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The Meaning of Mooch

The Meaning of Mooch

If blink-or-you'll-miss-him Anthony Scaramucci taught us anything, it's that Donald Trump is basically a Goodfellas character.

Right as I was about to hit "send" on my article about Anthony "The Mooch" Scaramucci, I found out he was fired. This really pissed me off because I worked in the best "Bohemian Rhapsody" parody with his name. While the implications of such a short, volatile tenure in office does indicate a potential change in the...

OK, no. I can't do this. There is absolutely no way I can possibly spin the fact that we had a guy in the White House who had the kind of nickname that only the weaselly, greasy-haired guys in mob movies have. You know, the kind of guys that the fat mobster in the track suit and gold chains sees on the street and starts yelling, "Mooch, you son of a bitch, where's my money? I'm gonna break ya fuckin kneecaps you little rat bastard," while he grabs his baseball bat. Of course, the guy manages to run off but not before knocking over some garbage cans and an old lady's groceries. However, to many people, Mooch came across as a Wolf of Wall Street extra (he actually paid to be in the Wall Street sequel), but when his expletive-filled rant to The New Yorker came out, my original impression of him being a Joe Pesci character from Goodfellas was confirmed.

What's so funny is that he really did end up being a Pesci mobster, in that he got whacked because he got too cocky for his own good. In Goodfellas, Pesci's character gets knocked off for beating Billy Batts to death for telling him to get his shine box, and in Casino, it's just for generally being a total lunatic who draws too much heat to the whole casino money-laundering operation. The Casino comparison is the most appropriate, since when Mooch got fired, the White House explainrf (spun?) that he brought too much negative attention and his remarks did not reflect well on the president.

Really? Initially, we heard Donald Trump canned chief of staff Reince Priebus partly because he didn't respond to Mooch's tear-down of him in The New Yorker with his own profane rant.

Some have said Scara ... Scaramooc ... Scarri ... Mooch's firing was just because he was brought in to get rid of Priebus, and once that was done, he was expendable. Yeah, makes sense. You hire from outside the organization for the hit, and once that's done, you get your guy to take out the button man. No loose ends, no loose talk. In fact, that might be the most competent act pulled off so far by the Trump family. I'm not referring to him and his kids, I'm referring to his administration and his way of running things. You see, Trump is basically running things like a Mafia don. Just really badly.

If you take the long view of Trump's history, it's pretty obvious. His first mentor when he struck out on his own was Roy Cohn, the closeted New York attorney who also worked as an intermediary between mob bosses and "legitimate businessmen" and also regularly advised the Gambino and Genovese crime families. Among the things the Mafia controlled during Trump's rise to prominence wwew construction materials and construction unions, and strangely Trump seemed to have far fewer issues with workers and job sites. This isn't anything shocking or "alleged," this is established fact by the FBI and other sources. The mob controlled concrete, and Trump rarely had a problem with finding any or getting it poured on his sites. Sure, Trump paid way over market cost for it, but that doesn't mean anything, right? Oh, aside from the fact that when they sent the boss of the Gambino family to prison, Trump's concrete contract was on the indictment. Lots more juicy stuff on that here.

This all was before Trump began to move into casinos, which have a long history with money laundering for organized crime. Now, I'm not gonna say that Trump might have gotten into the money-laundering business back in the 1980s, but in March, a casino in Saipan that has business ties to Trump was raided by the FBI, and in May a lobbying firm with ties to Trump casino money, Paul Manafort, and Roger Stone was as well. I'm not saying there's anything suspicious here, but that big Russian meeting with Donny Jr. was with some Russians connected to money laundering. High rollers at Trump's casinos were flown in by a firm that belonged to a friend of Trump, who just happened to be a convicted embezzler and was also convicted for drug trafficking. Trump defended the guy in court at the cost of losing his casino license and when asked about it later, said, "I hardly knew" the guy. I mean, c'mon Donny, your bustin' our balls over here.

Trump has a history of just barely once-removed mob ties that have been involved in everything from constructing his buildings to offering services to his casinos to even his Miss Universe pageant. Dozens of people have gone to jail over the years, lost their professional licenses, or been subject to criminal investigations for organized crime, but Donny has slipped by every time because he just happens to be just a little big on the slippery side. Maybe at this point he now thinks less of himself as a businessman but a "legitimate businessman," but he's seemed to have not learned a single thing. He blabs too much to the press, he brags too much, his attempts to muscle out folks isareham-fisted and clumsy, and he sure as hell didn't learn why the FBI is considered incorruptible by organized crime. In reality, he's not Don Corleone, he's barely John Gotti. Actually, he's a Joe Pesci character from the movies, not Mooch. Hot-headed, not very bright, impulsive, crooked as all hell, and in the end, he'll have gotten too big for his own good, get sloppy and cocky, and he'll end up getting taken down.

He's barely even all that, though. Trump's the guy who ran the mob front for years, thinks he's a gangster, and is about to find out he ain't got the goods for it. I mean, c'mon. Who rubs out a cop in broad daylight and then whacks a guy for no good reason? That's bad business, Donny.

AMANDA KERRI is a writer and comedian based in Oklahoma City. Follow her on Twitter @Amanda_Kerri.

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