrong.
We don’t need her in the United States.
We can read her boring diatribes On Line, and she can make room for someone who does a job Americans need doing.