First, thanks to those who inquired about the family emergency referenced in the preceding post. I think it's going to be resolved well.
I have a lot to say about everything that happened yesterday, but not enough time to say it. Right now, here are some preliminary thoughts.
My first reaction: If the Trumpers had had their act together, they would have treated Michael Wolff as if he were Ed Klein -- a laughable promulgator of fiction. That charge could have stuck: Wolff has been accused of manipulating quotations in the past.
But Trump did not go that route. His immediate reaction was to write an inane message condemning Steve Bannon. Bannon had an office mere feet from Trump's desk in the White House, yet now we are supposed to believe that the guy was a mere covfefe-fetcher.
Absolutely no-one bought this story. Trump was supposed to be the guy who chooses only the best people
Trump's response amounted to a confession: "Yeah, Steve really said those things. The book is not fiction."
The rabbit-like rapidity of Trump's counterpunch tells us that his insecurity button was well and truly pressed. The words attributed to Bannon must include some very serious and damaging truths.
To make the situation worse, Trump's lawyers are suing Bannon for breaking confidentiality agreements
. I've never before called a Beverly Hills lawyer "stupid," but in this case, I'm tempted to do so.
No contract can enforce silence concerning illegal actions. Bannon accused Team Trump of treason and money laundering. If those accusations are false, then the proper ground for suit would be slander, not the breaking of a confidentiality agreement or a non-disparagement agreement.
Bringing this suit only encourages Bannon to do whatever it takes to burn down the entire Trumpian enterprise.
(Side note: Remember when the allegedly liberal mainstream media routinely accused the Clintons of lacking transparency? The Clintons don't make everyone they meet sign confidentiality and non-disparagement agreements. The Trumps do
. A non-disparagement agreement explains why Bannon is still praising Trump.)
The lawyers have threatened legal action against the publisher. Henry Holt also has lawyers. A book like this would not see print unless it were legally defensible. Everyone knows that the Trumps are not masochists like the Clintons, who allow anyone to publish any libel, however ridiculous.
Mercer has broken off with Bannon, leaving Breitbart without its major funder. Thus, there is a rift between Trump and the major media organ of his Alt Right supporters. At the same time, the funding spigot won't flow as it once did.
I'm nobody's idea of an optimist, but these events could undo the whole Trump experiment in indecency. His entire political plan is to maintain a hammerlock on his hardcore supporters, which constitute about 30 percent of the nation. (In an election, the other twenty percent can be "won" through Roger Stonian dirty tricks, plus a smidgen of vote manipulation.) That thirty percent is Trump's retaining wall. A rift between Trump and Breitbart will fracture the dam.