It is getting toward the end of a dizzying week in American history.
We started out with the indictments that christened the name #MuellerMonday. For Paul Manafort and his henchman Rick Gates, the inevitable had happened. But the bigger news was 29 year old Trump campaign official George Papadopoulos, an unlikely piker who may soon bring down a president.
Young George, who reportedly was considering a run for office himself, has already accepted a guilty plea. Looks like he told on everybody.
Papadopoulos communicated with several senior campaign officials about his outreach to the Russian government over a period of months. His emails were favorably noticed by senior staffers such as Paul Manafort
and Trump’s nominee for head scientist of the Department of Agriculture Sam Clovis,
Trump is actually on the record in an interview with The Washington Post
in March 2016, calling Papadopoulos an “excellent guy.”
This is because Clovis handed him a piece of paper with Papadopoulos’ name on it.
Later on Monday, an act of savage and cowardly terrorism was carried out in New York City’s Lower Manhattan district on Tuesday. The suspect was an Uzbekistan national. He conducted a truck attack “to inflict maximum damage against civilians” in Manhattan, near the World Trade Center. It was the deadliest terrorist attack New York has seen since 9/11.
A note found in the truck claimed the attack was for ISIS.
We differ with Trump’s personality and policies in nearly every regard, but the fact remains that he is the one who’s got to manage this situation. We are hoping for the best, but expecting the worst. Since Trump has chosen already to try and cash it in for an illusory political conquest, though, it isn’t looking good.
The Editorial Board of the Washington Post characterized this reaction as downright dispiriting
. Millennial Democrats are inclined to agree.
On Wednesday Trump tweeted
“The terrorist came into our country through what is called the ‘Diversity Visa Lottery Program,’ a Chuck Schumer beauty. I want merit based.” He adds in a subsequent tweet
: “We are fighting hard for Merit Based immigration, no more Democrat Lottery Systems.”
It happened because someone with money can buy enough ordnance to level half the country if they’re left to reign unchecked. The outrage we’re seeing from Trump these last few days was completely lacking then. Nothing to gain from talking up a white terrorist.
It’s popular to kick immigrants around. It’s hard to stand up to the NRA lobbyists who stuck him in office.
Chuck Schumer responded from the floor of the Senate, noting that after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, President George W. Bush
brought Mr. Schumer and Hillary Clinton
, then the other Democratic senator from New York, to the White House to demonstrate national unity. Nobody cared about what party they were from after 9/11. We were united in our sorrow by the sacrifice of four thousand of our people.
“President Trump, where is your leadership?” Mr. Schumer asked. “President Trump, instead of politicizing and dividing America, which he always seems to do at times of national tragedy, should be bringing us together and focusing on the real solution — antiterrorism funding — which he proposed cutting in his most recent budget.”
A different kind of distraction was offered up Thursday as well, a very sad one. It’s always sad, to see someone turn on their own with vicious lies and slander.
The Brazile bone was thrown to get Democrats squabbling over last year, rather than focus on what’s going on today. This is a continuation of the Uranium One
strategy from last week. It was done in order to divert attention from a number of other events taking place today, events with actual significance.
This is what they do when they need to deflect attention. They manage, in one way or the next, to push a button they know will cause internal strife among the left.
But they brought it back up when they found it convenient, and threw it at us like a bone among dogs in the hopes that we’d start in on each other. That’s what’s going on today. It’s an attempt at distraction, and today, they have got a lot to distract us from.
It appears his candor was lacking, on the subject of Russia and the Trump campaign. During his previous testimony, he swore up and down that he knew nothing about any attempts on the part of Trump campaign officials to meet with the Russians or to set up meetings with the Russians.
The revelation that he rejected a suggestion to convene a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump last year comes in direct contravention of that statement and opens the door on charges of perjury
Senator Martin Heinrich, a New Mexico Democrat who sits on the Senate intelligence committee, said that despite Sessions’ testimony before the panel earlier this year, “it turns out he was at this meeting with George Papadopoulos. Papadopoulos proposed meeting with Putin and Trump. He didn’t disclose that to the committee.” That’s pretty cut and dry.
Trump’s son in law Jared Kushner has seen his fortunes falling
as of late. A call on Tuesday with former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon
heard Trump laying blame for the expanding scandal surrounding special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian election interference squarely on Kushner’s shoulders, former Trump campaign aide Sam Nunberg told Vanity Fair.
“Here’s what Manafort’s indictment tells me: Mueller is going to go over every financial dealing of Jared Kushner and the Trump Organization,” said Nunberg. “Trump is at 33 percent in Gallup. You can’t go any lower. He’s f—ed.”
“Jared is the worst political adviser in the White House in modern history,” Nunberg added.
There have been terrible things happening in America of every shape and size this past year. But Trump only cares about some of them. When the California wildfires ravaged wine country and ruined the lives of thousands, he gave a big smile, and offered us his “warmest respects”
Not a day has gone by since Trump’s original travel ban
, that hasn’t seen pandemonium breaking out somewhere. His pettiness and sloven has made this last year a time of great crisis, everywhere. The election was a year and three days ago. It feels like an eternity.
Trump has made it clear long ago where his priorities are. But somehow, knowing that never completely lessens the blow. Regardless of whether or not you agree with the current President of your country, or whether you voted for him, you expect to see him observe a certain decency. Good taste and kindness are not merely decorum. They bring honor to the highest office in the land. Trump doesn’t have any.
It’s a sad thought, to consider the impression he’s made on our children, the children of the millennial generation. When we were kids, we looked up to our presidents. What will our children have? All we can do is point to him as an abject example of everything we don’t want them to be.
Going forward, we’ve got our work cut out for us.
The APA has been conducting its Stress in America poll every year since 2007. The most recent provided an upsetting commentary on our collective state of mind. It found that 63 percent of Americans currently feel that the future of the country is a very significant source of stress in their lives.
59 percent of us said this is the “lowest point in our nation’s history that they can remember.”
People are in pain. They see confusion all around them. Economic challenges are getting worse. Disinformation and frustration have both taken a toll. We are going through it with everybody else because we are everybody else. However, it is precisely this shared sorrow that will allow us to make our voices heard.
We have a plan. We have specifics. We have continued to provide a sane and decent alternative to an increasingly messy ordeal. We will keep our noses to the grind and refuse to give in. And eventually, we will succeed.
Enough has happened today to keep analysts busy for years. What will happen next is at this point anyone’s guess. In the meantime, we stay tuned and stay focused. Things will come out all right, in the end. We’re all going to see to it.