STEVE BANNON: GOING, GOING, GONE

Not being a follower of Breitbart News, I was unfamiliar with the name Stephen K. Bannon. When he joined the Trump campaign, my curiosity was aroused. First impression: sloppy appearance and extremely polarizing.

As I learned more—former Navy, Harvard Law, successful Goldman Sachs trader, Hollywood movie producer—I thought with that background how bad can he be and decided to keep an open mind. Then damaging leaks from the White House and negative comments about colleagues were attributed to Steve. Not good!

Subsequently I happened across an article about Steve’s father Marty Bannon and his exploits in the stock market.
Apparently Marty Bannon worked for 50 years at AT&T and over that time invested as much as he could afford in AT&T stock. As the story goes, he always said he would never sell his AT&T stock, no matter what! But when the 2008 financial crisis hit and stocks tanked, Marty Bannon, without seeking advice from his two sons with investment backgrounds or consulting any adviser, sold his AT&T stock for less than he paid for it.

Marty Bannon broke the most basic rules of investing: don’t invest only in the company that employs you, diversify your stock portfolio, and as a general rule buy low and sell high. This was a truly unfortunate episode in Marty Bannon’s life, but the story doesn’t end there. Steve Bannon says this moment crystallized his own antiestablishment outlook and his theory of economic nationalism. He is quoted as saying, “Everything since then has come from there.” That’s scary. How can you base a whole economic and political philosophy on a mistake? To me, this calls into question Steve Bannon’s judgment. Since leaving the White House staff, Steve has been trying to defend trashing the President in the book “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” he has been asked to step down from his position at Breitbart News, he has lost one of his key financial supporters, and he has been campaigning for several questionable congressional candidates, including Roy Moore in Alabama. Recently he has been in France supporting the National Front Party. This is a slide downward of epoch proportions and may not be over yet.