Coronavirus

“Jared is bringing conspiracy theories to Trump”

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

There's now a concerted effort among conservative media entertainers, pundits, Trump's advisers and Trump himself to popularize the idea that we should declare victory and end self-isolation next week, but exactly which of Trump's advisers is giving him the worst advice?

I would have guessed it was his top economic adviser Larry Kudlow who appeared on Fox News this morning and said we need to restart the economy and make "difficult tradeoffs," implying that some Americans will just have to die for stock value, but Vanity Fair reports that the effort is being driven Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

An unnamed Republican source says Kushner has been delivering laser-brained miracle cures and other nonsense to Trump.

Sources say that Trump is leaning toward telling at least some Americans to return to work after the 15-day social-distancing period ends on March 31. This puts Trump on a potential collision course with [Dr. Anthony Fauci] that many fear will end with Fauci being fired or quitting. [...]

Trump’s view that he can ignore Fauci’s opinion may be influenced by advice he’s getting from Jared Kushner, whose outside-the-box efforts have often rankled those in charge of managing the crisis. According to two sources, Kushner has told Trump about experimental treatments he’s heard about from executives in Silicon Valley. “Jared is bringing conspiracy theories to Trump about potential treatments,” a Republican briefed on the conversations told me. Another former West Wing official told me: “Trump is like an 11-year-old boy waiting for the fairy godmother to bring him a magic pill.” (The White House did not respond to a request for comment.)

Throughout the crisis, Kushner has counseled Trump that the crisis isn’t as bad as the media is portraying. Two sources said Vice President Mike Pence has complained to Trump about Kushner’s meddling in the work of the coronavirus task force. (Another former West Wing official disputed this, saying Pence wouldn’t openly challenge the Trump family. “Pence is politically smart,” the former official said.)

Trump has placed Jared Kushner in charge of many things big and small over the years, and you know what? Exactly none of them have turned out well for the world. Kushner is not actually an expert on anything. He inherited his real estate business which he nearly drove into the ground before he was bailed out by Qatar. Sound familiar?

There are times -- nearly all times -- when it appears that Kushner is less of an adviser and more of a handler. Trump is not capable of handling virtually anything himself and he offloads it to an unqualified and unaccountable family member who has never paid a price for policy failures he signed off on.

The guy whose big Middle East peace idea was to build a Starbucks in Gaza is Trump's most trusted adviser during a global pandemic.

  • Christopher Foxx

    “Pence is politically smart,” the former official said.

    “Pence is totally lacking in morals and empathy,” the former official said.

    FTFY.

  • muselet

    Of all the people in the world not to listen to, Jared Kushner and Larry Kudlow are numbers 1 and 2 on the list.

    Kudlow’s cold-blooded balance of death versus prosperity is horrifying, while Kushner’s shilling for Silicon Valley meatheads (take a look at Elon Musk’s various wacky and uninformed opinions, and you have a pretty good idea what Kushner is being pitched) is even more dangerous, because it feeds into Donald Trump’s bottomless ignorance and wishful thinking.

    The sooner the Trumps—the whole freakin’ clan—are out of the White House, the better for us all.

    –alopecia

  • katanahamon

    Isn’t it amazing that Weinstein has gotten a test for the virus? Well, hate to say it, but, the public at large won’t raise a big stink until they can’t get toilet paper, or food, and until the ventilators are all occupied and the docs start telling families “we are sorry, but your (grandma, grandpa, mother, father, brother, sister, cousin, etc) doesn’t have a ventilator because they’re all being used. Go say your goodbyes,” we won’t see the appropriate outrage. We can predict, we can warn, we can advise..but..it’s not a problem for these ppl, until it really is, then it’s too late. Unfortunately, if we do a great job and sacrifice and we do stop this thing, Rump will say “see? Told you the media was blowing this out of proportion.” And if it gets worse, well, he’s a master of hypocrisy, lies, deflection and propaganda.

    • muselet

      Speaking only for myself, I want Harvey Weinstein to live long enough to serve his full 23-year sentence. If testing for Covid-19 keeps him alive, test away.

      –alopecia

      • Christopher Foxx

        Nice as it is to picture Weinstein suffering for years to come, I’d be much happier if he just dropped dead and we were done with him.

        I’ve decided I don’t want people who deserve it to suffer. Not from any compassion, but because I just want them gone and the rest of us able to move on.

        • muselet

          To be clear, I don’t want Harvey Weinstein to suffer, at least not physically. I just want him to take the 23 years (or however long it is until he’s eligible for parole) to reflect on what a terrible person he is.

          From what I’ve read and heard about the man, I don’t think introspection is in his skill set, but I live in hope.

          –alopecia

    • Tony Lavely

      While I’m sympathetic to Alopecia’s position, this came at the same time a story about a woman getting a bill for $35K to get tested. Somehow, I doubt old Harvey got a similar bill.