Controversy and disaster continue to beset Donald Trump’s transition team as Michael Flynn Jr, the son of Trump’s national security adviser Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, has been fired (CBS News’ Major Garrett says he resigned) from the transition team because of his ‘Pizzagate’ claims which resulted in shots being fired at the D.C.’s Comet Ping Pong restaurant.
Unflappable in the face of the violence he had caused – and nearly a body count – Flynn Jr tweeted that he stood by his conspiracy theory in the face of every fact:
— Michael G Flynn🇺🇸 (@mflynnJR) December 5, 2016
Mike Pence, who had first denied Flynn Jr’s role in the transition, later admitted to CNN Tuesday that is is “no longer the case” that Flynn Jr is helping his father. According to The New York Times, Flynn Jr had hoped to be part of his father’s national security team, but there are apparently limits even to the craziness the Trump camp will tolerate.
Of course, Michael Flynn himself is also quite the conspiracy theorist, having retweeted fake news 16 times in the past few months. As HuffPo‘s Michael Calderone points out, “Flynn’s fondness for spreading fake news casts doubt on his fitness to serve as WH national security adviser.”
CNN’s Jake Tapper had attempted a personal intervention with Flynn Jr directly, saying to him,
“Michael — the police called pizza gate a fictitious conspiracy theory tonight,” Tapper wrote. “Does someone have to die before you take this s— seriously. Spreading this nonsense is dangerous.”
When Flynn Jr. responded, “I want it to be false,” Tapper’s retort was like a slap in the face:
“It is not the site of a satanic pedophilia cult. It is a f—— pizzeria. Show me what you’re talking about that proves a satanic pedophilia cult. Your tweet is wildly irresponsible. Listen to me. You are going to get someone killed. Maybe an innocent child. For what??????”
This whole sordid mess was, as Mother Jones‘ David Corn said, “deplorable,” but it isn’t as if Hillary Clinton did not warn us.
CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski noted the growing concern of members of Congress (Democrats, not Republicans):
Members of Congress are beginning to take notice that Michael Flynn and son shared conspiracies pic.twitter.com/Q8k4RhXssq
— andrew kaczynski (@KFILE) December 5, 2016
And Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA) has announced his own “grave concerns” about Flynn’s fitness for duty.
Schiff and Smith did not quite get their wish with Flynn Jr’s exit, and probably won’t. Neither Trump nor his cronies will disavow the falsehoods and conspiracy theories that got Trump elected.
The only reason Flynn Jr is out now is because it is hard to ignore a guy showing up with a gun and virtually shouting Flynn Jr’s tweets to the whole world as he fires it.
So the wildly irresponsible Flynn Jr is out and as Colbert quipped will probably show up on CNN, and Tapper shouldn’t expect any invitations to the Trump White House. We’ve nipped at the symptoms and not the problem.
And when he assumes that office, there will be nobody to say “no” to Donald Trump or to those he chooses to surround himself with.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.