In his op-ed piece in today’s NY Times, Tom Fitton advises “How Trump Can Avoid the Ethical Tar Pit.”
There has been a lot of concern about what the president-elect would do regarding his empire. He was supposed to address that in a press conference tomorrow, but he postponed. I guess he was too busy planning to meet with all those celebrities.
One of those included Jim Brown, the former NFL legend who is very involved in preventing gang violence. According to a telling article about those meetings in today’s paper, according to Darrell Scott, a pastor who accompanied Brown and Ray Lewis, another former NFLer, “Trump had made a verbal commitment to ‘put the government behind'” Brown’s Amer-I-Can program. Funny, I thought Trump’s administration wanted to get away from government-funded programs, although, to be fair, you don’t know what getting behind it means.
That article, “From Midtown to Midwest, Presidential Reality Show Rolls On” by Mark Lander condensed the recent events
The rally came after a theatrical day of meetings at Trump Tower in Midtown Manhattan, with visitors including Kanye West, Bill Gates and the retired football stars Jim Brown and Ray Lewis. There were cameos by familiar bit players: the Naked Cowboy and a man who paces through the lobby reading aloud from books like “Night,” by Elie Wiesel.
The scene [at Trump Tower] showcased yet again how Mr. Trump has turned his transition into a kind of political reality show, with twists and turns, special guests and a running narrative built around his own celebrity.
Since soon after he was elected, he has summoned people to interview for cabinet jobs — a public spectacle that includes a ritual parade before a phalanx of reporters and cameras.
Someone the image of the Naked Cowboy read from Night strikes me as
Anyway, getting back to Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, a conservative nonprofit that promotes government transparency and accountability:
He offered his opinion on what Trump “should” do:
- “formalize his complete separation from his company and stop working on any aspect of his business.”
- “draw no pay.”
- “vow not to discuss any aspect of the Trump business empire with his children — or any other Trump executive.”
“commit to full transparency by making public any contracts with any federal agency, foreign government or foreign corporation.”
- “refuse any third party contributions to his personal foundation.”
- “Above all, the Trump administration should be completely transparent on any government dealings with the Trump empire.”
That is what Trump should do. But will he? Or will he weasel his way out of these issues, claiming he’s smart enough and successful enough to work around these impediments because they really shouldn’t apply to him because of his unique situation.