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‘Only I Can Fix It’

Meanwhile, my own column at The Week [1] offers the President a bit of empathy:

It’s so hard to get good help these days.

All the president wants in the people he hires is someone who he can trust, who understands him and what he wants to do, and who will be loyal. Is that too much to ask?

Apparently it is. And I feel your pain, Mr. President.


Read the whole thing there [1].

12 Comments (Open | Close)

12 Comments To "‘Only I Can Fix It’"

#1 Comment By Charles On August 1, 2017 @ 12:52 pm

Noah, you do realize that sarcasm wears thinner and thinner the longer and longer it goes on, right? You’re better than throwaway clickbait like this — I sincerely hope that you’re only offering this up so that your friends will forgive you for anything genuinely reflective or interesting you’ve written about Trump.

As to the substance, even if Trump had a good temperament, he would still have staffing problems — all the people who are “supposed” to fill out Presidential administrations are bitterly opposed to his policy agenda. In all seriousness, if you were advising him on how to maximize his success in achieving *his* policy objectives —
not those of the editorial board of the NYT or the WSJ, but *his* — whom would you have him hire? That would be an interesting column for us to read (and probably more interesting for you to write), but be warned that doing so would require some *sincere* empathy. 🙂

#2 Comment By kimp On August 1, 2017 @ 1:55 pm

Does Trump HAVE any “policy objectives”? What he told his voters is not what he is interested in,(that seems to be solely attention seeking) and it takes competence and a decent attention span to accomplish goals of any kind, two things he apparently does not possess.

#3 Comment By ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ On August 1, 2017 @ 2:01 pm


There are literally thousands of highly competent people who would be excited to serve in a presidential administration that openly espoused Trump’s policy objectives. The reason why he’s not attracting them is because he is a gigantic boob who thrives on chaos and interpersonal conflict. His lieutenants are constantly feuding in order to secure short periods of being in his good graces before he sours on them and abandons their favored policies until the cycle repeats itself. That, combined with his fundamental lack of curiosity and even rudimentary knowledge in any area of policy, sets him up to fail hopelessly at accomplishing his ostensible goals. The bottom line is that no one wants to stake their career prospects on something that looks very likely to flame out sooner than later.

Hope this helps.

#4 Comment By bacon On August 1, 2017 @ 2:40 pm

Read the column at The Week and agree with @Charles, thin sarcasm. Either that, or you need time alone, away from news outlets.

In re can’t get good help, first one has to try. State Department, for example, lets important jobs sit empty, but does have time to appoint a walking disaster like Brownback to a made up ambassadorship to hawk his religious views around the world. As the joke goes, you couldn’t make this stuff up.

#5 Comment By BGko On August 1, 2017 @ 5:06 pm

Anyone who understands context knows that the “Only I can fix it” line was uttered within the scope of there being a clear bilateral choice between Trump or Hillary for President.

The use here is disingenuous.

Faced with the same bilateral choice again, of course I would again vote for Trump.

#6 Comment By One Man On August 1, 2017 @ 5:53 pm

Noah, thanks for the reminders that Trump cannot fulfill his promises. His supporters like to portray him as a victim-those mean insiders, elitists, congressmen, etc. etc. just won’t let him be. A lot of us knew his promises were empty, but that didn’t prevent him from making them, or his base from believing them. Of course, it’s not HIS fault he can’t keep his promises. It’s NEVER his fault. The buck stops somewhere else.

#7 Comment By Clifford Story On August 1, 2017 @ 6:59 pm

Donnie puts the same amount of effort and attention into hiring decisions as he does in all the decisions he makes. He sees something in the shop window and buys it, without considering whether he needs it, what the alternatives might be, or what it’s going to cost him. He’s like a kid with too much money and a short attention span — of course, that’s what he’s been all his life.

#8 Comment By polistra On August 2, 2017 @ 2:02 am

Well, no, that’s not the problem. Most folks understand that a leader who says “I can do X” really means “I can organize and delegate a team to do X”. That’s leadership.

The problem is that Trump can’t even organize HIMSELF, therefore he can’t organize a team.

#9 Comment By Dan Green On August 2, 2017 @ 10:26 am

Take a hard look at the circumstances. Hillary was marketed as a slam dunk, to carry on, steady as she goes Hope and Change. Jeb had the wrong last name from day one. Trump is President, not supported by the GOP to this day, and Bernie Sanders is popular. Try managing those circumstances.

#10 Comment By cdugga On August 2, 2017 @ 1:26 pm

I am starting to like the don’s style of forcing an issue and letting the congress either address it through negotiation and consensus, or let them get in front of the camera with mud on their face. I never believed I would see mitch get on tv and say that the legislative impasse was republicans fault and not the dems. I cannot see any other president being able to get that to happen. Makes me wonder if other parts of the don’s agenda are similar. Get republicans to legislate or let them get on tv to explain how they cannot, even when owning all government branches. Now, they may be able to point at the don for everything, and I do see that trend from even before he won the presidency. If he succeeds we can share in the success, if he fails, well, he never was a real conservative.

#11 Comment By One Man On August 2, 2017 @ 6:31 pm

“Anyone who understands context knows that the “Only I can fix it” line was uttered within the scope of there being a clear bilateral choice between Trump or Hillary for President.”

“The use here is disingenuous.”

So you’re saying Trump doesn’t mean what he says.

I thought one of the great things about Trump was that he means what he says.

#12 Comment By Charles On August 4, 2017 @ 10:29 am

Does Trump have any policy positions? Yes, trade protectionism, for a start — he’s been consistent on that for his entire public life, and it’s what swing voters in the Midwest wanted from him. Which DC think does he go to fill out his administration with protectionists? A commenter above claimed there were “thousands” of people who would like to do that, but (tellingly) didn’t name a single one. Do you think any DC Republicans or Democrats would be “excited” to serve in such an administration, executing a protectionist policy? Which ones? Give an example — you won’t, because it can’t be done. Even if Trump were a competent administrator, it doesn’t change the fact that the fix is in — if you oppose the policy priorities of the party elites/leaders/policy-people, you won’t be permitted to pursue your preferences. Period. They didn’t refuse to serve because they thought he was incompetent (even though he is), they refused because they worried he might have *been* competent at pursuing policies they don’t want to pursue.