« THE "IS" DILEMMA | Main | PHANTOM STORMS-REAL STORMS »

THE UNWILLING EXIT STRATEGY

FROM NORTH AMERICA SYNDICATE, 300 W 57th STREET, 41st FLOOR, NEW YORK, NY 10019
CUSTOMER SERVICE: (800) 708-7311 EXT. 236
BOB FRANKEN
FOR RELEASE FRIDAY, APRIL 6, 2018

THE UNWILLING EXIT STRATEGY
---
In spite of all the controversy about Scott Pruitt’s cushy D.C. condo, it’s entirely appropriate that he was getting a sweetheart deal on a place to sleep. After all, for his entire political career, he’s been in bed with the special business interests who resist any and all government efforts to protect against their ravaging of the environment.
In Oklahoma, as a state senator, then attorney general, and now as President Trump Environmental Protection Agency administrator, Pruitt has been a stalwart opponent of any regulation that would get in the way of the energy companies that have been his patrons. They and their extremist advocates have rewarded his efforts on their behalf handsomely.
Now that he has brought their bought-and-paid-for agenda to Washington, he has turned the EPA into the “Environmental Punishment Agency.” He has been dismantling clean-planet rules left and right, and dogmatically ignoring climate change science as he represents big business in pushing POTUS' anti-regulation agenda.
He’s also been living large. Or trying to. His ridiculously cheap living arrangement at a lobbyist-owned apartment within spitting distance of the Capitol has been exposed by media reports, so he has violated scoundrel rule No. 1 -- which, of course, is “don’t get caught.” He was charged $50 dollars a night, far, far below market rate but even with all the industry largesse, he’s gotten greedy. And clumsy.



ADVERTISEMENT

In fact, Pruitt is quickly becoming legendary, even by Washington’s dreary standards. His insistence on spending $40,000-plus of taxpayer money to construct a soundproof telephone room at his agency for his use was just one embarrassment. Until the drumbeat of criticism got too loud, he insisted on flying first class. EPA policy requires economy seating, with permission granted for an upgrade in exceptional circumstances. The “exceptional circumstance” his PR people finally settled on was that security concerns dictated he fly first class; he argued that being in the front of the plane would shield him from threatening passengers. Apparently, it’s a dangerous jungle in the back.
He’s now grudgingly seated in the fetal position with the scary riff-raff in the back, even though his people even explored renting a private jet to fly him around in style. That idea was hastily abandoned when word got out, in spite of his best efforts to stiff what he calls the “toxic” media. They ask too many impertinent questions.
He’s adopted a policy of avoiding any but the friendliest, churning out interviews with the likes of Fox News and the right-wing Washington Times. However, even the Fox interview was awkward, with correspondent Ed Henry asking tougher questions than he expected. He embarrassed himself, plain and simple. Looking bad on TV is the original sin in the Gospel According to Donald Trump.
So down at Casa Blanca, El Presidente is trying to determine whether all the bad publicity is enough to add Scott Pruitt to the list of those he must replace. On the one hand, Pruitt has been shamelessly effective at gutting environment-saving regulations at the EPA. That pleases Trump, who insists he has full confidence in Pruitt.
But is that the Don Trump Kiss of Death? The indicators are becoming familiar: The president and maybe chief of staff John Kelly assure the unfortunate one that they have his back. At the same time, Sarah Huckabee Sanders or another White House-designated knife-wielder makes it clear that they possibly mean that his back is there to stab. So here was Sanders, telling reporters “We’re reviewing the situation. When we have had a chance to have a deeper dive on it, we’ll let you know the outcomes of that.”
Scott Pruitt may be the next to take the dive ... with concrete. If he’s smart, even while he struggles to stay on, he’ll be making sure all those wealthy special interests are there when he leaves power, so he can cash in his chits.

© 2

About

This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on April 7, 2018 1:03 PM.

The previous post in this blog was THE "IS" DILEMMA.

The next post in this blog is PHANTOM STORMS-REAL STORMS.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

Subscribe



Enter your Email


Preview | Powered by FeedBlitz