… mustaches, or at least for John Bolton’s, which was given an unceremonious bum’s rush right out of the White House, along with its owner—the newest former national-security adviser—who had the misfortune of being attached to it at the time. But any week that began with the news that the Palins were divorcing wasn’t going to be much fun regardless. (Where were you when you heard?)
Nor was it a very good week for Plácido Domingo or Boris Johnson. The former is being investigated by the opera performers’ union regarding sexual-harassment allegations, while the latter watched his agenda thwarted—by his own political party—on a pretty much hourly basis, including when (a) Parliament rejected the prime minister’s call for snap elections and (b) a Scottish court ruled that, by his suspension of Parliament, he had in effect misled the Queen (the Queen!) into doing something unlawful. Theresa May’s tenure is starting to reconfigure itself as a period of great accomplishment.
But it was a fine week for circumstantial evidence, as the black-Sharpie-loving president appeared in the Oval Office before a black-Sharpie-doctored map to insist that he hadn’t been wrong, or even alarmist, when he warned that Hurricane Dorian would be hitting Alabama hard; and, no, he had no idea how that suspicious-looking, clumsily rendered line could have gotten there. Incredibly, this controversy went on all week, and ultimately involved a couple of government agencies and the White House, whose acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, reportedly pressured the commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross, to threaten the jobs of federal employees who didn’t fall into lockstep behind the First Forecaster and his beliefs.
Meanwhile, back in the world of self-respecting grown-ups, donations to environmental groups have spiked since, oh, January 20, 2017, or thereabouts. The United States marked the 18th anniversary of the September 11 attacks. Mark Sanford joined Joe Walsh and Bill Weld as challengers for the Republican nomination for president. The Chosen One’s approval rating dropped to 38 percent, according to a Washington Post–ABC News poll, which also determined that 6 in 10 Americans are expecting a recession. A CNN poll found that 71 percent of Americans—Wilbur Ross evidently not among them—don’t trust most of what comes out of the White House. And the president announced that he wanted to keep certain Bahamian refugees of the Alabama-threatening Hurricane Dorian out of the U.S., “including some very bad people and some very bad gang members and some very, very bad drug dealers.”
Nevertheless, apparently “the Trump Administration has achieved more in the first 2 ½ years of its existence than perhaps any administration in the history of our Country.” Can’t remember exactly where we read that, but we’re pretty certain it was written with a black Sharpie. —George Kalogerakis