You boomers should get that reference right away. The rest of you? Try to keep up, kids.
“Is this the end?” a friend asked me this afternoon. I knew he meant the reports that Donald Trump had ordered the firing of Robert Mueller several months ago, but that his counsel had refused, causing Trump to back down (probably in great confusion, since he has yet to show he has a clue how people behave in a nation of laws and not of men).
Well… some think it’s at least the beginning of the end. For instance, the Post‘s conservative blogger/columnist Jennifer Rubin wrote a piece headlined, “In trying to fire Mueller, Trump digs his own legal grave.”
Second, “Attempted obstruction is obstruction even when the perpetrator backs down after failing to get his consigliere to do the deed for him,” constitutional lawyer Larry Tribe emails me. “In addition, it’s part of a persistent pattern of obstruction. And it’s also strong evidence of consciousness of guilt.” As the Times report notes, Trump has “long demonstrated a preoccupation with those who have overseen the Russia investigation.” He threw a fit when Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the Russia probe, and he fired Comey after he failed to extract an oath of loyalty. The attempt to decapitate the probe again goes to Trump’s intent to stymie an independent investigation and his seeming cluelessness that these actions would be potentially illegal, an abuse of his power….
She later elaborated on Twitter:
Why isn’t attempting to fire Mueller already and in and of itself grounds for impeachment?
— Jennifer Rubin (@JRubinBlogger) January 26, 2018
Yeah, maybe it is.
But as I keep saying… You may bring the man down using the law (if Republicans in Congress are ever sufficiently moved by a sense of duty to act), but the fundamental problem remains, and it is political, not legal: There’s little reason to think the people who voted for him understand the legal underpinnings of this nation any more than Trump himself does. People gullible enough to believe Trump when he dismisses truth by crying “Fake news!” are highly unlikely to go, “Oh, obstruction of justice! Then I’ve had it with him.”
For the nation to heal, for the normalcy this nation enjoyed for 240 years to return, the 30 percent or so who still support this guy have to realize how wrong they are. Otherwise, we’ll be torn apart. And honestly, I don’t see that happening. For one thing, they think half his idiocy is wisdom. And since they are immune to facts, they easily dismiss the other half as, once again, “Fake news.”
I don’t know when the end will come. And I don’t know what madness and trauma we’ll have to wade through before we get there….
I suspect it’ll end in 7 years. No reason it shouldn’t… but I’m sure we’ll be hearing about how he’ll be impeached until then.
And there you have it.
You know how I feel about Trump but don’t bet anything on the Mueller thing being enough to warrant impeachment. Democrats are already wary and very cautious about pursuing impeachment and it is very doubtful enough votes could be garnered to throw him out of office even if the House is won by Democrats and actually bring charges against Trump, especially in red states that have Democrat representation. Then if it goes to the Senate, unless Democrats win an overwhelming majority in the upcoming election, he will go the way Clinton did and remain in office. A simple majority is required in the House but a 2/3’s vote is required in the Senate. You can do the math. All impeachment proceedings will do is provide the split Congress to go before the news cameras and pontificate their position and in the end, it will fizzle out and Trump will remain in office. Why waste time on something everyone already knows won’t happen?
Another consideration is the reception Trump received in Davos by the world’s leading corporations. It was like an old-fashioned love-in by the heads of major international corporations who took turns telling Trump how pleased they are with the new tax bill and relaxation of some of the regulations required to do business in the US. I watched a short video of the meeting and for once, Trump actually seemed to be trying to be presidential. The speakers were from Siemens, Nestle, and other big investors in the US and they announced billions in new investments to be implemented because of Trump’s tax bill. If the reports are accurate, the audience for the British PM’s speech was very small because so many left when Trump arrived for another meeting. His reception in Davos does matter and based on the limited news coming out, so far it has been a positive one. Not quite what the media said was going to happen by country and business leaders turning their backs on Trump.
If the economy does continue to grow at the current rate and if bonuses, pay increases, expansions, investments in new businesses, and other indicators continue to be good, unseating Trump will become a very difficult task. In the end whether we like it or not, as positive as the economic news is now and if it continues, voters will be reminded and remember when they go to the polls in November. And if someone is doing better financially for his or her family, they can and will excuse his behavior and comments for the sake of their income. Basic human nature, self-preservation.
All I am trying to convey is don’t count Trump out, he is a survivor. Another point is that he has kept or tried to keep his campaign promises. When the political ads start coming out in earnest, you can bet the public will be reminded of the positives according to Republicans and like it or not, if the greatest positive impact of his promises involves family income, it is more than likely voters will vote with their pocketbook.
The bonuses are not crumbs as Pelosi and Schumer describe them. How many on this blog alone could use a $1,000 or $2,000 bonus? How many would consider it a crumb? How many have family in the Detroit area where Chrysler has announced that the Dodge Ram pickups will be made as soon as the old plant is refurbished? How many know someone who is associated with Apple and the impact their decision to bring back around $300 billion from their untaxed offshore funds? How many jobs will be created because of the new tax bill? How many will be impacted by the wage increases already announced by so many major corporations and employers? So far the reported numbers are very much in favor of Trump and Republicans in Congress.
Take my comments for what they are worth but figuratively and literally don’t ignore the elephant in the room, Donald Trump.
I’m looking for resources on media literacy for children and youth, to be used in an Episcopal Church Formation setting. I need stuff for myself and other old people too. I’m not without hope. I am tired
I am very happy to be in agreement with you on this subject.
And I’m happy that you’re happy. It’s a good feeling, being able to agree with someone, especially after arguing about something difficult. I want to feel harmony in my interactions with other people.
But immediately on that good feeling comes a worry: Am I, too, becoming one of those people who has to have people around him who agree with him? That is the great danger of our age.
In fact, it’s the cause of the phenomenon I’m referring to in this post: All those Trumpistas have constructed an alternative universe with alternative facts in which they reinforce each other in their unlikely attitudes.
And they are not alone. The problem is not just among that stubborn 30 percent that continues to support him. People across the political spectrum do this. It’s so easy — you really don’t have to make an effort — to allow a cocoon of comfort and reinforcement to form around us, each of us with our own alternative universe. Each comment of agreement, each retweet, each “like” gives us a little reward to which we become addicted.
And it’s not so much the disagreements themselves, but the way technology is rewiring our brains and our social interactions.
For most of my life, I was comfortable being around people who disagreed with me — my coworkers, sources, readers, and friends and family as well. I kept my ability to reason, and to effectively explain my reasoning, by having my ideas constantly tested. And we were all used to it to the point that we could disagree without becoming alienated from each other.
Other people had this facility as well — although it was not their stock in trade the way it was for an editorialist (which means being bombarded all day at work with other people’s disagreements with you) — and we had civility in spite of not all agreeing with each other.
Are we all, not just the Trumpistas, losing that?
How neurotic is this? I can’t smile over someone agreeing with me without worrying…
By the way, Tom, is that you in the avatar with the M60? If so, thank you for your service…