Dirty tricks vs. democracy | Tom H. Hastings

Can Republicans survive without dirty tricks?

Open question. Some historical and current examples cause pause as we consider this.

Trump has just issued a full pardon to then-Vice President Dick Cheney’s criminal chief of staff I. “Scooter” Libby, a scoundrel and master of Dick’s Tricks. In retaliation for former ambassador Joseph Wilson telling the truth in 2003 that Saddam Hussein was actually not attempting to purchase the radioactive material for possible nuclear weapon construction, Libby and Richard Armitage told several journalists that Wilson’s wife was a covert CIA agent, thus blowing her cover, ending her career, and likely revealing the identities of other U.S. CIA covert operatives working to gather intelligence on WMD throughout the world.

Libby was rightly convicted and sentenced to 30 months in prison for lying to the FBI under oath, something the Trump regime has been doing for more than a year. National Security Adviser Mike Flynn, Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort, Trump campaign official Rick Gates, Attorney General Jeff Sessions (OK, under oath to the Senate in the case of Sessions), Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, Trump himself — just founts of disinformation, falsehoods, and buck-naked lies, either under oath or just out in the clear via tweets or Fox News bluster.

Now Trump is apparently setting the stage for a big round of pardons in anticipation of the conclusion of the Mueller investigation and the publication of James Comey’s revelatory book. And to add to the concatenation of confusion and chaos, despite his denials, Trump is gearing up to fire Mueller in a last ditch effort to save his own hide. It is likely that Mueller has more than enough to either indict Trump himself or to send a report to Congress that would virtually mandate a launch of impeachment procedures.

We are getting ready to resist Trump. One pledge to rally in resistance if Trump moves on Mueller already has more than 300,000 who’ve signed up. Mueller is a Republican. Rod Rosenstein — top Department of Justice official who appointed Mueller — is a Trump appointee Republican. Even Comey was for most of his life, until his Trump disillusionment.

The hyperbolic claims by Trump that those investigating him are all Democrats is way overblown. Trump keeps appointing ideologues to run his agencies, including Department of Justice, and yet those chosen conservative Republicans seem loathe sometimes to commit the depth of fraud, abuse and corruption Trump expects, so they get fired. He is likely without Democrats (who are all part of the “deep state” by his lights) left to fire, so it’s almost certainly going to be Republicans, most of whom he appointed, who will continue to bite the dust.

Our democracy is in great peril. If Trump takes the next corrupt and criminal step — to end Mueller’s investigation — I will join those who hit the streets in nonviolent resistance. If we fail to rise up we fail to do our citizen duty to protect our very democracy.

Sign me up. If I’m arrested in our nonviolent actions attempting to shield our democracy from Trump attack, oh well. The greatest price would be to let him get away with it.

Tom H. Hastings is founding director of PeaceVoice.

More in Opinion

Aretha Franklin: Respect

Newspaper cartoonists from across the country and around the globe paid tribute… Continue reading

Can The Beer Industry Still Brew Up A Comeback? | Tyrades!

It’s a drastically different world than when I was working a summertime… Continue reading

Swamp Thing | Raging Moderate

During the 2016 Presidential Election, Donald Trump famously proclaimed he would drain… Continue reading

Today’s cartoon for Wednesday, Aug. 15

Today’s cartoon is by Adam Zyglis, The Buffalo News.… Continue reading

Honestly Looking at Family Values | Wim Laven

A recent look at the GOP’s platform on immigration was quite heartbreaking;… Continue reading

How to Survive Your Summer Vacation | Raging Moderate

We look forward to it for months. Calendars have been cleared, reservations… Continue reading

Poverty, Violence and Spiritual Wildfires | Robert C. Koehler

“They take advantage of that opportunity and they shoot into a crowd,… Continue reading

Today’s cartoon for Friday, Aug. 17

Today’s cartoon is by Pat Bagley, The Salt Lake Tribune.… Continue reading

Today’s cartoon for Thursday, Aug. 16

Today’s cartoon is by Bob Englehart.… Continue reading

Most Read