Leaders who play with fire

Dear President Trump,

In a conversation with someone yesterday I mentioned that I write to you daily. I don’t tell all that many people about this because it’s such an oddball thing to do, but when I do, it’s interesting to see their reactions. Are they appalled that I waste any time at all on you? Are they amused at my naivete and think that I think you actually read the letters? Do they think this is a particularly odd way of coping and remind themselves to keep an eye on me, just in case….? Any and all those reactions may have been going through her head, but what she said was: “How do you decide what to write about everyday? There’s always so much to choose from.”

Sadly, she’s absolutely right – often the hardest part of writing to you is figuring out what to zero in on. It takes time to sort out what has me the most upset or what I think I can tackle without completely losing my shit.

Today I got lucky since Jennifer Rubin (WP) gave me a tidy little gift. In her editorial she argues that although there’s plenty of fodder for impeachment based on your obstruction of the Russia investigation, it would be more straightforward to go the corruption route. She includes a pointed list of your greatest hits to the American tax payers’ coffers and draws out how it’s not just you and your toadies’ self-dealing that’s problematic, but the fact that legions of foreign business and political people are staying at your properties to curry favor with your administration. It’s certainly not a greatest hits list that I’d ever want to see or hear again from anyone else, but I’d be ok with having it on endless loop for a while here if it served to finally shame the GOP into doing their checks/balances job and if it served to finally wake up those in your base who’re wavering and looking for an excuse to break up with you (not unlike Bolton apparently did this morning).

Rubin makes quite a compelling case for going with the corruption charges, but personally, I am loathe to give up on the obstruction case and I still think there’s plenty of evidence sitting right on the surface that your campaign at least encouraged Russian election interference (and how is it that Manafort sharing polling data with Russia isn’t enough all by itself?). These issues are so fundamental to the integrity of American democracy that to not formally address them with impeachment proceedings would be tantamount to giving permission for future bad actors to simply hit the “repeat” button.

As you can tell, I’m still squarely with Tlaib in the “Impeach the mother*cker!” camp, and if we have to go the corruption route, so be it. I just want to be sure that the whole, long, filthy-dirty laundry list of your wrong doings is aired one way or another.

And then there’s your oh so secret ‘unbeknownst’ plans to have Taliban leaders come to Camp David to negotiate a ‘peace plan’ that you called off the night before it was set to happen. What the hell do we do with that? It probably won’t index neatly into the impeachment catalogue, but maybe it argues that we revisit Article 25. There’s no end to the items for that list too, including your scary and sickeningly ironic inability to read the teleprompter yesterday in your weird commentary on the 9/11 victims and first responders. Holy Jesus – what were you thinking? Were you thinking? Whose idea was this really? It sure reeks of Vladimir-esque machinations; “No really Donald, it’ll be fine to have Taliban leaders meeting with you at Camp David three days before the anniversary of 9/11. 9/11 is old news, no one cares any more.” Coupled with “Hey, you know, maybe it’s not such a great idea – go ahead and pull the plug on this one, pal, I’ve got you covered.”

After listing a handful of other possible “unbeknownst” items you might have in the works, Dana Milbank closed out his WP editorial by circling back to the Taliban-at-Camp David issue with the following:

“Belatedly, Trump evidently realized that he was surrendering to America’s enemies on U.S. soil, desecrating the memory of the most solemn day in modern U.S. history and insulting those who have fought and died in a worthy cause.”

I think he’s giving you (and whoever’s behind this) way, way too much credit. I don’t think you realized jack – I think you’re f*cking with us.

May we be safe from you.
May we be willing to keep amassing evidence that you are an unfit endangerment to humanity.
May we do something useful with that information before it’s too late.
May we not make peace with leaders who play with fire.

Tracy Simpson

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