Sunday, February 19, 2017
Who Needs Ringling Bros. When We Have The Trump Circus?
In January, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus announced that it would permanently end all of its performances this May after a 146-year run.
The show, whose name had become synonymous with "the circus", may soon be no more, but we don't have to worry because an even better circus has pitched its tent in Washington, DC.
Since assuming office, President Trump has occasionally managed to articulate an actual agenda. He has also chosen some qualified people -- Gary Cohn, Rex Tillerson and James Mattis among them -- for important positions.
Unfortunately, the sideshow element of the Trump presidency drowns out the administration's few accomplishments.
Angry tweets, disproven claims, blatant lies, fights with judges and the news media, and above all, endless self-promotion, define the Trump presidency thus far. For all of Trump's claims about being a man of action, he's actually accomplished very little in his first month.
At this point in his presidency, President Obama had signed into law an almost-trillion-dollar stimulus bill to revive the economy, extended health insurance to 4 million children and made it easier to challenge unfair labor practices.
In their respective first 100 days in office, Bill Clinton had passed 24 bills; John Kennedy, 26; Harry Truman, 55; and FDR, 76. Trump will be lucky to surpass 10 even though he has the advantage of a Republican House and Senate.
The president has issued a series of executive orders that are mostly hot air -- hollow directives that order agencies to review this thing and report back to him on that thing.
The one executive order that actually did something -- the temporary travel ban -- is now stuck in the courts because it was so poorly written and implemented.
The Trump White House has not even begun to work with Congress on major legislation. The Washington Post recently noted that of 696 key positions requiring Senate confirmation, the president has yet to nominate 661 of them.
At this point, those who voted for him are probably wondering when the big top will be folded up and put away and when the serious work will begin.
Circuses are entertaining but one can endure clowns, freaks and jugglers for only so long.