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THE DANGERS OF CLAUSTROPHOBIA

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BOB FRANKEN
FOR RELEASE FRIDAY, AUG. 24, 2018

THE DANGERS OF CLAUSTROPHOBIA
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It probably feels to President Donald Trump like the noose is starting to tighten. That’s not ake noose. Although metaphorical, it’s also very real. That had become apparent with one of those TV news “split screen” days, when major story developments break at the same time.
The screens were frantically fragmenting after Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen became felons at around 4:00 p.m. Eastern time Tuesday -- Manafort with his guilty verdict near Washington and Cohen’s copped plea in New York. Wherever you looked on the cable news telly, you’d see the split screen, the two of them and Donald Trump in the middle. If you used your imagination, you could watch the walls of the Trump box slowly closing in on him. It was not hard to imagine that he was being squeezed by various investigations, the ones that he squeals are “witch hunts” run by “thugs” like Robert Mueller.
The “witch hunt” seems to have scored two direct hits in the Trump coven, a “Double, Double, Toil and Trouble” combination if there ever was one. And let’s face it, his political opponents, whether they say so or not, would dearly love for this to be the beginning of the end of this mob and its don named Donald. However, the leaders of this organized crime syndicate, which some adversaries consider the administration to be, are notoriously difficult to hold accountable. Trump the politician, like Trump the businessman, has always been exceedingly slippery.
He has survived so many seemingly fatal blows, and even thrived. As a candidate, his objectionable conduct and the disgusting nastiness of his running commentary would have done in normal politicians. But for a variety of reasons, every repulsive act seemed to further attract millions of Americans, and continues to. He had grown wildly rich in the past, in spite of his making one mistake after another, one egregious ethical lapse after another, which is amazing because his field has almost no code of ethics. Still, his operations were notable for violating the flimsy honor among thieves.


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As for the future, it will take more than a litany of proven crimes to do him in. Even evidence campaign law violations won’t cut it. It’s conceivable that being caught with his hand in the Russian cookie jar wouldn’t be enough. Even if it was shown without question that he had stolen the 2016 election, conspiring with Vladimir Putin to do so, it would not be sufficient to get Congress to depose him.
For starters, political courage is a classic oxymoron, certainly in this day and age. Rudy Giuliani is right: “Truth isn’t truth,” or at least objective truth doesn’t matter anymore. It’s all about emotion in our divided society -- hateful emotions and, most of all, anger.
If, somehow, the members of the House and Senate actually would remove Donald Trump from office, there are many thoughtful people who believe that would ignite a violent reaction from his avid supporters, many of whom are heavily armed. At the very least, Trump predicted: “If I ever got impeached, I think the market would crash. I think everybody would be very poor.” He made those comments on Fox News. Where else? Is it possible the markets might spike upward? Just asking.
Whatever, the investigations grind on. Even David Pecker is cooperating. Pecker is Donald Trump’s longtime bosom buddy who, as National Enquirer publisher and CEO, allegedly would bury uncomfortable stories against Trump. Now he has been forced to play ball with Mueller and testify under immunity. Even more menacing, investigators have gotten testimony from Allen Weisselberg, the chief financial officer for the Trump organization who for decades has been Donald Trump’s business and personal accountant.
The big danger to him is that his extended family members have no choice but to violate their omerta blood oath. He obviously is feeling the squeeze. As he’s cornered in the split screens, will he continue to lash out? Even this leader of a gang that couldn’t shoot straight has the power to do great harm to our nation if he’s enraged.

© 2018 Bob Franken
Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on August 25, 2018 7:15 AM.

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