The scariest Trumpie? Mike ” Jack D. Ripper” Flynn FTW
From the looks of it, Donald Trump plans to staff his administration with every plutocrat and retired general he’s ever met. So far he’s named billionaire Betsy DeVos, billionaire Wilbur Ross, along with multimillionaires Elaine Chao, Steve Mnuchin and Tom Price. He has interviewed the vastly wealthy Mitt Romney and is reportedly considering Gary Cohn, the president of Goldman Sachs. It’s clear that whatever Trump may have said that sounded like economic populism during the campaign is unlikely to be translated into policy in his administration.
I can take glee in that — I think Donald Trump conned them. I worried that he was going to do crazy things that would blow the system up. So the fact that he’s appointing people from within the system is a good thing.
Basically, it looks like Trump is going to deliver Wall Street’s wish list and leave the “populism” to people like Jeff Sessions and Kris Kobach, who are designated to bring the “law and order” to communities of immigrants and people of color. Surprise.
Currently, he’s said to be considering former generals David Petraeus, James “Mad Dog” Mattis and John Kelly, along with Admiral Mike Rogers for high-level jobs in the administration. As this Washington Post article by Phillip Carter and Loren DeJonge Schulman spells out in some detail, this is unusual and frankly unnerving. But none of them are as unnerving as the former general who has been tapped to serve as Trump’s national security adviser, his close associate Michael Flynn.
Speaking to a gathering of young conservatives at Trump’s Washington hotel, Flynn said, “I was with Dinesh D’Souza last night, and the other, for the young audience here, for the young ones here, I mentioned it to a couple of you, I was also with Milo Yiannopoulos … See, a lot of people in here won’t know who he is. I tag him on Twitter, you know, because he’s a phenomenal individual, and I’m mentioning him tonight because he spoke alongside of me last night to another group of folks.”
It’s known that Flynn travels on the far edge of the conspiratorial extreme of neoconservative thinking, having recently written a book called “The Field of Flight” with Michael Ledeen, a longtime proponent of the idea that the U.S. faces an existential threat from … well, pretty much everyone. (Ledeen famously speculated that even Germany and France were in cahoots with al-Qaida when they failed to back the U.S. invasion of Iraq.)
Curious about Flynn’s views of China and North Korea, about which he has said very little, the New York Times consulted “The Field of Flight” for clues as to his thinking. This is what they found:
In the introduction, [Flynn] wrote that radical Islamists “are not alone, and are allied with countries and groups who, though not religious fanatics, share their hatred of the West, particularly the United States and Israel.” The introduction continued, “Those allies include North Korea, Russia, China, Cuba and Venezuela.”
The general expanded on his definition of the anti-Western alliance: “The war is on. We face a working coalition that extends from North Korea and China to Russia, Iran, Syria, Cuba, Bolivia, Venezuela and Nicaragua. We are under attack, not only from nation-states directly, but also from Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, ISIS and countless other terrorist groups.”
“Suffice to say, the same sort of cooperation binds together jihadis, Communists and garden-variety tyrants,” he added.