Saturday, January 18, 2020


The impeachment trial of President Trump starts next week. The prologue was marred by numerous incidents which bode ill for the future. The "take over" by the Senate, who will act as the ultimate court, followed, nevertheless rules which might look arcane in these days of overkill by social media.

The Democrats, who are never at their best in more ceremonial occasions, brought the articles of impeachment to the Senate in solemn, awkward procession. The stage is now set for the third impeachment in America's history.

Trump already stole the show by adding a celebrity cast to his formidable defense team. Ken Starr and Alan Dershowitz need no introductions. The latter dealt with O.J. Simpson, Claus von Bulow, Weinstein and Jeffrey Epstein (the company he keeps). The former was President Clinton's nemesis. Both will add to the trial some Vanity Fair cachet. Their supreme skill in distortion is undisputed. One might argue that foregone conclusion makes their involvement more a luxury than a necessity. Such considerations never stopped the president.

Compared to the Democrats who will be professional and dour, the Trump team will play for TV. The president's only compass is the impact he might have on the media. He found in this team the added "entertainment value" he likes. However by making this choice, he confirms yet again, by way of proxies, his reputation as an unsavory, corrupt Mafia character. Other members of his team, Pat A. Cipollone and Jay Sekulow represent an ultra-right, religious agenda, popular with this White House and his "base".

The Republicans studied McLuhan. The Democrats did their homework, finding transgressions, lies and corruption, but fail to get traction. The same goes, by the way, for the presidential race. Democrats are "boring". The shift in political culture favors improvisation, interruption, manipulation. Obama's soliloquies have become in three years a thing of the past, chased away by alternative facts. The pursuit of happiness became the pursuit of self-interest.

The current debates among Democrats are querulous and lack frissonThis white sleeper-cell is more about aging than becoming. Only Buttigieg and Yang are refreshing to a point but they, too, lack the former fire of Clinton or Obama. 

There is nobody in this America who has a strategic view regarding role and ambition for the future. Nixon was bold. G.W. Bush was wrong. Trump mistakes shock for awe. The Democrats are just plain parochial. The stage is set for a moral implosion in the land and for numerous trials worldwide - when magnified, that's where Trump's "America First" is heading.  Head for the lifeboats.

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