When Donald Trump moved in to the White House, he brought his family with him. Adhering to norms, the media has refrained from talking about his youngest son Barron. Tiffany Trump seems to keep a low profile—which is fine. Don, Jr. and Eric were supposed to stay out of politics and run the family business, but everything the president promised in his not-blind trust agreement turned out to be a lie.
Ivanka and her husband Jared are the two who have been given overt roles in the administration—even though they are ill-defined. Ivanka’s main job seems to be to hold meetings with various groups and then tweet about them in power point-speak.
#ICYMI: Great speaking at this yr’s @WorldBank meetings. #WGDP & #WeFi are making rapid progress & are catalyzing on these efforts w/ public-private partnerships to mobilize billions of dollars for women entrepreneurs so that they can freely & fully participate in the ? economy. pic.twitter.com/4jPxKSuPoO
— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) October 20, 2019
Of course, part of her job is also to mislead the public.
Since the passage of #TaxCuts in December 2017, real disposable personal income per household has increased $5,205 as of June 2019.?
— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) October 28, 2019
Growing up in the Trump household obviously taught Ivanka that job number one is to demonstrate total loyalty to dad.
“…surrounded by enemies and spies catching and perverting every word that falls from my lips or flows from my pen, and inventing where facts fail them.” -Thomas Jefferson’s reflections on Washington, D.C. in a letter to his daughter Martha.
Some things never change, dad!
— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) October 31, 2019
My first reaction was to suggest that comparing Trump to Thomas Jefferson demonstrated that the narcissistic apple didn’t fall far from the tree. But thank goodness there are a lot of people on Twitter who are smarter than me. A couple of them did a good job of setting the record straight.
It’s interesting Ivanka picked this example because the thing Jefferson’s enemies were accusing him of — fathering a child with a slave — was absolutely something he did. 6 times as a matter of fact. Jefferson was bemoaning being called out for something he actually did. https://t.co/ZnvjPLrkjY
— Rachel Larris (@RachelLarris) October 31, 2019
“I therefore laid it down as a law of conduct for myself never to give to an appointment to a relation.”
Thomas Jefferson on nepotism, 1801 https://t.co/TmBwsmgzfS
— Look here, Jack (@realworldrj) October 31, 2019
Ivanka isn’t the only one who has attempted to compare her father to a historic figure. One of the most intriguing I’ve seen comes from Edward Luce.
It takes effort to picture Donald Trump as Alexander VI, the late medieval pope whose notoriety helped trigger the Protestant Reformation. Once you have the image, it is hard to lose…Late medieval Rome was pervaded by three corruptions: simony, nepotism and indulgences.
If you are not familiar with Pope Alexander VI, I highly recommend the Netflix series titled “The Borgias.” What struck me was that Christianity and the papacy were merely the symbolic accoutrements on which the drama of power, money, and family played out. That’s both the oldest story ever told and very applicable to the Trump family.
There are those who would suggest that the good news is that it was the corruption and depravity of the Borgias that led to the Reformation. But then history tells us that the battle between Catholicism and Protestantism was particularly bloody. We need to be much more thoughtful about what happens when the Trump family leaves the White House.