Thursday, April 06, 2017

Bannon vs Kushner - Night of the Tiny Dagger

Okay, I know this is totally Goodwin's Law stuff here but the power struggle between Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner reminds me of a PG-rated version of the Night of the Long Knives.
Bannon takes the role of Ernst Rohm. Both are hideous to look at, although Rohm earned his scars in World War I while Bannon's ugliness oozes from his soul to his face.

Both are anarchists. Both saw democracy as weak failed institutions. Both saw their Fuhrer as a tool to be manipulated and used to achieve their personal goal to totally destroy the current society, replacing it with brutal dictatorship. Both were raging anti-Semites. Both had a large army of rabid and frightening supporters.

Both hated women. Rohm was homosexual while Bannon is allegedly a serial wife abuser. His three short marriages only lasted long enough for the women to realize what sort of sick hot mess they had married into.
The Kushner/Himmler parallels are not as neat. Himmler, of course, was a rage infused anti-Semite who tried to kill the entire Jewish "race." Kushner is, himself, a devout Jew. But if we put that notable difference in a box there are several points of comparison.

Both are skeevy schemers who prefer to work in the shadows. Both will look you in the eye while stabbing you in the back, remember how neatly he shivved Chris Christie as payback for a decade-old grievance. Their most valuable skill is ruthless, heartless efficiency. Himmler was the quintessential psychopath bookkeeper. While Kushner may be less of a psychopath (so far) he is every bit an obsessive bean counter.

Both are sycophants. While both Himmler and Kushner desperately crave power neither had the wherewithal to wield it in their own names and must kiss up to more powerful men.
Kushner's big problem, and where he failed Himmler, is he let Steve Bannon live. Bannon remains in the White House and while his portfolio is diminished he is still positioned to plot his revenge. Bannon's alt-right troops (his SA) remain loyal to him, not Trump and certainly not the Jewish Kushner.

Kushner forgot the first rule of betrayal - make the first shot count because you won't get a second.

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