Lone Wolf Journalism

So much of what I read about Trump is same-y: This is Not Normal; Is he past his use-by date?; Comey; GOP will never do what is needed; Comey; Cabinet will never do what is needed; GOP wavers; Is this the beginning of the end? and so on. I don’t myself feel any need to add to this buzz, necessary precondition though it may be before the nation leaps into the acid vat of division that is an impeachment. I don’t even feel much need to link to it, it’s so readily available everywhere.

Then there is Martin Longman’s Trump is Being Taken Apart, Step By Step; I’m not sure I agree with it, but it is at least different from the pack. Here’s a taste:

The ordinary way to minimize the damage from Trump’s leak would have been to quarantine knowledge that it had happened at all. This is for a variety of reasons. First, while there’s a fear the Russians will help ISIS track down the source of the information, there’s no certainty they will do so. Telling the whole world what happened almost assures that the informant’s life is at risk. Second, intelligence officers don’t want possible sources to know that the president can’t be trusted not to leak to our adversaries because it makes it difficult to recruit them. Advertising this makes their jobs immeasurably harder. Third, by telling the Israeli public what happened, it makes it more challenging for the Israeli government to share information with us. It would have been easier to patch things up with the Israelis if we had limited knowledge of what happened to a few key, reliable figures in their intelligence services and their cabinet. Yet, the intelligence community immediately revealed what Trump had done, and that the Israelis were the aggrieved party.

Another way of putting this is that the damage control plan from the beginning showed no signs of being an ordinary kind of plan. Every step is counterproductive. None of it makes any sense unless the real damage control plan is to remove Trump from power. If the conclusion is that the problem isn’t limited to a single blunder, but is systemic, any damage control plan that goes no further than triage and cleanup won’t be adequate.

I’ve been writing about this slow-moving coup in various ways for months now because its not well understood and it’s the most consequential thing going on in this country and the world right now.

Worth a look.

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8 Responses to Lone Wolf Journalism

  1. Vic says:

    Something nobody on your side of the political spectrum seems to talk about is the very real question of the reaction of the millions of Trump voters who elected him PRECISELY because he’s not part of the Swamp, don’t see what he’s doing day-to-day as a legitimate problem, and watch the very open bias against him by the media and the historically liberal, if not historically socialist, Intelligence Industry class, if he is removed so quickly and with such open malice displayed?

    I’m sure all of your Law School friends agree that he’s a menace and needs to be impeached and removed now for the good of the country, but you should be warned that not everyone takes that view and in fact WANT him there BECAUSE he is a menace to the circus that is Washington. I tried having this discussion honestly with you before the election, but you were only interested in laughing at it. Well, here we are.

    Trump voters are NOT the idiots with no clue, or the duped victims of a con man, that you’d like to think. If you invalidate millions of voters and supporters over what you believe, contrarily, to be misdeeds, you risk a backlash like you’ve never seen before. He wasn’t some fringe candidate that took the Presidency because his pop died and left to to him. He had and has the continuing support of millions. He hasn’t committed any crime, even if proven true, that his supporters actually consider an impeachable offense. The damage to Democracy if he is summarily removed after what most of his supporters will view as a sham proceeding cannot be imagined by those who advocate removal at all costs.

    Like it or not, if he is removed from office, ESPECIALLY with GOP cooperation, it will be seen by millions of people you clearly have no firsthand knowledge of as definitive proof that Washington is in the hands of a corrupt class that spends most of its energy making sure it never changes meaningfully or admits outsiders. Our Constitutional system will be seen as destroyed and buried. This is FAR more damaging to the country than anything Trump is doing or has done, even if true.

    I think you folks need to step off the ledge and start thinking about the fact that not everyone has the same ideas as you and your friends and consider what THEIR reaction will be if you tell them that what they want is irrelevant in the Government that belongs to you. This is a serious question that you should consider seriously.

    You can laugh this post off and come up with some argument that says I’m nuts, but remember: Trump was 100% the same before the election, yet he got elected. A candidate that was a SURE THING to all of the Pauline Kael Class got beat. If you truly don’t understand how that could be, then you truly don’t understand those that elected him. Ignore the problem if it makes you feel better.

    • Just me says:

      Vic, you are absolutely right about the Trump supporters and what their reaction to an impeachment of Trump might be. But that shouldn’t matter.

      The trouble with those voters, even if they are conceivably a majority of Americans (which they aren’t but they are still a HUGE chunk of the country), is that they are a threat to the republic. For all of our talk of democracy in this country, we really don’t have a democracy, we have a republic.

      Our government was formed not for the benefit of the majority, but for the protection of the minority against the majority. Far too many people in this country have lost sight of that (or simply never learned it to begin with). Nationalism is the antithesis of the concepts that form the cornerstone of our republic. When Trump supporters talk about “Real Americans” or “Make America Great Again” they are talking about rolling back the forward progress we have made on the ideal that all men are created equal.

      If the Trump supporters are allowed to have their way, we face an existential threat as real as a coup d’etat or foreign invasion – just without the blood. Ours is not a country based on tribe, but a country based on ideals. If those ideals are overthrown, our republic is surrendered.

      I know that all sounded dramatic, and that a lot of hay can be made about our country’s long and storied failure to live up to its ideals. But the story arch of the US has been one of struggle towards its ideals. Trump and his supporters have succeeded in electing a President who openly mocks American ideals and seeks to roll them back. When your country is founded on something as delicate and intangible as ideals, the dramatic repudiation of those ideals as advocated by Trump and his supporters should be seen an existential threat.

      • Vic says:

        The fact that you have ALL of this so backwards, from the POV of a Trump supporter, yet have no idea about it, is exactly how you got Trump by surprise in the first place, Na how you will get more of him in four years.

        Seriously. Stop presuming that what YOU think is true matters to those who have a different viewpoint. I assure you that there are very different and opposite arguments for your presumptions being the “existential threat.” You will remain in the dark until you understand that.

        Maybe, here’s a thought: The real existential threat is a Government big enough and powerful enough to be an existential threat. Maybe Trump is making that point unintentionally, but everyone is too enamored with Government being in charge, to see that as a threat, rather than a point to be made. You might consider THAT as the point being made, rather than getting all twisted up about slogans on hats.

        • Just me says:

          I don’t think you read my post. It starts “Vic, you are absolutely right about the Trump supporters and what their reaction to an impeachment of Trump might be. But that shouldn’t matter.” I get their point of view. I am surrounded by them on a daily basis. I also don’t give a rat’s ass. They are wrong, and if I go down with the ship, oh well.

          I am not one of these people who believe that all opinions are equal – they aren’t. This is not like like Obama v. McCain where reasonable people could disagree, or creamy peanut butter v. chunky, where there is no right answer. Anyone who voted for Trump made an objectively poor choice. Trump’s rhetoric and stated positions are objectively a threat to the ideals on which America was founded. If people don’t see that, they are wrong and I have no use for them. If the result of my way of thinking gets me 8 years of Trump, that is sad, but changes nothing.

          • Vic says:

            Oh, I read your post. I simply can’t understand how you think it makes any sense to just presume that since you are more enlightened than millions of other Americans, your positions should either be implemented by force, or barring that, those other Americans, at least, don’t matter to you. Screw the country, so long as you are right!

            I’m simply pointing out that your position is shared by many, and was EXACTLY what put us in this position in the first place. By all means, keep it up. Does it make you happy or something?

            Meanwhile, Michael, true to form, is much too busy to participate in his own blog on the very rare occasions when anyone bothers responding to him.

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