Trump’s Bargaining Over a Barrel

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If there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation.
– Donald Trump

According to the Kubler-Ross model of cognitive grief, there are five stages of cognition: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and Acceptance. We’ve seen Donald Trump exhibit two extensively. Denial began with claims his people never met with Russians.

Then Michael Flynn admitted he actually did speak with Russians. Then we found out that junior Trump met with Russian agents in Trump tower. Then we found out that Trump was in talks with the Russians about a proposed tower in Moscow well into 2016.

Then came Anger. Trump has lashed out at the “Fake News” and their reporting of his ties with Russia, as well as numerous scandals. Trump has incited his supporters to violence against the media and political rivals, because they dared report the truth about his lies.

And there have been several books detailing Trump’s erratic and unhinged responses to leaks and perceived disloyalty. He’s screamed about “executive harassment” and tries to incite violence against his critics. He’s publicly attacked people who have turned on him.

And as of the State of the Union, Trump officially entered the Bargaining stage. He threw out a slew of policy positions intended to convince Democrats in Congress to stop their impending investigations into his political and personal affairs. Textbook bargaining.

In the weeks since the State of the Union, Democrats made it clear they find Trump’s negotiation skills as hysterically bad as they were before the 2018 midterms and have proceeded with their investigations. Trump has predictably regressed into flailing.

Neither Trump nor the Republicans can bargain their way out of this hole. The Democrats have an absolute political advantage that is only blunted by the Republican control of the Senate, so the Democrats have no reason to make concessions here.

Republicans have committed¬†to an inexplicable last stand on Trump’s hill, deciding on political expediency instead of moral necessity. The rest of 2019 and 2020 is going to be a brutal slog for them, because their only hope for surviving is Trump’s being vindicated.

Do Republican politicians and party insiders actually believe Donald Trump’s personal and private affairs are clean? If they do, then they are dumber than even I have given them credit for, and they deserve every indignity coming their way. Sic semper tyrannis.


Liberty is For The Win!

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