Yesterday in the Oval Office, the alleged president again congratulated Bill Barr's Justice Department for intervening in the Roger Stone sentencing on his behalf, because the baby thinks it's unfaaaaaaaaaair. He also, as usual, said meaningless words about FISA warrants (that had nothing to do with Roger Stone) and whined about someone only receiving two months for leaking "highly classified information," even though his dumb ass leaked "highly classified information" to the Russians, our adversaries, the day after he fired James Comey, in that very same Oval Office. Oh, and of course he played cute with whether or not he's planning on pardoning Stone.

In other words, typical day in the hellscape that is now America.

The Trump White House swears, at least on record, that he's not retaliating and unleashing a campaign of revenge on all those he perceives to have slighted him, of course he's not doing that, HOW DARE YOU EVEN. National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien huffed at a think tank event Tuesday that Trump's retaliatory firings of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman and his brother Yevgeny Vindman were totally normal, nothing to see here, they were "absolutely" not retaliated against, and also those guys were bad. O'Brien insisted, "We're not a country where a bunch of lieutenant colonels can get together and decide what the policy is of the United States," and added that "we are not a banana republic," to which we reply OBJECTION, YOUR HONOR: Assumes facts not in evidence. We live in Donald Trump's fuckshow vision of America now. It's looking more and more like a banana republic every day.

Meanwhile, White House comms idiot Keegan Gaygley Booger Whimsybottom Hogan Gidley told Fox News on Wednesday that it was just "ludicrous" to suggest Trump pressed Bill Barr to piss on the Justice Department and cause the resignations of four respected career prosecutors, by intervening to get Roger Stone's sentence reduced to a slap on the wrist, a pony ride and a free blowjob, HOW DARE YOU EVEN. Gidley said, of course, that Trump "has the right" to interfere with the Justice Department, because of how he is an unaccountable king, we guess, but he "just didn't" do that.

In other words, the gaslighting is in full effect.

But the truth is that of course Donald Trump is retaliating, and of course he's turned the Justice Department into a lawless organ for airing his grievances. He's firing everybody who ever went against him by refusing to commit crimes for him, and he's taking his revenge, because he's fucking unleashed. In the seemingly neuron-free zone that is Donald Trump's brain, he has really and truly been "acquitted" of all wrongdoing, or at least he now fully understands that as long as the Senate is controlled by Republicans, he really can do anything he wants. He literally says he won in the Senate on impeachment 52 to nothing. In the House he thinks he won 197 to nothing. In his mind, the Democrats are illegitimate and do not exist.

The Daily Beast reported yesterday on the scene inside the White House, and it's chilling. He's still directing Rudy Giuliani to investigate the Bidens in Ukraine, the scheme for which he was impeached. He "wants to get to the bottom of the Ukraine issue" just like he wanted to get to the bottom of the "Russia hoax," according to a Trump source quoted by the Beast. (Which, of course, are the two conspiracy theories he babbled about on his treason call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.)

"I think he feels like the chains are off now," said one senior administration official. "It's like things have taken a turn. The gloves are off. And everything that used to be hush hush is now just… out in the open."

Trump wants to erase the entire Robert Mueller investigation and fake "exonerate" all those caught by Mueller who committed crimes on his behalf, like Stone and Paul Manafort and Michael Flynn. He wants to exonerate Russia for the election attack that helped install him in office, and which Mueller called "sweeping and systematic." And God knows what he has planned in his fuckwit mind for Robert Mueller himself, but we really need to not ignore the fact that Trump accused Mueller of lying to Congress on Twitter yesterday.

Meanwhile over there in the Justice Department, Trump has in Bill Barr a low-rent rest stop Dairy Queen transmogrification of Roy Cohn, ready to do whatever puppy dog tricks Trump commands him to do. Or maybe Trump is telling the truth when he says he and Barr really aren't talking, because Barr is just knowledgeable enough about Trump's criminal desires that he doesn't need micromanaging. Barr is sticking his dick in literally every investigation that has anything to do with Trump, he participated in at least part of the coverup of Trump's Ukraine crimes, and oh yes lest we forget, there is now an "intake process" at Justice so Rudy Giuliani can deliver whatever Kremlin lies he learns in Ukraine about the Bidens and fake Ukrainian interference in the 2016 election.

What was Robert O'Brien saying about "not a banana republic"?

And what's the Senate doing? Investigating Trump's Kremlin conspiracy lies about Ukraine and the Bidens. Why wouldn't they? Trump owns their asses and there's gonna be "heads on pikes" if they don't fall in line. Right, Lindsey Graham and Susan Collins? Does it offend you that we are pointing that out right now? Oh well, eat shit.

We're There, Y'all. The Reichstag Is Burning.

The time we have feared in the Trump presidency is right now, and it's going to last at least until the election in November. What happens after that is up to the American people. Or at least hopefully it's still up to us.

This is Trump's Reichstag Fire, and yes, he's going to bumblefuck his way through it, because he's not the brightest bag of dicks in the knife drawer. But it's still happening. He might even try to make a Moscow Apartment Bombing happen, or at least tell his followers it happened, and they will accept it as true, because he has captured them. As Rachel Maddow asked last night, is there anything that you honestly believe this amoral shithole of a man would not do to this country, if it helped him retain or grow his power? Anything?

In a Wonkette piece yesterday — aptly titled "PULL THE FUCKING FIRE ALARM," because that's what you do when the Reichstag is on fire — we ended by saying everyone needs to go back and re-read Masha Gessen's "Autocracy: Rules For Survival," published two days after the election. In it, the Russian-born Gessen, who knows a thing or nine about living under authoritarian regimes, correctly predicted what the Trump presidency would become and offered a roadmap for how to handle it. Rule number one is "Believe the autocrat" when he says he's going to do something. (Not when he says there's a hurricane a-bearin' down on Alabama, that's different.) Rule number three is that "Institutions will not save you."

Gessen noted:

It took Putin a year to take over the Russian media and four years to dismantle its electoral system; the judiciary collapsed unnoticed. The capture of institutions in Turkey has been carried out even faster, by a man once celebrated as the democrat to lead Turkey into the EU. Poland has in less than a year undone half of a quarter century's accomplishments in building a constitutional democracy.

We don't know if Maddow read our piece (if so, hello), or if Gessen's piece was just going around yesterday, but she devoted her "A" block last night to this very subject. The institutions are falling apart in front of our eyes, the autocrat is doing what he always said he would do, ever since the 2016 campaign, and it's time to wake the fuck up.

Maddow also referenced a book that's made the rounds the past few years, a short tome published just after the 2016 election by Timothy Snyder called On Tyranny. Maybe it's time you grabbed yourself a copy and read it real quick so you are armed with Snyder's rules too. One is to make sure you and your people have passports, which is dark, but so is America right now.

Snyder also noted, along the lines of Gessen's "Institutions will not save you," that they definitely won't save us if we don't fight to save them. Oh yeah, and he especially cautioned against obeying the autocrat before he even officially asks, by changing our behaviors in little ways that signal to the regime that actually, we are kinda sorta OK with whatever it's doing, or at least we're not going to take to the streets about it or anything. (Gonna need to start taking to the streets again, y'all. Today would be a good day to call your local Indivisible and see what they've got planned.) Maddow noted that Senate Republicans did just that, when they collectively signed off on Donald Trump extorting a foreign country, our ally, which is under attack by our adversary and Trump's BFF Russia, to gin up fake dirt on Joe Biden, to help him steal the 2020 election.

Snyder writes:

"We are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to fascism, Nazism, or communism in the last century. Our one advantage is that we might learn from their experience…"

In other words, it's a republic, if you can keep it.

It's going to be a long nine months, y'all. And our problems won't just magically disappear if/when we elect a Democrat (ANY FUCKING DEMOCRAT, DON'T CARE WHICH). For one thing, there's zero evidence President Shitmouth will cede power readily if/when he gets his ass kicked in November.

The fire alarm has been pulled. Where we go next is up to us.

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Evan Hurst

Evan Hurst is the managing editor of Wonkette, which means he is the boss of you, unless you are Rebecca, who is boss of him. His dog Lula is judging you right now.

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