Rogue CNN: The End of An Era

((Rogue CNN exists in a parallel universe to ours where a property developer and reality TV star gets elected President))
Wolf: We are going over to the White House for an announcement from Michael Strauss, Press Secretary to the President.
Strauss: As all of you know we are in the middle of the Mueller Inquiry and although the President has been saying that he has no plans to sack the Special Prosecutor, I am here today to say there is serious doubt about that. There has been planning going on for this with the inner circle, including Republicans on the investigating committees.
The actions being contemplated are not Constitutional, and they will pose an extraordinary threat to the very nature of this democratic Republic. Since I, for one, care about this country and will not take part in such activity, I am effective as of now resigning.
A full text of my statement will appear below
CNN: Mike, have you been in contact with the Robert Mueller's office?
Strauss – I can't really comment on that from this podium. Let me just say that Bob and I ... Sorry, let me just say that the Office of the Special Counsel and myself have had appropriate conservations about appropriate topics. Many appropriate topics.
Fox - do you mean you've been snitching on and betraying Our Dear President?!
Strauss – I do not call the accurate reporting of actual facts snitching or a betrayal. In the world that I grew up in that was the proud, noble and necessary duty of every journalist – and indeed every citizen.
Though I can understand how a P, P & P infotainment organization such as yours could consider the truth as a betrayal.
Politico – Excuse me, Mike, clarification! What is P,P & P?
Strauss – Political Porkies and Propaganda.


CNN – Mike, you were away for three days last week, the same days Air Force Two was reportedly seen flying over northern Norway, near the Arctic Ocean.  Were you on that flight?  Where did you go? Does this decision of yours have anything to do with that?
Strauss – I cannot reveal details of any non-presidentially approved activities. I can, however, assure you that it was not to meet with the Russian fleet that’s now cruising to take over the Arctic, thanks to the massive melting of sea ice due to climate change.
Let me just say I have another client of many years based in the North Pole region, and this is his busy season, and we both felt it was time for a talk.
Youth Vogue – was it Claus, Mike! Are you talking to Santa?!
Strauss – Alright, I definitely can't comment on that.  You know, I and a former colleague, whom I'll just call Felix …
Mother Jones – Felix?! is that a Russian connection?
Strauss: No, David.  He’s just a Brit.  Dodds and I have had a journalistic relationship with Mr. Claus for many years, and he's used us to communicate some messages to the public. In fact, it's been more than a professional association, he's been almost like a mentor to me.
Hollywood Reporter – Mike, I thought you interned with Thomson. Wasn’t he your mentor?
Strauss – No, actually, that was all a cover story. Claus was working with the IC Intelligence Community at the time on some international children’s issues.  He needs a communications person.  They assigned me. Hunter was very gracious about allowing me to use him as a decoy.  You know he had his own connections.
New York Times – Did Santa have anything to say about Trump?
Strauss – Like I said we both wanted to talk. I can't go record, it's not for publication.  But let me just say Santa has been closely following events in the White House and in Congress the past few weeks. And he wasn't pleased.
WSJ – Mike, Santa has cable?
Strauss – No, he uses a dish. From one of the polar satellites. And he's also obviously online a lot. I mean, how do you think he keeps up with the daily needs and behavior of 1.2
billion boys and girls?  He’s totally hooked up.
Washington Post – So you're saying Santa commented on the tax bill?
Strauss – I'm not saying anything for publication. All I can tell you is that St. Nicholas was extremely angry, and frankly astonished that any political party, anybody claiming to have religious values, anybody who was even a minimally-responsible adult would have taken actions with such extraordinarily destructive impacts on children, on poor people, and on mothers and families.
And done so the week before Christmas.
MSNBC – Mike did he say precisely that?
Strauss – Actually, he used much harsher terms. I've never heard him talk like that. Didn't even realize he knew those words.
Alright, who’s next, over there on the far right, is that Breitbart or Fox? Oh, Fox. It’s hard to tell the difference between you two these days.
Fox – Isn't it much too soon to talk about this?  Isn't he politicizing a national tragedy? Isn't it inappropriate for a religious figure to comment on political issues? Isn't he a foreigner? Who elected him?  Is he even an American?
Strauss (stares at reporter coldly. long silence) – I see. That's also kind of what you said last year about the Pope. You do realize you're talking about Santa? You're asking why Santa is worried about taking care of kids. That's his job. He takes his responsibilities seriously.
Who elected him?!  Well, it wasn’t Putin. I would think conservatives would not want to start that conversation.
Politico – Mike did he say what he would do because of the tax act? Is he going to punish anybody?
Strauss – He did mention that world public opinion about the US was plummeting. He did point out that the US was risking a global consumer backlash. I think he said many people are talking about a boycott of American products and services. He wondered what the current president was doing to America's brand. That's all off the record.
As for punishment, I think he said, 'If you think the lump of coal thing was just a metaphor. Wait til you see the impacts to your cities and your farms and your economy from  the rising tides, the melting ice and hot rainless summers that are caused by pumping, even more, oil out of my beautiful Arctic, in Alaska, and burning literally mountains of coal.'
(Press corps all go silent)
Washington Post – Mike was he serious? Was he that angry?
Strauss – I'll make it clear. There was no 'Ho, ho, ho!'
USA Today – Mike, what did he say about Trump personally?
Strauss – Wow. I really shouldn't be repeating that. I didn't even realize he knew those words.
But he was furious. He remembered Trump from when he was little boy. Said he always hit other kids and took their toys and money. Always said nasty words to everybody. But only really, really simple words. Hired other children to do his homework. Then didn’t pay them.
He told me that later when Trump was a teenager, he had actually bragged about dealing with organized cri ...
(Sudden commotion in the press room. Screen goes blank.)
Wolf appears on screen. Voice of producer off-screen – You’re On, Blitzer!
Wolf: Our feed from the White House press room has suddenly been lost. Strauss has resigned to a stunned White House Press Room. We’re hearing from our correspondents that he has just walked off the podium and left his White House pass on the lectern. He can now be seen being taken out of the White House by Security.
I am here with a star studied panel to comment on what must be the most stunning resignation from a White House ever. Joining me is Anderson, David Gergen, Mary Katharine Ham and Dr. Hunter Thompson. 
Anderson: This is possibly the worst first year of a President in living memory. What Strauss has said or inferred makes it clear that impeachment is on the table.
Thompson: I am so proud of Strauss – I worked for President Bush as Governor of American Samoa and as the United States Ambassador to the People's Republic of China. So, liberals working for Republicans isn’t wrong or at least it shouldn’t be or it wasn’t in the past. But this Trump administration shows that the mind of America is seized by a fatal dry rot - and it's only a question of time before all that the mind controls will run amuck in a frenzy of stupid, impotent fear. I learned a long time ago that reality was much weirder than anyone's imagination. There is no such thing as paranoia. Your worst fear can come true at any moment. Trump shows that the Republicans have never thought that democracy was anything but a tribal myth. Will they take note of what Strauss has said? Will the Republic survive? Possibly not!
David Gergen: Strauss was an unusual member of the Trump administration because he was clearly a Liberal on most things and wasn’t prepared to lie about the motivation for whatever the President was doing. This made him the darling of the Press Corps. This very eloquent resignation will be the talk of this town and the country for weeks to go. But even more important than that is the comment that Strauss is working with the Special Prosecutor which means I think that the President is toast.
Ham: What a journey this last year has been – America elected a person who at the best didn’t have a clue what he was doing and the worst that he was in collusion with a foreign power who was considered our main enemy. The question now is when will he go and the second question is how much did the Vice President know. If he was in any of the meetings that Strauss is talking about then we may have a constitutional crisis. The next in line is, of course, is Speaker Ryan. If Ryan has any involvement it falls to President pro tempore of the Senate Orrin Hatch (R) and then beyond that to the Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. What an irony if it ended up with the Secretary of State.
Anderson: I wonder if we are now going into territory where the President might try and pardon himself. That would not stop impeachment but might stop him going to jail if he is found guilty. So many questions this brings up.
Gergen: The political parties we have need to really take a moment and think what is best for America and they need huge reform. We need a better electoral system – perhaps the time has come for proportional representation in the US – much of Europe has it and they elect more stable governments. We can't let the Republic fall over this.
Thompson: Trump is a lame professional swine, and he has made a good living at it.
Trump represents that dark, venal and incurably violent side of the American character almost every other country in the world has learned to fear and despise. By disgracing and degrading the presidency of the United States, Trump has broken the heart of the American Dream.

Full Statement of Michael Strauss as resignation from the position as Press Secretary to the White House and President Trump
Strauss: As all of you know we are in the middle of the Muller Inquiry and although the President has been saying that he has no plans to sack the Special Prosecutor I am here today to say he is lying. He has been planning this with the inner circle which I have been a member within weeks of firing Comey .
I can announce like other people who have worked for the President that I am cooperating with the Special Prosecutor. As the Washington Post says Democracy Dies in Darkness. Let there be light and let people know that the Republic is not good when we are lining up with our greatest foe – Russia. 
We are no longer a great Nation--spiritually, politically, militarily, diplomatically, and economically. America's commitment to international security has under-minded the safety of allies and friends in many areas--in the Middle East, in Europe, and in Asia. Our turning away has unleashed new instabilities, new dangers around the globe, which, in turn, would threaten our own security.
A resurgent American economy does not soften the destruction of our institutions whether it is the judiciary when the President nominates people to be judges such as Matthew Petersen who couldn’t answer basic legal questions and had not served as a judge on any court. The President is destroying our State Department as career civil servants leave in droves or are being pushed out. He is undermining our security forces whether it’s the FBI or the CIA. 
He must be replaced to restore the confidence of the world in the United States. Congress should start impeachment process. We can be a better country than this, we can show that this Nation is able and willing to help other nations meet the common challenge, it can demonstrate that the United States will fulfill its responsibilities as a leader among nations. But not while this President is in office. We need better laws on ensuring our media outlets can’t just reproduce false facts as if they are true. This feeds the view that there are no facts, no science its just an opinion. 
All parties should come together and say this emperor has to go. We the United States have contributed to making this world the most insecure it has been since the 1960s and this can not go on. 
We must exercise responsibility not just at home, but around the world. The hope of this new century has gone and we must rekindle it, we still have the power and the duty to build a new era of peace and security. But make no mistake about it, today's chaos has to stop. America must stand against the poisoned appeals of extreme nationalism whether this is at home and the antics of Bannon and his fellow travelers or abroad. 
To meet the challenges facing the world and America in the second decade of the 21st century by working with those who join the family of nations, and isolating those who do not. Let us hope that the World doesn’t decide that they can move forward without us. There is a real danger that the American Dream has died under this President. With that I announce my resignation from the Trump White House and I look forward to working with the Special Prosecutor and boy do I know a lot. Thank you.


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