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Hullabaloo


Monday, June 11, 2018

 

You need an analyst, a psychoanalyst

by Tom Sullivan


Manual reconstruction of Stasi documents. Source: BStU.

But. Her. Emails.

Among the bizarre behaviors of the sitting president, this one stands out. Donald Trump has claimed repeatedly Hillary Clinton should be prosecuted for destroying emails she "acid washed" from her personal server's hard drive (her staff used a free app called BleachBit). Politico reports Trump destroys official documents personally:

Armed with rolls of clear Scotch tape, [Solomon] Lartey and his colleagues would sift through large piles of shredded paper and put them back together, he said, “like a jigsaw puzzle.” Sometimes the papers would just be split down the middle, but other times they would be torn into pieces so small they looked like confetti.

It was a painstaking process that was the result of a clash between legal requirements to preserve White House records and President Donald Trump’s odd and enduring habit of ripping up papers when he’s done with them — what some people described as his unofficial “filing system.”

Under the Presidential Records Act, the White House must preserve all memos, letters, emails and papers that the president touches, sending them to the National Archives for safekeeping as historical records.
Donald Trump's habit when he is finished with documents is to tear them up and throw them in the trash or onto the floor. To prevent violations of law (if willful destruction of presidential records is not), staffers learned to collect the fragments and ferry them to the records office across the street to be reassembled by hand by Lartey (54, earning $65,969 per year) and his team.
Lartey said the papers he received included newspaper clips on which Trump had scribbled notes, or circled words; invitations; and letters from constituents or lawmakers on the Hill, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

“I had a letter from Schumer — he tore it up,” he said. “It was the craziest thing ever. He ripped papers into tiny pieces.”
The story comes out now after a reporter approached Reginald Young Jr., 48, another senior records management analyst, to ask about his abrupt dismissal after decades in government service. The White House fired Lartey in March and Young in April, forcing them to sign pre-written resignation letters. Both have no idea why they were "stripped of their badges with no explanation and marched off of the White House grounds by Secret Service," Politico reports. Lartey corroborated Young's account of their dismissal. The White House would not comment.

I keep hearing this little ditty from an Allan Sherman record my dad brought home when I was a kid:
If you're always tearing paper into teeny weeny bits,
You need an analyst, a psychoanalyst
Since the president is in Singapore to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, let's hope someone is collecting those bits and brought lots of good, old American scotch tape. Kim brought a squadron of three planes to confuse observers over which he was in. These two are made for each other:
First to arrive in Singapore was an IL-76 transport plane carrying food and other essentials for Kim as well as his bullet-proof limousine and a portable toilet that will deny determined sewer divers insights into to the supreme leader's stools.
Someone on Trump's staff will be out of a job for not thinking of that. Lartey and Young can take comfort that toilet tissue is not a presidential record.

Speaking of bodily functions, Trump has an 8-inch height advantage on Kim. Maybe "the two dictators" should just find a tree and see who can pee higher up the trunk. Trump can declare himself the winner and go home without doing any more damage.



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