Opinion How Low Will Trump Go? .....The president is unabashed, unapologetic and out of control.

  
Via:  john-russell  •  4 weeks ago  •  6 comments

Opinion How Low Will Trump Go? .....The president is unabashed, unapologetic and out of control.
How low will Trump go? Leagues lower than you ever imagined, and probably several hundred feet below your current nightmares.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


Opinion
How Low Will Trump Go?
The president is unabashed, unapologetic and out of control.

Frank Bruni
By Frank Bruni
Opinion Columnist

Oct. 19, 2019

The wonder of the Trump administration — the jaw-dropping, brain-exploding phantasmagoria of it — is that it doesn’t bury its rottenness under layers of counterfeit virtue or use a honeyed voice to mask the vinegar inside. The rottenness is out in the open. The sourness is right there on the surface for all to see.

It’s at the president’s rallies, where he plays a bigot for laughs, a bully for applause.

It’s in the ballrooms and beds at Mar-a-Loco, where he mingles official government business with free marketing for his gilded club.

It’s in the transcript of his phone call with the president of Ukraine, for whom the quid, the pro and the Biden-ravaging quo couldn’t have been clearer.

It’s at the microphone in the White House briefing room, where his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, showed up on Thursday, announced that President Trump would host the next G7 meeting at one of his own golf resorts, and conceded that, yes, aid to Ukraine had been tied to that country’s indulgence of the president’s political obsessions.

“Get over it,” Mulvaney told the assembled journalists.

“Elections have consequences,” he also said.

Allow me to translate: American voters gave Trump the presidency, so it’s his to use and abuse as he wants. If you’re looking for an apology, you might as well be looking for the yeti. What you should really be doing is looking the other way.

Mere hours later, Mulvaney changed his tune, whining that the media had “decided to misconstrue” his words as some kind of confession. Um, no.

Our hearing was just fine, our construing was just right and our sole arguable failure was that we didn’t instantly grasp and immediately communicate the overarching import of his remarks: He was telling us that in the minds of the president and his unscrupulous minions, he from now on possessed and planned to revel in carte blanche. And the White House has a new public relations strategy, much evolved since the days of Robert Mueller.

Those revelations of rottenness that I mentioned before? They’re no longer an inadvertent tic. They’re an advertent tactic. Done with denials of wrongdoing, administration officials are reframing it as right-doing — as a president’s prerogative, even his entitlement, pre-emptively authorized by voters themselves.

Get over it, media. Get over it, America. This is Trump’s country. You’re just squatting in it.

[Get a more personal take on politics, newsmakers and more with Frank Bruni’s exclusive commentary every week. Sign up for his newsletter.]

Trump’s presidency was scary from the very start, when he summoned “American carnage” and hallucinated inauguration throngs. But the past several days have been something else: a clarifying, terrifying descent.

How low will Trump go? Leagues lower than you ever imagined, and probably several hundred feet below your current nightmares. Officials with Trump’s re-election campaign apparently plan to use “get over it” as a slogan on merchandise, but I think that the White House’s real new motto comes from Tacitus, a celebrated historian in ancient Rome: “Crime, once exposed, has no refuge but in audacity.”

That audacity animated Mulvaney. It was manifest when Trump publicly beseeched China to get in on the action and do its own investigation of Hunter and Joe Biden. It helps explain the planned convening of the G7 at Trump National Doral Miami, a gesture of such perverse defiance, such profound contempt, that it takes the breath away.

With the gaslighting logic that is his greatest gift, Trump is asserting that no real crook would be this nakedly, flamboyantly criminal, and he’s giving anyone in America who isn’t aboard the Trump train the middle finger. It, not his brain, is the body part with which he governs.

This is all about impeachment, to which he has responded — predictably — with a puerile rage. The first, second and third laws of Trumpian psychology are that for every action, there’s an unequal and hysterical overreaction, and ever since impeachment took on an air of probability, he has been overreacting all over the place.

He’s at his most dangerous when he’s most vulnerable and impotent, because he’s compelled to project command and potency. He has to convince everyone that he’s unflustered and unafraid.

That, as much as any promise to voters, motivated the disastrous pullout from Syria and abandonment of Kurdish allies. Precisely because it was what might undermine the loyalty of his Republican saviors and leave him exposed, he did it. It was a pantomime of fearlessness, a pretense of invincibility.

Ditto the Doral decision, which Mulvaney, saying goodbye to any shreds of credibility and integrity that he was still clinging to, insisted would not turn much if any profit for Trump. Whatever the actual revenues from the G7 meeting itself, it would amount to the kind of advertising that money can’t buy. Doral would be better known afterward, just as Mar-a-Loco, Bedminster and other Trump properties have skyrocketed in visibility since he took office. He has made sure of it, by visiting them in a constant rotation that repurposes the presidency as a promotional tool and branding exercise.

The G7 at Doral is just the cherry on a rancid sundae. But the timing of it: That’s what’s so chilling. It comes as the sword dangles ever sharper and more threatening over his head, and it makes clear that he won’t be answering the accelerating revelations about him with good behavior that coaxes Americans to wonder if he could really have been that bad.

No, he’ll ratchet up the badness, intensify the insolence and lash out more provocatively and ruinously than ever before. He’ll be worse. Virtue is for suckers, who don’t have the nerve for vice. Look, Ma, no morals!

The miserable Mikes, Pence and Pompeo, will race around the world trying to forestall or clean up his messes, because “get over it” doesn’t really translate to geopolitics, where the “it” can be terrorism, slaughter and an American image soiled beyond repair.

Ivanka and Jared Kushner will lay low, as they’re doing now, unable to peddle the pretty fiction that they’re keeping a lid on the combustible patriarch, who keeps setting himself on fire.

He has finally arrived on the Fifth Avenue that he conjured long ago. Remember that — when he said that he could shoot someone there, in view of all the passers-by, and not lose any of his loyal supporters?

Metaphorically speaking, he’s now striding down that busy thoroughfare, gun in hand. Take cover, America.


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JohnRussell
1  seeder  JohnRussell    4 weeks ago

He has finally arrived on the Fifth Avenue that he conjured long ago. Remember that — when he said that he could shoot someone there, in view of all the passers-by, and not lose any of his loyal supporters? Metaphorically speaking, he’s now striding down that busy thoroughfare, gun in hand. Take cover, America.
 
 
 
Nerm_L
2  Nerm_L    4 weeks ago

How low does Trump need to go? 

Trump hacked Clinton's emails, coerced Wikileaks to leak the emails, rigged the election with help from the commies, fired Clinton's cover story, shut down the government to attack undocumented migrants and asylum seekers, forced Republicans to pass a tax cut that hurt New York and California, flipped Robert Mueller to get off the hook, gave the Middle East to Israel, bad mouthed Muslim Democrats, leaned on Ukraine to sink Biden's campaign, threw the military under the bus in Syria, and, worse of all, called Nancy Pelosi a third grader.  And Democrats are still sitting on their hands. 

How low does Trump have to go before Democrats impeach Trump?

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Nerm_L @2    4 weeks ago

Would you like to comment on something in the seed article? How about this?

The wonder of the Trump administration — the jaw-dropping, brain-exploding phantasmagoria of it — is that it doesn’t bury its rottenness under layers of counterfeit virtue or use a honeyed voice to mask the vinegar inside. The rottenness is out in the open. The sourness is right there on the surface for all to see.

It’s at the president’s rallies, where he plays a bigot for laughs, a bully for applause.

It’s in the ballrooms and beds at Mar-a-Loco, where he mingles official government business with free marketing for his gilded club.

It’s in the transcript of his phone call with the president of Ukraine, for whom the quid, the pro and the Biden-ravaging quo couldn’t have been clearer.

It’s at the microphone in the White House briefing room, where his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, showed up on Thursday, announced that President Trump would host the next G7 meeting at one of his own golf resorts, and conceded that, yes, aid to Ukraine had been tied to that country’s indulgence of the president’s political obsessions.

“Get over it,” Mulvaney told the assembled journalists.

“Elections have consequences,” he also said.

Allow me to translate: American voters gave Trump the presidency, so it’s his to use and abuse as he wants. If you’re looking for an apology, you might as well be looking for the yeti. What you should really be doing is looking the other way.
 
 
 
Ronin2
2.1.1  Ronin2  replied to  JohnRussell @2.1    4 weeks ago
It’s in the ballrooms and beds at Mar-a-Loco, where he mingles official government business with free marketing for his gilded club.

Democrats are very pissed off they didn't think about doing something like this first.

That is all.

It’s in the transcript of his phone call with the president of Ukraine, for whom the quid, the pro and the Biden-ravaging quo couldn’t have been clearer.

Sorry, the rest of us are not on rampant TDDS. There are not enough hallucinogens on the planet for any sane person to see that.

It’s at the microphone in the White House briefing room, where his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, showed up on Thursday, announced that President Trump would host the next G7 meeting at one of his own golf resorts, and conceded that, yes, aid to Ukraine had been tied to that country’s indulgence of the president’s political obsessions.

No, he didn't say that; and once again TDDS is causing hearing disorders, as well as visual problems.

“Get over it,” Mulvaney told the assembled journalists.

Yes he did say that. He was far more diplomatic than I would have been. "Fuck off. You ass clowns will write whatever you want no matter what I say. This and all future press conferences are cancelled. Leave your media passes at the door."

“Elections have consequences,” he also said.

Taken straight from the lips of "I have a cell phone and pen" Barack Obama. Want to deny he said it first? In a much more condescending way that he didn't need Republicans or Congress.

Allow me to translate: American voters gave Trump the presidency, so it’s his to use and abuse as he wants. If you’re looking for an apology, you might as well be looking for the yeti. What you should really be doing is looking the other way.

Let me translate. Trump is following Obama's lead; who was following Bush Jr's lead; who was Clinton's lead; who was following Bush Sr's lead; who was follow Reagan's lead; who was following Carter's lead; and on, and on, and on. Did any of them ever apologize for abusing the power of the presidency? Nope, they all expanded off the abuse of power. Trump has been fought every step of the way in the courts, by congress, and by the intelligence agencies. He has still come out on top. Think the next president won't build on what Trump is doing?

“Elections have consequences,”

The only damn thing that the article had right; even if completely forgets who the first person to utter it was.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
2.1.2  Nerm_L  replied to  JohnRussell @2.1    4 weeks ago
It’s at the president’s rallies, where he plays a bigot for laughs, a bully for applause.

You left out "lock her up", "send her back", "illegal immigrants are drug dealers, criminals, and rapists", and “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing.”

It’s in the ballrooms and beds at Mar-a-Loco, where he mingles official government business with free marketing for his gilded club.

You left out Trump Tower in NYC, Trump International Hotel in Washington D.C., Trump International Golf Links in Scotland, and Trump Towers Istanbul in Turkey.

It’s in the transcript of his phone call with the president of Ukraine, for whom the quid, the pro and the Biden-ravaging quo couldn’t have been clearer.

You left out “China should start an investigation into the Bidens, because what happened in China is just about as bad as what happened with Ukraine.”

Allow me to translate: American voters gave Trump the presidency, so it’s his to use and abuse as he wants. If you’re looking for an apology, you might as well be looking for the yeti. What you should really be doing is looking the other way.

Allow me to translate: Democrats do not have a backbone.  When are the spineless Democrats going to impeach Trump?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
2.1.3  Nerm_L  replied to  Ronin2 @2.1.1    4 weeks ago
Democrats are very pissed off they didn't think about doing something like this first.

Paul Pelosi must be so jealous.

 
 
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