Trump critics and the U.S. mainstream press are exulting over former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen’s guilty plea to supposed violations of federal campaign contribution regulations. The critics and the press are saying, “We got him! We can now remove him from office, regardless of whether he won the election or not.”
The supposed campaign finance violations that they are so excited about? Well, they relate to sexual affairs that Trump supposedly had with two women.
Imagine that! After being democratically elected in a nationwide election, Trump might now be involuntarily removed from office because of two sexual affairs.
Let’s put this controversy in an overall context.
At the center of the effort to remove Trump from office is the anti-Russia brouhaha that has taken the nation by storm.
Trump was warned early on by the national security branch of the federal government — i.e. the Pentagon, the CIA, the NSA, and the FBI — that Russia was to be considered an official enemy of the United States, just like it was during the Cold War, when it was the leading member of the Soviet Union.
The national-security establishment knows that the American people have grown tired of the forever wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and the rest of the Middle East. But it also knows that the day that U.S. troops are no longer killing people in that part of the world, there goes the “global war on terrorism,” given that anti-American terrorism is driven by U.S. interventionism in that part of the world. No more interventionism, no more terrorism, and, thus, no more “global war on terrorism.”
But the Pentagon, CIA, and NSA know that they need an official enemy to keep the American people riled up and afraid. Otherwise, Americans might begin wondering why the federal government must continue to be a national-security state rather than be restored to its founding principle of a limited-government republic.
That’s where Russia comes in. It is imperative to the national-security establishment that Russia be made (again) into an official enemy of the United States. Nothing must be permitted to interfere with that goal. With Russia as an official enemy of the United States (again), the U.S. national-security establishment, along with its army of contractors and subcontractors, can continue justifying its existence and its ever-growing budgets.
Like President Kennedy after the Cuban Missile Crisis, Trump refused to go along with the national-security state’s playbook. Trump, like Kennedy, made it very clear that he intended to establish friendly relations with Russia.
This is Trump’s “crime.” That has been his undoing.
For its part, Russia has also refused to play by the national-security establishment’s playbook. Led by President Vladimir Putin, Russia doesn’t want to be an official enemy of the United States. That’s why Putin and other Russian officials wanted Trump to win the presidency. They knew that Hillary Clinton would follow the national-security establishment’s mandate and make Russia an official enemy. Russia wasn’t interested in that type of president. It wanted a U.S president who was interested in establishing friendly relations with Russia.
Both Trump and Putin are guilty of heresy in the eyes of the Pentagon, CIA, and NSA, as well as the FBI, which was absorbed into the national-security establishment during the Cold War. By striving to establish friendly relations between the United States and Russia, Trump and Putin were thumbing their noses at the national-security establishment, just as Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev did some 55 years ago after the Cuban Missile Crisis.
So, Trump has to go. That’s why former FBI Director Robert Mueller was appointed Special Counsel to go after Trump. The criminal offense that Mueller is ostensibly investigating is “collusion,” i.e., the notion that Trump and Putin might have cooperated to get Trump elected. In the eyes of the national-security establishment, that is a grave crime, just as Kennedy’s working with Khrushchev and Fidel Castro to establish friendly relations after Kennedy’s Peace Speech at American University in June 1963 was considered a grave crime.
It’s ironic that during the Cold War, when Russia was considered an official enemy, the fear that the national-security establishment inculcated in the American people was that the Russians were coming to get us by military conquest. Today, the fear is that Russia is coming to be our friend.
It is clear that the national-security establishment is pulling out all the stops to punish Trump and remove him from office and, in the process, send a message to every other U.S. official: Don’t buck us. Do as we say, especially when it comes to Russia.
Why, even Cohen has gotten on board in the hopes of ingratiating himself with federal prosecutors who now hold his fate in their hands. According to his lawyer Lanny Davis, who has been a strong supporter of Hillary Clinton, Cohen is now saying that the turning point for him was Trump’s friendly meeting with Putin in Helsinki.
Every American should read the book National Security and Double Government by Michael J. Glennon, professor of law at Tufts University. Glennon explains perfectly how the national-security establishment has become the most powerful part of the federal government and is, in fact, in overall charge of the federal government.
Yes, I know, we are taught in our high school civics classes that there are only three branches of government — the executive, the legislative, and the judicial. Glennon’s book will disabuse you of that quaint notion. That was certainly the case before the federal government was converted to a national security state. But after the conversion, the national-security state or the “deep state” became in charge, with the other three branches deferring to its overwhelming power and influence. After the Kennedy assassination in 1963, there was no doubt in the mind of anyone in Washington that there was now a new sheriff in town, one that everyone is supposed to defer to.
Look at what they have done to get Trump. They go after his campaign manager on income-tax violations and bank-fraud charges. What does that have to do with the anti-Russia brouhaha? Nothing! But the idea is to convict Paul Manafort on those charges so that he can be squeezed to rat out Trump on any criminal violations whatsoever, even if they are are totally unrelated to the anti-Russia brohaha and relate only to Trump’s activities as a businessman or a presidential candidate.
And just look at what they did with Cohen, who they knew was Trump’s private lawyer. They raided his offices, seizing all his records and then scouring them in the hopes of getting him on some criminal offense, even if totally unrelated to the anti-Russia brouhaha, so that he could then be turned to rat on Trump on some charge — any charge, even if totally unrelated to the anti-Russia brouhaha, such as those sex-related violations of campaign-finance regulations.
If something like that were to happen in Russia or China, none of us would be surprised. But here in the United States?
And the ultimate inanity in all this is the possibility that Trump could be removed from office for “campaign finance violations” relating to two sexual affairs. Imagine: a guy pays off a woman with whom he has had a sexual affair and that is considered to be an illegal donation to his campaign! That’s rich, the ultimate inanity of “campaign-finance reform.”
But really, Trump and his Republican supporters are being hoisted on their own petard, the petard of campaign-finance laws. Working with Democrats, Republicans erected those laws to prevent third parties and independents from threatening their power. After all, has the $2,700 limit on campaign contributions brought an end to “big money” and “big corruption” in political campaigns? If you believe that, I’ve got a bridge in Brooklyn I’d like to sell you. All that campaign donation limits have done is inhibit or prevent third party candidates and independents (or even insurgent Republicans and Democrats, such as Eugene McCarthy in 1968) from receiving large donations from a few wealthy individuals that would enable them to go after incumbents and establishment candidates.
Bottom line: There shouldn’t even be any campaign donation limits at all. Campaign-finance laws are nothing more than a racket to protect the Democrat-Republican stronghold on power and the largess that accompanies the welfare-warfare state to which both Republicans and Democrats are wedded. The fact that Trump might now be involuntarily removed from office because he supposedly violated these inane regulations by trying to keep a couple of women from disclosing sexual affairs to the public might just be poetic justice.
But hey, Trump should be counting his lucky stars. If he is peacefully removed from office by impeachment for two sexual affairs, that’s better than being removed from office the way Mossadegh, Arbenz, Kennedy, and Allende were.