A fam­ily-friendly trans­la­tion of Scara­mucci-speak

Woonsocket Call - - Opinion - Alexan­dra Petri writes the Com­Post blog, of­fer­ing a lighter take on the news and opin­ions of the day.

It is one of those news weeks when you can't say what the news is with­out slid­ing be­low the stan­dards of a fam­ily news­pa­per.

New White House com­mu­ni­ca­tions di­rec­tor An­thony Scara­mucci ex­pressed him­self to jour­nal­ist Ryan Lizza of the New Yorker in a lengthy rant un­fit for print. This is not what the Found­ing Fa­thers had in mind when they cre­ated the po­si­tion of com­mu­ni­ca­tions di­rec­tor. Or, er, well, you see what I am get­ting at.

The last time this hap­pened ev­ery­one de­cided that maybe the word could sneak into the lex­i­con and hang out with kids dis­guised as a pink hat, and I would like to get out in front of this one say­ing NO HATS, PLEASE. I do not want a fun whim­si­cal hat de­pict­ing what­ever Stephen K. Ban­non was sup­posed to be do­ing.

But just be­cause he can­not hold him­self to these stan­dards does not mean that we should aban­don them our­selves. The fam­ily news­pa­per is right, and An­thony Scara­mucci is wrong. I have taken the lib­erty of edit­ing his re­marks for broad­cast into more ap­pro­pri­ate lan­guage.

Good day, sir. I am look­ing for­ward to see­ing you at to­mor­row's press brief­ing, which will ob­vi­ously be tele­vised. I am call­ing to an­swer the ques­tion that you had about the ad­min­is­tra­tion. I would never call a jour­nal­ist de­mand­ing the iden­tity of a source. I would cer­tainly never say you had to re­veal a source as a test of pa­tri­o­tism. This is not a ba­nana re­pub­lic, al­though we do have an old navy.

"Is it an as­sis­tant to the Pres­i­dent? OK, I'm go­ing to fire ev­ery one of them, and then you haven't pro­tected any­body, so the en­tire place will be fired over the next two weeks." (Dig­ni­fied si­lence.)

"Reince is a [verb­ing] para­noid schiz­o­phrenic, a para­noiac. 'Oh, Bill Shine is com­ing in. Let me leak the [bleep­ing] thing and see if I can [im­pede] these peo­ple the way I [im­peded] Scara­mucci for six months.' "

Reince and I have had our dif­fer­ences. I some­times feel that he seeks to in­ter­pose bar­ri­ers be­tween me and the things that I de­sire. "I've called the FBI and the De­part­ment of Jus­tice."

I am not un­der the er­ro­neous im­pres­sion that my pub­lic dis­clo­sure form, a pub­lic doc­u­ment with the word pub­lic RIGHT THERE IN THE NAME, has been leaked(?!) by the White House chief of staff (!?!?). I cer­tainly know that this is not a felony. "The swamp will not de­feat him." I would never re­fer to my­self in the third per­son.

"They're try­ing to re­sist me, but it's not go­ing to work. I've done noth­ing wrong on my fi­nan­cial dis­clo­sures, so they're go­ing to have to go [verb] them­selves."

In­deed, they do thwart me in all man­ner of way, and hurt me full sore, but yet shall they not pre­vail, and any men who think ill of my dis­clo­sures must seek to know them­selves more in­ti­mately.

"I'm not Steve Ban­non, I'm not try­ing to [verb] my own [noun]. "I'm not try­ing to build my own brand off the [bleep­ing] strength of the Pres­i­dent. I'm here to serve the coun­try."

I lack Steve Ban­non's flex­i­bil­ity and self-re­gard.

"He didn't get the hint that I was re­port­ing di­rectly to the Pres­i­dent. And I said to the Pres­i­dent here are the four or five things that he will do to me."

I have def­i­nitely not as­sem­bled an alarm­ing chart to prove to the pres­i­dent that Reince Priebus is sab­o­tag­ing my life, and I cer­tainly have not gone into the pres­i­dent's pres­ence and shouted: "THE BIRD! THE YEL­LOW BIRD! DO YOU NOT SEE HOW REINCE PRIEBUS AFFLICTS ME? AND WILL YE STAND BY?" I don't have a creepy and non­sen­si­cal list of ways to prove that Reince Priebus is con­spir­ing against me, be­cause I am not a ma­niac and the White House is not some sort of Tu­dor night­mare full of back­stab­bing and torches where ev­ery­one has also had a lot of stim­u­lants.

"What I want to do is I want to [bleep­ing] kill all the leak­ers and I want to get the Pres­i­dent's agenda on track so we can suc­ceed for the Amer­i­can peo­ple."

I wish we had some­what more mes­sage con­trol. I be­lieve in the pres­i­dent!

"OK, the Mooch showed up a week ago. This is go­ing to get cleaned up very shortly, OK? Be­cause I nailed these guys. I've got dig­i­tal fin­ger­prints on every­thing they've done through the FBI and the [bleep­ing] De­part­ment of Jus­tice."

Again, I would never re­fer to my­self in the third per­son. I am the White House com­mu­ni­ca­tions di­rec­tor, not a man on a bus with a big bag of old news­pa­pers rant­ing to him­self about leaks and dig­i­tal fin­ger­prints.

"Well, the felony, they're gonna get pros­e­cuted, prob­a­bly, for the felony. The lie de­tec­tor starts-" None of this.

"Well, he doesn't know the ex­tent of all that, he knows about some of that, but he'll know about the rest of it first thing to­mor­row morn­ing when I see him."

I am def­i­nitely not go­ing to see the pres­i­dent to­mor­row. Are you kid­ding? For some­one like me to have di­rect ac­cess to the pres­i­dent of the United States would be ter­ri­fy­ing.

"Yeah, let me go, though, be­cause I've gotta start tweet­ing some [noun] to make this guy crazy." (A dig­ni­fied si­lence.) It would be one thing if it were just the words that were un­print­able.

Alexan­dra Petri Wash­ing­ton Post

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