Even CNBC was forced to call Larry Summers on some of his more vociferous Trump slander this morning as the former Treasury Secretary took to the air in a follow-up to an op-ed that demanded all CEOs should quity Trump's councils or "they will be on the wrong side of history."
Summers pulled no punches as he began:
"President Trump is endorsing white supremacists, he is 'uncomfortably close' to white supremcists... our President is supporting racists"
Which prompted CNBC's Carl Quintinilla to correct Summers that there was, in fact, no endorsement for neo-nazis.
But that didn't matter for Summers had one clear message to deliver (as is clear in his op-ed):
...the President has again and again traduced American values of international cooperation, of integrity in government, and of human decency. No advisor committed to the bipartisan American traditions of government can possibly believe he or she is being effective at this point. And all should feel ashamed for complicity in Trump's words and deeds. I sometimes wonder how they face their children.
After this weekend, I am not sure what it would take to get these CEOs to resign. Demonizing ethnic groups? That has happened. Renouncing international agreements that have supported business interests? That has happened. Personal profiteering from the Presidency? Also happened. Failure to deliver on ballyhooed promises? That has happened as well.
Summers then went to explain that "the CEOs that remain will be on the wrong side of history," going on to equate their currenct actions to historical companies that have supported racism, anti-semitism, and homophobia.
Summers then singled out Walmart CEO Doug McMillon, who this week condemned Trump's remarks in the wake of the rally but said he would remain on one of the president's advisory councils regardless.
"He is not fit to be the CEO of Walmart if his judgment is so bad as to suppose that being a member of this council is giving him some sort of effectiveness," Summers said in an interview on CNBC.
"What he may be - and what a number of CEOs are - is scared. Scared that if they leave, the president, using the tools of government, will retaliate."
Summers called that reasoning "egoistic delusion."
"It is absurd to suppose that if the CEO of Walmart wishes to speak to anyone in the Senate, anyone in the president's cabinet, or key officials in the White House, he will be unable to if he is not a member of the presidents' council."
"I cannot understand why others have not followed Ken Frazier out the door," Summers said, referring to the CEO of Merck, who was the first to leave the council. "This is not a happy day for American business."
He said CEOs who remain on the president's councils are legitimizing what he called Trump's "endorsement" of white supremacists.
"I don't know how people who are supporting them are able to face their children," Summers said.
Summers then said in and interview on Bloomberg Television that some CEOs fear retaliation from President Donald Trump if they oppose him and see "safety in numbers... more CEOs deserting Trump’s manufacturing council would be constructive for the government and the country."
Summers also said Wednesday he's surprised no officials of Trump's administration have resigned.
"There's a tradition in America of people of principle when they are sufficiently offended and disagree with their president on matters fundamental resign," he said.
"I have been disappointed that there have been no resignations on principle by the political appointees of this administration."
But apart from that, we wonder how he really feels.