The image Nancy Pelosi added to her Twitter profile last week shows her as the plucky woman at a table full of gray men, standing up and wagging her finger at Donald Trump like a scolding schoolmarm, just before stalking out of the meeting.
She must imagine it portrays her in a good light. It doesn’t, no matter how many progressive women share it triumphantly on social media as a symbol of female empowerment. It’s more a symbol of female entitlement.
It’s an embarrassment to women who want to be judged on their merits, not given special treatment by men through melodrama and flouncing hysterics.
But the scene is bad for the president, too.
The photograph was taken in the Cabinet Room by a White House photographer Wednesday, during a meeting with Democratic lawmakers on a serious topic which has been lost in all the fangirl, “boss move” eulogizing in the media about Pelosi.
The meeting was supposed to be about national security and Syria. But instead of trying to find a constructive middle ground, Pelosi took the opportunity to stage another petulant outburst and storm out to the waiting media for whom she can do no wrong because she dresses stylishly, adjusts her sunglasses just so, and is a progressive 79-year-old woman who persists.
Trump tweeted out the photo of “Nervous Nancy” having an “unhinged meltdown” Wednesday night to illustrate her destructive tactics, and it quickly went viral as she and her supporters facilely appropriated it as evidence that “#PelosiOwns-Trump.”
She is the first woman speaker of the House, and the most powerful woman in Washington, yet she brings disgrace on our sex.
Because of the needlessly secretive impeachment proceedings she has instigated, it was incumbent on Pelosi to pour oil on troubled waters and show that her team is capable of working with the president on pressing issues.
Instead, she did what she does best, taunting Trump: “All roads with you lead to Putin,” she snarked, rising to her feet.
In her electric blue jacket, the diminutive 79-year-old lecturing the seated 73-year-old President under the watch of a bust of Benjamin Franklin is a striking figure.
Capturing the moment, the image shows the president with an exasperated frown on his face, lips curled, spitting unknown words at her as she points at him. His hands are in his lap, and body language is neutral, as any man’s would have to be lest he be accused of “violence” or aggressive gesticulation or patriarchal “looming.”
It’s never a level playing field in the #MeToo era and, unfortunately, women like Pelosi, butter never melting in her mouth, take unfair advantage.
Sitting next to Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer peers intently over his glasses at Trump like a scientist inspecting the entrails of a rat. Next to him Jack Reed (D-RI), leaning forward, also is studying Trump’s reaction to Pelosi’s harangue.
They’re working on cracking the president and the pressure is unrelenting, day after day. That’s their only plan to win the 2020 election.
Trump says he thrives on the pressure but, honestly, no one can withstand such a barrage indefinitely. It’s forcing him to make errors which slowly but surely are alienating those around him.
On Trump’s side of the table, the other seven men visible either look mortified or resigned. They are like naughty boys held back in a classroom as the bossy mean girl lectures them.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is gripping the table’s edge with both thumbs, eyes downcast.
House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, who literally was almost murdered by the Resistance, has his head bowed at 45 degrees, eyes fixed on his firmly clasped hands.
To President Trump’s right is Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, a bear of a man, resplendent in uniform, a look of utter chagrin on his face. There is no mistaking the emotion.
And this is where Trump does the people who serve his administration a disservice.
The image was taken only minutes into the meeting, during which various Democrats present say the president insulted former Defense Secretary General James Mattis as “the world’s most overrated general … He wasn’t tough enough.”
Mattis, who quit last year, honorably had never criticized the president, other than to say he disagreed with the decision to pull out of Syria.
But the following night, at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner in New York, Mattis felt provoked enough to hit back: “I earned my spurs on the battlefield … Donald Trump earned his spurs in a letter from a doctor,” he said, referring to bone spurs Trump used to avoid the Vietnam War.
It was an understandable get-square, but it did not reflect well on either man.
This is the problem. Trump’s paranoid street-fighter instinct might be effective in the short term but it ends up sullying the people he needs to help defend his presidency. He can’t win the next election alone and he’s running out of people to burn.
Yes, Pelosi is a disgrace, as are her gormless sidekicks Schumer and Adam Schiff.
But there is a classy way of rising above their taunts to underline their disrespect and enhance his office that the president never seems to grasp.
Gift of Gabbard vs. Hillary
Tulsi Gabbard defended herself masterfully against Hillary Clinton’s smear that she is a Russian “asset.”
She branded Clinton “the queen of warmongers, embodiment of corruption, and personification of the rot that has sickened the Democratic Party for so long.”
That’s the least of it. Clinton has never been held to account for her venal, tragic incompetence as secretary of state.
Who could forget her lack of empathy when Libyan President Moammar Khadafy was murdered live on camera in 2011 after an American drone attacked his convoy. Dragged out of a truck, half dead, he was sodomized with a knife by rebels yelling “Allah Akbar.”
“We came, we saw, he died,” Clinton cackled after watching the horror.
It was the Obama administration’s worst foreign-policy fiasco, turning Libya into a failed state overrun by ISIS and helping set in motion the Syrian catastrophe.
WikiLeaks e-mails showed Clinton had relied on flawed foreign-policy advice from her friend, dirty-tricks operative Sidney Blumenthal. In one leaked e-mail he tells her overthrowing Khadafy will expedite regime change in Syria.
“The best way to help Israel deal with Iran’s growing nuclear capability is to help the people of Syria overthrow the regime of Bashar Assad … The resulting regime in Syria will see the US as a friend, not an enemy.”
Sure. If anyone has been an asset to America’s enemies, it’s Clinton.
NBA’s Silver tops China gold
Credit to NBA boss Adam Silver for defying China’s demand he fire Daryl Morey after the Houston Rockets executive expressed support for Hong Kong’s democracy protests. China is vowing “retribution” but Silver has found his backbone. Better late than never.