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Stop staffing White House with ex-military

first_img“When a reporter pointed out just minutes ago that Kelly had gotten his facts wrong about this speech, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said one of the most shocking things I’ve ever heard from that podium – she suggested that journalists cannot question generals,” he said.“That’s not how we do it here in the United States.”But then, Trump has made destruction of democratic values and institutions a feature of his presidency.The press puts out “fake” news.The special prosecutor is on a witch hunt. The courts have no power to second-guess the president on the travel ban.It’s all part of Trump’s imperiousness and determination to delegitimize all independent sources of information and criticism.Kelly, rather than restrain these authoritarian impulses, fuels them. We don’t believe in the divine right of kings or the infallibility of military or civilian leaders.And Kelly, now in a civilian role, certainly should not be permitted to deploy his military service record, no matter how admirable that may have been, to deflect criticism and shut up the press.Kelly and Trump seem to actually have a lot in common.They both display disdain for the press and contempt for critics.Kelly rails at treatment of (“sacred”) women but enthusiastically serves a president who serially insults and abuses women.Rather than address criticism, Kelly and Trump both like to pull rank, treat critics as their lessers and react indignantly when anyone questions their motives.CNN’s Jake Tapper had it exactly right in his appearance Friday afternoon. Kelly deemed it appropriate to restrict questions to reporters with a connection to a Gold Star family, as if one group of Americans (and their readers and viewers) is more worthy than another.However, when White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders warned reporters not to criticize Kelly (or his slander of Wilson), the administration took on the creepy aura of a military junta. In defending his boss, White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly gratuitously attacked Rep. Frederica S. Wilson, D-Fla., derisively referred to her as being like “empty barrels,” misrepresented her conduct at a dedication of an FBI building and, even when film of the event showed his characterization to be utterly false, did not apologize. Conventional wisdom has been telling us that Kelly has created a more disciplined and effective White House.He’s supposed to be taking his shifts for supervision of an erratic, irrational president. I don’t see it.Since Kelly’s arrival, Trump has ignited explosive cultural confrontations, failed again to repeal Obamacare and looked thoroughly hapless in his inability to articulate or stick to any position for more than an hour or so.Trump blusters and threatens North Korea; he alarms European allies by threatening to trash the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.Trump under Kelly’s “day care” still has not filled a slew of top-level posts.Trump is not becoming more competent, more focused, more civil or more respectful of others under Kelly’s tutelage.In fact, he’s getting worse on all four counts.center_img The Washington Post reported:“Instead of backing down, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders piled on Friday and said Kelly was justified in accusing the lawmaker of grandstanding, despite erring on the facts. ‘As we say in the South: all hat, no cattle,’ Sanders said of Wilson, an African-American who is known for wearing brightly colored cowboy hats.“Sanders also attempted to shift the debate away from Kelly’s inaccuracies to instead focus on his personal integrity.“’If you want to get into a debate with a four-star Marine general, I think that that’s something highly inappropriate,’ she said.”No one in service of our country is beyond reproach or immune from criticism.Generals get criticized and every day must answer to politicians, who in turn are responsible to the public.(Trump, by the way, routinely demeaned generals – whom he claimed had been “reduced to rubble” – in the presidential campaign.) Categories: Editorial, Opinion Kelly’s eagerness to defend the president’s unconscionable behavior and Kelly’s own lack of respect for civilian politicians simply feed Trump’s demons.Kelly should be replaced by someone who actually understands democratic governance and can deliver bad news and honest criticism to the president.Going forward, Congress needs to stomp out creeping military authoritarianism.Congress should start by barring generals from acting in civilian capacities in the White House.Jennifer Rubin writes the RightTurn blog for The Washington Post, offering reported opinion from a conservative perspective.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homeslast_img read more

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Seek bipartisanship on Niskayuna board

first_imgIt was interesting to see the statements from the “victors” in the Niskayuna election. Yasmine Sayed said, “I might have been on the Republican line, but I plan to work with them (the Democrats) on a bipartisan basis.” Murphy McGraw said “ I’m prepared to lead the governing majority ( Democrats) on the Town Board. Everything we do requires a motion and resolution.”Questions. Who is willing to cross party lines and look out for the town’s best interests?And will the “invisible” hand of Joe Landry still be controlling the Town Board?Jim Vincent NiskayunaMore from The Daily Gazette:Puccioni’s two goals help Niskayuna boys’ soccer top Shaker, remain perfectFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motorists Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinionlast_img read more

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South Hampshire retail

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Canary Wharf value soars after hyperactive half-year

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Criterion goes Euro

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Brighton retail: A regal buy prompts shake-up

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Niche market

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Spec on the horizon

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Civil service cull will not mean a property bonanza

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Walt Disney’s Iger steps down as CEO, parks head Chapek to take reins

first_imgAnalysts on the call, as well as two former employees Reuters interviewed, questioned if Chapek had sufficient experience in the entertainment business. The former employees expressed surprise that Kevin Mayer, chairman of Direct-to-Consumer and International, was not named to the top job, especially after the roll-out of the Disney+ streaming service, which attracted 10 million sign-ups in its first day.In Chapek’s new role, which is effective immediately, the company said he will directly oversee all of Disney’s business segments and corporate functions.As chairman of Disney theme parks division, Chapek oversaw Disney’s largest business segment, including the opening of Disney’s first theme park and resort in mainland China and the creation of the new Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge lands at Disneyland and Walt Disney World. He joined Disney in 1993.Read also: Global box office has biggest ever year thanks to Disney mega-hitsChapek “did a great job of growing the home entertainment business and built consumer products at Disney,” said Michael Wolf, founder of Activate, a technology and strategy consulting firm. “Bob is one of the best managers in the entertainment business. And not a lot of people know about him.”Iger, who has been CEO since 2005, built up the Disney brand through a series of acquisitions, including animation studio Pixar in 2006, Marvel in 2009, and “Star Wars” franchise owner Lucasfilm in 2012. His biggest bet was the purchase of 21st Century Fox, a deal that was instrumental in launching Disney+.Shares of Disney, which ended the day down 3.6 percent, fell another 2.2 percent after the markets closed. Walt Disney Co’s Robert Iger will step down as chief executive officer, handing the reins to Disney Parks head Bob Chapek, the company said on Tuesday, ending years of speculation on who will take over Hollywood’s most powerful studio.Iger is still keeping a significant role at the company. He will assume the post of executive chairman and direct the company’s “creative endeavors” until his contract ends on Dec. 31, 2021, Disney said.“The company has gotten larger and more complex just in the recent 12 months,” Iger said on a conference call on Tuesday, citing its purchase of 21st Century Fox and launch of direct-to-consumer services such as Disney+ last year. Read also: Disney fund names West Kalimantan woman environmental hero“I felt that with the asset bases in place and with our strategy deployed I should be spending as much time as possible on the creative side of our business.”Chapek, who will be the seventh CEO in the company’s nearly 100-year history, has most recently served as the chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products. Chapek will report to Iger.Walt Disney Parks and Resorts chairman Bob Chapek. (Reuters/Tyrone Siu)center_img Topics :last_img read more

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