The Rundown - Mon 8/28/17: Hurricane Harvey; Joe Arpaio; Anthony Sullivan

Before we get to the major news of the day...

At 7:06 we'll be joined by Anthony Sullivan, one of the best-known and most successful pitchmen ever, known in part for his work with Billy Mays (and then after Billy passed away) to make OxiClean such a huge success. 

Anthony has a new book out, "You Get What You Pitch For," and it's really a great and insightful read about much much more than just selling stuff. It has a lot of insights about being successful in life and I highly recommend it (as long as you can handle reading a bit of R-rated language.) Here's the Amazon link:

https://www.amazon.com/You-Get-What-Pitch-Situation/dp/073822006X/

 

Hard to add anything to the pictures and videos below, but at 6:15 and 8:15 AM we'll talk with reporter Cliff Saunders from KTRH NewsRadio 740 in Houston to hear from someone who's living through it.  

One story coming out of all this is the question of "price gouging." The Attorney General of Texas, where "price gougeing" is illegal, is already threatening people. I think it serves a useful economic function even though it feels bad in the short term. You might find these of interest:

http://cafehayek.com/2015/03/some-economics-of-price-gouging.html

https://danieljmitchell.wordpress.com/2017/08/27/teaching-economics-to-texans-three-cheers-and-three-videos-for-price-gouging/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2017/08/27/hurricane-harvey-is-when-we-need-price-gouging-not-laws-against-it/

 
 

As he was heading out of town on Friday evening, President Trump made three announcements. In order of (short-term) importance:

  • He pardoned former Maricopa County (AZ) Sheriff Joe Arpaio, much to the delight of many supporters of both men. I think it was a mistake for a few reasons, and I think some of Trump's supporters are not thinking through their support of this move. More background:
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2017/08/23/what-you-need-to-know-about-former-arizona-sheriff-joe-arpaios-record-on-illegal-immigration/?utm_term=.54c2e005d768
  • The White House issued official guidance to the Pentagon regarding transgender people serving in the military. On the one hand, it seems to be a blanket ban on future admissions of the "T" in LGBT into the armed forces. On the other hand, it seems to give SecDef Mattis almost complete discretion over how to manage the Ts who are already serving. This is a fight that Donald Trump did not need to start. 
  • It was announced that Sebastian Gorka, the "America First" nationalist who has long been a supporter and adviser to the president no longer works at the White House. Gorka said he resigned, but news reports suggest he was fired, and that he was not permitted to meet the president to personally offer his resignation. Gorka is clearly a very smart guy, but he's not my cup of tea. I didn't like his aggressively criticizing Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in public. Not because I love Tillerson but because that stuff has to be done in private unless you want to look like a self-aggrandizing free-lancer, which is basically what Gorka is, in my opinion.

This was a fairly interesting debate about the Arpaio pardon that moved into a fairly interesting debate about the present and future of the GOP:

 

Speaking of Tillerson, this raised a lot of eyebrows and has me thinking the guy simply doesn't care if he loses his job. I imagine he's sick of the president and can't believe he's surrounded by such palace intrigue and incompetence. And frankly it can't be easy, even if you're a fast learner, to take someone who's never been a diplomat and put them in that position. Finally, although my worldview is closer to Tillerson's than to Trump's, the president deserves people who support him and his agenda. It's becoming too clear that Tillerson doesn't and he's going to have to go. I don't think it will be as fast as Bannon, but I think it will be before year end.

 
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