Home LIFESTYLE Style News Dear Gary Cohn: Please Do Not Become Trump’s Chief of Staff

Dear Gary Cohn: Please Do Not Become Trump’s Chief of Staff

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Hi Gary,

How are you? As you’ve probably heard by now, Donald Trump needs a new chief of staff. Things, it seems, aren’t working out as he’d hoped with John Kelly, not because Kelly viciously smeared a congresswoman last fall, or because he said immigrants are “too lazy to get off their asses,” or even because he reportedly condoned a staffer’s alleged physical abuse of two different women, covered it up, and allegedly tried to get other West Wing staffers on board. These things, obviously, are how people score points with the boss. No, Kelly has to go because yesterday the director of the F.B.I. testified that Kelly is full of shit, and the whole thing is making Trump look bad. Anyway, that’s where you come in!

Apparently, you’re on a short list of candidates the president is considering to replace Kelly. In most cases, finding out you’re in line for a promotion is a good thing. Management has noticed your efforts and is recognizing them! Good for you! It’s what every little worker-bee dreams of; what you had always hoped would happen at Goldman Sachs, all those years you toiled in Lloyd Blankfein’s shadow, waiting for the day the board would give you the keys to the big-boy office. Only that day never came, making you the eternal Charles to Lloyd’s Queen Elizabeth.

So you might see this as a second chance—a chance to prove yourself. Maybe, a small part of you sees it as an opportunity to stick it to Lloyd. What worries us, Gar, is that we’ve yet to see a single report assuring us that you responded to the rumors of this job opportunity by fleeing the building with only the clothes on your back and paying an Uber driver 800 bucks to take you straight back to New York, with an extra 50 on the line if he could get you there in less than four hours.

We know that’s the advice you’d give someone else in your position, given the benefit of distance and perspective. In fact, we like to think that if one of your lackeys at Goldman had approached you back in 2016 about potentially leaving their job to work for Donald Trump, you would’ve fired them for even considering what we assume you would’ve called a “stupid fucking idea.” Deep down you know this administration makes the seventh circle of hell look good, and that every day you spend there is like a trip to idiot island. Your closest allies are sentient handbag Ivanka Trump, who thinks her dad is going to eliminate the national debt, and Jared Kushner, who would struggle to get a job at Ruby Tuesday’s if nepotism weren’t a factor. Did you work your way from aluminum-siding sales in Ohio to the upper echelons of Wall Street so you could be a glorified au pair, running interference on a 71-year-old’s tweets and essentially telling reporters, “Plenty of lawyers pay their client’s alleged porn star mistresses $130,000 for no reason whatsoever, I don’t think there’s anything to read into here”?

We’re aware that part of you supposedly feels a duty to stick with the Trump administration as one of its few people there who knows his ass from his elbow. But in case you hadn’t noticed, every single person who enters the administration leaves worse for the wear, their dignity a distant memory. You got tax reform “done,” but as many have pointed out, calling that a win is kind of like saying, “the captain of the Titanic won when he found that reclusive iceberg.” As a victim of Stockholm syndrome, we know that it’s hard for you to make a clean break. You tried, after Charlottesville, but it didn’t take. Now, you have a chance to leave, but you’re risking getting sucked back in. DON’T DO IT. Instead, print out that e-mail that totally wasn’t written by you—the one that calls Trump “an idiot surrounded by clowns” and describes every day in his employ as “a constant state of shock and horror”—and staple it to your forehead. Review it every time you start to think well, maybe the job won’t be so bad and remember Gary: it’ll be so much worse.

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Lloyd Blankfein: Trump’s tax cuts couldn’t have come at a worse time

Speaking of ole Lloyd: the Goldman Sachs C.E.O. had a chat with CNN on Wednesday, and he did not have the most positive things to say about the president’s yuge tax cuts. Noting that the economy was doing just fine before the ex-beauty pageant owner decided to dump in $1.5 trillion stimulus, Blankfein said he’s worried about the economy getting too hot. “The odds of a bad outcome have gone up,” he told Christine Romans. In an interview earlier in the week with Bloomberg, Blankfein put it out there that the cuts “wouldn’t have been what I would do. . . . It’s a very bold thing to kind of throw a little bit more lighter fluid on a fire that was already going.”

What’s an eight-figure military parade between friends?

That parade Trump is demanding the Pentagon throw, since he went to France, gazed upon the Bastille Day parade, and thought gotta get me one of those? It’s expected to cost somewhere between 10 and 30 million actual American dollars, according to the president’s number’s guy, Mick Mulvaney:

Mulvaney offered the estimate during questioning at the House Budget Committee. He said the White House hasn’t yet budgeted for the parade and would either rely on Congress to appropriate funds or use money that already has been approved.

“The estimates I’ve seen, they’re very preliminary, is between 10 [million dollars] and 30 [million dollars] depending upon the length,” Mulvaney said. “Obviously an hour parade is different from a five-hour parade in terms of the cost and the equipment and those types of things.”

Raise your hand if you’re a Trump official who doesn’t think taxpayers should finance your luxe travel habits

They are apparently few and far between, though Veteran Affairs Secretary David J. Shulkin seems to have gone to greater lengths than others:

Shulkin’s chief of staff doctored an e-mail and made false statements to create a pretext for taxpayers to cover expenses for the secretary’s wife on a 10-day trip to Europe last summer, the agency’s inspector general has found.

Vivieca Wright Simpson, V.A.’s third-most-senior official, altered language in an email from an aide coordinating the trip to make it appear that Shulkin was receiving an award from the Danish government, then used the award to justify paying for his wife’s travel, Inspector General Michael J. Missal said in a report released Wednesday. V.A. paid more than $4,300 for her airfare.

Elsewhere!

New Hedge-Fund Tax Dodge Triggers Wild Rush Back Into Delaware (Bloomberg)

Stormy Daniels: I am now free to tell my story (Washington Examiner)

Fannie Mae to Require $3.7 Billion Government Cash Infusion (W.S.J.)

Harvard, Hawaii Gambled on Market Calm—Then Everything Changed (W.S.J.)

Wall Street Cheers as Zuma’s Resignation Marks New Era for Rand (Bloomberg)

Who’s Going to Fix Wynn Resorts? Not Its Board (BloombergView)

Rare 70 pound meteorite sells for record $237,500 at Christie’s (CNBC)

Amazon has partnered with Bank of America for its lending program: Sources (CNBC)

Fla. man builds Intercontinental Ballistic Love Missile for Valentine’s Day (CNBC)

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