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United States Politics

Trump Adviser Steve Bannon is Leaving White House Post (nytimes.com) 420

President Donald Trump's chief strategist Steve Bannon left his position on Friday (alternative source) as the newly minted chief of staff John Kelly sought to bring order to a White House riven by infighting and power struggles, more than a dozen news outlets report. Maggie Haberman, reporting for The New York Times: The president and senior White House officials were debating when and how to dismiss Mr. Bannon. The two administration officials cautioned that Mr. Trump is known to be averse to confrontation within his inner circle, and could decide to keep on Mr. Bannon for some time. As of Friday morning, the two men were still discussing Mr. Bannon's future, the officials said. A person close to Mr. Bannon insisted the parting of ways was his idea, and that he had submitted his resignation to the president on Aug. 7, to be announced at the start of this week, but the move was delayed after the racial unrest in Charlottesville, Va.
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Trump Adviser Steve Bannon is Leaving White House Post

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  • Well, okay - but (Score:5, Insightful)

    by 93 Escort Wagon ( 326346 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:20PM (#55041693)

    ... as the newly minted chief of staff John Kelly sought to bring order to a White House riven by infighting and power struggles ...

    As we saw on Tuesday - there's only so much discipline and order General Kelly can impose because the biggest problem in that regard is actually Trump being Trump.

    • Kelly did look exasperated in the background when Trump decided to ad lib. Tough for a retired four star general to not be in charge but in this case he's just another bozo on the bus.
      • "I think we're all Bozos on this bus. And the President is driving us."

        -- The Firesign Theatre

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by grasshoppa ( 657393 )

      Given Trump's successes thus far, can his behavior truly be said to be a problem? Mind you, I ask this question as a neutral party; I have an equally low opinion of all politicians and, in general, public leaders.

      Hell, he wasn't even wrong in his comments about who was contributing to the violence. It was tone deaf, perhaps, but not wrong. He's not even wrong about the statues and their relationship to history. If anyone were to ask my opinion of his tactics, instead of calling his behavior crazy, I wou

      • by 93 Escort Wagon ( 326346 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:38PM (#55041889)

        Given Trump's successes thus far,

        What successes are you referring to?

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by aardvarkjoe ( 156801 )

          What successes are you referring to?

          Well, getting elected as President of the United States does come to mind.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by grasshoppa ( 657393 )

          Winning the primary, then Whitehouse against what would otherwise be called a "shoe in" candidate. The economy, kinda, but more concrete would be supreme court appointment and reduced immigration.

          Mind you, I'm not saying these are good or bad, merely that they're accomplishments.

          More fun has been his work against the media and in working towards replacing ACA. Sure, these are fuzzier accomplishments. You may even question if they count at all given he "failed" to overturn ACA. However, look at what was

          • Re:Well, okay - but (Score:5, Informative)

            by JohnFen ( 1641097 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @01:11PM (#55042217)

            against what would otherwise be called a "shoe in" candidate.

            Clinton was never a "shoo-in" candidate. That her campaign thought she was is irrelevant. She shares with Trump the honor of being among the least popular major party candidates in history.

            The economy, kinda, but more concrete would be supreme court appointment and reduced immigration.

            None of those are Trump victories.

            The economy has simply continued the trend line that started well before Trump got in office.

            The supreme court appointment was engineered by Congress and no matter who was President, they were going to make an appointment.

            Immigration reduction was also a trend that started well before Trump got in office (although you could argue that he increased the rate of reduction).

            • The supreme court appointment was engineered by Congress and no matter who was President, they were going to make an appointment

              You're correct on the rest, and grasshoppa is nuts if he thinks that Trump's effort to take on ObamaCare has accomplished anything at all (the left was already talking about how to improve it), but on this one you're wrong. At least, you have to admit that Clinton would have nominated a very different kind of justice. It's remotely possible that the Senate could have refused to confirm, but very doubtful. They managed to hold off confirming Obama's nominee for 8 months, but there's no way they'd have left S

              • At least, you have to admit that Clinton would have nominated a very different kind of justice.

                Yes, of course. I think you missed my point: appointing the SC justice can't be considered a "victory" for Trump, because no matter who was President, they were going to appoint a justice. So it's not so much a "victory" as it is a "gift".

                • At least, you have to admit that Clinton would have nominated a very different kind of justice.

                  Yes, of course. I think you missed my point: appointing the SC justice can't be considered a "victory" for Trump, because no matter who was President, they were going to appoint a justice. So it's not so much a "victory" as it is a "gift".

                  Okay, not a victory for Trump, but a victory for Trump's voters. I know lots of people who voted for Trump only because they wanted a conservative justice, and they got it. Actually, this issue is kind of an anti-victory for Trump, because if there hadn't been a seat or two on SCOTUS up for grabs, he'd have gotten fewer votes... and it wouldn't have taken that many fewer to have lost the election.

                  • That was the major reason for me along, but I also felt that Washington needed to be shaken up. They have become too complacent.

                    And what was the "preferred" choice of the Republicans, we already had Bush Sr. and Jr., Bush middle?

                    Also, what were the Democrats thinking that we needed another Clinton? This country isn't a freakin' family run business anyway

                    Maybe we should be looking at it from another perspective. We put Trump in there to punish both Democrats and Republicans.

              • Neil was all McConnell. As you said, he held off Obama's for 8 months AND killed the senate rule for 60 votes for a supreme. Just like the Dem's are paying for killing off other rules for 60 votes and are probably regretting it, you can bet the republicans are gong to be regretting this. Consider a supreme is a lifetime appointment. I believe compromise is essential to such an appointment. But then compromise is now completely foreign to the new world of bubble left/right.

          • by Shatrat ( 855151 )

            I really don't think he's intentionally manipulating the media. I think he's just wandering between topics saying crazy things and mostly getting away with it, like Mr Magoo, because everyone is so caught off guard.

          • Winning the primary, then Whitehouse against what would otherwise be called a "shoe in" candidate.

            Obama did that twice, and with black skin.

            Now you routinely hear the left talking about how to fix it

            The left talked about fixing Obamacare from the day it was passed.

            I thought Trump was a joke at first, but now that I've been watching him for a while I can appreciate how masterfully he manipulates the media and public.

            That's what we need in a president: someone who can masterfully manipulate us. Good job.

          • Now you routinely hear the left talking about how to fix it ( and as a small business owner, let me tell you; it absolutely needs to be fixed ).

            The main reason the left routinely talk about that is because they only managed to get it passed in a broken state because the Republicans insisted on breaking it. That predates Trump and so has nothing to do with him.

          • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

            So basically nothing. Didn't get rid of Obamacare, the wall hasn't been started or funded, and he missed his own deadline to get a handle on Muslim's visiting the US.

            He hasn't managed to come up with a replacement to Obamacare that his own party will accept, and they really, really hate Obamacare.

            His trade councils failed and everyone quit. He failed to deal with ISIS in the timeframe he promised.

            Remember that photo of his closest advisors and staff in the Oval Office, taken a few weeks after he came to pow

      • by Captain Splendid ( 673276 ) <capsplendid.gmail@com> on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:39PM (#55041899) Homepage Journal
        Trump's successes

        Say what now?
      • by werepants ( 1912634 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @01:05PM (#55042161)

        Well, "trolling the left" has certainly provoked a response. Not just from the left, either - from the business community, from the vast majority of Republican politicians, and from many of Trump's historically more loyal supporters. Apparently, making excuses for Nazis pisses off a lot of people. This week has cost Trump dearly in terms of poll numbers, business support, conservative media support, party support, and even forced his hand on firing Bannon.

        I'd say the left doesn't really need to do "their side" any favors - Trump is doing more for them right now than they could ever do on their own.

      • it seems he's specifically trolling the left to provoke a disproportionate response.

        He's trolling the right and the left, and it's working. The [dis??]proportionate response will be impeachment, or in the best case, handcuffs.

      • by amicusNYCL ( 1538833 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @01:46PM (#55042583)

        Given Trump's successes thus far, can his behavior truly be said to be a problem?

        I think you answer your own question right here:

        I would suggest that it seems he's specifically trolling the left to provoke a disproportionate response.

        There are a lot of responsibilities and expectations that people have for the office of President. Trolling Americans in order to provoke a disproportionate response is not one of them. That's a behavior problem. Maybe instead of trolling people he should be trying to set the actual tone of the debate and try to work at healing wounds instead of opening new ones. That's the kind of behavior we expect from a president, from any party. We expect the person to rise to the office, and instead Trump has dragged the office of President down to his level. So, yeah, his behavior can truly be said to be a problem.

        but they aren't doing "their side" any favors by allowing him to further provoke them.

        Here's more evidence that his behavior is a problem. You are suggesting that maybe it is counter-productive or beneath someone to respond to the President. The President Of The United States. That if the President addresses you, with the objective of provoking you, that you somehow need to be the bigger person and not respond. To the President Of The United States. The American people have never had a relationship like that with their president, at least not that I'm aware of. Several months ago when Trump was attacking the Morning Joe show, I think on ABC, with just all of these stupid personal insults, there was a quote by someone with a title that was something like "Senior VP of Communications" or something, and he pointed out that he never expected that it would be beneath him to respond to the POTUS. We are in new territory here, and it is largely because of Trump's behavior. So, yeah, it's a problem.

  • Which is it? (Score:5, Informative)

    by JohnFen ( 1641097 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:21PM (#55041709)

    The CNBC article says both that Bannon resigned and that Trump fired him.

  • Trump's base (Score:5, Interesting)

    by onyxruby ( 118189 ) <onyxrubyNO@SPAMcomcast.net> on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:21PM (#55041715)

    Looks like Time's puppet master attack worked.

    Bannon represented Trump's base far better than any other person in his inner circle. Without Bannon Trump will have a far harder time keeping in sync with the people responsible for putting him in office. It wasn't the globalists like McMaster that got him elected, it was people like Bannon who helped him connect with people from the lay person to the disenfranchised (both Dem and Rep).

    • Disenfranchised (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:43PM (#55041967)

      Trump is just a symptom and so are all these protests - for whatever reason. People are looking for the one reason for their declining standard of living, healthcare costs going out of control, food prices increasing, housing costs, and just finding it harder to live better than their parents (the American dream) - let alone as well as them.

      People are pissed but unfortunately, they are blaming the wrong people.

      My meds are artificially high priced. Can I go and get them from another country? Nope - it's illegal. Why? For my own safety - because I may get counterfeit drugs from a foreign pharmacy. Amazing, I don't see many deaths from counterfeit drugs in Canada.

      But why are our prices so high here in the USA? Because they can, that's why. And I know who is to blame and they are ALL members of the Republican party. Free markets my ass!

      And when someone is making over $15 and hour - 40 hours a week - and STILL can't afford a place to live in some southeast sub-urban town, there is something really fucked up. We're not talking about the SF Bay area - but nowhere.

      The wealth and income disparity is what is causing all this and it is because the system is rigged against us peons.

    • One of Breitbart's most senior editor just tweeted #WAR [twitter.com], suggesting the publication isn't happy about Bannon's firing, and there's rather a lot of speculation on Twitter that it's about to do a 180 and oppose Trump.

      So... my advice, BUY ConAgra stock, they own Orville Redenbacher's. Also BUY Diamond Foods, who own "Pop Secret!"

      And you probably want to buy some popcorn too.

      • One of Breitbart's most senior editor just tweeted #WAR [twitter.com], suggesting the publication isn't happy about Bannon's firing, and there's rather a lot of speculation on Twitter that it's about to do a 180 and oppose Trump.

        Rats/ship?

    • Trump was dogwhistling to his base long before Bannon. Mexicans are rapists, "Mexican" judges can't be fair to white people, Birtherism,
  • Just a reminder (Score:2, Insightful)

    by friedman101 ( 618627 )
    Just a reminder. Rumor is that Bannon was fired not because of his whack-job views on race or economics but rather because he's not sufficiently bellicose toward North Korea for Trump's liking.

    That is, he may have fired a snake but he did it on account of one of the snake's few redeeming qualities.

    By the end of his term it will be clear that Trump is the biggest mistake America has ever made.
    • Re:Just a reminder (Score:5, Insightful)

      by JoshuaZ ( 1134087 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:42PM (#55041949) Homepage

      By the end of his term it will be clear that Trump is the biggest mistake America has ever made.

      Bigger than allowing slavery? Bigger than Vietnam? Bigger than leaded gasoline?

      I think it is already clear that Trump is the worst President in my lifetime, and probably the worst President we've ever had. But I'm not convinced he is the worst mistake for the US has ever made. Of course, there is still time, so you may turn out to be right. I sincerely hope not.

      • by HiThere ( 15173 )

        Slavery was vile, but it was politically impossible to get rid of it in the late 1700's, so yes, bugger, but bigger than allowing slavery. (But the federal government should have been allowed to tax slaveholders for their slaves.)

        Bigger than Vietnam? Sorry, but Vietnam isn't even up as one of the major mistakes made by the government. It merely looks that way because many here lived through that time.

        Bigger than leaded gasoline? Well, *MAYBE* not. That was a huge mistake, and no question about it. We

      • ...Trump is the biggest mistake America has ever made.

        Bigger than allowing slavery? Bigger than Vietnam? Bigger than leaded gasoline?

        Bigger than Mcdonalds? No, but getting there.

  • Trumpers keep giving interviews to news outlets known to be opposed to them down to the quarks in their component atoms, and then are astonished that the resulting stories don't cast them in a favorable light. There's naive and then there's downright stupid and incompetent.
  • by gman003 ( 1693318 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:33PM (#55041831)

    And there was much rejoicing.

  • by ErichTheRed ( 39327 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:35PM (#55041857)

    I've been very lucky boss-wise, and only worked for one manager/group of managers in my career that bothered me enough to quit. However, I have many co-workers who have "escaped" from toxic environments run by terrible bosses. Some weren't exactly low-paying jobs either -- think investment banks, elite law firms, and consulting companies. Almost every one has told me that leaving and taking a pay cut was better than dreading going to work every day and dealing with their bosses screaming at them, throwing them to the wolves, or just being a total jerk. Say what you will about Bannon, but I think he's just making a rational decision and answering questions like "Can I control this guy? Is he hurting my long term aspirations? Is the access and influence I have and future untold billions I will have because of it balanced with the probability of everything going sideways?" The problem is always cost/benefit - I know some people who've worked in investment banking as devs or very high-end IT pros, and they say the bonuses are massive and salaries are great, but you have to deal with a company that's basically 100% bro-culture assholes every day in exchange for it.

    My dislike of the current administration mostly stems from its apparently inability to control its emotions. I think Trump is not used to being questioned on _anything_ and people in his inner circle have given him a pass on his behavior forever because they want to keep getting paid. I obviously don't know what he's thinking, but I think he feels that international conflicts and political compromise is just like strong-arming some union boss on one of his construction sites or bribing some city official to get one of his properties expedited through the system.

    One of my favorite political cartoons of late (sorry about the ) came out when Trump started signing his first executive orders and shows him sitting on Bannon's lap saying, "I'm a big boy!" I think that it's pretty obvious that no one can control him at this point, so we'll see what happens. [kym-cdn.com]

    • by Anonymous Coward

      In many ways Trump is in a toxic environment. It's got to suck for him. I don't like the guy at all but sometimes I feel sorry for him. He's in way over his head, he not getting the adulation that he craves, and he clearly was having a lot more fun when he was outside government grandstanding, lobbing grenades, chasing women, nettling Obama, etc. I don't think Trump thought he'd be elected: it was just a game to win. All he needs is an excuse like "my family needs me" or a health problem to bail out and

      • by Nidi62 ( 1525137 )

        The health excuse wouldn't work since he already had his doctor declare him to be the healthiest person ever elected President.

  • by Weaselmancer ( 533834 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:47PM (#55042011)

    A person close to Mr. Bannon insisted the parting of ways was his idea, and that he had submitted his resignation to the president on Aug. 7, to be announced at the start of this week, but the move was delayed after the racial unrest in Charlottesville, Va.

    Now, why would that matter?

    • by Shatrat ( 855151 )

      Because the White House didn't want to make it seem like Bannon resigned or got pushed out as a result of what happened there. Correlation = Causation in the minds of 99% of people.

    • the move was delayed after the racial unrest in Charlottesville, Va.

      Now, why would that matter?

      Because it would weaken Trump's KKK/Nazi endorsement.

  • by T.E.D. ( 34228 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @12:49PM (#55042035)
    In a statement, Bannon said he wanted to spend more time with Anthony Saramucci's family.
  • by Lisandro ( 799651 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @01:07PM (#55042185)

    ...is staggering. So much winning.

  • by ganv ( 881057 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @01:10PM (#55042207)
    Have a look at his original staff and check who is left: http://time.com/4658499/donald... [time.com] Of those who sometimes communicated their own opinions rather than simply defending Trump, there is only Kushner (family) and Pence (elected VP). Those that left include Bannon, Priebus, Flynn, McFarland, Walsh, Dubke, Spicer, Scaramucci, and more. https://www.bustle.com/p/all-t... [bustle.com] We are looking at 3.5 more years of a delusional President who chooses divisive people for his staff and then fires anyone who gets under his thin skin. I can't see how competent people would agree to work there given what we know thus far.
  • by taustin ( 171655 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @01:16PM (#55042253) Homepage Journal

    This is entirely consistent with Trump running first his campaign, then the White House, as a reality TV show, a business he understands well.

    He started off, when he had so many Republican rivals, playing the Bad Boy That Everybody Loves To Hate, which was an excellent choice, because it is dramatically necessary to have the Bad Boy That Everybody Loves To Hate around for the finals so that the winner can finally defeat them. This guaranteed him the nomination.

    But once he had the nomination sewed up, he had to switch characters, because the Bad Boy That Everybody Loves To Hate cannot win (ratings, you know). So he switched to The Lone Wolf Who Is Right When Everybody Else Is Wrong, which is certainly a character that can win - Americans love underdogs. But his real genius, at that point, was to force Hillary Clinton to become the Bad Boy That Everybody Loves To Hate. In other words, he painted his opponent as the character that simply cannot ever win. That won him the election.

    Once he was in the White House, he was in a job he didn't know much about, so he went with what he knows. He continued to play The Lone Wolf Who Is Right When Everybody Else Is Wrong. But in order to be The Lone Wolf Who Is Right When Everybody Else Is Wrong, you have to surround yourself with people who are wrong all the time. So any job that was advisory, and very publicly visible, was filled with someone chosen specifically to be wrong, so that Trump could be right when they were wrong. Bannon was "chief stategist," which is an advisory position, and Bannon himself was so controversial that he couldn't possibly avoid the public's eye if he tried (and he never tried). But we got Mad Dog Mattis as Defense Secretary, a job that is not purely advisory, and has considerable authority in its own right. It's not a 100% correlation, but it's pretty consistent. Those who advise are idiots, chosen to be wrong and thus ignored. Those who do things are not.

    And now that Trump is settling into the job of President, he's slowly working away from being The Lone Wolf Who Is Right When Everybody Else Is Wrong, and getting rid of the advisory positions that were filled with people chosen to be wrong all the time. He's learned what areas he really needs advisors in, and is replacing them with people who can tell him what he wants to hear.

    He may well be Satan incarnate, hell bent on the destruction of humanity, but he's increasingly competent at what he's doing, and what he's doing is, for the most part, what he promised to do during the campaign.

    • by Baron_Yam ( 643147 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @02:50PM (#55043407)

      >He may well be Satan incarnate, hell bent on the destruction of humanity, but he's increasingly competent at what he's doing, and what he's doing is, for the most part, what he promised to do during the campaign.

      That's a lovely narrative you've built there, but it's entirely inconsistent with Trump's every tweet and recorded appearance ever.

      He's a nightmare child who was born with a silver spoon in his mouth and has bullied his way through life. It got him to the presidency because things were in a state where his particular message sold really well, not because he was a genius tactician, or even remotely qualified to do the job.

  • I'm not a fan of Trump or Bannon on in the slightest. That said, I'm concerned that Bannon actually pushed Trump in the right direction on certain issues - namely, the US involvement in the rest of the world. From what I can tell, Bannon pushed Trump against war and military intervention in other countries, which is a good thing because in most cases US involvement is neither beneficial to the US, nor the country/people on whose behalf we're allegedly acting. Similarly, I understand that he pushed Trump to
  • Bannon, Spicer, Preibus, Flynn, Scaramucci...Trump wasn't kidding when he said he was going to "drain the swamp".

  • by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) on Friday August 18, 2017 @01:53PM (#55042689) Journal

    Now Bannon can go back to cooking meth in his bathtub (not making that up).

    https://www.deathandtaxesmag.c... [deathandtaxesmag.com]

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