Ethic Hero: Former White House Chief Of Staff Mick Mulvaney

Mick M

Mulvaney resigned in the wake of yesterday’s lunacy, saying “I can’t stay here…It doesn’t affect the transition. But it’s what I’ve got… And I wouldn’t be surprised to see more of my friends resign over the course of the next 24-48 hours.Those who choose to stay, and I have talked with some of them, are choosing to stay because they’re worried the president might put someone worse in.”

His current position is as a special envoy to Northern Ireland—not exactly a crucial cog— and he only had a few months left in the role at best. Still, this is the principled way to show disapproval of one’s own administration’s conduct. It will be interesting to see if his prediction of further resignations comes true.

Even Trump’s most ardent defenders have to concede that the President asks a lot of those under him, and often expects them to accept outright abuse. I won’t miss the workplace chaos that this management style brought to the White House; nobody will.

High level public resignations—higher level than Mulvaney’s, frankly—would benefit the Republic in general if they became commonplace tools to hold Presidents publicly accountable for misconduct.

Maybe Mulvaney can create a new “norm.” I hope so, but will not be holding my breath.

22 thoughts on “Ethic Hero: Former White House Chief Of Staff Mick Mulvaney

  1. This late in the game. I would tend to be at least a bit skeptical about the motives behind this sort of move, and even more so when done by someone in a relatively minor position where little to nothing will really be affected by it. It may be a cynical take, but it seems all too likely that in Washingtonworld this could just be a CYA sort of thing to ensure future prospects. “Yeah, I served Trump, but I nobly resigned in protest against his __________ (policies/actions/attitudes/insanity….).

  2. I suspect high level resignations at this point are a means to insulate oneself against the expected tar an feathering of anyone in Trump’s orbit. I see it as a form of virtue signaling. There is no downside risk. No one becomes a hero when they incur no risk to themselves.

    We know that the media has already decided that any person at the rally were law breakers. We know that even here there is a rush to judgement.

    There will be no defense for anyone that even suggests the idea that maybe we should wait and require transparency in evaluating evidence. I know that some will immediately equate a demand for judicious evaluation of facts as no different than Nazis blaming communists. I am hearing in the MSM that those regaining power should create lists of those supporting Trump or his policies and neuter them socially and economically. Where is Lunch Bucket Joe’s condemnation of that. Economic or social ostracization is a form of violence.

    Even Adam Kinzinger is talking invoking 25th amendment. The Republicans have lost me as a voter yet I am diametrically opposed to the Democrats victimization strategy. Whether I ever vote again will be determined by the candidate.

    I see no real allegience to the Constitution. For many it is merely a tool to reduce liberty for others in the courts.

    The world is a cesspool of greedy bastards who seek power. This characterization applies to the rich and poor alike. I don’t hold the President to any higher standard than I hold myself or anyone else. To pretend the President should be held to higher standards is just an excuse to lower ones own standards.

    When I start seeing discussions on what various groups can do themselves to foster unity and inclusion of other groups instead of groups demanding others change so as to improve their own comfort level I might begin to see the world differently. I won’t hold my breath.

    I am done trying.

    • There’s a hole in the world like a great black pit
      And the vermin of the world inhabit it
      And it’s morals aren’t worth what a pig can spit
      And it goes by the name of Washington

      At the top of the hole sit the privileged few
      Making mock of the vermin in the lower zoo
      Turning beauty into filth and greed
      I too have sailed the world and seen its wonders
      For the cruelty of men is as wondrous as Peru
      But there’s no place like Washington

      (from Sweeney Todd, with a few changes)

  3. I completely agree that one should resign before going public with criticism, but in this case I’m not sure it’s all that heroic. It’s sort of an acknowledgement that the job you’re doing is not important enough to benefit from continuity for a couple of more weeks until your term is up. It looks like he’d rather signal to the incoming powers and the entrenched Republican elite that he wasn’t really a Trump guy after all, and he needs a soft spot to land. There’s not much personal sacrifice involved when you can walk out the door and into high-paying a Wall Street or Beltway job as I predict he will. Just another politico playing CYA. I know I’m being cynical but cynicism is warranted with these people.

    • But Jim, that is always an argument that can be made to diminish any protest resignation. It’s still the right thing to do in such a circumstance You can’t criticize from the post (or shouldn’t), and staying says, “I’m OK with it, as long as my check comes on time!”

  4. My niece was at the ellipse yesterday and did nothing wrong but she and over 74 million people were cast as foolish players at best and treasonous insurrectionists by many because of the acts of probably fewer than 500 idiots.
    Most of the people at the rally are the ones going to work, paying taxes, and trying to be good citizens. For the vast majority this is a first for them; they got involved in political events. We complain about voter apathy and vote ignorance but if they don’t protest in a manner that relieves the rulers of any discomfort we ridicule and condemn them. If 40% of the public feels the election was not on the up and up and no one is giving guidance on the best course of action how should they get their concerns heard? The courts used procedural reasons to dismiss cases.
    Tell me, how does one learn how to be effective protesters? It seems CNN has been broadcasting instructional videos all last year.

    Had any court allowed an adjudication of evidence instead of claiming no standing it can be argued that the pressure would have been relieved. Placing virtually all of the blame on one person is short sighted and will not lead to unity.

    The rally was not sedition nor an insurrection. It was more peaceful than when 1600 Pennsylvania Ave was attacked by activists where dozens of secret service officers were hospitalized because of projectiles and incendiary rockets. No doubt this rally had a relatively small group that succumbed to mob psychology but in terms of injuries and property damage how does yesterday compare to similar events last summer. Without comparisons we cannot establish the relative severity of the incursion into the Capitol. Or, does a bunch of hooligans running amuck in the Capitol warrant greater charges than the burning and looting of local businesses?

    As for my statement about rush to judgment, in an earlier post I wrote we need more information that allow us to ID perpetrators before we start attaching labels.

    Despite condemning the violence I was attacked as using Nazi tactics to scapegoat another group when I wrote “For all I know, it could have been anarchists attacking the Capitol” . The point was that we do not have full information on what happened and by whom so let us not assign guilt yet. The media and politicians are convicting 75 million Trump supporters as insurrectionists. Look how many are seeking to cancel those with whom they disagree. Ask Corey Bush who wants every Republican removed from office. Ask Joe Scarborough why he wants the Trumps and Gulliani arrested.

    I don’t need to subject myself to Valkygrrl]s incessant Hitler comparisons or telling me to gargle with a box of dicks. I have tried to keep it civil but I lost my temper today. Life is too short to continue allowing others to associate me with Nazis. My brother did it on Facebook and I no longer consider him family. I don’t need it here.

    • 1. Valky was trolling. The urge to gloat is not an attractive one.
      2. Surely, after the Big Lie on this topic and after the AUC has tarred Trump and anyone who doesn’t fall into lockstep with the “resistance” as Nazis, one more cheap shot can’t bother you that much, can it? You must have built up some immunity by now.
      3. You know this can’t be “safe space” for any single point of view and still be a useful forum, right?
      4. Did Valky use the box/bowl/bag of dicks thing again? I missed it. Boy, Ablative Meatshield’s legacy lingers on…

      • Jack,
        your point 2. You made an unwarranted assumption. My last name has been subject to claims of being a Nazi my entire life. I am sick of it. Imagine your disgust if you were an Iranian and your are subject to being called a terrorist. How many times has everyone been condemned for such associative thinking. Unfortunately I no longer feel that I can add a perspective without a troll as you call them label me a Fascist. For me that is a bridge too far. Would you allow a troll to label someone a nigger or or Kike? I would think not. For me, Nazi or fascist is the equivalent.

        After my brother, who is also a tenured professor at the local community college where I had been an administrator, wrote a Facebook comment about me espousing Nazi ideas when I suggested using the Hawaiian Islands as a secure location to temporarily house border crossers until their hearings so they could not merely melt away into the populace, even my former assistant will not acknowledge me in the grocery store – (the association to my idea was with the pre war Madagascar plan to strip the citizenship and relocate European Jewry to Madagascar.) I am sure he gained points at HCC for being strong to call out his older conservative brother and his knowledge of National Socialist Workers Party ideas. For that, I avoid him like the plague.

        I don’t expect anywhere ideas are exchanged to be a safe space for ideas but the personal attacks are unwarranted and do not further the discussions. People can challenge my opinions and ideas all day long but character assassination brings discourse to an abrupt halt. Ordinarily, I let the vulgar comments roll off my back as I have done several times here. I don’t believe vulgarity adds to understanding and when I resort to it to make my point I know that I am not be holding myself to the standards I have set for myself so I must limit if not end my involvement in the discussions.

        You have a lot of great minds here and I am including you in that characterization. John Burger, Other Bill, Michael(s) Erjecito and West and so many others have helped shaped my thinking on many issues. It is your site and you can moderate as you see fit. I am simply resigning myself to readership from here on out. Valky wins in silencing her opposition because I am taking the course of action that you recommended for Trump; suck it up and concede. So I will concede the floor to her. I hope she is happy with the outcome.

        • For some reason associating a German-American with the Nazis, or an Italian-American like myself with organized crime, or an Irish-American (which heritage I also share) with being drunk all the time, or a Polish-American with just not getting it (remember in the 1970s EVERYTHING was “Dumb Polak?”) are all considered perfectly OK. But, poke fun at an African-American using ghetto stereotypes, and that’s not ok. Poke fun at a Jewish-American and say he’s a cheap bastard with a huge nose and that’s horrible. Poke fun at an Arab-American and say he’s a terrorist, and that’s going to really send the left into a case of the vapors.

          Welcome to the new Amerika.

        • Making light of your name and applying the tongue-in-cheek honorific Herr to it was wrong. There is absolutely no excuse for it. I apologize completely and without reservation.

          Referring to you as a fucking fashie was wrong, insulting, dishonorable and outside of the behavior I would expect of myself or anyone I deigned to speak to. There is no excuse for my actions and I apologize completely and without reservation.

          While you have every reason never to address me again in any way, still I ask you to please tell me what, if anything, I might do to make amends for my inexcusable behavior?

      • I don’t know who this Ablative Meatshield is but maybe after the pandemic that person and I can get together and share one of these.

        • hmm didn’t know an amazon link would show a picture. If the picture’s a problem Jack I will not be offended if you delete the post.

        • Ablative Meatshield, aka Scott, I have forgotten his last name, was probably the nastiest commenter ever here. Sometimes he had some good points, but between the profanity and attacks it was kinda hard to read and comprehend them. He was a pretty committed libertarian, and stormed out saying “I’m done with this shitshow” or something to that effect during a discussion over drug legalization, which Jack is not a fan of. I tried to step into his slot, but didn’t quite have the hang of it, and Jack said he would rather retire the slot, describing him as “a deeply unhappy young man.”

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