Quote of The Week: “Perfect.” ~ Donald Trump
Other Quote of The Week: “Perfect.” ~ Nancy Pelosi
Well, what is there to say about Week #141 of The Trump Era? Apparently, about ten million things, bursting in unison from every screaming headline on the planet, every furious editorial and every lead newscast story on every station, exploding as one upon a public already talking all at once about the astonishing news about Trump, pretty much boiling down to a global primal scream.
Just as Trump was hitting New York City for a long working weekend at the United Nations General Assembly, the shit was hitting the fan in Washington, when we learned more and more tawdry details about Trump shaking down the President of Ukraine to frame former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden for nonexistent crimes, in exchange for Trump releasing hundred of millions of dollars in Ukrainian military aid that was already approved by Congress.
Yes, the same Joe Biden that every political poll says is going to take Trump’s lunch money in the 2020 election, which prompted the lead sentence in this US. Government document released this week, an Official Whistleblower Report issued against a sitting President: “The President of the United States is using the power of his office to solicit interference from a foreign country in the 2020 U.S. election.”
That bears repeating. “The President of the United States is using the power of his office to solicit interference from a foreign country in the 2020 U.S. election.” Has an awful familiar thing to it, no?
For good measure, he tried to fix the 2016 Election all over again too, pressing President Volodymyr Zelensky to conduct a quest to find Trump’s personal Maltese Falcon, Hillary Clinton’s email server, telling the Ukrainian leader that that evil rich men in his country controlled the Server, and it changed hands frequently to foil those who would dare lay eyes on the Maltese Server and unlock its secrets.
Zelensky is a guy who just got elected president of the poorest nation in Europe, one beset by official corruption and a war with Russia, and dependent on the good will of the Western democracies, so he knew he was already stepping into the frying pan when he got sworn in. Just weeks into his new job, here comes the fire, President Donald J. Trump, corruption with a red tie, calling him with congratulations on his election victory before launching into a scheme so outrageous that it sounded like a cross between a Tom Clancy novel and a Marx Brothers movie.
Now, President Zelensky was a professional comedian before getting elected, so at some point during this conversation he had to be thinking that this must be one of his former colleagues pranking him, that there’s no way the President of The United States is pulling a Mob Boss act on him, and the giveaway was that the Ukrainian “crimes” Trump says the Bidens committed were previously investigated and dismissed as groundless by Ukraine’s own very thorough law enforcement authorities.
As in case closed because there never was a case in the first place, unless you count the bellowed rantings of America’s Night Mayor, Rudy Giuliani, a central figure in this scandal and the man who has spent the past 3 years alternately doing Trump’s dirty work and spilling the beans about it on national TV, like a poorly-trained attack dog that bites its owner when excited.
We would have to wait until Monday for Trump to directly address the scandal, what with him being so busy “making great deals” while meeting world leader after world leader whose names he cannot pronounce and about whose countries he is completely ignorant.
Then there was his side trip to Houston for a MAGA rally on Sunday while he had the Prime Minister of India handy, hosting something called “Howdy Moji,” a gathering of Indian-Americans eager to see the popular Prime Minster Narendra Moji while Trump tried to capture their votes. Then it was on to Ohio to meet with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison to visit an Australian-owned factory and spout more uncomfortably disturbing lies about his personal greatness. These particular uses of foreign leaders to influence an American election, however, broke no laws other that those of decency.
Monday is when Trump first directly addressed the Whistleblower Affair, which did break a bunch of real laws, following a meeting with the (naturally puzzled) Polish President Andrzej Duda, who got to witness the birth of the false narrative upon which Trump would expand in greater phony detail later in the week when he told reporters “Joe Biden and his son are corrupt, but the fake news doesn’t want to report it because they’re Democrats. If a Republican ever did what Joe Biden did, if a Republican ever said what Joe Biden said, they’d be getting the electric chair by right now.”
Then to add to President Duda’s confusion, out of nowhere came this from Trump – “I think I’m going to get a Nobel Prize for a lot of things, if they gave it out fairly, which they don’t.” The fact that the charismatic schoolgirl who eclipsed his UN performance in 53 seconds would be nominated for his coveted Nobel before the week was out was some sweet Karma.
The next day President Trump made his featured speech at the UN, but not before being completely upstaged (Trump’s most infuriating experience) by a 15 year-old Swedish Girl and Climate Activist in pigtails, Greta Thunberg, whose brief and mercurial speech electrified the world. The instant iconic status bestowed on Ms. Thunberg placed her high on Trumps’s enemies list, since when it comes to Viral Icons, just like the Immortals in the Highlander tales, There Can Be Only One. Headline thieves like Greta Thunberg, Hurricane Maria, California wildfires and John Bolton are not long tolerated, with even the deaths of beloved Americans getting folded neatly into his All Trump All The Time narrative.
Normally, the speech of an American President to the General Assembly is a gracious, upbeat reaffirmation of our global brotherhood and cooperation, along with a summary of the major issues addressed by this year’s meetings and America’s hopes for the future of the United Nations. But, for the millionth time we remind ourselves, that guy’s not President anymore.
No, Donald Trump is the President of the United States, and the assembled best and brightest on the planet gets treated to the same lying bozo spectacle that Trump delivers to his beloved “poorly educated” at his MAGA rallies. With the 800 Pound Gorilla of the Whistleblower Scandal hanging over the room, Trump attempted to defend his crippling trade war, his catastrophic decisions regarding Climate Change, made a case for war against against Iran, decided it would be a good idea to place more sanctions on an already suffering Venezuela by saying Europe made me do it, then launched into a scathing critique of social media companies and how they were (what else?) very unfair to (who else?) him, ditching the program and all pretense of normalcy when he promoted Nationalism with this Steven Miller-esque slogan: “The future does not belong to globalists. The future belongs to patriots.”
Since the details of the Whistleblower Scandal kept unfolding publicly by the hour and incriminating a half dozen others in its criminal conspiracy, including the Attorney General of the United States, Tuesday was also the day when Speaker of The House Nancy Pelosi dropped the I-Bomb when she called a press conference in Manhattan and announced that formal impeachment proceedings against the President would commence immediately in the House of Representatives.
Even (!) Republicans in the Senate voted unanimously to order the transcript of the phone conversation released to the public after it became clear that the White House Staff and the Justice Department tried to bury it deeper than the Marianas Trench so that Congress would never see or hear of it, in direct violation of the law that mandates that Whistleblower complaints having to do with intelligence matters and/or National Security that are deemed to be credible be presented to the Intelligence Committees of both Houses of Congress within 7 days. Months elapsed before it was made known and now, thanks to some important investigative reporting by the New York Times, the defecation just won’t stop hitting the ventilation device, such as the fact that Trump ordered the funds for the Ukraine frozen before he made the phone call, providing himself with the carrot and stick to dangle before Ukraine’s new president when he told him “I need you to do me a favor.”
And speaking of financial extortion, Tuesday was also the day Trump threatened to withhold Federal Highway Funds from California over their “poor air quality,” just one week after suing the State of California for passing a strict environmental law designed to… wait for it… improve their air quality!
Wednesday was Trump’s final UN appearance when he gave his typical rambling and uninformative press conference, notable for only his subdued and quiet manner. He bragged about how hard he worked that weekend meeting the leaders of a list of countries he read aloud, then tried unsuccessfully to steer reporters’ questions away from the Whistleblower Scandal and to stick to his lofty and unequalled accomplishments, whatever they may be since he never seems to get very specific on that whole “more than any other president in our history” schtick.
Subdued or sedated, it was hard to tell, but his powers of lying and viciousness were unaffected as he openly admitted that he had asked the newly elected Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky, to work with Attorney General William Barr and Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani to look into whether former Vice President Joe Biden pressured Ukrainian officials to fire a prosecutor investigating gas company on whose board of directors Biden’s son Hunter served, but insisted there was (!) nothing wrong with doing that.
Since the release of the Whistleblower complaint negated his usual impulse to deny it ever happened, instead he declared he was within his rights to interfere with another country’s justice administration and to extort said country to interfere with our election on his behalf by providing him with manufactured evidence of imaginary crimes.
And our imaginations were surely challenged by Trump’s continuous additions to his Golden Sand Castle, that “the Bidens took millions and millions out of the Ukraine,” and how it was really the Ukraine and not Russia the interfered in the 2016 election, but not on behalf of Trump, but for his opponent Hillary Clinton, a false (and very convenient) narrative that our own intelligence agencies have confirmed was formulated in Russia. Funny how that works, the sort of transcontinental ventriloquism we have seen time and again since 2016.
Trump added his own twists to the Russian narrative, that of accusing 3 United States Senators of trying to extort Ukraine earlier in the year, then throwing his Vice President under the bus when he said “Pence also had a couple of conversations with Zelensky,” insuring that Pence will be called to testify before the Impeachment Panel alongside William Barr, Rudy Giuliani and a handful of White House Staffers involved in the coverup.
As Adam Schiff, Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee so aptly called it, this “Mafia-style shakedown” was anything but the “perfect conversation” Trump called it 100 times, but more like the Perfect Storm of Presidential Crime that pushed Speaker Pelosi into the Impeachment Camp, a set of charges completely separate from any of the 6 other active investigations of Trump stemming from the Mueller Report. Nope, this was a brand new crime, openly confessed to and defiantly defended by its perpetrator, and one that cannot be stalled by harassing lawsuits.
He even compounded his crimes on Thursday by threatening potential witnesses with execution, a crime which Speaker Pelosi calmly informed us will be added to the list of impeachable offenses. “Keep talking, Mr. President. Please!” seems to be Ms. Pelosi’s mantra for the week.
Of course Trump’s Tweets and off the cuff statements were even more savage and insane than usual this week, screaming Witch Hunt, Hillary, “Democrats are the real traitors,” “This is an attempted coup by the Socialists!” and “My conversation was perfect,” and has replaced his threadbare “No Collusion” chant with “No Extortion!”
So much for his claim about his “perfect phone call” about which “a lot of people are saying they didn’t know I could be so nice.” No one ever said that, and it never happened.
The impeachment hearings have begun, the legal maneuvering on both sides is underway, and our President lashes out like a wounded animal, bellowing and clawing at the entire world. His remaining staunch defenders are screaming right alongside him, while the wiser among them remember that they had to wash their hair today and can’t make it to the circled wagon train. Even his most loyal propagandists are making plans for a “Post-Trump Fox News” as the beginning of the end of the Trump Era dawns.
It was fitting that Trump spent most of Week #141 at home in Trump Tower, where it looks like he may be spending his entire non-existent “Second Term” defending himself from more criminal charges than that other famous Teflon Don from New York City, John Gotti. Perhaps it might behoove the soon-to-be Former President of the United States to hire a defense attorney other than Rudy “How Is This Helping” Giuliani. That would be about as “perfect” as this man can expect as his world collapses.