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Trump to Tillerson: “You’re fired”

 Former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China, March 19 of last year in Beijing. Courtesy U.S. State Department

Former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China, March 19 of last year in Beijing. Courtesy U.S. State Department

In the Revolving Door Policy that is the Trump Administration, Secretary Rex Tillerson is out at the State Department, and Mike Pompeo, the CIA director, is in.

I’m of two minds about not-so-sexy Rexy. You can’t run a government or a government agency like a business – cutting people to save money. Tillerson gutted the place and drove senior staffers at State from their jobs. He never understood that a government has a heterogeneity that businesses don’t. It’s only as good as its weakest link. In business, which is first and foremost about making money and a homogenous approach to that goal, you get rid of the weak links.

On the other hand, Tillerson tried to be the grownup in the room, laying the groundwork for the North Korean negotiations. But he called the boss a “moron,” never a smart move, particularly when the boss is a narcissist. And in typically narcissistic fashion, President Donald J. Trump responded in a cruel, humiliating way, firing Tillerson on Twitter. Nothing like staying classy.

Perhaps Pompeo, one of Trumpet’s wingmen will do better by the people at State. Perhaps there will be a more cohesive policy that will raise our profile overseas. Perhaps.

But I wouldn’t count on it.