Tillerson Calls Trump Undisciplined and Sought to Violate Law. . . Trump Calls Tillerson “Dumb As A Rock” and “Lazy”

440px-Rex_Tillerson_official_portrait.jpgFormer Secretary of State Rex Tillerson unleashed on President Donald Trump at an event for a medical center.  Tillerson said that he stopped Trump from violating the law and that Trump is both unread and undisciplined.  Trump responded by calling Tillerson “dumb as a rock” and “lazy as hell.”

Tillerson told CBS’ Bob Schieffer: “So often, the president would say here’s what I want to do and here’s how I want to do it and I would have to say to him, Mr. President I understand what you want to do but you can’t do it that way. It violates the law.” He added “It was challenging for me, coming from the disciplined, highly process-oriented Exxon Mobil corporation, to go work for a man who is pretty undisciplined, doesn’t like to read, doesn’t read briefing reports, doesn’t like to get into the details of a lot of things, but rather just kinda says ‘this is what I believe.’”

Clearly this is not a relationship that has improved with time.

274 thoughts on “Tillerson Calls Trump Undisciplined and Sought to Violate Law. . . Trump Calls Tillerson “Dumb As A Rock” and “Lazy””

  1. Unfortunately this device produces ever narrower gutters in replys to replys to replys…

    So the text becomes too narrow to read before it disappears entirely, leaving only a vertical ghost.

        1. David Benson is the God Emperor of Making Stuff Up and owes me twenty-four citations (one from the OED, one from the town ordinances and two from the Old Testament), an equation and the source of a quotation, after twenty-five weeks, and needs to cite all his work from now on. – WE are not responsible for your poor choice of instruments.

  2. Darren This is Tiresome says, on December 8, 2018 at 2:36 PM

    “It’s Diane. And it’s a reasonable wager she’s a retired schoolteacher or social worker.”

    Not even close.

    “Wretched” (with the DTs) ought to be banned for using the names of others in his crazy user names.

  3. Curiously, we only learned about the times Obama wanted to violate the law while in office when the Supreme Court of the United States told him he couldn’t, or when folks like Prof. Turley and Prof. Dershowitz spoke up.

  4. One would think that the former leader of one of the world’s largest public corporations would have the experience and judgment to use discretion in his public statements, especially when being trolled in an interview by the MSM. Anticipating these questions, he should have had a few true, but non-controversial answers thought out in advance.

    Same goes double for the President of the United States.

    Relatedly, I have always admired (at some level, anyway) politicians who might field a difficult question and reframe the response to highlight one their policy objectives that is only tangentially related to the question.

    Leaders like Presidents Obama and Reagan – whatever one thinks of their politics – were especially adept at doing this. An example of the opposite was the debate in which Michael Dukakis muffed the question about whether he would support the death penalty if is wife was raped and murdered. Clearly it was a trap question where a little empathy for victims of crime and a nuanced policy answer was called for.

    Back to the present case, we need to be confident that our leaders are focused on the national interest. There is a time and place for airing personal grievances. This was clearly not one of them.

    1. I agree that people at that level of decision-making ought to save their brickbats for their memoirs, which goes for Trump and Tillerson.

      Mr. Tillerson was obliged to point out what was legally wrong in what Mr. Trump wished to be done. He’s also obliged to respect what was said in confidence, unless it touches on violations of the law in progress – in which case the proper forum isn’t a speech at a fundraising event – and it’s puzzling that Mr. Tillerson would unburden himself there and then.

  5. Why Tillerson Thought Trump Is Dumb



    The ties between Mr. Kushner and Prince Mohammed did not happen on their own. The prince and his advisers, eager to enlist American support for his hawkish policies in the region and for his own consolidation of power, cultivated the relationship with Mr. Kushner for more than two years, according to documents, emails and text messages reviewed by The New York Times.

    A delegation of Saudis close to the prince visited the United States as early as the month Mr. Trump was elected, the documents show, and brought back a report identifying Mr. Kushner as a crucial focal point in the courtship of the new administration. He brought to the job scant knowledge about the region, a transactional mind-set and an intense focus on reaching a deal with the Palestinians that met Israel’s demands, the delegation noted.

    Even then, before the inauguration, the Saudis were trying to position themselves as essential allies who could help the Trump administration fulfill its campaign pledges. In addition to offering to help resolve the dispute between Israel and the Palestinians, the Saudis offered hundreds of billions of dollars in deals to buy American weapons and invest in American infrastructure. Mr. Trump later announced versions of some of these items with great fanfare when he made his first foreign trip: to an Arab-Islamic summit in Riyadh, the Saudi capital. The Saudis had extended that invitation during the delegation’s November 2016 visit.

    But by the time of the inauguration Mr. Kushner was already arguing that under the influence of Prince Mohammed, Saudi Arabia could play a pivotal role in advancing a Middle East peace deal, according to three people familiar with his thinking. That would be the president’s legacy, Mr. Kushner argued, according to a person involved in the discussions.

    It was around the time of the White House visit in March 2017 that senior officials in the State Department and the Pentagon began to worry about the one-on-one communications between Prince Mohammed — who is known to favor the online messaging service WhatsApp — and Mr. Kushner. “There was a risk the Saudis were playing him,” one former White House official said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

    Two later face-to-face encounters with Mr. Kushner preceded key turning points in Prince Mohammed’s consolidation of power.

    Shortly after Mr. Kushner visited Riyadh with the president in May 2017, Prince Mohammed orchestrated the ouster of his older cousin, Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, removing him from control of the Saudi Interior Ministry and replacing him as crown prince. Prince Mohammed also announced a Saudi-led blockade of its neighbor and rival Qatar, the host of a major American air base.

    And days after Mr. Kushner made an unannounced visit to Riyadh in the fall of 2017, the crown prince summarily detained about 200 wealthy Saudis, including several of his royal cousins, in a Ritz-Carlton hotel in Riyadh.

    Edited from: “The Wooing Of Jared Kushner. How The Saudis Got A Friend In The White House”

    Today’s NEW YORK TIMES


      The full story explains that Mohammed Bin Salman, the Crown Prince behind the Khashoggi murder, was ‘not’ the Crown Prince when he first met Kushner. However, after meeting Trump through Kushner, Bin Salman connived a power play that led to his becoming Crown Prince.

      Article notes that Rex Tillerson was very concerned by Kushner’s bonding with Bin Salman. The two were exchanging texts and emails like old buddies without any oversight from the State Department.


        The latest fictions being promoted in the Sulzberger Birdcage Liner or the Bezos Birdcage Liner are only ‘essential’ if you’re trolling for Talking Points. Which most of us aren’t. Because we aren’t partisan numbskulls.

      2. Peter Hill – I do not think Khushner needs oversight from the State Dept. His oversight is the POTUS.

      3. Kushner is no Saudi Kingmaker. Think about it. Nope, not at all. So they talked. Ok. Wow. The NYT is very paranoid. Jared is not Darth Sidious.

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