January 3rd, 2018

Finally, Steve Bannon gets some respect from the press?

Why? Because he said something they want to hear: that the meeting between Kushner et. al. and some Russians was “treasonous.”

Bannon, of course, has reason (or thinks he has reason) to hate Kushner. You may or may not recall this sort of thing:

Steve Bannon‘s White House exit was partially orchestrated by First Daughter and Presidential Advisor Ivanka Trump and her husband, Senior Advisor to the President Jared Kushner, a source with knowledge of the situation tells PEOPLE.

“Jared and Ivanka helped push him out,” the source tells PEOPLE, adding, “Bannon being removed changes everything.”

On Friday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed that Bannon would no longer serve as chief strategist in a statement, saying, “White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and Steve Bannon have mutually agreed today would be Steve’s last day. We are grateful for his service and wish him the best.”

That was back in August. Bannon is a “don’t get mad, get even” sort of guy. Or maybe he’s a “get mad and get even” sort of guy.

And so we have Bannon’s scorched-Kushner policy:

Bannon, speaking to author Michael Wolff, warned that the investigation into alleged collusion with the Kremlin will focus on money laundering and predicted: “They’re going to crack Don Junior like an egg on national TV.”

Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, reportedly based on more than 200 interviews with the president, his inner circle and players in and around the administration, is one of the most eagerly awaited political books of the year. In it, Wolff lifts the lid on a White House lurching from crisis to crisis amid internecine warfare, with even some of Trump’s closest allies expressing contempt for him.

Completely unsurprising. Bannon’s one of those people for whom the answer is “neither” when you’re asked the question would you rather have him inside the tent pissing out, or outside the tent pissing in?

[ADDENDUM: I was wondering what Trump might say. After all, Kushner is his son-in-law, and Trump isn’t a guy who tends to retreat from a fight, or to disregard an insult or a threat. Well, the White House has issued a statement, and it’s a lulu:

Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my Presidency. When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind. Steve was a staffer who worked for me after I had already won the nomination by defeating seventeen candidates, often described as the most talented field ever assembled in the Republican party.

Now that he is on his own, Steve is learning that winning isn’t as easy as I make it look. Steve had very little to do with our historic victory, which was delivered by the forgotten men and women of this country. Yet Steve had everything to do with the loss of a Senate seat in Alabama held for more than thirty years by Republicans.

Steve doesn’t represent my base—he’s only in it for himself.

Steve pretends to be at war with the media, which he calls the opposition party, yet he spent his time at the White House leaking false information to the media to make himself seem far more important than he was. It is the only thing he does well. Steve was rarely in a one-on-one meeting with me and only pretends to have had influence to fool a few people with no access and no clue, whom he helped write phony books.

We have many great Republican members of Congress and candidates who are very supportive of the Make America Great Again agenda. Like me, they love the United States of America and are helping to finally take our country back and build it up, rather than simply seeking to burn it all down.

Now it’s Steve’s turn.]

26 Responses to “Finally, Steve Bannon gets some respect from the press?”

  1. F Says:

    Bannon’s 15 minutes of fame (or more) was over a long time ago. But he keeps trying. As for the quote in People Magazine:

    “a source with knowledge of the situation tells PEOPLE”, that would probably have been Bannon himself. Trump’s tweet today makes it clear part of the reason he was fired was for all his leaks to the press.

    But as you say, Neo, the MSM now likes him, because he is now leaking stuff they want to hear. So he’ll be getting plenty of mileage out of what he says.

  2. AesopFan Says:

    I read Woolf’s article earlier today and wondered if any of it was misquoted or misinterpreted, just another round in the Russia-collusion wrestling match.
    Looks like Bannon burned any remaining bridges at Trump Tower, if there ever were any.
    Question: how will the Breitbart Base respond?
    We really don’t need more infighting on the Right.

  3. AesopFan Says:

    Woolf -> Wolff.
    Freudian slip on wolfs in general?

  4. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    I have no personal knowledge of the actual contributions of Bannon to Trump’s campaign. He might have provided valuable input or might not have but when Trump states that,

    “Steve doesn’t represent my base—he’s only in it for himself.

    Steve pretends to be at war with the media, which he calls the opposition party, yet he spent his time at the White House leaking false information to the media to make himself seem far more important than he was.”…

    I have to take issue with a few points.

    Trump’s kidding himself if he actually thinks that much of his base doesn’t agree with Bannon on a number of issues. Specifically, illegal immigration, DACA, the Chinese threat… both economic and militarily and the terrorist threat from Islam and Muslim migrants.

    I’m also unconvinced that Bannon was the primary source of the leaks, which continued after his departure and the vast majority of which did not favor Bannon’s position on the issues.

    Bannon also remaining loyal to Trump after his departure, which speaks well of any ‘fired’ employee.

    Whereas, there are strong indications that Kushner (and Ivanka) are at best, only partially in agreement with Trump. So I think Trump has driven away the people who most share his POV.

  5. AesopFan Says:

    Geoffrey: I agree with most of your points. There was something going on that we don’t know about, IMO, and may never find out, because at this point I do not believe any of the participants is immune from dishing out self-serving spin.

  6. AesopFan Says:

    Great minds etc etc: both of J.E. Dyer’s posts are on the same subjects as Neo’s, although with (today at least) less rhetorical elegance.


    “For the record, whatever is going on with Bannon, the reality of political concerns and beliefs among the people he’s been a nominal leader for over the last year hasn’t gone away. I do think, however, that the December Trump just had went a substantial way toward reconciling many of those folks to Trump.

    I also assume there’s a misrepresentation factor, to a greater or lesser extent, with the MSM’s depiction of “what Bannon is doing.” That assumption will be 100% valid nine times out of ten, and still valid but less than 200-proof the tenth time, whether you check out any specific instance or not. So there’s that. I’m not jumping on any bandwagons either way.

    Also for the record, I assume this isn’t “the Republicans, conservatives, Trumpistas, or a pack of zoo animals in red hats tearing themselves apart.” That’s the shallowest possible analysis. The social, political, and geopolitical developments in our world are fundamental – in Dmitry Medvedev’s word, tectonic – and can’t be reduced to personalities or in-crowd ankle-kicking.

    In fact, I think most people intuitively know that. The reality that we’re in a time we can’t back out of (i.e., and “get back to normal,” whatever that means to a given person) is getting harder to pretend against. That’s frightening and disorienting for a lot of people, and joking aside, we ought to feel for them and be gentle with them.

    But baiting them with gossip into Two-Minute Hate sessions isn’t the way to do that. So I, for one, am rejecting this whole Bannon-Trump Theme of the Day out of hand, and posting on it solely for click-bait (while my colleague Howard Portnoy is on assignment).”

  7. Cornhead Says:

    I view this as a disaster. More drama. More WWE stuff. More stuff for CNN and MSNBC. We don’t need this. Very disappointed in Bannon.

  8. Dave Says:

    This is an obvious sabotage, a calculated move designed to derail the trump train by resurrecting the dead russian collusion narrative to stab the president in the back, obviously bannon was mad about trump giving him a mouthful on the phone after the Alabama defeat. What a pitiful grudge bearing loser, no wonder everyone hates him. I am sorry for doubting anyone who had criticise bannon, he is now officially Glenn beck 2.0

  9. Manju Says:

    It’s not just Steve Bannon. Katie Walsh also describes him as a child, the context being his inability to process information. Rupert Murdoch calls him a “fucking idiot”, echoing T.Rex’s earlier “Moron”.

    Perhaps these aren’t the right words. After all, he managed to get elected, Neo has argued. Fair enough. But maybe we should take this criticism seriously, but not literally…to use the oft-repeated defense of Trump against him.

    Personally I think he’s essentially Paris Hilton: an heiress, a socialite, and a reality TV star known primary for an adventurous sex life. And i wouldn’t call Paris dumb…it does take a certain skill set to have a lot twitter followers.

    But if you were to discuss nuclear weapons with Paris, she probably wouldn’t be interested because well, she’s primarily a reality TV show celeb and she’s just not that interested in this stuff. Judging from the context from which these insults emerge, that appears to be what’s happening here.

  10. Stephen Ippolito Says:


    I am glad the Donald is a tycoon and won’t be needing a comfortable diplomatic sinecure after his second term expires.

    A diplomatic touch is not among his many gifts.

    I’m with Cornhead on the wider and more important implication for this personal feud- distraction from the agenda and ammunition for the enemies of the popular movement that Trump perfectly embodies and rode to office.

    So sad since there was plenty of well-deserved credit to go around for both men.

    I have long thought that they were rather like the team that achieved Italy’s unification: Mazzini, Cavour and Garibaldi – Bannon being the heart and the mind and Trump the movement’s strong and vigorous right arm.

    So sad.

  11. Dave Says:

    if trump is Paris Hilton, Obama’s is carrot top and Bill Clinton is Ron Jeremy. It is quite pitiful that the only way the liberals can escape from the reality that their candidate lost to a better candidate is to create an illusion that their candidate was still the greatest ever, and the other guy is an idiot who just has the special ability to fool other conservative idiots to vote for him with the help of the evil man in Russia. The only way a person can lose to an idiot is being an even bigger idiot, so the argument the liberals cooked up that Hillary somehow lost because she is a better candidate is idiotic, it is as illogical as saying the browns have the worst record in the nfl because they are the best team in the league.

  12. Dave Says:

    Who is more idiotic and more more damaging to world peace, the president who insults a dictator with nuclear weapons on twitter, or the president who allowed this dictator to obtain nuclear weapons without intervention under his watch?

  13. parker Says:


    It is a bit too late to be disappointed in Bannon. The guy was a poison pill after Breitbart passed away, should have been 86th as a rabid dog with no leash. You are a bright fellow, was this not obvious?

  14. AesopFan Says:

    Dave, I can’t answer your question without my Magic 8 Ball in hand, but I would amend your second phrase to read “the presidents (plural)”.

    Here’s a take on the WWE aspects of the Button, Button, Who’s Got the Button? posturing:

    Here’s a POV on Bannon v. Trump that raises some more questions:

    A commenter brings up the point that Wolff is not in this because he likes Bannon:
    MarkSmith | January 3, 2018 at 4:23 pm
    Wolff is hawking his book. Search Wolff and Clinton and you get a mess of stuff that you would think he is part of her campaign.


    “Hence, it’s a stage that is set for just one Trumpian moment of outrageous clarity during the debates, one mock-innocent goof on the system and its self-regard, one break in her self-control, for him to win. Let’s hope she is in fact made of steel.”

    This is more pro-Trump, kinda sorta:

  15. Dave Says:

    Criticizing trump for trying to defuse the nk nuclear crisis but not Obama who did not do enough to prevent nk from obtaining the nuclear weapons is like criticising the mother who is trying to take a loaded gun away from a child because that might cause an accidental discharged but not the stupid father who left the gun in the family room.

    You can criticise trump’s behaviours in his spare time all you want but the job he is doing is no worse than Obama. Either Obama was as stupid as trump or being the president is so easy that anyone can do it as long as you have the ability to say things that enough people like what they hear to get you elected…

  16. Dave Says:

    Trump’s fault is not that he is stupid or hold bad thoughts, his fault is that he can’t control his urge to share what he thinks. Snakes like obama and Hillary might have the better ability to hold their tongues and not to spill their guts, they might be better at pretending to like someone even at heart they want the same person dead, does that make them better people? Do that make them more competent?

    If Kim jong un is going to unleash his nuclear arsenals because of some tweets he would have done it for whatever trivial reasons that might be, and nothing would be more stupid and incompetent than not doing everything in one’ Power to prevent this unstable man from obtaining those weapons in the first place and place the safety of the region at this mad man’s mercy, and no matter how dumb trump is, obama is dumber, at least trump recognises nk is a problem, smarter the man who thinks appeasing this mad man and granting his wish to become a nuclear power would bring world peace.

  17. Cornhead Says:

    I thought Bannon was on OUR side.

    I suppose now he will become a regular on MSNBC with Tyler and Schmidt. Maddow might even sleep with him now. Give up her girlfriend for Steve-O.

  18. AesopFan Says:

    Cornhead Says:
    January 3rd, 2018 at 10:18 pm
    I thought Bannon was on OUR side
    * *
    There are a lot of those around, but at least the others started out NOT supporting Trump and have stayed on the same course.
    However, I had to suffer through an NPR interview tonight with Max Boot lamenting the death of the Republican party and lamenting that he was now “homeless” because he could see becoming a Democrat.

    David Brock is an early example of turncoats, although I doubt if Bannon (or even Boot) will go full-left as Brock did.


  19. Stephen Ippolito Says:

    It’s a very clever marketing ploy for the book to brand Steve B as a traitor because betrayal, be it of a friend, a cause or one’s country, strikes such a deep emotional chord in all of us.

    I forget who said it, (it might have been Churchill), or where I read it but all of us can probably relate on a visceral level to the fellow who, when asked, who he would shoot if he only had one bullet left and he was being advanced upon by a foreign enemy and a traitor, said: “I’d let the traitor have it every time”.

  20. AesopFan Says:

    And then there’s this…did Bannon really say what Wolff alleges? “Lied once, lies always” isn’t a bad mantra when dealing with the Left.


    “New York Magazine has published an excerpt from a forthcoming book by Michael Wolff titled Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House. This is the book that includes bizarre comments by Steve Bannon smearing President Trump and his family. It also contains a story that was, as liberal reporters say, too good to check: President Trump had never heard of John Boehner. “

  21. Jim Miller Says:

    Two things to consider: First, if the Guardian article is correct, Bannon wrote this “soon after” a July NYT article on the famous meeting:

    “Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad shit, and I happen to think it’s all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately.”

    Since Bannon was fired on August 17, the comment may not have been in reaction to his firing. You really have to know when he wrote the comment, and when he learned he was being fired.

    (I believe that he was talking to Wolff, and others, all through the campaign, and during his time in the White House.)

    Second, as with Paul Manafort (and others), this incident should make you wonder about Trump’s judgement in picking subordinates. Superior leaders pick competent, loyal subordinates. (It took me about one minute on the Internet to learn that Manafort has serious ethical problems; it apparently took Trump months.)

  22. Jim Miller Says:

    Minor correction: According to Wolff, Bannon said those things to Wolff, he didn’t write them.

    But that doesn’t affect my main point: Before you can say that any comment by Bannon is “revenge” for him being fired, you have to know that he said it before he was fired, or at least before he knew he would be fired.

  23. Jim Miller Says:

    One more time: Before a comment can be “revenge”, you have to know it was made after the firing, or at least after Bannon knew he was about to be fired.

    (Sorry — I’ve had a long day.)

  24. FOAF Says:

    “Personally I think he’s essentially Paris Hilton”

    I bet you think that is really, really clever, don’t you manju?

  25. FOAF Says:

    “if you were to discuss nuclear weapons with Paris, she probably wouldn’t be interested”

    When did Hillary Clinton become a foreign policy genius? Was it during the ten years she spent as First Lady of Arkansas?

  26. Artfldgr Says:

    Here are headlines you won’t read in almost any major American newspaper, hear on any of the evening news programs, or see in your Yahoo “news” feed:

    * Dow Hits 87 Record Closes Since Trump Elected

    * Texas Hero Was NRA Instructor

    * Dow Reaches Four 1,000 Point Milestones in One Year for the First Time Ever

    * ISIS on the Run, Almost Completely Destroyed

    * New Home Sales Highest in a Decade

    * Texas Hero Uses AR-15 to Save the Day

    * Dow Hits Two Streaks Lasting More Than Ten Days, First Time Since 1959

    * Trump Donates One Million Dollars of His Own Money to Hurricane Victims

    * U.S. Economy Gains Over Six Trillion in New Capital

    * U.S. Senator Viciously Attacked by Deranged Socialist Neighbor

    * U.S. Economy Grows at 3% for First Time Since Bush Administration

    * Unemployment Rate Lowest in 17 Years

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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