So, it’s done. Donald Trump didn’t do anything wrong. Or wait. He did do something wrong. Yeah, yeah, he did. It just doesn’t merit any punishment. It’s just like that section of the U.S. penal code that lists all those crimes for which our legal system recommends no punishment. What? You’re not familiar with that section? Oh. Right. It doesn’t exist.
This is straight out of East Germany. Yes, there was a “trial.” But the jury was also the judge. The judge was just for show. The jury voted against hearing witnesses, even as one eyewitness was, at the very moment of the jury’s deliberations, veritably screaming that he had first-hand evidence of guilt!
Oh, and the defenses. There were three: First, he didn’t do it. Second, he did it, but he was justified. Third, he did it, but it doesn’t merit punishment.
And for good measure, the night before the acquittal, just to remind the rest of us that we can all go fuck ourselves forever, just to spray that little extra measure of piss on the Constitution, the jury took an occasion of state that’s supposed to be free of campaign politics and turned it into a grotesque exaltation-fest, chanting “Four more years!” as if they were at a party rally.
And then, on Wednesday afternoon, February 5, 2020, the United States Senate voted to send the legislative branch off to reeducation camp.
I’ll circle back to Trump, but first let’s examine the precedent being established here that goes beyond Trump. It’s harrowing. Absofuckinglutely harrowing. A future president does what Trump did—or something worse that we can’t even imagine. Maybe it’s far worse—maybe it’s a completely unambiguous crime. But the president felt it served his political interests.
Well, under the Dershowitz principle that the Senate just voted to accept, that’s fine. Anything is fine. Indeed, precisely because the president did it in furtherance of his political fortunes, it definitionally cannot be a crime. And that president’s lawyers will argue exactly that.
“But Mr. Chief Justice, the Senate said in 2020 that this was fine.” Believe me, they will argue it, and it will stick. It will mean that the president is clearly above the law, is no longer a servant of the people who derives his authority from the people, but an essentially uncheckable monarch.
Most presidents won’t behave that way, you say. No, most won’t. But that’s irrelevant. It only takes one more (whose name might very well be Trump Jr.), and one more authoritarian Congress, and poof.
So that’s a future president. Now, let’s talk Trump.
There are two theories here. Theory one is Susan Collins’. That he’s “learned his lesson” and wouldn’t do such a thing again.
Okay, you can stop eating that Tide pod now. (What is with her? She goes out of her way to state the most insanely laughable defense of her positions, as if she came up with them with a team of comedy writers.)
Theory two goes like below.
Remember what happened with the Zelensky call? July 25: Robert Mueller testifies before Congress that he did not exonerate Trump. July 26: Trump, having claimed exoneration, called Zelensky to get the Biden dirt.
So, I have a question for you: What do you think Trump is going to be doing tomorrow?
I bet history will reveal to us that just as he did last July, he’ll waste no time in using his acquittal to do something no president is supposed to be doing.
What might that be? Who knows. Here’s one little guess though.
“Ah. Donald Fyodorovich! Congratulations on your great victory over the cosmopolitans!”
“I have those Republicans wrapped around my finger. It was very easy. They’re a joke. That Graham. If only he knew how I laugh at him. But listen. That’s not why I called.”
“Bernie. Crazy Bernie. Incredibly, it looks like they might nominate him. Don’t know, but might.”
“There is old Russian proverb. Grandma has two sayings. Maybe it will rain. Maybe it will not.”
“Okay, I don’t understand what that means. But look. Crazy Bernie spent time over there. You know, when it was communist. And then he got to Congress. I think when it was still the Soviet, you know, thing.”
“Da, da. Just barely, right at end. I was in KGB.”
“Exactly. So you must… you know. Know something. You follow?”
“There is old Russian proverb:…”
“Good. So we understand each other.”
“Like Diaghilev and Balanchine.”
Okay, I make joke, but is no laughing matter. The Soviet Union would likely have had a file on Bernie Sanders. Assuming it exists, how long before it’s in Trump’s hands? Mind you, it may say nothing of any importance beyond where he went on that honeymoon—I’m not suggesting anything about Sanders here. I’m suggesting things about Trump.
And it will hardly end there. It doesn’t need to be dirt on potential opponents. It might be money, in-kind “assistance” of who-knows-what variety, or a dozen other things I’m not just devious enough to imagine.
Tweeted Rudy: “Acquitted for life!"
And now, there is nothing we can do about it. Except of course vote him out. In a rigged election. With an Electoral College that favors him even if he loses the popular vote.
And remember this date. However long this country lasts, it will be a dark one, and one that the historians who write this nation’s obituary will certainly mark.