For now, a diminishing president is good for the country – New York News


WASHINGTON — Looking, as prudent people are disinclined to do, on the bright side, there are a few vagrant reasons for cheerfulness, beginning with this: Summer love is sprouting like dandelions.

To the list of history’s sublime romances — Abelard and Heloise, Romeo and Juliet, Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy — add the torrid affair between Anthony Scaramucci and Donald Trump.

The former’s sizzling swoon for the latter is the most remarkable public display of hormonal heat since —here a melancholy thought intrudes — Jeff Sessions tumbled into love with Trump.

Long ago. Last year.

Sessions serves at the pleasure of the president, who does not seem pleased. Still, sympathy for Sessions is in order: What is he to do?

If dignity concerned him, he would resign; but if it did, he would not occupy a Trump-bestowed office from which to resign.

Such are the conundrums of current politics. Concerning which, there is excessive gloom.

“To see what is in front of one’s nose,” George Orwell wrote, “needs a constant struggle.”

An unnoticed reason for cheerfulness is that in one, if only one, particular, Trump is something the nation did not know it needed — a feeble president whose manner can cure the nation’s excessive fixation with the presidency.

Executive power expanded, with only occasional pauses (thank you, Presidents Taft and Coolidge, of blessed memory), throughout the 20th century and has surged in the 21st.

After 2001, “The Decider” decided to start a preventive war and to countenance torture prohibited by treaty and statute.

His successor had “a pen and a phone,” an…


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