Thursday, October 10, 2019

The Snake Pit: The National Security Council

You may have read the story last week that President Trump has ordered "a substantial reduction in the staff of the National Security Council". Larry Johnson views this as good news, and high time--Empty Desks at the NSC. As usual, there's more than meets the eye. Without a very determined President the Deep State expands relentlessly, spreading its tentacle into every corner of the decision making organs of government:

Looks like President Trump finally realizes that he is working in a snake pit. When he took office on January 20, 2017, he left an enormous cadre of Obama/Hillary sycophants in place. He could have (and should have) moved them out and reassigned them to the bureaucratic equivalent of Siberia. But he did not. ... 
Under President Obama the number of CIA officers "detailed" for temporary duty at the National Security Council swelled to around 200. That makes for an enormous number of bodies walking the halls of the Old Executive Office Building. When Donald Trump was inaugurated the CIA boosted the number to closer to 300. Gone are the old days when CIA officers eschewed partisan politics and focused on serving the elected President. The current crew is heavily politicized and most have an anti-Trump bias. 
Starting last week President Trump began shedding CIA detailees. ... 
If you get a chance to visit the OEOB their are lots of empty, unoccupied desks this week. This is not a temporary change. It is a long overdue move. President Trump finally realizes he is surrounded by partisan seditionists and is eliminating their access and influence. About time.

That's the good news. The bad news is that this reduction in staff will occur by attrition, as Time reports:

The reductions will primarily be carried out through attrition, as staffers return from assignments at the NSC to their home agencies, the people said. Many people who work at the council are career government professionals detailed from the Pentagon, State Department, and intelligence agencies.

My view is that this is happening too late in the life of this administration, and is taking place too slowly.


  1. I agree entirely. I know he didn't get this right off, he came from a world where people were by and large honest, and I know he had trouble recruiting good people. But this shedding by attrition is close to worthless.

    He should have reduced CIA numbers in this redoubt to 10, in one fell swoop,like snapping his fingers. These people, all of them, despise him.

    I really don't understand why he is doing it this way. By the time the election rolls around there will still be 289 CIA spies in place @ the White House.

    1. Totally agree. Despite his rhetoric, he clearly didn't come in with the team that could clean house for him and ensure that he had a loyal supporting staff that would implement his policies.

    2. Mark, Titan: my view is your view. On steroids.

    3. In the President’s defense, he came into The Swamp and its longstanding and large cabals from a corporate business empire based in New York. He didn’t know the players and those who did gave him bad advice. Condi Rice recommended McMasters, Mattis and maybe a few others in that area. Reince Priebus was a less than brilliant Chief of Staff who surely hired many of the early Trump WH staff. Jeff Sessions was a forever Senator who knew the Capitol and probably not much more. And so on. So it has been trial and error during a time when the Swamp alligators, cheered on if not actually lead by Barack Obama, were in full hostility mode. NYC is no ladies garden party, but DC is feral to the max.

      So, as Bubba Clinton once aid, “Mistakes were made”.

      It doesn’t help that some of these so-called “career employees” have roots that go to the middle of the earth that cannot be just summarily pulled out. Some sort of job protection. Are they all Civil Service? That should change. In the meantime, how about sending a number of these traitors to flyover country… or Puerto Rico? Give them reassignments that are quite different from their usual specialties, move them downstairs, down a back hall and around a corner (figuratively speaking). There has to be some way...

    4. I understand. I think he gave these people the benefit of the doubt--that they would pull together to MAGA.

    5. I agree. I believe it is his management style to give the benefit of the doubt to those who come well-recommended. He also seems to be surgical when they don’t work out or prove to be less than loyal. I believe there are just so many of these entrenched “career” types that just ferreting them out could be a monumental task while there is other business needing to be done. He bit off a big chunk. I believe he also knew it would not be easy. He believed - believes - that he and the American people will prevail. I’ve been around a while and have never seen anyone who was stronger or more committed to our country and its people. He is indeed a patriot. MAGA!!! and KAG!!!

      Thanks, Mark, for giving us your excellent forum. I look forward to seeing your latest post(s)...

    6. He wanted to believe, like most of us, that their was some flicker of honor and decency left in these denizens of Darkness.
      If the last 3 years have done nothing else at least reasonable Americans have been permanently cured of such wishful thinking. We will never view an agent of Gov't so naively again.
      Tom S.

    7. I've read more than one place that despite his "You're fired!" TV persona, Trump actually doesn't like to fire people.

      Tx, Bebe.