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Chaos Is NOT a Moderate Governing Strategy – Nor an Effective One

Civilization begins with order, grows with liberty, and dies with chaos.
– Will Durant

General James Mattis’ reportedly resigned as Secretary of Defense to avoid being fired, after many disagreements with President Trump. Mattis tried for two years to counsel the temperamental President on MODERATE courses of action – to no avail.

Their disagreements included Trump shredding the Iran nuclear weapons treaty, barring transgender citizens from military service, sending troops to the Mexican border, withdrawing troops from Syria and possibly Afghanistan (the kind of Presidential action Trump and Republicans skewered President Obama for), and alienating allies, while praising adversaries like Russia and China.

Mattis’ departure left the Pentagon in chaos – nothing new in this Administration. Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Bob Woodward’s book “Fear: Trump in the White House,” described senior aides worrying about the President’s erratic behavior, ignorance and lying. Mattis (called “the last adult in the room” by some staffers) allegedly said Trump understands issues at the level of an elementary school student.

Without Mattis, a rumored gentlemen’s agreement between him, former Chief of Staff John Kelly and former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson would have no gentlemen left to keep it, after Kelly’s and Mattis’ departures in January and Tillerson’s firing in 2018. They agreed one of them would remain near the volatile Trump at all times – to stop him from doing something dangerous in a fit of rage.

Nicknamed “The Voices of Reason” within an administration often devoid of it, they join a record number of Cabinet officials (13) who have left within 2 years – more than those in the first 2 years of the Clinton, Bush, and Obama administrations COMBINED.

Those departed officials include:

  • H.R. McMaster, National Security Advisor (disagreed with Trump’s approach to foreign policy);
  • Jeff Sessions, Attorney General (recused himself from Justice Department investigation of Trump’s campaign, since he assisted the campaign – and Trump never forgave him);
  • Ryan Zinke, Interior Secretary, and Scott Pruitt, EPA Administrator (both accused of ethical violations).

Several departed appointees, including National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci, and Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, had the shortest-service tenures in their offices’ history.

Constant personnel churning at high levels of the Administration (and lower levels, such as Brett McGurk, envoy to the coalition fighting ISIS, who resigned and said it was “reckless” to consider ISIS defeated) reflect Trump’s management style: chaos.

But is chaos, defined as “complete confusion and disorder”, effective leadership?

Moderates, ask yourselves, could you work effectively if:

  • You were in constant fear of losing your job?
  • There was frequent turnover among leaders in your organization?
  • Your senior executive was under investigation for lying (Trump averaged 15 false claims PER DAY in 2018, according to Washington Post’s Fact Checker), sexual harassment, infidelity (paid hush money to alleged mistresses), and possible treason (accused of colluding with Russia to win his election)?

If the answer is NO, we must conclude chaos is NOT an effective – nor Moderate – leadership style.

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Share Your Thoughts

  1. Well, moderation is rearing it’s beautiful head in the form of climate change action. Yes, you heard correctly. Thousands are joining CCL, Climate Change Lobby, the common sense wing of anthropogenic climate change mitigation which is sweeping the country.

    CCL now has over two hundred chapters and over 100,000 members across the country – and the world – dedicated to bringing logic to the struggle to save our planet. CCL is a grassroots, non-partisan, effort to promote a Carbon Fee and Dividend (CF&D) plan that will dramatically reduce the consumption of fossil fuel while passing along the environmental extraction cost to all Americans in the form of a monthly dividend credit. The carbon fee begins at $15/ton/month of CO2 levied at the source and increases by $10/ton/month each subsequent year. This assessment will be returned 100% to Americans after a small accounting fee is deducted.

    U. S. House Bill 763 has growing bipartisan support in congress and would provide that the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act be enacted this year. CCL was established in 2007, and as the name indicates, its mission is to help concerned citizens ban together to lobby congress to take action to protect our climate.

    It is calculated that the monthly dividend would rise each year from $125.00 per month in 2018 – for a typical family of two adults and two minor children to close to $400.00 per month in 2035, when the carbon fee would then be $175.00 per ton. On an annual basis, that dividend would add up to $1500 per household in 2018 and $4800.00 in 2035. It is anticipated that this inflow to American families would yield a large multiplier effect in the local economy.

    If you would like more information on CCL, you can find it at

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