Sorry for the lack of posts this week. Been sick as a dog and barely able to keep a thought in my head. Which, sure, wouldn’t make the blog that much more different than usual. In my feverdreaming state, I honestly thought I read somewhere that the Trump budget cuts Meals with Wheels, but then, no one–and certainly no political party–could have that level of baseline meanness, right?
Next week we’ll be back with budget stuff, Great Lakes book reviews and budget cuts, an in-depth analysis of Butler’s run to the Sweet 16 (I hope) and more. But right now I just want to quickly mention the ridiculousness of the Trump administration publically accusing the British government of spying on Trump, based on Sean Spicer reading out loud something an idiot said on Fox.
The White House has assured No 10 that allegations British intelligence spied on Donald Trump will not be repeated, Theresa May’s spokesman has said.
The claim that GCHQ helped former president Barack Obama wiretap Trump during the 2016 election drew a rare denial by British intelligence officials after the White House press secretary, Sean Spicer, repeated it on Thursday.
Spicer quoted a claim by the Fox News analyst Andrew Napolitano that three intelligence sources confirmed to him that the Obama administration used GCHQ to spy on Trump so there would be “no American fingerprints on this”.
In its surprise public rebuttal, GCHQ described the allegation as “utterly ridiculous” and on Friday, the prime minister’s spokesman said the White House had told the British ambassador and the UK’s national security adviser that Spicer had been instructed not to repeat them.
A couple of things: one, we’re still basing policy and public declaration on what idiots say on Fox. Administrations tend to run from the top down, no matter how much we like to ascribe to the people President’s have around them. When the dude at the top is a paranoid TV-obsessed idiot, so is everyone else.
Two, this is just another example of how their TV-obsession and the grudge-fueled need to never be wrong on anything leads to chaos and disaster. Because they have to back up Trump’s insane claims, arguing at one point that his quotation marks were a sign of ignored subtlety, they will flail wildly to the point where they are accusing allies of crimes. That’s an insanely dangerous way to run things, but it is the heart of Trumpism. The boss’s petty pride is the top priority.
And that gets to the main point: I hope the GCHQ was spying on Trump. That is, I hope the Fox reports were right. It’s the job of intelligence agencies to monitor potential threats. A dangerous madman becoming the President of the United States is a major threat. They should be monitoring him.
But even if they are right about this, it’s a given. We monitor allies. We monitor threats. Trump being both, ostensibly, makes it an imperative to be monitored. But you don’t come out and say it. You don’t levy criminal accusations against your most important allies. You accept it as a price of doing business in a fallen world.
So Spicer saying this, and the reasons why he did so, really proved GCHQ correct. The Brits were right to do so. This is the world we are in.
Now, it’s St. Patrick’s Day, and my health is revived, so I am out in the world, and this was the last nice thing I’ll say about the British all day.