by Dr. Albert Samuels, Professor of Political Science, Southern University
I have read the Meuller Report. I wanted to refrain from opining until I read it for myself. I deliberately turned away from all media coverage because I didn't want my.views contaminated by the pinditocracy. Here are my takes:
Isn’t it interesting?
Some of the same people who excoriated President Barack Obama for pulling the troops out of Iraq are now either silent or are applauding President Trump’s yanking our military out of Syria, immediately. Oh, and soon, out of Afghanistan.
Back then, Trump led the charge. Every opportunity, he blamed Obama for taking steps that were feckless and weak
Robert Mueller’s “witch hunt” just cornered the leader of the coven when Donald Trump’s former lawyer-fixer, Michael Cohen, flipped for a second time and blew the whistle on what he claims is his long-time benefactor’s financial lying and manipulation regarding Russia. Cohen’s Thursday revelations in a Manhattan federal court opened the door to further scrutiny of Trump purported commingling of personal and political affairs. If proven, Trump will be deprived of further ability to maintain that his organization had nothing to do with Russia, where official action serves to enhance private enterprise.
Assuming the truth of Cohen’s revelations, which are contested by Trump and his now personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, there was a long-standing relationship between the president and the original red state. Another Trump associate, Felix Sater, has claimed that Russian election meddling had a nexus to a proposed Trump tower in Moscow that included a fifty-million-dollar, in-kind, inducement to Russian president Vladimir Putin.
There has been no shortage of Damon Runyon-like characters in Trump’s orbit, going back to his earliest days in business. The notorious lawyer, Roy Cohen, who played a large part in Senator Joseph McCarthy’s 1950’s hearings into purported communist infiltration of Hollywood, was one of them. Cohen, who mentored Trump, is likely the source of his lifetime obsession with giving no quarter.
Most international real estate tycoons would salivate over the prospect of penetrating the Russian market. With oligarchs galore, who operate under the aegis of officialdom, the potential for enormous profits is tempting. Trump may have succumbed. His offspring, Don Jr. and Eric, have spoken lovingly about beaucoup Russian money flowing to the family enterprise.
Deutsche Bank, a prodigious Trump lender, has been under investigation that peaked this week when the bank’s headquarters were raided by German authorities who seized records they believe will reveal the extent of Deutsche’s alleged money laundering. Trump would’ve gone under without the bank’s help on more than one occasion.
Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross, replaced himself as top official at the Bank of Cyprus with a former Deutsche Bank chairman when he left to head Commerce. Due to the bankruptcy of the 2nd largest Cypriot bank, (then headed by Ross), and forced merger with the Bank of Cyprus, Russian depositors wound up with huge shares of the newly combined financial institution that, effectively, controls Cyprus, a valued tax haven.
These issues will come into clearer focus if Mueller’s investigation links Russian endeavors to put a favorite sun behind the Resolute Desk with desires to further enhance that country’s favored citizens. Cohen’s revelations point the way. Trump, who lies easily, particularly about his business connections to Russia, may be close to getting tagged with an insufficient funds penalty.
Today, after the blockbuster news broke that Michael Cohen, the former attorney for Donald Trump, pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about pursuing a Trump Tower deal is Moscow, as late as the summer of 2016, President Trump faced the media and slammed Cohen as a liar and someone just looking to get a reduced sentence.
That would be expected. Going on the attack is vintage Trump.
However, Trump also said that everybody knew about the Trump Tower building initiative in Moscow at that time, referring to, the summer of 2016 and prior.
The land of the free and the home of the brave under Donald Trump has become a fearsome place for outsiders. When the first tear gas canister was fired towards refugees at the San Ysidro, CA, border crossing, the administration lost whatever remaining moral authority it had. The action could be construed unfavorably under the U.N.’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, ratified seventy years ago, in 1948, and the photos of barefoot children in diapers running from tear gas will accompany Trump’s history, forever.
They’re b-a-c-k, the Russians that is, messing around with the midterms, practicing for the big show in 2020. Social media is the target, again, of course, and to prove it’s doing something meaningful Facebook has set aside a broom closet with fewer people than it takes to run a shift at Starbucks to catch the trolls. That’ll work, and if you can’t trust Facebook who can you trust? Turns out, shock of shocks, it’s Vladimir Putin.
Before turning to the topic on everyone’s mind, the tweet that’s burning up the airwaves, the next person Donald Trump should fire is the misbegotten soul who failed to install portable air conditioners aimed at the president during his Saturday rally in Ohio. Trump said it was around 110 degrees in the smallish gym where he spoke and the heat ruined his new suit. The makeup artist who slathered meltable pancake on the president’s face, also, must go. Dislike Trump all you want, but he’s still president and should appear looking presidential, no matter how he acts, or what he says.
Bayoubuzz Note: For decades, Russia has been considered our adversary. For decades, the FBI has been considered a strong bulwark against crime, corruption and foreign attacks against American interests.
During the past year, since the candidacy of now-President Donald Trump, the way some in the country view Russia and its president, Vladimir Putin and even the FBI has changed.
Endangered species, who needs them? They’re lots of other animals. Threatened species are not endangered, yet, so what’s the fuss there? Both impede progress. Climate change, on the off chance it’s real, won’t wipe out entire populations on earth while we’re still alive, so don’t fret when carbon caps get lifted. The banks made honest mistakes in the past, which they’re unlikely to repeat, so everybody’s money is safe again, and deregulation is good there, too. The sick, about time, can stand on their own two feet instead of lounging about in government paid wheelchairs, obviating the need for universal health care. And, hats off to the generous Iowa hog and soybean farmers who are supporting the economy by going bankrupt. Best news of all, however, the Russians mean us no harm.