Open thread for night owls: Goodbye to Sean Spicer, who was never one of the ‘good ones’

As longtime political hands react to the news of Spicer’s sudden retirement from the Trump White House with claims of an integrity on Spicer’s part that was never once evinced during his brief tenure—usually formulated with the assertion that Spicer is, in so many words, “one of the good ones”, let us take a moment to recognize that no, in fact, he was not. He was one of the bad ones. He was one of the worst sorts of political figures, one who would say anything that he was asked to say and gaslight whichever of his fellow Americans his momentary patron had tasked him with gaslighting. He did willful harm to his country for the sake of a temporary job and a temporary paycheck, and should be treated accordingly for the rest of his now-degraded life.

Jack Shafer:

The White House attracts all manner of toadies, suckups and flatterers

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the president’s favor, but never did any staffer demean, degrade and humble himself to the chief executive the way outgoing press secretary Sean Spicer did. […]
[W]e find no Trump transgression so foul that Spicer would not grovel before it. When Trump praised North Korea’s Kim Jong Un and invited thuggish Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte to the White House, Spicer dispensed sympathy and understanding upon the despots. No Trump mistake was too mundane for him to correct: He insisted that the word “covfefe,” which appeared in a late-night Trump tweet, wasn’t a typo. When Trump alluded to secret Trump-Comey audio recordings, Spicer dodged all questions about their existence. After the president claimed Obama had tapped his phones at Trump Tower, Spicer created a diplomatic incident by falsely accusing British intelligence of doing the snooping.

The newfound popularity of Spicer-led White House press briefings, Shafer says, “had less to do with his skill as a faithful communicator of the president’s policies than it did the audience’s curiosity about which planet of lies Spaceman Spicer would escort them to next.”

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BLAST FROM THE PAST

At Daily Kos on this date in 2013—Today in E.W. Jackson news: E.W. Jackson speaks for everyone:

Today in E.W. Jackson news, we learn that E.W. Jackson speaks for fellow Republican ticketmate Ken Cuccinelli because E.W. Jackson says so.

“I represent the entire ticket by the way. And we are a unified ticket and we are going to win in November.”

I suspect Jackson is using the royal we here, as so far there have been precious few indications that his running mate wants anything to do with him. And that’s saying something, because Ken Cuccinelli is pretty much the living embodiment of the American Taliban (he’s for jailing adulterers, which may be the most Talibanesque thing yet and which sounds like a really, really bad idea until you realize that Newt Gingrich would probably have found himself spending some time in the pokey under that rule and well now, that sort of makes it more tempting, doesn’t it? We’ll have to ask Mark Sanford his thoughts on that one as well—hell, we should be convening a conservative round table on one of the Sunday shows to discuss it. Let’s see if even the Republican Party thinks electing Ken Cuccinelli to higher office is something they can stomach with a straight face.

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