When I was a kid, and some noteworthy made a jackass of himself in public, I’d make up some drivel about him calling me in the middle of the night, drunk, whining obscenely about whatever treatment he’d received in the course of his moronic behavior.
There were those who, reading these scurrilous diatribes, took them as reportage. I would take a demure bow and retire, allowing my public its profane fantasy. But anyone connected to reality however vaguely would notice the fraudulence in its composition. Confusingly, I received far more demands for retraction of my comments than praise for my witty insight. I suppose my recognition will come in retrospect.
Meanwhile, Friday, my “New Yorker” subscription brought me an article by
their Washington editor, Ryan Lizza, “Anthony Scaramucci Called Me to Unload About White House Leakers, Reince Priebus, and Steve Bannion”. Lizza had tweeted an item about Scaramucci dining at the White House with the Trumps, Sean Hannity, and Bill Shine, recently a Fox News executive.
In the tweet, Lizza speculated on T. Rump’s relationship with Hannity, and whether he was thinking of hiring Shine.
“‘Who leaked that to you?” Scaramucci said. “What I’m going to do is, I will eliminate everyone in the comms team and we’ll start over.'”
Scaramucci said, “‘You’re an American citizen, this is a major catastrophe for the American country. So I’m asking you as an American patriot to give me a sense of who leaked it.'” [Lizza said he could not.]
“He eventually convinced himself that [White House chief of staff Reince]Priebus was my source,” Lizza said.
“The issue, he said, was that he believed Priebus had been worried about the dinner because he hadn’t been invited. ‘Reince is a fucking paranoid schizophrenic, a paranoiac,’ Scaramucci said. He channelled Priebus as he spoke: ‘”Oh, Bill Shine is coming in. Let me leak the fucking thing and see if I can cock-block these people the way I cock-blocked Scaramucci for six months.’ (Priebus did not respond to a request for comment.)”
Priebus, the former Republican National Committee chairman credited elsewhere with “turning around” the Republican Party six years ago, was forced to resign the day after the dinner party.
“‘The swamp will not defeat him,’ [Scaramucci]said, breaking into the third person. ‘They’re trying to resist me, but it’s not going to work. I’ve done nothing wrong on my financial disclosures, so they’re going to have to go fuck themselves.’
“Scaramucci also told me that, unlike other senior officials, he had no interest in media attention. ‘I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own cock,’ he said, speaking of Trump’s chief strategist. ‘I’m not trying to build my own brand off the fucking strength of the President. I’m here to serve the country.’ (Bannon declined to comment.)”
It all sounded legit to me. I remember when parody and life, even politics, were separate endeavors. That’s what They must mean when They talk about the Good Old Days When Things Were Simpler. I preferred it. So I’m getting older.