Actions lead to major security risk
Donald Trump isn’t capable of self-reflection and feeling shame, so he isn’t embarrassed by his behavior. But when he was elected President, he became more than an embarrassment to the United States. He has upended global alliances, shown disdain for the environment and actively destroyed gains we’ve made. His disastrous trade tariffs, punishing immigration action, attempts to withdraw healthcare from millions, irresponsible tax cuts and support of authoritarian leaders is incomprehensible. He scuttled the Iranian agreement with no plan to replace it.
He is blatantly corrupt and dishonest, as are many of his cabinet secretaries. He apparently feels contempt for the Constitution, and has turned the United States—once the moral leader of the free world—into an untrustworthy pariah. But beyond the embarrassment, he has become a major risk to the security of the United States.
Trump beholden to Russia
I have long believed that he is beholden to Russia, which provided financing he couldn’t obtain elsewhere. Remember, he had driven companies he controlled into bankruptcies, while stiffing the banks that financed him. I also believe he has laundered ‘dirty’ money for Russian oligarchs. These actions make it easy for Russia to insist Trump follow their playbook. If Russians provided financing, they could easily withdraw it, bringing on the collapse of the Trump empire. And if they chose to reveal his duplicity, his reelection hopes would be dashed and potentially expose him to prosecution.
This scenario seems like a plausible explanation for his refusal to release his tax returns. It also makes sense of his continued defense of Russian aggression towards the United States. Despite being warned repeatedly by the U.S. intelligence agencies, he refuses to take any serious action to prevent Russian intervention again in the 2020 elections. Of course, these assertions remain to be proven. But the whistleblower complaint, which revealed his conversation with the new Ukrainian President suggests this theory might be accurate.
Trump—sleazy misogynist and more
Trump’s narcissistic character and lack of morality has never been in doubt. The Access Hollywood tape revealed—in his words—he was a sleazy misogynist, proud of being able to assault women. Without insight or shame there can be no remorse. Therefore, he hasn’t changed, but has exposed more of what most people would find shameful. Unabashed liar, racist, anti-Semite and corrupt, are descriptions that characterize Donald Trump. His hubris is unmatched outside of a psychiatric in-patient unit. He calls himself a patriot, but he is definitely not a patriot of the United States. Just read the readout of the conversation with the Ukrainian President.
In that call Trump violated U.S. law that prohibits a person from soliciting, accepting, or receiving anything of value from a foreign national, directly or indirectly, in connection with a Federal, State, or local election. He also abused his power by withholding material aid to Ukraine—aid that had been specifically authorized by Congress. He used Mafia-like extortion that he believed would benefit him personally in the 2020 election, before releasing the aid. Then he authorized the record of that call to be transferred to a separate server used only for top-secret, sensitive government information. At the very least, this cover up is an acknowledgement that he had committed a crime.
Throwing the Ukraine under the bus
But the commission of a crime is not the most damaging result of his actions to the country. Withholding approved aid to the Ukrainians limits their ability to defend themselves from Russian aggression. During their meeting at the U.N. General Assembly, Trump blithely commented to the Ukrainian President, “I really hope that you and President Putin can get together and solve your problem.” That statement completely ignores and eliminates Russia’s blatant aggression in annexing Crimea and invading Eastern Ukraine. Trump would be hard pressed to make it more obvious that he is beholden to Russia, and vulnerable to blackmail by foreign sources that could present proof he’s broken U.S. law. No President has ever been more of a risk to the security of the United States.
Time for impeachment
I was against impeaching Donald Trump, but no longer. He is more than an embarrassment. Trump has debased the Constitution and committed high crimes and misdemeanors. He must be removed from office. Of course, that raises the ugly problem of the self-serving Republicans Senators. But in spite of them, Democrats must make the case and put Trump’s sycophants on trial as well.
I’m extremely impressed by several female Democratic Congresswomen who, in 2018, were elected in districts Trump won in 2016. Despite the risk to their reelection in 2020, they voted to begin the impeachment inquiry, and uphold the oath they took to defend the Constitution. Republicans, it is a time to face the obvious truth, exhibit some moral character, protect the country and honor the oath you took. The United States of America needs men and women of honor, who don’t put the fear of being “primaried” above their patriotism.
A grave threat to democracy
Donald Trump and his administration are the gravest threat to our democracy in my lifetime. And Democrats must take up the task. Polls show that a majority of Americans are fed up. Perhaps the Trump base, like other cults before them, will never accept the danger this man represents. During the 2016 campaign Trump said, “I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.” It sounded like hyperbole, but it was not then, and is not now.
Reality and facts
In 1950 Bernard Baruch, an American financier and presidential advisor said, “Every man has a right to his own opinion, but no man has a right to be wrong in his facts.” Were he alive today, he’d be shocked to learn that many of Trump’s followers have come to believe in alternative facts. The saying, “Don’t confuse me with facts,” has no relevance to them. Reality and facts are what they perceive them to be, what they hear on Fox News, and what Trump says they are. Let me give a brief example.
Trump supporters take me to task
As anyone who’s read my blogs knows, I’ve been very critical of Donald Trump. In general, they’ve been largely ignored by Trump supporters. After all, why would a Trump devotee read this blog? But an August posting, I love My Country, Do You? must have inspired a few to look at it. They took me to task for my failure to recognize reality and distort the truth. Here are some comments:
“Robert… President Trump is the first honest president since JFK- who was assassinated by the Deep State Cabal. I’m hoping you will do some real research and wake up to the truth. The msm is controlled by the Deep State and is lying about Trump- and everything else!”
“Bob, very sad to read this. You attack your president that the majority elected Recklessly. Every single president in your lifetime has been a law breaking criminal. Some worse than others, I rate a president on what they actually do or dont do for the country. This president is by far the best performing president of my lifetime, a patriots patriot. And i may speak having actually served my country as a patriot.”
I responded, suggesting a reality check was in order. Honesty is certainly not an attribute to apply to a proven pathological liar. And as most of us know, Trump was not elected by a majority of Americans. As for Trump being a patriot’s patriot, I suggested that would apply only to Russia and Saudi Arabia.
Meaning of the whistleblower’s complaint
Given the fast breaking news and seriousness of Trump’s duplicity, let me repeat and summarize my conclusions. Up to now I could only surmise that Trump was acting on behalf of Russia. However, that’s been substantially confirmed in the aftermath of a Whistleblower’s Complaint concerning Trump’s illegal extortion of the Ukrainian President. He violated the law seeking information from a foreign government about a U.S. political rival. He then covered up his illegal action, improperly placing relevant data in a server reserved for top security code-word items.
His actions were known to several U.S. intelligence officials, and likely by other countries’ security services known to intercept calls. And that is a risk to our national security. Trump obviously wanted to keep his actions secret, making him vulnerable to blackmail by an enemy country that knew of them. But even worse was his delay in delivering weapons Congress had already approved for Ukraine’s defense. A U.S. ally is trying to defend itself from Russian aggression, and Trump places a roadblock in its path. Did he forget Russia is a country that has, and is actively trying to harm the United States?
What Russia means to Trump
No, he didn’t forget. He just didn’t and doesn’t care. Russia is more important to him personally than is the security of the United States. Recent news reports reveal that Trump excused Russian interference in the 2016 election. Notes of this 2017 meeting with the Russian Ambassador and Foreign Secretary were then hidden in the top-secret server. It’s also believed that information concerning Vladimir Putin and Mohamed bin Salman have been improperly placed in these top-secret servers.
If these reports are true, and I suspect they are, then Donald Trump is a real-life Manchurian candidate. Not one who acts under a movie plot’s controlled mind, but is driven by his own greed, fear and narcissism. A traitor is someone who betrays the trust of another or is false to an obligation or duty. Donald Trump meets that definition. He is not a patriot. Donald Trump is more than an embarrassment. Donald Trump is a traitor. For the security of the United States, he must be impeached and removed from office.