Some people have accused Trump of being a narcissistic psychopath While I am no psychologist, I would surmise that any contender for the US presidency needs a fair dose of narcissism, and Trump wouldn’t be the first with an unhealthy number of psychopathic tendencies – Nixon springs to mind. Among Trump’s numerous unappealing qualities is his pathological need to lie, and to surround himself with sycophantic liars to echo and amplify his spin.
And it isn’t merely a need to lie to cover up unpleasant truths about his character, attitudes, abilities and accomplishments, it seems to go beyond that. It seems that he is mentally incapable of telling the truth where a lie will sound better to his own ears. He lies in order to inflate his own ego like a bullfrog inflating its chest. To any faintly knowledgeable and impartial observer, he only succeeds in making himself appear a smaller and smaller, if louder and louder blowhard.
It was clear from the Mueller Report that the Special Counsel had determined that Trump was obstructing the course of justice into the investigation of Russian involvement in his election campaign. True, Mueller could not prove strict conspiracy and collusion in legal terms, but he made clear in his report that obstruction was a fact.
Yet the president set the yapping dogs of his administration, the White House scandal defuser Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Attorney General William Barr to distort the report’s conclusions, and lie, lie and lie again that he had been completely exonerated and had no case to answer. It got to the point that Mueller had to give a brief press conference recently to clarify the point that if the Special Counsel had found reason to exonerate Trump from criminal activity, he would have done so, and that the only reason he had been unable to prosecute Trump was because of Dept. of (In?)Justice own policy that they cannot indict sitting presidents for criminal wrongdoing.
Mueller went further and made clear that it is the role of Congress to bring about impeachment proceedings in cases like this. Trump’s response was typically both ignorant and intemperate. After weeks of tweeting that he had been “exonerated”, that there was “no collusion” or “conspiracy”, and that the “case was closed”, he had these tweets to post in response to Mueller’s statement:
“The Greatest Presidential Harassment in history. After spending $40,000,000 over two dark years, with unlimited access, people, resources and cooperation, highly conflicted Robert Mueller would have brought charges, if he had ANYTHING, but there were no charges to bring!”
“… Robert Mueller would have brought charges, if he had ANYTHING, but there were no charges to bring!” Another lie by the Liar-in-Chief, who ignored (if he even read) that Mueller had clarified there were no charges brought because he was procedurally constrained from bringing any, and saying it was the proper course for Congress to do that.
Trump further tweeted:
“Russia, Russia, Russia! That’s all you heard at the beginning of this Witch Hunt Hoax…And now Russia has disappeared because I had nothing to do with Russia helping me to get elected.
“It was a crime that didn’t exist. So now the Dems and their partner, the Fake News Media say he fought back against this phony crime that didn’t exist, this horrendous false acquisition (sic), and he shouldn’t fight back, he should just sit back and take it.
“Could this be Obstruction? No, Mueller didn’t find Obstruction either. Presidential Harassment!”
Mueller found 10 cases of obstruction. Trump also admitted in this tweet that Russian interference in fact had helped him get elected.
I think that after this, impeachment is a certainty, indeed a duty, the only question being of when and after what further investigation by Congress. With Trump doing his best to obstruct – there’s that word again! – all investigation by the House judiciary committee, and blocking all subpoenas of administration employees, the precise path to impeachment is not currently clear. Further, given that the Senate is full of Republicans who would rather slit their own throats than publicly admit they had supported a monster in the White House, impeachment is not likely to succeed.
However, that would be more of an indictment of the lack of any ethical values in the Senate and the Republican party, and under the circumstances, is not likely to help their election chances in 2020. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has explained her reluctance to impeach because it would give Trump the opportunity to ride a bandwagon of aggrieved and rabid Trump supporters into an election. He would whip them into frenzies in more and more Nuremberg-style rallies. However, even granted that election results in a frenzy like this are not guaranteed, failure to impeach where impeachment is clearly appropriate is not likely to be forgiven, either.
I should think Democrats’ phonelines will be extremely busy this week.