Just when you think there are no more surprises possible
President Trump has fired the director of the F.B.I., James B. Comey, over his handling of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails, the White House said on Tuesday.
The abrupt firing raised questions over whether Mr. Trump was trying to influence the Russia investigation. But he said he was following recommendations from the Justice Department, which criticized how Mr. Comey concluded the investigation into Mrs. Clinton.
I have said it all along. The Trumpers really do plan to lock her up. My hunch is that they are going to use the entire mechanism of government to find some reason to attack Obama as well.
The "recommendation from the Justice Department" refers, of course, to a memo from Jeff Sessions, as reproduced here
. (Scroll to the bottom.) Many people are misreading that letter. In short and in sum, Sessions says that Comey erred not
when he told the public about the emails on the Weiner/Abedin laptop, but when he recommended closing the investigation without prosecution
I can imagine your reaction: "Whaaaaaaaa...?"
These events cannot be appreciated unless you understand that this government does not inhabit the reality that you and I share. This government lives in the alternative reality of Fox and Breitbart and Infowars. In that
universe, Comey sinned not when he ruined Hillary's chances of becoming president but when he did not join the mob chanting "lock her up."
(In his initial reaction
, Josh Marshall writes: "In other words, they are saying that they are firing Comey, in essence, for unfairness to Hillary Clinton." No. As noted above, many people are not reading the memo carefully enough.)
Let's peek at some quick Twitter reactions. The most remarkable comes from Ed Snowden
This FBI Director has sought for years to jail me on account of my political activities. If I can oppose his firing, so can you.David Corn
How can anyone Trump hires to be FBI director now handle an investigation that involves Trump and/or his associates??????
Today is the day Donald Trump finally became autocrat of the United States?Claude Taylor
sounds an optimistic note which I hope is justified (but I suspect is not):
Everyone who is panicking right now-Comey anticipated this. A dozen or more indictments have been handed down. Comey's firing stops nothing.
Watergate netted 48 indictments. Trump is going to blow past that record. Bigley
Let me offer a word -- actually, three
words -- about the instantly-ubiquitous Watergate comparison: Stop kidding yourselves
That was a different era and a different political reality. Nixon faced a Democratic Congress. His own party had not yet hardened into the vicious, rabid, bloodthirsty killing machine that it now is. In the early 1970s, the alternative reality media machine consisted of a handful of publications put out by the John Birch Society and similar organizations, along with a few on-air ranters like Wally George. If Nixon possessed the armaments that Trump has, not only would he have survived Watergate, he would have been able to lock up Ted Kennedy and proclaim himself President For Life, as in Watchmen
Back to the tweets. Eddie Elfenbein
, previously not on my radar:
Welcome to the FBI, Director Baio.John Schindler
, whom I politely assailed in the previous post, says all of the right things:
Firing your secret police chief because he's investigating you is the stuff of banana republics. America as I knew it is gone.
At this point:
1. Let Congress know your view. Now.
3. Stockpile ammunition, food, water & non-perishable goods.
Trump has either BIGLY Saturday Night Massacred himself here...or he's consolidated power & is beyond any law.
We'll know soon which it is.
I favor option 2, Mr. Schindler. See my comments above re: The Watergate comparison.
As I see it, only the UK can save us now. Spill everything you know about Trump, my British friends, and we will consider the whole Lend-Lease thing more than squared. Yet I can't place much hope in a rescue from Bond, James Bond: As noted in the post below, a faction within the UK's right-wing Establishment played an under-discussed role in getting us into this fix in the first place.
There's another possibility. People like Comey, people in the know, can finally get it into their skulls that some secret truths are so damned important, so in need of airing, that they supercede even a security oath. Of what value is an oath given to a usurper?