Cartoon Break (‘Wingman’)

Via Steve Sack

Wingman

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Context part 1

Context part 2

 

Full context

So former Goldman banker and preexisting condition that no insurance company will cover, Steve Bannon, wants the world to know that he is gone but not forgotten at 1600 Penn.

Bannon has of course returned to Breitbart, where he’s turned the populism knob to a Spinal Tap-ish “11” in what he insists is an effort to defend Trump from the status quo and the evil forces of globalism.

Of course really, he’s just pushing a repackaged version of the nationalist agenda we’ve all seen before, complete with the bigotry and xenophobic overtones. And happily, he gets to profit from it by virtue of his media arm, which is nice because as the folks who know the real Steve will tell you, “he just wants to make a buck.”

Well, in Bannon’s first extensive interview since John Kelly fired him he left the Trump administration of his own accord, Bannon tells Charlie Rose that he’s “going to be [Trump’s] wingman outside for the entire time so that his enemies know there’s no free shot on goal.”

Steve also wants you to know that he’s “a streetfighter.”

There are some fun soundbites from this patently absurd “discussion” excerpted below, but what matters for markets is probably the part where he tells Rose that Gary Cohn should have resigned following Charlottesville. To wit:

Bannon: You can tell him, “Hey, maybe you can do it a better way.” But if you’re gonna break, then resign. If you’re going to break with him, resign. The stuff that was leaked out that week by certain members of the White House I thought was unacceptable. If you find it unacceptable, you should resign.

Rose: So who are you talking about?

Bannon: I’m talking – obviously, about Gary Cohn and some other people. That if you don’t like what he’s doing and you don’t agree with it, you have an obligation to resign.

Rose: So Gary Cohn should have resigned?

Bannon: Absolutely.

Yes, “absolutely.” If you don’t like the fact that our unhinged geriatric President is being manipulated by a shrewd, scheming, angry bigot with political aspirations, then you “should have resigned.”

While we would “absolutely” agree with Steve in the sense that everyone “should have resigned” after Trump’s August press conference on Charlottesville, we would suggest that part of the reason a lot of people haven’t resigned is to try and keep Bannon’s ideas from becoming public policy – an eventuality which is still possible even with Steve back at Breitbart because as we noted last week, Trump sneaks around and calls him when John Kelly isn’t paying attention.

In any event, here are some super-fun excerpts from the CBS interview with a man who wants you to believe that the reason he had to become a populist “prophet” is because his dad lost everything on AT&T shares

Charlie Rose: So how do you want to be perceived, you today? Because you have a media image.

Steve Bannon: The media image I think is pretty accurate. I’m a street fighter.

Rose: You’re more than that.

Bannon: No, I think I’m – I think I’m – I’m a street fighter. … By the way, I think that’s why Donald Trump and I get along so well. Donald Trump’s a fighter. Great counter puncher. Great counter puncher. He’s a fighter. … I’m going to be his wing man outside for the entire time, to protect –

Rose: You will not be attacking Donald Trump?

Bannon: No, our – our purpose is to support Donald Trump. By the way –

Rose: – And destroy his enemies?

Bannon: To make sure his enemies know that there’s no free shot on goal. By the way, after the Charlottesville situation, that’s what I told [White House Chief of Staff] General [John] Kelly, I was the only guy that came out and tried to defend him. I was the only guy that said, “He’s talking about something, taking it up to a higher level.” Where does it all go? Where does this end? Does it end – does it end in taking down the Washington Monument? Does it end in taking down –

Rose: I tell you where many people suggest it should have gone, it should have gone in terms of denouncing specifically from the very beginning Neo-Nazis and white supremacists and people of that political view. And it should have gone there because those were people that Americans in World War II went to fight against and should have instantly have denounced them. And you didn’t at first instinct. In fact, you seemed to be doubling down in terms of a moral equivalency.

Bannon: What he was trying to say is that people that support the monument staying there peacefully and people that oppose that, that’s the normal course of – of First Amendment. But he’s talking about the Neo-Nazis and Neo-Confederates and the Klan, who, by the way, are absolutely awful – there’s no room in American politics for that. There’s no room in American society for that. … And all Donald Trump was saying is, “Where does it end? Does it end in taking down the Washington Monument? Does it end in taking down Mount Rushmore? Does it end at taking Churchill’s bust out of the Oval Office?” My problem – my problem, and I told General Kelly this – when you side with a man, you side with him. I was proud to come out and try to defend President Trump in the media that day.

Rose: And no exceptions in terms of siding with someone?

Bannon: You can tell him, “Hey, maybe you can do it a better way.” But if you’re gonna break, then resign. If you’re going to break with him, resign. The stuff that was leaked out that week by certain members of the White House I thought was unacceptable. If you find it unacceptable, you should resign.

Rose: So who are you talking about?

Bannon: I’m talking – obviously, about Gary Cohn and some other people. That if you don’t like what he’s doing and you don’t agree with it, you have an obligation to resign.

Rose: So Gary Cohn should have resigned?

Bannon: Absolutely.

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