Donald Trump always makes things worse for himself. It's become a daily feature of the Trump era to watch in stunned amazement how Trump routinely makes horrible decisions, digging his shithole deeper and more inescapable with every move. Hell, Trump's bad decisions make Walter White look like the world's most rational pragmatist.
So, it should come as no surprise to learn that Trump ordered his staff to concoct a smear campaign against senior FBI officials, this according to a Friday report by Foreign Policy magazine. It's yet another indication that Trump has engaged in a year-long obstruction of justice campaign to thwart the Trump-Russia investigation. Knowing what we know at this point, including his inexplicably derpy confession to Lester Holt on national television, it'd be a colossal miscarriage of justice if the president wasn't at least indicted on multiple accounts of obstruction and witness tampering.
This latest news is easily dovetailed with the bombshell New York Times piece by Michael Schmidt and Maggie Haberman in which we learned that Trump asked White House Counsel Don McGahn to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller. The operative concept here is that Trump literally decided Mueller had to be fired and, so, he set out to do so. He didn't count on the fact that McGahn would draw a line in the orange sand by threatening to quit instead. At that point, Trump backed down.
This is galactically dumb on so many levels.
1) Trump had to know this would leak. Given Trump's history with the press and the roster of disloyal stooges he surrounds himself with, it's impossible to imagine that Trump believed it'd remain secret. Even in June, there were already countless bombshell articles published about the president's handling of the Russia situation, including the gargantuan story about Don Junior's meeting with a team of Russian operatives. Somehow, like an idiot, Trump thought it'd be different this time. Since then, it clearly hasn't occurred to him that Steve Bannon, Reince Priebus and Don McGahn all have the same lawyer and that two of the three men were fired by Trump. One of them, Bannon, was publicly smeared by Trump and Trump's flying monkeys on Fox News, almost destroying Bannon's reputation. Trump's chickens are coming home to roost.
2) Trump looks guiltier by the hour. His flop-sweat stained desperation is really showing now. No one who's innocent would try this hard to derail a federal investigation of this magnitude. Either he's totally clueless about what's happening around him to the point of being severely mentally ill, or he's fully aware of how much jeopardy he's in. Given his actions, he knows he's fucked, so he's tossing caution to the wind and just swinging his presidential authority around hoping to knock down, brick by brick, Mueller's case. Frankly, at this point, I don't think he cares if it makes him look guilty. In his mind, he's doing what he has to do in the eternal now. Whether he's guilty is a question for later.
3) Another count of obstruction. Obviously, Trump is fighting potential obstruction charges by manufacturing more obstruction of justice charges. No further explanation required.
4) Mueller is still here! So, Trump continues to squeeze his cumbersome bulk through a series of flaming hoops to discredit or outright remove Mueller and the FBI, yet both Mueller and the bureau continue to exist anyway with their sights laser-focused on the Oval Office. In other words, if you're planning to discredit, smear or fire an elite team of federal agents tasked with potentially sending you to prison, you'd better be sure your plan works otherwise they'll have more ammo to take you down. Duh. It's remarkable to imagine that Trump, who's reached the most powerful station in public life somehow, doesn't know this. It seems like something a child learns by watching movies -- "dead men tell no tales," etc.
I mean, yeah, I get it. Trump's goal in all of this is to exculpate himself by convincing his disciples that the "deep state" is out to destroy him, and he's taking allegedly reasonable measures to defend himself. Sean Hannity said as much last night when he told his viewers that Trump's entitled to point out Mueller's so-called conflicts of interest, as flimsy and stupid as those conflicts happen to be.
In Trump's frantic effort to control his PR, just as he might do as a realty-show celebrity or even a New York City socialite, he's forgetting about the bunting-clad sandbox he commandeered with Russia's help -- he's forgetting that he's dealing in the very serious high-stakes world of Washington power politics. He's up against a government that, despite what you might hear otherwise, works feverishly in the best interest of the people. Likewise, he's treating the world's most powerful intelligence community as if it's Paul Blart Mall Cop. In Trump's deluded brain, he thinks he can out-dazzle the FBI. This proves he's operating out of pure panic, delusion and hubris. He thinks he can squeeze out of this because he always has.
However, and now more than ever, we should rest assured knowing Trump will very likely be charged with obstruction, which, by the way, was the centerpiece of Nixon's trespasses during Watergate.
Things are about to get really crazy. Buckle up.