July 17, 2020


'The guy stinks and he's a racist': Anthony Scaramucci on Donald Trump (David Smith, 17 Jul 2020, The Guardian)

[D]uring that brief spell in the west wing, Scaramucci observed up close the most powerful man in the world. "My observation was, OK, he's not listening, and good leadership requires delegation and listening, and he's too defensive and too insecure to actually take in input," he says.

"I found that when I was briefing him, I had to put pictures of him in the briefing. When I put the pictures in, it was a good sign, and when I didn't put the pictures in, you couldn't get him to focus on it.

"Here's the bad news, though. Even if you got him to focus on it, he wouldn't listen to you anyway because he's so maniacally narcissistic. He wants to immobilise everybody around him and then he wants to go on and win the presidency anyway on this nihilistic rampage and show everybody, 'See, I wiped out all of you with napalm and I didn't need any of you.' That's full blown narcissism."

Scaramucci was dismissed on 31 July 2017 after he gave an expletive-laced interview to the New Yorker magazine and made derogatory statements about White House officials including Priebus and chief strategist Steve Bannon, both of whom are now long gone.

"I was crestfallen about the firing, but listen, it's not the first time I've been fired - I'm a little bit of a rogue, I'm an entrepreneur," Scaramucci recalls. "I made a mistake. I did something fireable. I am accountable for my mistakes."

If he had not been fired, wouldn't he have quit by now, as the Trump administration lurched from disaster to disgrace? "I don't want to pretend about what I would have done because I would tell you this as a cautionary tale about ego. When you've got your ego involved in something, you do things that are irrational and your emotions go up and your intelligence goes low.

"I was fully invested in getting rid of Steve Bannon and Reince Priebus. I would like to think that I would have stood on principle during the Charlottesville situation [when Trump drew equivalence between white nationalists and anti-fascists] because that was a week after my departure. I thought that was ridiculous.

"Even if I didn't stand on principle - let's say I was into moral equivocation that you see in many of these people working for President Trump or trying to justify themselves through cognitive distance, 'If I wasn't here, it would be worse,' and all the stuff that they say to themselves - I would have been fired anyway.

"I may not have made it 15 days or 20 days because my personality is not suitable for President Trump's. I'm an entrepreneur. I'm an independent thinker. He doesn't like iconoclastic or independent thinking, so I don't think I would have lasted very long. But listen, the universe and the good Lord works in very strange ways: saved my ass.

"As I told Trump when we were still friendly, after I got fired he called me and asked me how I was doing, I said: 'Relax, you've made me as famous as Melania and Ivanka and I didn't have to sleep with you or be your daughter..."

Or both.

Posted by at July 17, 2020 7:41 AM