We watch them pass in echelons this fool’s parade. The trickle becomes a flood as five top Pentagon officials resign in a single week. What have we learned from it in this city of the dammed? Jeff Sessions soldiered on slovenly loyal, putridly loyal, embarrassingly loyal making a hound dog seem cold. Even on his knees with his mouth open and his eyes shut he could only last eighteen months. Scaramouche lasted…what a week? But these are political employees who give orders to the staff of the various government agencies.
So, Sessions is replaced by the even more compliant Barr, and the Justice Department is compromised. Barr isn’t an Attorney General he’s a consigliere who acts as the President’s protector from the law. They and when I say they, I mean Trump and Barr. Two criminal co-conspirators with no daylight between them. They begin an investigation into the origins of the Russia probe as retaliation. What other reason could it be? Trump claims he was vindicated by the Mueller probe. Why would you investigate the investigation, if it proved your innocence?
One curious fact, the life expectancy of a political employee is in direct proportion to their contact with Donald Trump. Secretaries of State and Chiefs of Staff stay at a hotel rather than sign a lease. What could account for this? These specters and phantoms pass before us and pass away but do we hear what they are saying to us from the political beyond? The President’s former campaign chair is in prison for a crime so simple to prevent. You fill out a form and sign it. You tell the United States Government that you are a foreign lobbyist working for an alien government. Do you know why you wouldn’t sign that form? You’re a criminal trying to hide your activities from scrutiny probably involving tax fraud and international money laundering.
Paul Manafort was a Georgetown trained Juris Doctor. “I didn’t know,” isn’t an excuse that will churn much butter. Michael Cohen ah, Michael Cohen…next! How much more of this do we really need to see? More importantly how much more of this can we stand? Between the years of 1936 to 1938 Joe Stalin held the great purge. Cabinet ministers and military officers were not judged on their competence but judged on their political loyalty to the party and Joe Stalin.
This is American crime white collar style; we don’t shoot them we force them out of their jobs. Suddenly there are openings that the competent don’t want. There are 136 federal agencies without administrators with 1,200 open positions needing Senate confirmation. Now add in the exodus of employees abandoning multi-decade careers. Trump calls them the deep state but I call them the backbone of our government, I call them the honest and legitimate.
Before the French Revolution the French Parliament met when the King felt like it, but mostly he didn’t feel like it. Its ministers were mainly ceremonial with few dedicated duties. The wealthy and royals didn’t soil their hands with office work that was left to the civil servants. After the French Revolution few of those civil servants managed to keep their heads and restarting the government was made to stumble. It didn’t work out well for Joe Stalin either when the Nazi juggernaut invaded the Russian steppe, Stalin had the best politically trained military incompetents in the world.
But we have seen what has happened to the Justice Department under Bill Barr. Will this happen in the Pentagon as well? Agencies without heads cannot act, it is the chloroforming government. Trump’s penchant for naming acting directors unable to pass Congressional muster making matters worse. No one has ever accused Trump of being smart but he is cunning. It’s taken him three years to figure out the levers of power and to overcome them. It would be insane at this point to assume any other outcome but catastrophic.
“Never yet has anyone exercised for good ends the power obtained by crime.” – Tacitus
The Republican Reichstag is frozen, stuck in their Stockholm Syndrome tracks. Terrified because Trump fights dirty and they know it. They know how to deal with political opponents but not mobsters. This is a mob boss presidency are you going to argue with the boss or are you going to play ball? How is 1932 Berlin any different from 2020 Washington? A criminal organization trying to suppress lawful government. Shh! They don’t want anyone to watch or to listen as the Cheeto cuts the numbers of those listening to his phone calls.
Ah, but now we know, don’t we? Someone’s called the blind man’s bluff. Trump applied sanctions as he withdrew from the Iran Nuclear treaty. Continual pressure continuing the cycle of violence. Proxy wars proxy armies, killing real people. Proxy foreign policy, The Brits were quick to say, Thanks a lot for the heads up. You’re on your own mate! We’ve been trying for several years to get you to negotiate and now in the words of Winston Churchill, “Bugger off!”
Its amateur night at the Big White House, assassinating a government official in a third country. Don’t they know that’s how World War One started? Or is this just another chapter of Vietnam of Arabia perpetual war without keeping score as long as our credit holds out. A criminal act of war, a provocation without an exit.
“When you surround an army, leave an outlet free. Do not press a desperate foe too hard.”
― sun tzu, The Art of War