Is Mad Dog Mattis Getting Cold Feet?

Probably not, but it is worth brief consideration.

Mainstream media is reporting that USMC General James Mad Dog Mattis's Senate confirmation hearing for Secretary of Defense is stalled because Mattis is a no show for a related hearing in the House. The reason for the cancellation of his appearance is at this writing a mystery, but it is known that it was the Trump transition team's word to the Senate, not the other way around, that underlies the delay.

Here is what I was originally going to suggest: Mad Dog Mattis, as I have previously written, is in the position of breaking his solemn oath of patriotism by working for the Putin-Trump White House. He has sworn to protect and defend the Constitution bla bla bla from all enemies foreign bla bla bla. Weeks ago, it was generally known inside the beltway and the DC intelligence community that the Russians had already made Trump. There was no way that someone like Mattis would not know this. I expected him to come forward with the truth, to refuse his nomination, and to open up the dialog on what to do next. At the time, various individuals were trying to contact Mattis to do this. I sent him a note myself.

But he didn't do that, and the widely known but secret information about Trump came out apparently without help from Mattis. Then, suddenly, Mattis isn't showing up for his confirmation hearing. I figured, that's it ... Mad Dog grew a conscious. Or found his old one. Or whatever. He's going to walk away from the Trump administration.

So, that is what I was going to write. Something hopeful.

But I looked into it a bit more and that may not be what is happening at all.

This is all unconfirmed, but look over the next few days for reporting indicating internal strife not over ethics, morality, patriotism, or treason. Rather, Mattis is in a fight with the Trump transition team over a wide range of decisions the team has to make. I don't know how it is normally done, but it may be the case that this nominee for Secretary of Defense wants to have a big say in other military related appointments, and the Trump team seems to not be going along with this. This will be a somewhat complicated story, but lacking real human interest or sex or exploding objects won't likely get much attention.

Apparently this has been going on for a couple of weeks, and we are just now seeing, publicly, the tip of the iceberg with Mattis' Senate showing being called off.

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Whatever the exact cause or causes of this no-show, I suspect it confirms that Mattis will not take shit from Trump or anyone else on the team.

This was never going to work.

Or trump won't accept anyone who doesn't do exactly what trump wants. Someone who would ask trump what he's doing.

Based on what little I have read of Mattis, he may be the ONLY one on the Trump list who HAS a conscience. That quote about being polite and killing everyone - let's be realistic - that is a military man's view of war. Would we expect it otherwise?

However, his other stated positions on various topics leads me to believe that the man is intelligent, principled, honest, scrupulous and that he possesses empathy...obviously a poor fit for the Trump administration.

By Bruce Jensen (not verified) on 12 Jan 2017 #permalink

Mattis does NOT possess any noticeable amount of empathy for Muslims who desire self-determination. However, he does possess a working brain and an understanding that the U.S. military is not omnipotent. This puts him in a different class from every other Trump appointee whose position is remotely connected to "security" or -snerk- "defense". Even a warmonger like Elliott Abrams says Mattis should be confirmed so he can try to keep Trump from doing things that are catastrophically stupid. For example, letting Rex Tillerson convince him that we not only deserve more access to the South China Sea than China does, but can take their access away by force. Because war with China would be a cakewalk, right?

Wouldn't it be better to go with someone who's actually suited for the job, though? And NOT one who has been too recently in service to take the job based on the rules about military personnel in the civilian service?

He may be better than some who Trump could dump in the running, but that is so low a bar that to get any lower you'd need to dig a trench.