Lion of the Blogosphere

Bannon, Kushner, and the two Captain Kirks

Does anyone remember the Star Trek episode in which a transporter malfunction splits Captain Kirk into two, the good half and the bad half? At first, everyone assumes that the good half is the real Kirk, but eventually Spock realizes that without both halves, Captain Kirk can’t be the captain because the bad half provides Kirk with a lot of critical leadership attributes. Spock is able to save Kirk by jury-rigging the transporter to reunite the two halves.

It’s the same thing with Bannon and Kushner. There are some people from the alt-right who think that Bannon is the real Trump and Kushner is an annoyance that Trump needs to get rid of. But actually, Trump needs Kushner a lot. Kushner has been instrumental in making Trump a more effective candidate and now a more effective President. It’s unfortunate that Kushner’s policy beliefs are closer to Hillary Clinton than to Bannon, but Kushner performs a critical role in the administration that no one else can fill.

Thus it’s essential that a Spock comes along really soon and gets Bannon and Kushner to be on the same team. Could Reince Priebus be Spock?

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

April 8, 2017 at 12:14 pm

Posted in Politics

65 Responses

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  1. This is total nonsense. Kushner is a dim little shit from a crooked family. The only people cheer-leading him are people who didn’t vote for Trump, and the occasional statistically irrelevant misfit from places like NYC such as yourself. It doesn’t matter what these people think and everything about Kushner is objectively horrible. If you even think he’s good optics you are so out of touch you might as well hang up your analyst hat.


    April 8, 2017 at 1:17 pm

    • Bannon is an Irishman, and Kushner is Jewish. That’s alcohol and a bagel. Not a very good combination!


      April 8, 2017 at 4:38 pm

    • Agreed. Ivanka and her husband are terrible influences on Trump.

      Whenever Trump inserts something stupid and incongruous (about empowering women entrepreneurs, for example) into a speech about something else, then you can be sure that Ivanka is behind it.


      April 9, 2017 at 5:33 pm

  2. I agree we need the whole Trump team. I do believe there is a power struggle between team Kushner and team Bannon, but that is probably for the best.

    Remember that the Bannon/Miller/Coulter wing has been wrong about a few things:

    1. The original Muslim ban. It was just poorly done and created awful optics. The 2nd ban was done well.
    2. They wanted to repeal DACA, which would have been idiotic.
    3. Bannon’s general desire to just blow everything up, which I agree with, doesn’t really work when you need to keep the whole Republican coalition together.

    To me, Trump has done 2 really bad things: 1. Lifting the cap on refugee visas; and 2. Supporting RyanCare.

    Those two things aside, I really feel like Trump is growing into the office. It will probably take a year for Trump’s numbers to recover from the RyanCare debacle but he already has his first SC Justice, the Muslim ban should be re-established soon and funding for the Wall should be passed soon as well.

    Otis the Sweaty

    April 8, 2017 at 1:26 pm

    • “They wanted to repeal DACA, which would have been idiotic.”

      I think Bannon actually did not want to do this, or at least doesn’t think it would be prudent.


      April 8, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    • Why is repealing DACA idiotic? Trump maintaining DACA means that in practice the Trump admin is to the left of W and Obama’s first term. During that time no illegal aliens recieved work permits.

      DACA qualifiers will generally be at the bottom of the deportation priority, but that does not mean they should be getting work permits which is what DACA does.

      There is also the little fact that DACA is unconstitutional, regardless of its policy merits.


      April 8, 2017 at 3:10 pm

      • There’s no need to spend political capital on DACA. Just let the permits expire and repeal it after they’re gone.


        April 8, 2017 at 3:33 pm

      • Didn’t they all learn you back in elementary school English that you should avoid acronyms in prose. Because of your lapse I had to click open a whole other window and lookup what DACA represents.


        April 8, 2017 at 5:55 pm

      • There’s no need to spend political capital on DACA. Just let the permits expire and repeal it after they’re gone.

        They’re still issuing new permits.

        Dave Pinsen

        April 8, 2017 at 9:42 pm

      • At this point, DACA isn’t worth the political fight. They are the most sympathetic of the illegals as far as the media is concerned, so it’s probably better to wait on handling the program. Plus, it could be useful as a bargaining chip down the line.

        Mike Street Station

        April 9, 2017 at 10:31 am

    • The great thing about Kushner is that he alienates the alt-right. I’m thinking like Otis now, LOL.

      Agree w/destructure, Mike, et al about DACA. But where’s that dayum wall I heard so much about during the campaign?

      And where is the molten lava to be poured into the tunnels built by the drug cartels? Otis wants to crush the immigrant community, I want to crush the drug cartels, at least, I the US.


      April 10, 2017 at 3:15 pm

      • The great thing about Kushner is that he alienates the alt-right.

        Right because Kushner is a liberal Democrat spoiled rich kid who married the daughter of a rich guy who lucked out and won the presidency.

        The alt-right doesn’t have a problem with the middle class conservative Jewish kid from LA Steven Miller.

        Notice the difference?


        April 10, 2017 at 5:00 pm

      • I’ll be honest, I don’t really care much about the wall. It can be a fence or a moat for all I care. I do believe we need an actual physical barrier, but whatever we get it’s worth paying for even if the Mexicans won’t.

        Mike Street Station

        April 11, 2017 at 7:41 am

  3. Lion, love how you illustrated this idea.
    Have a good weekend.


    April 8, 2017 at 1:33 pm

  4. Obviously, this assumes that the news of a rift isn’t just the media stirring things.

    That said, they don’t need to be on the same thing. They need to be in equilibrium, each just powerful enough to counteract each other from their worst impulses.


    April 8, 2017 at 1:34 pm

    • You’re definitely right that I wouldn’t want either one to get entirely his way. Although both of them, especially Kushner, are still kind of a mystery.


      April 8, 2017 at 7:31 pm

  5. Nice analogy. I’m not sure why the alt-right is hyperventilating over this action. After all, Trump said he would be a strong leader, and this shows him as such. It also gets the Dems to move on from their “denial” stage, which has kept them in the Trump/Putin collaboration talking points loop. And it has many positive knock-on effects as well.

    We KNEW Ivanka and Kushner were not pure conservatives (LOL). We knew they had (have) Trump’s ear.

    So he’s not a fully committed alt-right. What? You would have preferred Clinton?

    Trump has clearly said he wants to get Democratic support. Did you think that was just words?

    Trump is a peculiar, indefinable mixture of conservative, (classic) liberal, and independent. Be prepared for surprises now the log-jam of Trump/Putin nonsense has been (pretty much) superceded.


    April 8, 2017 at 1:42 pm

    • I’ve been surprised by how many humorless, melodramatic dorks Trump had in the movement. It’s like they all thought he was Pat Buchanan or something until last week.

      Two in the Bush

      April 8, 2017 at 2:49 pm

      • What’s melodramatic about wanting to disengage from the muslim world?

        Explainer 21

        April 8, 2017 at 5:03 pm

    • No, Trump is not really trying to get Democrats. His big fall from 50 to 35% approval was him losing the support of the Reagan dems and the WWC who won him the election. The health care bill was a disaster and the largest part of it.

      Trump and Kushner are both basically mediocre brains and selfish people who inherited huge amounts of money. Bannon by contrast is a brilliant guy who has built one success after another and actually got Trump elected.

      We really do not know why Trump appointed a nearly all Paul Ryany cabinet and pushed Ryan’s health care bill. It certainly was not Bannon, but why would Jared and Ivanka push Ryanism?


      April 8, 2017 at 3:20 pm

      • “His big fall from 50 to 35% approval was him losing the support of the Reagan dems and the WWC who won him the election”

        Citation needed

        Trump never crossed 50% DURING the election.


        April 8, 2017 at 4:11 pm

      • There are two very different sets of approval rating polls: those of likely voters and those of all adults. The people that don’t heavily support democrats so the two numbers differ quite starkly.


        April 8, 2017 at 7:17 pm

      • the people that don’t vote heavily support democrats


        April 8, 2017 at 7:18 pm

    • Trump has clearly said he wants to get Democratic support. Did you think that was just words?

      Why won’t he reach out to the antiestablishment bernie sanders wing then? Cheap healthcare, and cheap college would both help Trumps white working class supporters. And anti immigration could easily be sold to economic liberals. And they both already agree on trade.


      April 8, 2017 at 7:16 pm

      • Because he will have no truck with the socialist wing. They are not the Dems he’s going to peel off, though he may attract a few of the more sensible ones (if indeed thats not a contradiction in terms).


        April 9, 2017 at 1:43 am

  6. Reuters reporting they’ve already buried the hatchet:

    Once again, The Lion writes tomorrow’s headlines today!

    Two in the Bush

    April 8, 2017 at 1:53 pm

  7. Everyone missed what exactly happened. He’s tired of being made fun of on Saturday Night Live. Ivanka is in the White House now. He’s now just going to do what she tells him to. She’s the power. Her and Jared have been playin everyone the whole time.

    A Reader

    April 8, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    • He’s also really unpopular among the general populace not just to the SNL writers.


      April 9, 2017 at 1:59 am

  8. You know, İvanka sort of sounds like a StarTrek name.

    Ice Hole

    April 8, 2017 at 2:36 pm

  9. What are your thoughts about Gary Cohn???


    April 8, 2017 at 3:00 pm

    • Sounds like a cross between Gary Carter who was a catcher for the 1986 Mets, and David Cone who was a pitcher for the 1986 Mets.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      April 8, 2017 at 3:11 pm

      • I never pegged you for a sports guy.


        April 8, 2017 at 3:26 pm

      • I stopped being a sports fan after the Mets traded Lenny Dykstra.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        April 8, 2017 at 3:57 pm

      • Cone was not on the ’86 Mets. 1988.

        Explainer 21

        April 8, 2017 at 5:04 pm

      • Oh no, I must be going senile.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        April 8, 2017 at 6:15 pm

      • >> I stopped being a sports fan after the Mets traded Lenny Dykstra.

        Lenny Dykstra is a horrible human being.


        April 8, 2017 at 5:57 pm

      • But he was a great baseball player. And a better human being than Darryl Strawberry.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        April 8, 2017 at 6:20 pm

      • Gary Cohen has been a Mets broadcaster since 1989.


        April 9, 2017 at 10:16 am

    • He is a large prole Jew from Cleveland (6-3 and 220lbs) with dyslexia. Attended American U. Ended up as the #2 man at Goldman Sachs after working his way up trading commodities. Father was an electrician.


      April 8, 2017 at 4:05 pm

    • >>What are your thoughts about Gary Cohn???

      Truth is, Trump is insecure. Notwithstanding his Wharton degree he knows that if he were fresh out of college today he would never get hired by Goldman Sachs. He wouldn’t even get into Wharton today. He believes that the Goldman Sachs crowd are all smarter than him, and he is right, but that is irrelevant to his responsibility, to his vows to look out for the interests of America and the American people. Trump thinks that associating with smart people makes himself look smart. It doesn’t. Associating with such smart and cunning people simply highlights Trump’s deficiencies, and they are running circles around him.

      Those of us who voted for Trump didn’t do so because of his smarts. We did so so that he would cut through liberal cant and bullshit and do what is right for America. The death of Wall Street and global finance, as we now know it, is in America’s interests. If I were in Trump’s shoes I would be waging an undeclared war to the death against Goldman Sachsers and all Wall Streeters. Trumps not the one to do that. He wants the respect, admiration and affection of these people. Still, he was a better choice than Hilary.


      April 8, 2017 at 6:09 pm

      • “Trump thinks that associating with smart people makes himself look smart. It doesn’t.”

        Interesting. One of Trump’s strengths is finding the best person for the job, and holding that person responsible if he/she doesn’t do a phenomenal job. The fact that many of his cabinet appointees probably have an IQ at least 1SD above his, doesn’t seem to have stopped him from appointing them. It’s why he has the smartest and best cabinet in like, forever.

        That’s not only smart, it’s wise. Associating with, and hiring, smart people, IS indubitably a smart move for/by Trump, whether or not it LOOKS smart.

        Give the man his due.


        April 9, 2017 at 2:11 am

      • >It’s why he has the smartest and best cabinet in like, forever.

        JFK and Lyndon Johnson both had smarter cabinets and subordinates than Trump, way smarter, and they brought us the debacle of Vietnam.

        If Trump really wants the best out of advisors he has to be as ruthless as Abraham Lincoln was in commanding the civil war. Lincoln quickly tired of foot-dragging, excuse-making generals and fired them all until he found the right man in Grant who was eager and confident in taking the fight to Robert E. Lee. Lincoln didn’t give one damn about approval ratings he just wanted to win the war, and win it fast. Lincoln would never allow these Wall Street gargoyles around him.


        April 9, 2017 at 6:28 pm

  10. Lion, your Captain Kirk analogy is good if you were talking about Bannon & Priebus, but Kushner is pushing both ban on and Priebus out!

    Kushner is the son of a crook responsible for pushing “Sex and the City” on the world. He would never be near power save for nepotism. He has nothing in common with the people who voted for Trump and probably sees them as class enemies.


    April 8, 2017 at 3:20 pm

    • Kushner also owns several tenement lots in the East Village, now in vogue with SWPLs.


      April 8, 2017 at 5:34 pm

      • Never trust a man named Jared.

        Paul Ryan's Sickly Old Lapdog

        April 9, 2017 at 10:56 am

  11. A house divided against itself cannot stand. Trump gets enough counterarguments from the media. He doesn’t need to bring more into the White House. I understand the logic of listening to liberals, but that’s only because it’sa good way to create stronger arguments to defeat them. Trump actually intends to take their advice! How is his administration going to get anything done when they don’t even know what they want to do? Either Ivanka and Jared need to go so the house can stand. Or Miller and Bannon need to go. I hope Trump chooses Miller and Bannon.


    April 8, 2017 at 7:32 pm

    • “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”

      Except when it can. Read the Trump/Steinbrenner connection. Trump thrives on this stuff.


      April 9, 2017 at 2:14 am

  12. Trump needs a Kirk on the same level of Bannon and Kirshner advising him that is a Christian ethno-nationalist. It’s a perfectly reasonable and moral position shared by most American leaders throughout American history. It should be represented in Trump’s circle.

    Andrew E.

    April 8, 2017 at 11:35 pm

  13. I never particularly saw what Kushner was good for (crossing the aisle isn’t useful in this day and age of polarization), but he can’t get rid of him without forcing Ivanka to divorce him (which could backfire badly).


    April 9, 2017 at 12:27 am

    • True. Also Jared was very helpful in getting trump elected supposedly (High tech analytics pay at the margins).

      It’s almost 100% certain though that kushner was only doing it out of family interest and not because he cares about the working and middle classes.

      Who knows? Maybe kushner knows he is a mediocrity and just wanted revenge against the striver upper middles who mocked him at Harvard.

      Paul Ryan's Sickly Old Lapdog

      April 9, 2017 at 10:59 am

    • If news reports are to be believed, Kushner is good at analyzing data, and he was the guy who was behind Trump’s final sprint in PA, WI and MI, which netted him the 110K votes and EC votes that sealed the victory. If Hillary had had a Kushner pushing her to compete in those areas, we would be discussing a Hillary presidency, and just think about how horrible that would be.

      Really: think about it. I would be seriously reviewing emigration options. Not kidding. Imagine having the pussy hate brigade sneering and preening and boasting 24/7.

      Good riddance to those who are deserting Trump over a shitty little cruise missile strike.

      (Not a lot of talk about Trump’s whopping win in OH, which he took by 8%.)


      April 9, 2017 at 2:31 pm

  14. Kushner’s Democrat/convicted felon father paid Harvard 2.5 million to accept his spawn, even though his HS grades were poor and his SATs low. Dude majored in Sociology. That should say it all. I think even the journalism majors had higher standards. This little nitwit and bimbo daughter are now advising Trump?!

    Walter Jeffords

    April 9, 2017 at 11:43 am

    • “Jared Kushner is dumb” is based on one MSM article. But do you REALLY trust the MSM? I don’t.

      Kushner appears smart to me, and Trump trusts him.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      April 9, 2017 at 2:58 pm

  15. Kushner makes Trump a lot more like Hillary, which is unfortunate, but good, because of a Star Trek analogy. I think I am going to stick with the alt right on this one.


    April 9, 2017 at 6:18 pm

    • Kushner has been by Trump’s side this entire time. Can the alt right explain why he’s only started “making him like Hillary” now


      April 9, 2017 at 7:13 pm

    • Kushner has been by Trump’s side this entire time. Can the alt right explain why he’s only started “making him like Hillary” now

      Jared and Ivanka tried to “normalize” him during the campaign but Trump always reverted back to his old self.

      I doubt Trump will alter his immigration or trade policies since he was most vehement about them during the campaign before Bannon joined on – which I believe was sometime in the Fall. Trump was already a nationalist without Bannon serving as an adviser.

      Trump is the real champion of Trumpism, not Bannon.

      Kushner’s portfolio, also, deals more with reforming government than trade or immigration. Bannon should be able like Sessions, Miller, Conway, and others to persuade Trump to keep to his core policies without trying to stupidly win a leak war with Kushner that Bannon can’t possibly win.

      Even though Kushner can’t realistically be fired he is inexperienced enough that Trump can be persuaded to ignore his and Ivanka’s advice on particular issues like Trump did during the campaign if other advisers give coherent policy arguments internally.

      But Bannon shouldn’t be taking internal policy debates public and personally like he is now.

      The Undiscovered Jew

      April 9, 2017 at 11:51 pm

      • I agree, Kushner is taking us in the direction we need to go.

        The Dems have become the lockstep party and the Republicans are now the disorganized, big tent. To get anything done, Trump needs to be able to work with all parts of the coalition. Kushner can get us there, Bannon can’t.

        Otis the Sweaty

        April 10, 2017 at 7:56 am

      • I’m not sure what to believe and what not to believe.

        And in this entire discussion, not one mention of Rex Tillerson.

        He’s the Secretary of State!


        April 10, 2017 at 11:59 am

      • I agree, Kushner is taking us in the direction we need to go.

        Oh I wouldn’t go that far. I’m just pointing out that his history with the campaign suggests he isn’t able to dictate how Trump operates.

        I agree Kushner could be useful streamlining how the White House administration operates, and that’s what his portfolio covers now.

        Bannon is more suitable in a role as a political and media strategist instead of trying to run paperwork for the White House because he is not used to working in Washington and is the opposite of diplomatic. The rollout of the first travel ban got him in trouble (though that wasn’t entirely his fault since Sessions was not yet confirmed). When he took part in the negotiations over the health bill he angered the Freedom Caucus, which thought Bannon would take their side, by offering Ryan’s legislation as a take it or leave it proposition.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        April 10, 2017 at 6:17 pm

  16. Jared is only where he is right now because he is useful to Trump. I do not buy the idea that he is somehow untouchable just because he married his daughter. Trump knows what is at stake here. Trump fired his own brother from the Trump Organization back in the 1980’s when he became bad for business. Don’t think he wouldn’t get rid of Jared too if he had too.


    April 10, 2017 at 7:20 pm

    • I do not buy the idea that he is somehow untouchable just because he married his daughter.

      Trump has options short of firing Kushner if he isn’t pleased with his performance. He could reduce or change his portfolio within the White House if needed.

      If he were inclined to just do whatever Ivanka and Kushner wanted him to do he would have moved to the center on Nationalism after he won the nomination. So Kushner is protected but Trump is still the one ultimately calling the shots.

      The Undiscovered Jew

      April 10, 2017 at 9:02 pm

  17. Here is another theory: I have observed over the last few weeks that Trump is delegating an enormous amount of responsibility to Jared. He is becoming the “Secretary of Everything”. Now, Trump is a good enough manager to know that having too much on ones plate is not a recipe for success. Could Trump already realize that Kushner is a liability and is setting him up for failure?


    April 10, 2017 at 7:35 pm

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