Damn Shame Trump Has All These Crooks Hanging Around Him, Doing His Criminal Bidding
Freshly impeached Donald Trump spent this weekend whining about why he was impeached at all. Oh, why did such a bad thing happen to someone like him -- a fundamentally bad person? Trump is just like Job if Job were a corrupt mob boss president finally held somewhat accountable for his actions.
Trump's ongoing dilemma is that he seems to have surrounded himself -- by some twist of fate -- with the type of people who'd frequent the Mos Eisley cantina in Star Wars. Trump's defenders, as well as Trump himself, will argue that we shouldn't trust anyone who was ever close enough to Trump to see firsthand how crooked he is.
This weekend, Jeanine Pirro compared human smoking gun Lev Parnas to Michael Cohen, Trump's former personal lawyer and "fixer," which is an above-board term used to describe someone who'd never break the law on his client's behalf.
PIRRO: For all you bozos who now want to call Lev Parnas, the latest guy indicted on multiple felonies who will say or do whatever he can to get out of his indictment, he's no more credible than your "hero" Michael Cohen, who you dragged out of prison to testify in your hallowed chambers.
Pirro is a former Westchester County prosecutor so she knows damn well that one thing someone can't do to avoid a stint in striped pajamas is called "perjury." A prosecutor who knowingly lets their witness lie on the stand is suborning perjury, which is "bad." Cohen and Parnas are credible witnesses against Trump not because we'd trust them with our grandmother's china, but because they saw him do crime ... a lot. There's a reason nuns are rarely witnesses in mob trials. Sister Edith isn't usually in the room when a gangster orders someone whacked.
Lindsey Graham, another former prosecutor who should know better, called Parnas "crooked as a snake." He also said he "smelled a rat," which is an interesting turn of phrase. This week on "Fox & Friends," Geraldo Rivera described Parnas as a "creepy, sleazy, self-serving super snitch." "Rat" and "snitch" are straight-up gangster terms. Gangster don't like "rats" and "snitches" because they cooperate with authorities. They don't keep their mouths shut. They reveal incriminating and damaging information about their fellow criminals.
Like one of the DAs probably said in a "Law & Order" episode: "First to talk is the first to walk." That doesn't mean "first to make up shit is the first to split." Trump rage-tweeted in 2018 that Cohen turned "rat" because he cracked under FBI pressure. He expected Cohen to happily do time for him like Mr. Blonde in Reservoir Dogs. Trump also wants his flunkies to commit obstruction if necessary if it'll protect his sorry ass. He told his former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn to "stay strong" and presumably not tell anyone anything that might prove inconvenient for Trump.
Trump is still improbably the president of the United States, so not everyone around him is shady AF. Honest people have testified before Congress to Trump's perfidy, but Republicans still don't trust them. Andrew McCabe, Marie Yovanovitch, and Fiona Hill don't have lengthy rap sheets, but Trump-ists are still try to smear them. They are part of some "deep state" conspiracy to take down a more or (very much) less duly elected president. How does Trump go on with all those scumbags and patriotic Americans conspiring to ruin him?
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He's on the board of the Portland Playhouse theater and writes for the immersive theater Cafe Nordo in Seattle. Tickets are on sale now for his latest Nordo collaboration, "Curiouser and Curiouser," an adaptation of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass." It promises to feel like an actual evening with SER (for good or for ill).