No matter what happens, we can always count on Donald Trump to make things worse for Donald Trump. In the ongoing effort to simultaneously brand himself as the Greatest Great Person Of Greatness while also desperately squirming out of legal jeopardy, Trump, like a doofus Walter White copycat, continues to make horrible decisions.
On Monday, Trump shocked the world by announcing his intention to declassify a series of documents related to the investigation into Russia's continued attack against democratic institutions and American voters. Just to recap, Trump seeks to unredact the FISA applications pertaining to Trump's foreign policy adviser and Russia conspirator Carter Page. Trump also wants to declassify emails and other documents related to James Comey, Lisa Page, Peter Stzrok and Bruce Ohr.
His goal is clearly self-preservation and has nothing to do with transparency. Along those lines, the first thought to pop into my head when I read the news was that Trump is taking another idiotic shot in the dark.
He's so convinced the Justice Department is out to destroy him, he's assuming there has to be something incriminating in there about Comey and the others, lurking just behind the tantalizing strips of black ink. Of course, a sane and rational president wouldn't order such a thing without knowing exactly what his order would reveal. In the movie Glengarry Glen Ross, Al Pacino explains to a stunned Kevin Spacey that you never open your mouth unless you know the shot. Likewise, whether you're seeking transparency or to exonerate yourself, you never declassify documents unless you know exactly what's in them.
But Trump always makes things worse for Trump.
Then on Thursday, we learned that, in fact, no -- Trump hasn't read the documents yet. Simply put: he's willing to declassify documents that not only would reveal FBI sources and methods at best, but the documents might actually worsen Trump's legal peril. When we say Trump is mentally unfit, this is a perfect example. And it's happened at nearly every turn. Whenever the Red Hats launch another #ReleaseTheMemo campaign, they assume it'll be bad news for the so-called Deep State and the Democrats. Instead, it turns into a PR disaster for the Trumpers.
Knowing this, Trump chose on Friday to continue pursuing the declassification process anyway despite reports that the FBI and DOJ were resisting the effort for the obvious investigatory and national security reasons.
Trump tweeted that he's asked the DOJ's inspector general to "quickly" review the documents before they're released -- speed is important to Trump, he said. And of course speed is important because of the rapidly approaching midterms and Trump's growing legal crisis, each of which reveal the purely selfish reasons for declassifying these pages. (Again, the transparency argument is bullshit.)
We also learned that world leaders urged Trump to balk, but it seems as though such an effort would actually incentivize Trump to do it. After all, it's always a win for the Red Hats when Biff sticks it to the libs or our allies, even if it means the boomerang clocks their guy in his bulbous orange forehead.
And that's exactly what'll happen. The IG will likely insist that the redactions remain intact and the emails remain classified. But Trump, who's suffering from obvious dementia, will make good on his tweeted threat to declassify the documents anyway. The declassified documents will expose the FBI's process, damaging its investigatory abilities and flummoxing allied intelligence sharing, but Trump will land on a random out-of-context word or sentence fragment that'll fuel two weeks of Fox News screechgasms. That said, there will be significant passages further proving the guilt of Trump and all of Trump's men.
In other words, Trump will have purchased a few hours of Fox News accolades for the low, low price of seriously damaging national security and our federal law enforcement methods. Yes, Trump is mentally unfit. Yes, Trump always makes things worse for Trump. And yes, Trump's irrational, impulsive, spastic self-interest is a clear and present danger to the safety and security of the United States. If you're like me and you're keeping a Reasons For Impeachment list, you can add this to the top five.