Last night I watched Rachel Maddow get rather agitated about the latest Trump fiasco. This time it is over his communications with the family members of slain US soldiers. BTW, his promise to send a check to the father of a slain soldier and then not doing it — until it came out in the press — is indeed sleazy. And it fits the pattern of Trump promising charitable donations and then not following through. That is an old story.
But Rachel went beyond the sleaze to make a point. Her point is that Trump does this outrageous stuff in order to manipulate attention. Remember Trump accusing Obama of wiretapping Trump Tower? Rachel argues that he did it to distract attention from revelations about Russia meetings by his top advisors and family that came out the same day. And Rachel thinks Trump is playing the same game now in order to distract attention from the question what US green berets are doing in Niger.
BTW, that is a good question. What are US troops doing in Niger? How did the ambush that killed 4 green berets happen? It seems that no one really knows, which is a bit creepy.
Is Rachel right? It is an intriguing theory. But I am skeptical that Trump is capable of the self-control that such a tactic would require. It is as likely that Trump lashed out in the Rose Garden the other day simply because of something he had heard behind the scenes that he wanted to get off his chest.
The bottom line here is that we have learned from repeated unpleasant experience that the dude can’t help himself from stirring the pot. He just did it again with a tweet where he asks who paid for the Steele dossier — suggesting that it might have been among others … the FBI! Here is the tweet
Workers of firm involved with the discredited and Fake Dossier take the 5th. Who paid for it, Russia, the FBI or the Dems (or all)?
As Vox reports
… we know who paid for it and it wasn’t the FBI: (it was) private American political donors, first supporters of Trump’s Republican primary opponents and later Democrats trying to torpedo his general election bid.
This is classic Trump. Throw out an outrageous suggestion in order to fan the flames of controversy and engage his base. You can just imagine him giggling as he wrote it. Politics as professional wrestling. Truth? Why let that get in the way! I have axes to grind!
Or perhaps Trump’s private investigators are still somewhere in Hawaii digging up “incredible” information about Obama’s birth certificate. Remember that absurd episode brought to you by the Donald before the election? Does anyone care now that the Donald never produced any information or even any real investigators? It is just one discarded story line in the enormous garbage heap of Trump’s ongoing mendacity.
The situation is untenable. The question is how do we get beyond it. At this stage, I do not think that the republicans in Congress will suddenly decide that Trump should be impeached. Folks who feel otherwise may not like this, but we should accept it as their decision. And they and Trump should be held accountable for the mess that we now are in as a result of Trump’s repeated malfeasance and republican decision to ignore it all. Scandal? What scandal? In other words, the way beyond the mess is through the 2018 mid-term elections.
Don’t just sit there – get ready, get set, get out the vote! And if you do not vote, don’t blame anyone else if this nonsense becomes the defining feature of American politics for the foreseeable future.