This Is Not Normal, May 20, 2019 – May 26, 2019

This is your weekly reminder that this is NOT NORMAL.

  • It is NOT NORMAL that the president’s former communications chief is facing the “existential crisis” (according to the New York Times) of deciding whether or not to honor a Congressional subpoena. You would think that the self-appointed party of law and order would insist that everyone honor subpoenas.
  • It is NOT NORMAL that the president gave the attorney general (the same attorney general who distorted the findings of the special counsel’s report) the unilateral right to selectively declassify documents relating to the investigation into the president’s campaign’s ties to Russia.
  • It is NOT NORMAL that the president refused to meet with congressional leaders on infrastructure until they dropped all investigations of his administration.
  • It is NOT NORMAL that the president invoked executive privilege to prevent his former White House counsel from testifying on the obstruction of justice allegations outlined in the special counsel’s report.
  • It is NOT NORMAL that in 2016 and 2017, legal entities controlled by the president and his son-in-law engaged in several financial transactions so alarming to Deutsche Bank that the in-house anti-money-laundering specialists recommended they be reported to a financial crimes watchdog agency.
  • It is NOT NORMAL that a freshman legislator held up a disaster relief package that was already delayed because it omitted funding for the president’s border security plans.
  • It is NOT NORMAL that a Chicago bank chair has been indicted on charges of arranging a sixteen million dollar loan to the president’s former campaign chairman in exchange for a senior role in the administration. (The bank chair was not ultimately offered a position.)
  • It is NOT NORMAL that the president’s first secretary of state told Congress that the president was less prepared for his meeting with the Russian president than the Russian leader was, and that the president had asked him to do things that were illegal.
  • The president’s Twitter feed continues to be something to behold. In particular, this week it was NOT NORMAL for the president to
    • allege, when complaining about the media, that the New York Times would “pass away when I leave office in 6 years”;
    • claim that he didn’t do business with banks because “I didn’t need money” (this is not accurate–also, see above);
    • call the media “an enemy of the people” because he doesn’t like what they say about him (John Adams, the second president: “The liberty of the press is essential to the security of the state”);
    • argue that the Democrats “would have a whole new future open to them” if they would only investigate Hillary Clinton (for, I believe, the eighteenth time?) and the “phony Russian investigation”;
    • declare that one of the Democratic contenders is “history” because “Sleepy Joe Biden” is pulling ahead, adding “China wants Sleepy Joe BADLY!” (this is so transparent I am embarrassed for him);
    • complain that Mexico is going “virtually nothing” to stop undocumented migrants from reaching the border and that the immigration laws are “totally flawed & broken” because of the Democrats;
    • whine incessantly about the Democratic investigations of his administration, while lying about how much the special counsel investigation cost as well as its findings;
    • continue to try to make “PRESIDENTIAL HARASSMENT!” happen;
    • claim that “without the ILLEGAL Witch Hunt, my polls numbers, especially because of our historically ‘great’ economy, would be at 65%” (no, they would not);
    • refer to his first secretary of state (whom he appointed, remember) was “‘dumb as a rock’ and totally ill prepared and ill equipped to be Secretary of State”;
    • push back twice against allegations that he threw a temper tantrum over the investigations of his administration in front of Democratic congressional leaders (nothing says “I am so calm” by repeatedly insisting on your own calmness and calling on various members of your administration to back you up);
    • claim that CNN ratings have gone down because of their coverage of him;
    • complain that Twitter “viciously shut down” several “popular Conservative Voices” (Twitter did ban both liberal and conservative accounts this week for various violations of the terms of service);
    • complain that a Democratic senator “should not be allowed to take ‘command'” of the Senate Intelligence Committee;
    • complain that the judge who ruled against his administration the border wall was an “activist Obama appointed judge” and that the ruling favored “crime, drugs and human trafficking”;
    • criticize the handling of a case involving an actor who lied about being attacked in Chicago;
    • tweet that “North Korea fired off some small weapons, which disturbed some of my people, and others, but not me. I have confidence that Chairman Kim will keep his promise to me, & also smiled when he called Swampman Joe Bidan [sic] a low IQ individual, & worse. Perhaps that’s sending me a signal?” (where to start? don’t conduct foreign policy on Twitter; don’t speak warmly of brutal authoritarian dictators; don’t approvingly cite said dictator’s criticism of an American political leader, whether or not it actually happened; don’t use derogatory nicknames for American political leaders, even if you don’t like them; especially don’t do any of these things while visiting an important ally in direct opposition to said dictator; and don’t make me defend Joe Biden); and
    • claim that “Numerous Japanese officials told me that the Democrats would rather see the United States fail than see me or the Republican Party succeed” (this is nonsense and everyone knows it, including–deep in their hearts–the president’s own supporters).
  • This week saw a bumper crop of “Fake News” and “Witch Hunt,” as well as at least one “Crooked Hillary” and one “18 Angry Democrats” reference.
  • A sixth migrant child has died while in U. S. custody after been separated from his parents. Nothing surprises me more than supporters of the president who think they will someday face God’s judgment but don’t think they will be judged for this.

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