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Is America turning into Pakistan? Trump's looming arrest suggests its future doesn't lie in Florida

(Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

(Drew Angerer/Getty Images)


March 21, 2023   5 mins

Let’s start with a game of “Guess the Country”. In this nation, a former head of state announces his attempted return to power, so his opponents set out to block him. In doing so, they revive past sex scandals and purported financial misdeeds related to questionable campaign contributions and gifts from foreign governments. Which country am I thinking of?

If you said Pakistan, you would be correct. If you said America, you would also be correct.

For the US, this is a departure. Not because of the scandals, of course. From the country’s inception, many of its highest-ranking political figures have engaged in outrageous behaviour — political, financial, sexual, or combinations of the three. There were love triangles, duels, extra-marital offspring, flings with interns. Accusations of corruption date back to Alexander Hamilton, and of illicit campaign finance to Ulysses S. Grant and 1872, when his supporters diverted a tax on whiskey into the election coffers.

At the presidential level, though, the maximum consequence has been impeachment (Johnson in 1868, Clinton in 1998 and Trump in 2019 and 2021), or the pre-emptive resignation of the offender (Nixon in 1974). To jail a president was, until recently, unthinkable, no matter what one might feel regarding the individual officeholder. And this was a valuable safety measure, keeping antagonism and partisan rivalries within bounds.

If Trump’s warnings are correct and he is arrested today, it will represent a new low in a chain of unprecedented prior boundary violations, including an unannounced FBI raid on a former president’s home with guns drawn. This time, the consequences will not be pretty — for once a red line is erased, it is gone for good, no matter which party you belong to. Who will be next? The Democrats hated and investigated Ivanka and Donald Jr.; already the Republicans are zeroing in on Hunter Biden. Step by step, tit for tat, America is heading into the banana republic zone.

To find out what this entails, we need only look to Pakistan. Here, we have a political system that regularly cannibalises its leaders, jailing, executing or assassinating them with such appalling regularity that one wonders why anyone would ever seek high office. The explanation is most likely a combination of factors: idealism bordering on a saviour complex; the addictive adulation of supporters who, at rallies, can easily number in the semi-hysterical millions; the push of relatives and hangers-on all hoping to benefit; and the lure of all sorts of personal licit and illicit benefits.

Take Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, who served first as Pakistan’s President and then Prime Minister in the Seventies. After being educated in the US and UK, he founded the Pakistan People’s Party and oversaw the drafting of the country’s constitution. Ultimately, however, he was deposed in a military coup, arrested, put on trial for alleged involvement in the murder of a political rival, found not guilty, re-arrested under martial law on the same charge, tortured, sentenced to death, and hanged. The man responsible for his demise was Zia ul-Haq, who became President via military coup in 1977. His turn in power ended in a mysterious plane crash in 1988, believed to have been caused by a bomb concealed in a box of mangoes.

Later, in 1999, Pervez Musharraf became President through a military takeover, cementing his position by jailing and initiating criminal proceedings against the Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif. Musharraf was the target of multiple assassination attempts but survived them. When his excesses against political opponents became too extreme, and he was about to be impeached, he fled into exile. Upon trying to make a comeback in 2013, he was indicted by the country’s high court for involvement in political murders, including that of Benazir Bhutto, daughter of Zulfiqar and twice Pakistan’s prime minister, causing him to flee to Dubai to avoid arrest.

This pattern of politics can only be described as dysfunctional. It operates on the basis of disregard for the rule of law, direct violent attacks on political rivals, manipulation of elections, intimidation of opponents, misuse of the judicial system, and frequent attempts to kill political figures. Its current protagonist, Imran Khan, is certainly eccentric, with marriages to a British socialite, a journalist who later wrote a tell-all about his supposedly degenerate personal life, and now to an ultra-Islamic Sufi alleged to engage in witchcraft on his behalf.

He is currently limping along with his legs in casts and bandages from a recent assassination attempt, while efforts are underway to arrest him for allegedly failing to mention an illegitimate daughter in his pre-election paperwork, selling gifts he received from foreign dignitaries, and dozens of lesser misdeeds. Khan’s supporters, meanwhile, are encamped around his home to defend him, engaging in battles with the police.

There are a number of obvious analogies to Trump: similarly a populist, an eccentric, a person swirling with allegations about his sex life, financial dealings and his family. If he is arrested today, it seems likely it will be because of hush money paid to a porn star. In response, the Democrats have spent the past months attempting to take him out of play through harassment in the courts over comparatively trivial matters. He is accused, for instance, of failing to properly register all the gifts he received during state visits.

During their time in office, politicians and diplomats constantly receive gifts of varying value and tastefulness, and it’s not the task of the recipient to register them — that’s a job for staffers. In the case of Trump, the two most significant gifts he is accused of keeping are a set of golf clubs and a life-size portrait of him, which I doubt the nation is desperate to keep.

Back in the real world, both Trump and Khan’s cases reek of a double standard, with the target personality being scrutinised for behaviour that, for better or worse, is widespread within a political elite. As for their sexual peccadilloes, in both instances these relate to incidents that are well in the past and not all that sordid. The Democrats have been scouring the nooks and crannies of Trump’s life in a determined effort to prosecute and jail him. That’s not “equal treatment under the law” — it’s a political gambit. Perhaps their campaign slogan should be: Make America Pakistan.

Meanwhile, as the Republican Party heads for the 2024 election, its most energetic slogan, inspiring hats and bumper stickers and T-shirts, is: Make America Florida. Under Ron DeSantis, Florida has charted its own course in recent years — and done very well. Its unemployment rate is at a record low, while its budget surplus is at a record high, despite zero income tax. Elsewhere, Washington DC is a mess, as is California, New York and Chicago. These major cities all sport a collapsing infrastructure, potholed roads, pop-up homeless encampments and rampant lawlessness.

Amid this urban blight, Florida appears as a beacon of hope. Its infrastructure is well-maintained; the streets are clean; affordable public transportation is state of the art; crime rates are low. Unsurprisingly, corporations as well as private persons have been abandoning ship, fleeing their foundering cities and moving to the well-run Sunshine State. The DeSantis formula — no-nonsense, frontier-America law and order fused with individualism — not only won him his recent landslide re-election, but turned the Florida Formula into the Republican vision of America’s future. Efficiently managed, pragmatic, minimally interventionist, focused on middle-ground conservative attitudes and values but strong on personal liberties, it’s sounding pretty good to a lot of people.

Whether or not Trump is locked up today, next year’s elections look to be a watershed moment. What path to follow? Will America become Florida or Pakistan?


Cheryl Benard is an academic and an author.

 


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Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago

I’m thinking the Pakistan comparison is a tad bit hyperbolic, but the author is right, the American political system is descending into a banana republic.

I don’t like Trump. I think he’s a pathological narcissist. I think he puts himself above all else, which is the last thing we need in politics today – or ever.

And yet I despise the Democrats for continually making me defend the guy. They’ve made a mockery of the judicial system and the political institutions.

What’s even scarier is the real possibility of conviction. Even though it’s not illegal to pay hush money to a mistress, 70% of New Yorkers are Democrats and they could possibly convict, no matter how flimsy the evidence.

Trump will appeal of course, and will almost certainly win the appeal, but the damage will be done already. The Democrats don’t even care if he’s convicted. The real goal is to keep Trump in constant legal limbo so they can signal to voters what a bad man he is.

I fear for the future of the west. The madness never ends.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jim Veenbaas
Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

To me, the difference between Trump and the Democrats (current incumbents at least) is that Trump represents a very personal corruption where the Democrats are a cartel.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

The Democrats are infinitely more dangerous than Trump. They control all the institutions – the bureaucracy, academia, culture, big tech and big finance, the regime media. Trump is a big blowhard.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

My thoughts exactly.

Michael McElwee
Michael McElwee
1 year ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

I would put it slightly differently. Yes, Trump is a blowhard, but then only a blowhard will do, in the face of what the Democrats represent. We are witnessing the reemergence of ideological domination. If Dostoyevsky’s “Demons” shows us anything, it is just how difficult opposing such a force is. Nothing seems to work. “Ideology does not know the miracle of being.”

Michael McElwee
Michael McElwee
1 year ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

I would put it slightly differently. Yes, Trump is a blowhard, but then only a blowhard will do, in the face of what the Democrats represent. We are witnessing the reemergence of ideological domination. If Dostoyevsky’s “Demons” shows us anything, it is just how difficult opposing such a force is. Nothing seems to work. “Ideology does not know the miracle of being.”

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

My thoughts exactly.

Tyler 0
Tyler 0
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

Yes. Trump’s dishonesty is self serving and venal. The Democrats are organised, powerful and deluded ideologues.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

The best comment of the day, thank you.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

The Democrats are infinitely more dangerous than Trump. They control all the institutions – the bureaucracy, academia, culture, big tech and big finance, the regime media. Trump is a big blowhard.

Tyler 0
Tyler 0
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

Yes. Trump’s dishonesty is self serving and venal. The Democrats are organised, powerful and deluded ideologues.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

The best comment of the day, thank you.

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Tomorrow, in the UK, ex-Prime Minister Boris Johnson appears before a committee of his fellow MPs accused of lying to Parliament about a whole slew of parties that took place in 10 Downing St, his place of work and official residence during lockdown when such activities were strictly banned. Part of his defence has been allow cronies and media allies to attack the whole process as a ‘witch hunt’ and the committee as complicit in the supposed witch hunt. So, straight out of the Trump playbook. Like Trump, Johnson is motivated entirely by self interest, is a narcissist but also massively insecure, idle, incompetent and a liar of sociopathic proportions, and doesn’t mind the damage he does to democratic institutions if it serves him.

Trump is a BAD man, he is corrupt and, because of his character flaws, refused to accept the result of the 2020 election causing the all the chaos that followed and which has done so much harm to democratic institutions in the US. All to serve his own purposes. So crying ‘witch hunt’ when prosecutors go after him for his crimes is standard for him, which either means you can accept he should not be above the law or take the ultra partisan view that it must be a witch hunt because
Democrats, Hunter’s laptop, the Clintons, blah, blah, blah.

The Pakistan analogy is that when you have a comic book view of politics, a world split into ‘Goodies’ and ‘Baddies’, with your side as the ‘Goodies’ who can do no wrong, never lose elections etc. you end up with a sociopath in charge who can operate with impunity and a broken political system.

It should be possible to accept two things at once; you don’t like Democrats but Trump is a crook.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

Hey John, I completely agree with your assessment of Trump. 100%.

But a witch-hunt is still a witch-hunt. And it’s a witch-hunt because there’s not enough evidence to convict. He might even get convicted in New York because of TDS, but it will be certainly overturned on appeal.

I can certainly hold two opposing thoughts in my head – Trump is deranged and being unfairly prosecuted. I think that is a perfectly objective assessment of the situation.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jim Veenbaas
Fred Oldfield
Fred Oldfield
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

And is he more deranged that many other heads of government?

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Fred Oldfield

Yes, I think he is more deranged than most politicians. His narcissism IMO is psychopathic. I still think the Democrats are much more dangerous – because the party is infected with this self- destructive progressivism and it controls all the institutions. The Democrats can impose this ideology on the rest of the world. Trump never had that kind of power and never will.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Fred Oldfield

Yes, I think he is more deranged than most politicians. His narcissism IMO is psychopathic. I still think the Democrats are much more dangerous – because the party is infected with this self- destructive progressivism and it controls all the institutions. The Democrats can impose this ideology on the rest of the world. Trump never had that kind of power and never will.

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

It’s a subjective assessment. I haven’t seen all the evidence in this case, and I suspect neither have you. So I don’t know whether it’s enough for a conviction. My point was that every case against Trump is dismissed as a ‘witch hunt’, by him but also as a partisan position. If they decide to proceed with the case in Georgia, totally different in terms of the alleged offences, the same thing will happen. Glad we agree on Trump, though.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

As I understand it, Trump is being indicted for paying hush money in 2016 to a former mistress. This is not an indictable offence, but a misdemeanor. But the New York AG is calling it an illegal political contribution. The former New York AG could have charged Trump as well – it was seven years ago – but declined to do so. So maybe Trump gets convicted on some kind of technicality – the jurors are from New York afterall – but it will almost certainly be overturned on appeal. This argument is coming from Alan Dershowitz, a lifelong Democrat.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

As I understand it, Trump is being indicted for paying hush money in 2016 to a former mistress. This is not an indictable offence, but a misdemeanor. But the New York AG is calling it an illegal political contribution. The former New York AG could have charged Trump as well – it was seven years ago – but declined to do so. So maybe Trump gets convicted on some kind of technicality – the jurors are from New York afterall – but it will almost certainly be overturned on appeal. This argument is coming from Alan Dershowitz, a lifelong Democrat.

Fred Oldfield
Fred Oldfield
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

And is he more deranged that many other heads of government?

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

It’s a subjective assessment. I haven’t seen all the evidence in this case, and I suspect neither have you. So I don’t know whether it’s enough for a conviction. My point was that every case against Trump is dismissed as a ‘witch hunt’, by him but also as a partisan position. If they decide to proceed with the case in Georgia, totally different in terms of the alleged offences, the same thing will happen. Glad we agree on Trump, though.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

Most Englishman don’t give a damn about Boris and his boozing. He was never meant to be Mother Teresa.

However many would like to see the International Criminal Court serve a warrant on Blair for his ‘Crimes against humanity in Iraq’.

As to Mr Trump, at the end of the day is he really any worse than Nixon, Clinton, Obama etc? Surely to run something as degenerate as the United States one has to be a bit of degenerate oneself?

Michael Marron
Michael Marron
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

I have despised Johnson for twenty years, but that is not a fair summary of his position.
He is not accused of lying to Parliament, but of intentionally misleading Parliament. The Committee (led by a woman whose moral compass is so skewed that she actively worked to legalise child abuse) is trying to remove ‘intentionally’ from the charge, so ANY politician who makes a statement that later turns out to be incorrect would be guilty. No Government could ever report anything to Parliament should they succeed.

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Michael Marron

As John McEnroe would have said “Are you being serious?”. Semantics aside, the issue is whether he did something which he later pretended not to have done. Parliament, for better or worse, is the cornerstone of our democracy and it’s role is to hold the Executive to account. Plus, the committee has four Conservative members, and one from the SNP, it’s not controlled by Harriet Harman!

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Michael Marron

As John McEnroe would have said “Are you being serious?”. Semantics aside, the issue is whether he did something which he later pretended not to have done. Parliament, for better or worse, is the cornerstone of our democracy and it’s role is to hold the Executive to account. Plus, the committee has four Conservative members, and one from the SNP, it’s not controlled by Harriet Harman!

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

Your argument is flawed. On the one hand, you accuse other of having a ‘comic book’ mentality while your argument uses the same absolutist language, declaring that “Trump IS a bad man” and so on. You imply that Trump and indeed no one should be above the law but then casually dismiss allegations against other political figures, “Hunter’s laptop, the Clintons, blah blah”. You cannot dismiss the allegations of one side and assume the truth of the other without the appearance of bias. Perhaps you’re right, but very few serious independent thinkers would take an argument like yours seriously. If you want to convince us, you’re going to have to do better than this. Believe it or not, there are many people in this world who won’t believe what they’re told and do what they’re told because somebody who has a degree in something-ology and is a duly appointed government expert on XYZ says so, and appealing to them/us requires an entirely different persuasion strategy. Angrily and loudly repeating the same things we’ve all heard before from abundant sources in the media is unlikely to produce anything more than an eye roll. I am very capable of believing that that Trump is a horrible person, criminal, etc. and also that those accusing him have ulterior motives for prosecuting crimes that are often overlooked in other cases for political reasons. In point of fact, I do believe that. The world is not at all simple, and every action regardless of good or ill intent produces consequences both intended and unintended. This particular instance may not be a witch hunt per se, but as the author clearly implies in the article it opens the door for anyone else with a political axe to grind to do so. He even names Hunter Biden that you casually dismissed as being another likely target next time the Republicans are in power. We must live in the world as it is, not as we wish it were. In a perfect world, we need only concern ourselves with guilt or innocence. Alas, this is not a perfect world, nor will it ever be. In the real world, people are not perfect and there will be reprisals. Many of the accused in such cases will be guilty, but many will not, and the reprisals, the anger, the indignation, the recriminations, and the distrust of the system will still occur regardless of how many are guilty or innocent of whatever crimes. I have learned to see the world in shades of gray, more gray, and grayer. Given your argument, I have to ask. Have you?

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Steve, I couldn’t agree more about shades of grey so I obviously didn’t make my point clearly enough. I was arguing that seeing politics as akin to a comic book – ‘Goodies’ and ‘Baddies’ – was polarising in itself, and very damaging to democracy. Dismissing what Trump has done because of a one-eyed partisan mindset allows him or has allowed him to operate with impunity, and dismiss EVERY charge, justified or not, as a ‘witch hunt’. I also find whataboutery extremely unhelpful, which is why I mentioned Hunter’s laptop etc., the point being that if someone has done something wrong, which can be proved, then investigate but don’t use it in a totally partisan way.

I suggest you reread what I wrote as I accept I may not have been as clear as I should have been but you making a couple of things I said do a lot of heavy lifting, particularly if taken out of context.

Like you, I suspect, I do not trust anyone who always has one simple solution to every complex problem. Most complex problems need imperfect solutions, often on a trial and error basis.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

An excellent excoriation of JM’s rather confused post, but be careful he may turn nasty!

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

I have already responded but having reread what I wrote it is actually quite clear and you seem to have deliberately misinterpreted it to make your own point.

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Steve, I couldn’t agree more about shades of grey so I obviously didn’t make my point clearly enough. I was arguing that seeing politics as akin to a comic book – ‘Goodies’ and ‘Baddies’ – was polarising in itself, and very damaging to democracy. Dismissing what Trump has done because of a one-eyed partisan mindset allows him or has allowed him to operate with impunity, and dismiss EVERY charge, justified or not, as a ‘witch hunt’. I also find whataboutery extremely unhelpful, which is why I mentioned Hunter’s laptop etc., the point being that if someone has done something wrong, which can be proved, then investigate but don’t use it in a totally partisan way.

I suggest you reread what I wrote as I accept I may not have been as clear as I should have been but you making a couple of things I said do a lot of heavy lifting, particularly if taken out of context.

Like you, I suspect, I do not trust anyone who always has one simple solution to every complex problem. Most complex problems need imperfect solutions, often on a trial and error basis.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

An excellent excoriation of JM’s rather confused post, but be careful he may turn nasty!

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

I have already responded but having reread what I wrote it is actually quite clear and you seem to have deliberately misinterpreted it to make your own point.

Michael Askew
Michael Askew
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

The point being made is not not whether Trump is any good or not (we all agree on that), but rather that pursuing political enemies by a dishonest manipulation of the legal system is dangerous, whoever is doing it.

Last edited 1 year ago by Michael Askew
Michael Davis
Michael Davis
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

And the UK action against Boris is not a witch hunt?

it is exactly analogous, Boris is flawed but ranged against him is the left wing blob of politicians lawyers and captured institutions

Don’t you find the “evidence” a few cans of Coke and packs of sandwiches a bit thin. If that’s all they could come up with them in reality Boris is a saint

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

Hey John, I completely agree with your assessment of Trump. 100%.

But a witch-hunt is still a witch-hunt. And it’s a witch-hunt because there’s not enough evidence to convict. He might even get convicted in New York because of TDS, but it will be certainly overturned on appeal.

I can certainly hold two opposing thoughts in my head – Trump is deranged and being unfairly prosecuted. I think that is a perfectly objective assessment of the situation.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jim Veenbaas
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

Most Englishman don’t give a damn about Boris and his boozing. He was never meant to be Mother Teresa.

However many would like to see the International Criminal Court serve a warrant on Blair for his ‘Crimes against humanity in Iraq’.

As to Mr Trump, at the end of the day is he really any worse than Nixon, Clinton, Obama etc? Surely to run something as degenerate as the United States one has to be a bit of degenerate oneself?

Michael Marron
Michael Marron
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

I have despised Johnson for twenty years, but that is not a fair summary of his position.
He is not accused of lying to Parliament, but of intentionally misleading Parliament. The Committee (led by a woman whose moral compass is so skewed that she actively worked to legalise child abuse) is trying to remove ‘intentionally’ from the charge, so ANY politician who makes a statement that later turns out to be incorrect would be guilty. No Government could ever report anything to Parliament should they succeed.

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

Your argument is flawed. On the one hand, you accuse other of having a ‘comic book’ mentality while your argument uses the same absolutist language, declaring that “Trump IS a bad man” and so on. You imply that Trump and indeed no one should be above the law but then casually dismiss allegations against other political figures, “Hunter’s laptop, the Clintons, blah blah”. You cannot dismiss the allegations of one side and assume the truth of the other without the appearance of bias. Perhaps you’re right, but very few serious independent thinkers would take an argument like yours seriously. If you want to convince us, you’re going to have to do better than this. Believe it or not, there are many people in this world who won’t believe what they’re told and do what they’re told because somebody who has a degree in something-ology and is a duly appointed government expert on XYZ says so, and appealing to them/us requires an entirely different persuasion strategy. Angrily and loudly repeating the same things we’ve all heard before from abundant sources in the media is unlikely to produce anything more than an eye roll. I am very capable of believing that that Trump is a horrible person, criminal, etc. and also that those accusing him have ulterior motives for prosecuting crimes that are often overlooked in other cases for political reasons. In point of fact, I do believe that. The world is not at all simple, and every action regardless of good or ill intent produces consequences both intended and unintended. This particular instance may not be a witch hunt per se, but as the author clearly implies in the article it opens the door for anyone else with a political axe to grind to do so. He even names Hunter Biden that you casually dismissed as being another likely target next time the Republicans are in power. We must live in the world as it is, not as we wish it were. In a perfect world, we need only concern ourselves with guilt or innocence. Alas, this is not a perfect world, nor will it ever be. In the real world, people are not perfect and there will be reprisals. Many of the accused in such cases will be guilty, but many will not, and the reprisals, the anger, the indignation, the recriminations, and the distrust of the system will still occur regardless of how many are guilty or innocent of whatever crimes. I have learned to see the world in shades of gray, more gray, and grayer. Given your argument, I have to ask. Have you?

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
Michael Askew
Michael Askew
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

The point being made is not not whether Trump is any good or not (we all agree on that), but rather that pursuing political enemies by a dishonest manipulation of the legal system is dangerous, whoever is doing it.

Last edited 1 year ago by Michael Askew
Michael Davis
Michael Davis
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

And the UK action against Boris is not a witch hunt?

it is exactly analogous, Boris is flawed but ranged against him is the left wing blob of politicians lawyers and captured institutions

Don’t you find the “evidence” a few cans of Coke and packs of sandwiches a bit thin. If that’s all they could come up with them in reality Boris is a saint

Fred Oldfield
Fred Oldfield
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Like him or loathe him, his policies while in office were good ones that served the US public well. I am no political pundit, but one thing I was taught is that it is policies not personalities that count. What more can you ask in this day and age?

Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Fred Oldfield

Yes. Eg no new wars. He promised a vaccine by the end of 2020 ( fact checkers sneered) and got one. Over twice as many deaths occurred in Biden’s first year, despite the vaccine. But you never hear about that. The Abraham accords got Israel and the Middle East together. Alll buried under the TDS.

Rob N
Rob N
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

“despite the vaccine”. Despite?!

Rob N
Rob N
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

“despite the vaccine”. Despite?!

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Fred Oldfield

This is true too. Look at how messed up the US, and the rest of the world is today, compared to a few years ago. I suspect, however, his Covid policies would have been just as bad as everyone else.

Paul Hendricks
Paul Hendricks
1 year ago
Reply to  Fred Oldfield

Indeed.

I hope it isn’t considered chauvinistic of me to say that one consequence of greater female involvement in the public sphere is an increased emphasis on “personality.” Of course it must be said nowadays many men are following their lead, with all this talk of Trump’s “personality disorders” and (rather pathetic) complaints of his “bullying.”

Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Fred Oldfield

Yes. Eg no new wars. He promised a vaccine by the end of 2020 ( fact checkers sneered) and got one. Over twice as many deaths occurred in Biden’s first year, despite the vaccine. But you never hear about that. The Abraham accords got Israel and the Middle East together. Alll buried under the TDS.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Fred Oldfield

This is true too. Look at how messed up the US, and the rest of the world is today, compared to a few years ago. I suspect, however, his Covid policies would have been just as bad as everyone else.

Paul Hendricks
Paul Hendricks
1 year ago
Reply to  Fred Oldfield

Indeed.

I hope it isn’t considered chauvinistic of me to say that one consequence of greater female involvement in the public sphere is an increased emphasis on “personality.” Of course it must be said nowadays many men are following their lead, with all this talk of Trump’s “personality disorders” and (rather pathetic) complaints of his “bullying.”

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

I’m in the same boat with you. I can’t stand the man and have disliked him since well before he got into politics. It wasn’t exactly hard to look at Trump’s personal and public history and conclude that the man was an incompetent, blubbering, thin-skinned, vindictive, womanizing, narcissistic egomaniac. I hate that he had to be the person to break the establishment’s hold on the Republican party. I hate most of all how that idiot became the symbol for populism when he is so manifestly unqualified to carry such a great historical burden. The hyperbolic reaction to Trump’s election, however, revealed something far worse, that is the depths which the political establishment was willing to plumb in order to protect their wealth, power, and status, the true extent of their influence over the media and corporate world, and worst of all, the level of contempt they seem to hold for the people in general or at least those people who don’t hold to their neoliberal vision of the future. I suppose there’s the silver lining that Trump getting arrested and thrown in actual jail might be enough to stop his 2024 candidacy and open the door for someone competent instead, but that’s small comfort given the precedent that’s being set.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Well said Steve. My thoughts exactly.

Rob N
Rob N
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Well said Steve. My thoughts exactly.

Rob N
Rob N
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

To me, the difference between Trump and the Democrats (current incumbents at least) is that Trump represents a very personal corruption where the Democrats are a cartel.

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Tomorrow, in the UK, ex-Prime Minister Boris Johnson appears before a committee of his fellow MPs accused of lying to Parliament about a whole slew of parties that took place in 10 Downing St, his place of work and official residence during lockdown when such activities were strictly banned. Part of his defence has been allow cronies and media allies to attack the whole process as a ‘witch hunt’ and the committee as complicit in the supposed witch hunt. So, straight out of the Trump playbook. Like Trump, Johnson is motivated entirely by self interest, is a narcissist but also massively insecure, idle, incompetent and a liar of sociopathic proportions, and doesn’t mind the damage he does to democratic institutions if it serves him.

Trump is a BAD man, he is corrupt and, because of his character flaws, refused to accept the result of the 2020 election causing the all the chaos that followed and which has done so much harm to democratic institutions in the US. All to serve his own purposes. So crying ‘witch hunt’ when prosecutors go after him for his crimes is standard for him, which either means you can accept he should not be above the law or take the ultra partisan view that it must be a witch hunt because
Democrats, Hunter’s laptop, the Clintons, blah, blah, blah.

The Pakistan analogy is that when you have a comic book view of politics, a world split into ‘Goodies’ and ‘Baddies’, with your side as the ‘Goodies’ who can do no wrong, never lose elections etc. you end up with a sociopath in charge who can operate with impunity and a broken political system.

It should be possible to accept two things at once; you don’t like Democrats but Trump is a crook.

Fred Oldfield
Fred Oldfield
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

Like him or loathe him, his policies while in office were good ones that served the US public well. I am no political pundit, but one thing I was taught is that it is policies not personalities that count. What more can you ask in this day and age?

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

I’m in the same boat with you. I can’t stand the man and have disliked him since well before he got into politics. It wasn’t exactly hard to look at Trump’s personal and public history and conclude that the man was an incompetent, blubbering, thin-skinned, vindictive, womanizing, narcissistic egomaniac. I hate that he had to be the person to break the establishment’s hold on the Republican party. I hate most of all how that idiot became the symbol for populism when he is so manifestly unqualified to carry such a great historical burden. The hyperbolic reaction to Trump’s election, however, revealed something far worse, that is the depths which the political establishment was willing to plumb in order to protect their wealth, power, and status, the true extent of their influence over the media and corporate world, and worst of all, the level of contempt they seem to hold for the people in general or at least those people who don’t hold to their neoliberal vision of the future. I suppose there’s the silver lining that Trump getting arrested and thrown in actual jail might be enough to stop his 2024 candidacy and open the door for someone competent instead, but that’s small comfort given the precedent that’s being set.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago

I’m thinking the Pakistan comparison is a tad bit hyperbolic, but the author is right, the American political system is descending into a banana republic.

I don’t like Trump. I think he’s a pathological narcissist. I think he puts himself above all else, which is the last thing we need in politics today – or ever.

And yet I despise the Democrats for continually making me defend the guy. They’ve made a mockery of the judicial system and the political institutions.

What’s even scarier is the real possibility of conviction. Even though it’s not illegal to pay hush money to a mistress, 70% of New Yorkers are Democrats and they could possibly convict, no matter how flimsy the evidence.

Trump will appeal of course, and will almost certainly win the appeal, but the damage will be done already. The Democrats don’t even care if he’s convicted. The real goal is to keep Trump in constant legal limbo so they can signal to voters what a bad man he is.

I fear for the future of the west. The madness never ends.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jim Veenbaas
Cho Jinn
Cho Jinn
1 year ago

We’re in a situation, at best, where a substantial portion of the electorate is fine with voting John Fetterman in as a senator. There isn’t enough pssy in the Milky Way Galaxy that Trump could grab to be more embarrassing than a stroked-out deadbeat ogre who miraculously made Braddock, PA, worse. The U.S. and its Constitution were not made for what our, um, citizenry has become.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Cho Jinn

It is a matter of what choice you have. A lot of people voted Jeremy Corbyn (him!) to get rid of Boris Johnson, and a lot of people, voted Boris Johnson (him!) to avoid Jeremy Corbyn. If you put up a candidate that lots of people think is terminally unacceptable, strange things will happen.

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Our democratic process is like a sieve where only the worst candidates get through.

Michael McElwee
Michael McElwee
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

Yes, but isn’t the larger point that John Fetterman represents the ideal public servant, that is, a personal utterly unable to serve? The mere appearance of a public servant? So that those who really wield power can do so without restraint or interference?

Michael McElwee
Michael McElwee
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

Yes, but isn’t the larger point that John Fetterman represents the ideal public servant, that is, a personal utterly unable to serve? The mere appearance of a public servant? So that those who really wield power can do so without restraint or interference?

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

For evidence, see the 2016 US Presidential election. I wholeheartedly believe Trump won because the Democrats managed to nominate the one person in the whole world it was possible for him to beat.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Our democratic process is like a sieve where only the worst candidates get through.

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

For evidence, see the 2016 US Presidential election. I wholeheartedly believe Trump won because the Democrats managed to nominate the one person in the whole world it was possible for him to beat.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Cho Jinn

It is a matter of what choice you have. A lot of people voted Jeremy Corbyn (him!) to get rid of Boris Johnson, and a lot of people, voted Boris Johnson (him!) to avoid Jeremy Corbyn. If you put up a candidate that lots of people think is terminally unacceptable, strange things will happen.

Cho Jinn
Cho Jinn
1 year ago

We’re in a situation, at best, where a substantial portion of the electorate is fine with voting John Fetterman in as a senator. There isn’t enough pssy in the Milky Way Galaxy that Trump could grab to be more embarrassing than a stroked-out deadbeat ogre who miraculously made Braddock, PA, worse. The U.S. and its Constitution were not made for what our, um, citizenry has become.

AC Harper
AC Harper
1 year ago

If the arrest, or even a show trial, of Trump goes ahead then that endorses the future prosecution, under a Republican government, of Biden and his family over much more significant allegations.
Democrats should be careful of what they wish for and Republicans should step back from the provocations offered. But that seems unlikely – America has always had ‘enthusiasms’ (Prohibition, McCarthyism) that it later regrets.

AC Harper
AC Harper
1 year ago

If the arrest, or even a show trial, of Trump goes ahead then that endorses the future prosecution, under a Republican government, of Biden and his family over much more significant allegations.
Democrats should be careful of what they wish for and Republicans should step back from the provocations offered. But that seems unlikely – America has always had ‘enthusiasms’ (Prohibition, McCarthyism) that it later regrets.

David Ginsberg
David Ginsberg
1 year ago

problem here is the same as we are seeing in the UK, activists of all hues are trying to use the courts to legislate and take out political opponents. The notion of the Rule of Law is becoming meaningless.

po go
po go
1 year ago
Reply to  David Ginsberg

Thomas Sowell argued the same in The Quest for Cosmic Justice.

po go
po go
1 year ago
Reply to  David Ginsberg

Thomas Sowell argued the same in The Quest for Cosmic Justice.

David Ginsberg
David Ginsberg
1 year ago

problem here is the same as we are seeing in the UK, activists of all hues are trying to use the courts to legislate and take out political opponents. The notion of the Rule of Law is becoming meaningless.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago

” . . .it’s sounding pretty good to a lot of people.” It sounded so good to us that we left New England (where my family has lived since the early 1600s) for Florida’s Gulf Coast two years ago.
Towns and cities here actually compete with one another on beautification; landscaping is Eden-like, bridges, walkways, even basic strip malls are gorgeously designed, constructed, and meticulously maintained. I’ve never even seen a homeless person, let alone a camp. After Hurricane Ian, which directly hit our area, the electricity was restored in 32 hours. Rebuilding construction on the Causeway to Sanibel began just days after the storm passed. Ft. Myers was devastated, and the governor was there immediately, assessing the damage and directing the on-going recovery. The Biden administration refused to send emergency aid (FEMA), but this state is so well-run, we didn’t need it.
We lived in NYC in the 80s. It was a toilet then; it’s a crime-ridden dystopia now. I can’t fathom why more mayors and governors don’t look at what’s happening in Florida – 1200 people move here per day – and apply our successes to their own cities and states. Could it be because they’re Democrats, and they don’t get elected unless there are crises to exploit and “racism” to blame?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

Prior to 1634 did your family come from either Suffolk or Lincolnshire may I ask?

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago

Mother’s side from Shropshire (the family castle – a ruin – is still there), father’s from Plymouth.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago

Mother’s side from Shropshire (the family castle – a ruin – is still there), father’s from Plymouth.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago

I think you nailed it in that last sentence. And we’re getting the same NY pathologies here in UKania now too.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

Prior to 1634 did your family come from either Suffolk or Lincolnshire may I ask?

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago

I think you nailed it in that last sentence. And we’re getting the same NY pathologies here in UKania now too.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago

” . . .it’s sounding pretty good to a lot of people.” It sounded so good to us that we left New England (where my family has lived since the early 1600s) for Florida’s Gulf Coast two years ago.
Towns and cities here actually compete with one another on beautification; landscaping is Eden-like, bridges, walkways, even basic strip malls are gorgeously designed, constructed, and meticulously maintained. I’ve never even seen a homeless person, let alone a camp. After Hurricane Ian, which directly hit our area, the electricity was restored in 32 hours. Rebuilding construction on the Causeway to Sanibel began just days after the storm passed. Ft. Myers was devastated, and the governor was there immediately, assessing the damage and directing the on-going recovery. The Biden administration refused to send emergency aid (FEMA), but this state is so well-run, we didn’t need it.
We lived in NYC in the 80s. It was a toilet then; it’s a crime-ridden dystopia now. I can’t fathom why more mayors and governors don’t look at what’s happening in Florida – 1200 people move here per day – and apply our successes to their own cities and states. Could it be because they’re Democrats, and they don’t get elected unless there are crises to exploit and “racism” to blame?

Bryan Dale
Bryan Dale
1 year ago

The only hope is for Trump to be returned to office in 2024 with strong America First majorities in the House and Senate. That’s a tall order with all the forces of government illegally arrayed against him, but Trump is the only one who can do it.
Once his presidency is restored he needs to set about draining the swamp. Criminal charges must be brought against the corrupt prosecutor Bragg and others who have abused their offices for political gain. It must be very clear that election interference and weaponizing the power of the state against political opponents can’t succeed and will lead to lengthy prison sentences.

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Bryan Dale

And yet here you are, hoping that a majority in 2024 will allow your side to weaponise the power of the state and use it against political opponents.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

It’d level things up a bit. Hollywood, Big Corporate, Wall Street, Big Tech, the Military-Industrial Complex, academia, the MSM and the very Federal State itself – the corrupt Democrat junta holds all the institutional power in the USSA at present and that power – and they – need to be broken and popular democracy and the rule of law restored.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  John Murray

It’d level things up a bit. Hollywood, Big Corporate, Wall Street, Big Tech, the Military-Industrial Complex, academia, the MSM and the very Federal State itself – the corrupt Democrat junta holds all the institutional power in the USSA at present and that power – and they – need to be broken and popular democracy and the rule of law restored.

Rob N
Rob N
1 year ago
Reply to  Bryan Dale

Agreed BUT I do worry that using that power, which is necessary, might make it impossible to ever return to any normal sort of government and country. Do I trust Trump? No. Is he the only person who can drain the swamp? Probably.

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  Bryan Dale

And yet here you are, hoping that a majority in 2024 will allow your side to weaponise the power of the state and use it against political opponents.

Rob N
Rob N
1 year ago
Reply to  Bryan Dale

Agreed BUT I do worry that using that power, which is necessary, might make it impossible to ever return to any normal sort of government and country. Do I trust Trump? No. Is he the only person who can drain the swamp? Probably.

Bryan Dale
Bryan Dale
1 year ago

The only hope is for Trump to be returned to office in 2024 with strong America First majorities in the House and Senate. That’s a tall order with all the forces of government illegally arrayed against him, but Trump is the only one who can do it.
Once his presidency is restored he needs to set about draining the swamp. Criminal charges must be brought against the corrupt prosecutor Bragg and others who have abused their offices for political gain. It must be very clear that election interference and weaponizing the power of the state against political opponents can’t succeed and will lead to lengthy prison sentences.

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago

As someone who dislikes Trump and thinks getting him out of politics is both good for the country and a necessary prerequisite for any sort of Republican victory in 2024, I have to concede I agree with the author. The things Trump is accused of doing are hardly unprecedented. Grover Cleveland was accused (and probably guilty of) having an illegitimate child. Kennedy had numerous well known affairs. Woodrow Wilson was incapacitated for most of the latter half of his second term, and rather than resign, he let his unelected wife run the country (though she was probably better at it than he was). Aaron Burr shot Alexander Hamilton in a duel when the former was Vice President and finished his term as VP. Andrew Jackson launched an unofficial and unauthorized invasion of Spanish Florida and was later elected Senator and then President. Most of us remember the Clinton sex scandal and have forgotten the more serious but never proven Whitewater allegations. As much as I dislike Trump and believe he’s a horrible person who probably deserves most of what he’s getting, we are indeed entering dangerous waters if we begin to use criminal proceedings to further political ends. It’s not about whether he’s guilty or not. He most likely is, but that isn’t the point. The point is that once the justice system becomes a tool for whoever happens to hold political power, it works the same way for everybody. Whoever gains power is able to use that power to destroy their political enemies and exact retribution for whatever came before. Politics becomes a string of reprisals where the focus is on getting even with the political enemy rather than actually running the country, and that’s just with average politicians of average competence and average character. On the other hand, if someone sufficiently competent and truly nefarious gets hold of power, it can go from banana republic chaos to something entirely worse. The defining mark of every totalitarian state that is or ever was, including Nazi Germany, Imperial Rome, Russia under Ivan III, Stalin’s USSR, Xi’s China, etc. has been that the criminal justice system is co-opted by political people and used to further political ends. Look no further than what’s happening in Hong Kong to see how bad it can get. Count us lucky if we end up like Pakistan and not somebody much worse.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago

As someone who dislikes Trump and thinks getting him out of politics is both good for the country and a necessary prerequisite for any sort of Republican victory in 2024, I have to concede I agree with the author. The things Trump is accused of doing are hardly unprecedented. Grover Cleveland was accused (and probably guilty of) having an illegitimate child. Kennedy had numerous well known affairs. Woodrow Wilson was incapacitated for most of the latter half of his second term, and rather than resign, he let his unelected wife run the country (though she was probably better at it than he was). Aaron Burr shot Alexander Hamilton in a duel when the former was Vice President and finished his term as VP. Andrew Jackson launched an unofficial and unauthorized invasion of Spanish Florida and was later elected Senator and then President. Most of us remember the Clinton sex scandal and have forgotten the more serious but never proven Whitewater allegations. As much as I dislike Trump and believe he’s a horrible person who probably deserves most of what he’s getting, we are indeed entering dangerous waters if we begin to use criminal proceedings to further political ends. It’s not about whether he’s guilty or not. He most likely is, but that isn’t the point. The point is that once the justice system becomes a tool for whoever happens to hold political power, it works the same way for everybody. Whoever gains power is able to use that power to destroy their political enemies and exact retribution for whatever came before. Politics becomes a string of reprisals where the focus is on getting even with the political enemy rather than actually running the country, and that’s just with average politicians of average competence and average character. On the other hand, if someone sufficiently competent and truly nefarious gets hold of power, it can go from banana republic chaos to something entirely worse. The defining mark of every totalitarian state that is or ever was, including Nazi Germany, Imperial Rome, Russia under Ivan III, Stalin’s USSR, Xi’s China, etc. has been that the criminal justice system is co-opted by political people and used to further political ends. Look no further than what’s happening in Hong Kong to see how bad it can get. Count us lucky if we end up like Pakistan and not somebody much worse.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
Elliott Bjorn
Elliott Bjorn
1 year ago

That was a silly article.

But to start

”At the presidential level, though, the maximum consequence has been impeachment”

haha, the word now is the rogue CIA shot JFK, so impeachment not quite ‘Maximum there.

And then the Democrats stole the 2020 election and no Judge will take the case – so that is well beyond what you call The Maximum too.

But this:

”Who will be next? The Democrats hated and investigated Ivanka and Donald Jr.; already the Republicans are zeroing in on Hunter Biden. Step by step, t it for tat, America is heading into the banana republic zone.”

‘T it for tat’?? Really? You equate the open political harassment against Trump’s Family with the Open Criminal selling of access to VP Biden as being step by step t it for tat? And the Big Guy and 10%? Trump Jr and Hunter, just 2 peas in a pod of presidential sons? OMG.

I think you rather miss the entire political thing going on – I mean miss it completely. Keep your day job, what ever it is, politics are not really your thing.

Also, why Pakistan? Better would be to use the Ukraine 100% corrupt Politics – as first Clinton, then Obama, and most of all Biden were the ones corrupting Ukraine. Ukraine was their personal Piggy-Bank, and as they owned one of the world’s most corrupt set of politicians – how would you expect them to be any different in their own country?

If Trump gets back in he will CLEAN HOUSE! He did not know the depth of the rot exemplified by Biden, almost all the Senate and House, the Judges, and the Deep State, and the DOD and CIA and NSA – and FED and FBI and DHS, FDA, CDC, and every last other Corporate captured department. But now he does, they wrecked him once, and now he will come with a Big shovel to Drain that Swamp! And American Politics may become clean again. MAGA!

Andrew McDonald
Andrew McDonald
1 year ago
Reply to  Elliott Bjorn

Whoever’s doing these Bjorn parodies needs to step up a bit and vary the subject matter. Also the last para is well below standard today, with all those TLAs and the Big Shovel again. I’m not paying UnHerd for mediocre Prepper parody – bring back Sanford A
.

Chris Wheatley
Chris Wheatley
1 year ago

Sanford was much better than this guy.

Chris Wheatley
Chris Wheatley
1 year ago

Sanford was much better than this guy.

Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Elliott Bjorn

The Ukraine analogy occurred to me too. One president imprisoned, another flees imprisonment, another flees an illegal coup, the good guy has a journalist cut into four pieces pour decourager les autres , the former Georgian President flees Ukraine where he governed a region, preferring prison for corruption in Georgia to coping with corruption in Ukraine. Oh, no, USA isnt that bad.

Rob N
Rob N
1 year ago
Reply to  Elliott Bjorn

Unless of course the CIA do a Kennedy on him!

Andrew McDonald
Andrew McDonald
1 year ago
Reply to  Elliott Bjorn

Whoever’s doing these Bjorn parodies needs to step up a bit and vary the subject matter. Also the last para is well below standard today, with all those TLAs and the Big Shovel again. I’m not paying UnHerd for mediocre Prepper parody – bring back Sanford A
.

Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Elliott Bjorn

The Ukraine analogy occurred to me too. One president imprisoned, another flees imprisonment, another flees an illegal coup, the good guy has a journalist cut into four pieces pour decourager les autres , the former Georgian President flees Ukraine where he governed a region, preferring prison for corruption in Georgia to coping with corruption in Ukraine. Oh, no, USA isnt that bad.

Rob N
Rob N
1 year ago
Reply to  Elliott Bjorn

Unless of course the CIA do a Kennedy on him!

Elliott Bjorn
Elliott Bjorn
1 year ago

That was a silly article.

But to start

”At the presidential level, though, the maximum consequence has been impeachment”

haha, the word now is the rogue CIA shot JFK, so impeachment not quite ‘Maximum there.

And then the Democrats stole the 2020 election and no Judge will take the case – so that is well beyond what you call The Maximum too.

But this:

”Who will be next? The Democrats hated and investigated Ivanka and Donald Jr.; already the Republicans are zeroing in on Hunter Biden. Step by step, t it for tat, America is heading into the banana republic zone.”

‘T it for tat’?? Really? You equate the open political harassment against Trump’s Family with the Open Criminal selling of access to VP Biden as being step by step t it for tat? And the Big Guy and 10%? Trump Jr and Hunter, just 2 peas in a pod of presidential sons? OMG.

I think you rather miss the entire political thing going on – I mean miss it completely. Keep your day job, what ever it is, politics are not really your thing.

Also, why Pakistan? Better would be to use the Ukraine 100% corrupt Politics – as first Clinton, then Obama, and most of all Biden were the ones corrupting Ukraine. Ukraine was their personal Piggy-Bank, and as they owned one of the world’s most corrupt set of politicians – how would you expect them to be any different in their own country?

If Trump gets back in he will CLEAN HOUSE! He did not know the depth of the rot exemplified by Biden, almost all the Senate and House, the Judges, and the Deep State, and the DOD and CIA and NSA – and FED and FBI and DHS, FDA, CDC, and every last other Corporate captured department. But now he does, they wrecked him once, and now he will come with a Big shovel to Drain that Swamp! And American Politics may become clean again. MAGA!

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago

The picture of ‘banana-isation’ is real enough – and worrying. And it is undeniable that there is a smell of lawfare in many of the cases against Trump – not that that is new for US politics either. But the problem and any solution is bipartisan, NOT just with the Democrats. The Republican party that gave us Kennett Starr and the Clinton impeachment cannot come later and complain that the other side is erasing red lines and going after the President on flimsy pretexts. And the Trump who refused to accept the result of the election and systematically tried to pressure officials to overturn it (and who campaigned on ‘Lock Hilary Up!’) cannot suddenly decide that everybody ought to be nice – to him – in order to preserve the boundaries of a functioning democracy.

If you care about making the system work, how about starting with what your own side should do different? Otherwise you are just continuing the special pleading.

Saul D
Saul D
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

It has become an arms race, predictably. In the American system the theory would be that the judicial branch, through the courts and learned judges, should step in to protect the law and constitution from such abuse. Lawfare of any kind is bad law. The law is not a weapon or form of retribution, but a tool for justice and resolution. Unfortunately, it seems parts of the judiciary are also infected by the same cancer. The big issue is then where does a disgruntled populace go when their systems seem to be, and feel, unfair and unfunctioning, ridden by in-fighting and points-scoring.

Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Clinton refused to accept the results of 2016. How quickly people forget.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

As I remember she moaned but conceded. She did not mount a ‘Stop the Steal’ campaign, try to pressure officials into misrepresenting the result, or invite a mob to the capitol to ratch up the pressure. Do you have different information?

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

You are mostly correct Rasmus. There was some noise about ‘appealing to the conscience’ of the actual electors to deny Trump the election victory in 2016. Questionable but technically not illegal. I believe that came from other quarters in the Democratic establishment and not the Clinton campaign specifically but that’s splitting hairs. She also released a book blaming James Comey and Russian interference for the loss which is, again, questionable but not illegal. There was also the two years investigating the Russian interference. In short, she and others did do an awful lot of complaining after the fact but using legal means with actual historical precedent. Trump took it to another level IMHO, because he tried to operate outside the law and set a dangerous precedent, and there have been entirely too many bad precedents set recently by him and by others on all sides. In so doing, he also destroyed his own political career and did considerable damage to anyone close to him (such as his children), who might try to pick up the political torch, but then he was never all that bright or politically insightful. He just came along at the right time with the right message against the most unpopular and polarizing nominee the other party could have possibly chosen.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

But suppose he was right, and the election – and US democracy – was stolen? There is a very great deal of circumstantial evidence that it was. Capitol ‘riot’?! The only person actually killed there – despite the false reporting of the BBC and rest of the Democrat Deep State stooge MSM – was in fact an unarmed woman murdered with a pistol shot, through a locked door, by a trigger-happy Capitol Police officer (who, needless to say, has suffered no consequences at all).
Just as well she was only white, eh?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

But Loootenant Michael Byrd was BLACK, and a true American hero as he claims to have “saved countless lives”!

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

If you have any decent evidence that Trump won – or for that matter that voter fraud is a serious problem – please link to it. I have asked this question many times, and never seen anything worth considering. You do not get to undermine the election results based on just ‘suppose’.

Danielle Treille
Danielle Treille
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

The resounding silence in answer to your question says it all. QED Even the pundits at Fox News admitted he lost fair and square, albeit “off air”!

Danielle Treille
Danielle Treille
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

The resounding silence in answer to your question says it all. QED Even the pundits at Fox News admitted he lost fair and square, albeit “off air”!

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

But Loootenant Michael Byrd was BLACK, and a true American hero as he claims to have “saved countless lives”!

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

If you have any decent evidence that Trump won – or for that matter that voter fraud is a serious problem – please link to it. I have asked this question many times, and never seen anything worth considering. You do not get to undermine the election results based on just ‘suppose’.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

But suppose he was right, and the election – and US democracy – was stolen? There is a very great deal of circumstantial evidence that it was. Capitol ‘riot’?! The only person actually killed there – despite the false reporting of the BBC and rest of the Democrat Deep State stooge MSM – was in fact an unarmed woman murdered with a pistol shot, through a locked door, by a trigger-happy Capitol Police officer (who, needless to say, has suffered no consequences at all).
Just as well she was only white, eh?

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

It was a non-conceding concession, in which she (and Jimmy Carter too, btw, who I USED to respect) FALSELY claimed Trump has won only thanks to, er, ‘Russian interference’. And she kept on claiming it, too, armed with the bogus, DNC-commissioned Steele Dossier (given false credence by the BBC and the rest of the stinking Democrat MSM) which has now been comprehensively debunked.
Like the Murrell-Sturgeon junta, however, it’s a case of ‘in for a penny, in for a pound’. Their crimes are now too great to risk losing power and being held to account, so Courts are corrupted, elections are rigged and opponents persecuted and crushed.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

It was still a concession – which is more than Trump was willing to do.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

It was still a concession – which is more than Trump was willing to do.

Carl Valentine
Carl Valentine
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

But was Trump not robbed? Fakebook and twatter both suppressed Hunter Biden’s unlawful and immoral actions in Ukraine, this may well have affected the vote in Trumps favour. This was subversion of democracy n’est pas?

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Carl Valentine

Here we all have to calm down. Trump is entitled to complain that the media did not back him in his campaign to smear Biden (why do you think that laptop was surfaced just a few weeks before the election?) Just like Hilary is entitled to complain that the FBI raised the email question again just a few weeks before the vote – and that the FSB hacked and leaked Democrat emails to help out Trump. There are a lot of dirty tricks around, and people are entitled to moan. But stealing the election means tampering with the vote count – and there is no evidence of that. If you got fewer votes in the electoral college you *lost* – and whinging that the other side was better at media manipulation that your own guys does not make any difference.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Carl Valentine

Here we all have to calm down. Trump is entitled to complain that the media did not back him in his campaign to smear Biden (why do you think that laptop was surfaced just a few weeks before the election?) Just like Hilary is entitled to complain that the FBI raised the email question again just a few weeks before the vote – and that the FSB hacked and leaked Democrat emails to help out Trump. There are a lot of dirty tricks around, and people are entitled to moan. But stealing the election means tampering with the vote count – and there is no evidence of that. If you got fewer votes in the electoral college you *lost* – and whinging that the other side was better at media manipulation that your own guys does not make any difference.

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

You are mostly correct Rasmus. There was some noise about ‘appealing to the conscience’ of the actual electors to deny Trump the election victory in 2016. Questionable but technically not illegal. I believe that came from other quarters in the Democratic establishment and not the Clinton campaign specifically but that’s splitting hairs. She also released a book blaming James Comey and Russian interference for the loss which is, again, questionable but not illegal. There was also the two years investigating the Russian interference. In short, she and others did do an awful lot of complaining after the fact but using legal means with actual historical precedent. Trump took it to another level IMHO, because he tried to operate outside the law and set a dangerous precedent, and there have been entirely too many bad precedents set recently by him and by others on all sides. In so doing, he also destroyed his own political career and did considerable damage to anyone close to him (such as his children), who might try to pick up the political torch, but then he was never all that bright or politically insightful. He just came along at the right time with the right message against the most unpopular and polarizing nominee the other party could have possibly chosen.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

It was a non-conceding concession, in which she (and Jimmy Carter too, btw, who I USED to respect) FALSELY claimed Trump has won only thanks to, er, ‘Russian interference’. And she kept on claiming it, too, armed with the bogus, DNC-commissioned Steele Dossier (given false credence by the BBC and the rest of the stinking Democrat MSM) which has now been comprehensively debunked.
Like the Murrell-Sturgeon junta, however, it’s a case of ‘in for a penny, in for a pound’. Their crimes are now too great to risk losing power and being held to account, so Courts are corrupted, elections are rigged and opponents persecuted and crushed.

Carl Valentine
Carl Valentine
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

But was Trump not robbed? Fakebook and twatter both suppressed Hunter Biden’s unlawful and immoral actions in Ukraine, this may well have affected the vote in Trumps favour. This was subversion of democracy n’est pas?

Robert Kaye
Robert Kaye
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

Liar

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

As I remember she moaned but conceded. She did not mount a ‘Stop the Steal’ campaign, try to pressure officials into misrepresenting the result, or invite a mob to the capitol to ratch up the pressure. Do you have different information?

Robert Kaye
Robert Kaye
1 year ago
Reply to  Anna Bramwell

Liar

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Yet DID he actually try to have the Crooked Hillary Clinton locked up? Got knows, an investigating Prosecutor could have found enough to charge her on had he put his mind to it? No. For all his blowhardism, and for all the Democrat nexus screeching, Trump actually had some respect for the US Constitution… unlike them.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

He tried to pressure Mike Pence and various state officials into giving the presidency to the loser. So much for respect for the constitution.

Last edited 1 year ago by Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter Joy

He tried to pressure Mike Pence and various state officials into giving the presidency to the loser. So much for respect for the constitution.

Last edited 1 year ago by Rasmus Fogh
Saul D
Saul D
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

It has become an arms race, predictably. In the American system the theory would be that the judicial branch, through the courts and learned judges, should step in to protect the law and constitution from such abuse. Lawfare of any kind is bad law. The law is not a weapon or form of retribution, but a tool for justice and resolution. Unfortunately, it seems parts of the judiciary are also infected by the same cancer. The big issue is then where does a disgruntled populace go when their systems seem to be, and feel, unfair and unfunctioning, ridden by in-fighting and points-scoring.

Anna Bramwell
Anna Bramwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Clinton refused to accept the results of 2016. How quickly people forget.

Peter Joy
Peter Joy
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Yet DID he actually try to have the Crooked Hillary Clinton locked up? Got knows, an investigating Prosecutor could have found enough to charge her on had he put his mind to it? No. For all his blowhardism, and for all the Democrat nexus screeching, Trump actually had some respect for the US Constitution… unlike them.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago

The picture of ‘banana-isation’ is real enough – and worrying. And it is undeniable that there is a smell of lawfare in many of the cases against Trump – not that that is new for US politics either. But the problem and any solution is bipartisan, NOT just with the Democrats. The Republican party that gave us Kennett Starr and the Clinton impeachment cannot come later and complain that the other side is erasing red lines and going after the President on flimsy pretexts. And the Trump who refused to accept the result of the election and systematically tried to pressure officials to overturn it (and who campaigned on ‘Lock Hilary Up!’) cannot suddenly decide that everybody ought to be nice – to him – in order to preserve the boundaries of a functioning democracy.

If you care about making the system work, how about starting with what your own side should do different? Otherwise you are just continuing the special pleading.

Dougie Undersub
Dougie Undersub
1 year ago

Sadly, Britain is going the same way, as anyone who has followed the Commons Privileges Committee’s vendetta against Boris Johnson can attest.

Carl Valentine
Carl Valentine
1 year ago

What garbage! Vendetta? It was all self inflicted. Tell grieving family members denied hospital access to dying partners how its a vendetta? Should you not be on fakebook?

Carl Valentine
Carl Valentine
1 year ago

What garbage! Vendetta? It was all self inflicted. Tell grieving family members denied hospital access to dying partners how its a vendetta? Should you not be on fakebook?

Dougie Undersub
Dougie Undersub
1 year ago

Sadly, Britain is going the same way, as anyone who has followed the Commons Privileges Committee’s vendetta against Boris Johnson can attest.

rob clark
rob clark
1 year ago

DeSantis 2024!

rob clark
rob clark
1 year ago

DeSantis 2024!

Philip Burrell
Philip Burrell
1 year ago

As regards the demise of General Zia there is a very good comic novel, written by Mohammed Hanif entiltled A Case of Exploding Mangoes.

Philip Burrell
Philip Burrell
1 year ago

As regards the demise of General Zia there is a very good comic novel, written by Mohammed Hanif entiltled A Case of Exploding Mangoes.

sid Williams
sid Williams
1 year ago

Pakistan and the United States. Talk about false equivalency.

sid Williams
sid Williams
1 year ago

Pakistan and the United States. Talk about false equivalency.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago

“Let’s start with a game of “Guess the Country”. In this nation, a former head of state announces his attempted return to power, so his opponents set out to block him. In doing so, they revive past sex scandals and purported financial misdeeds related to questionable campaign contributions and gifts from foreign governments. Which country am I thinking of?”
You forgot to mention Russia

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago

“Let’s start with a game of “Guess the Country”. In this nation, a former head of state announces his attempted return to power, so his opponents set out to block him. In doing so, they revive past sex scandals and purported financial misdeeds related to questionable campaign contributions and gifts from foreign governments. Which country am I thinking of?”
You forgot to mention Russia

Claire England
Claire England
1 year ago

Pakistan?!? My spouse is from there, and had to hire security after death threats were made because of his BOOK that was critical of the then president. I could go on, but any writer trying to compare the two countries has lost any credibility with those who have an even passing knowledge of that nation’s political issues.

And unprecedented raid? A 5 second online search provides ample timelines of the efforts made to retrieve documents before the “raid”:

“After NARA realized that documents from Trump’s presidency seemed to be missing from the material that it received as he left office, the agency requested the records from Trump on or about May 6, 2021, according to a heavily redacted affidavit made public last week”

https://apnews.com/article/biden-donald-trump-mar-a-lago-subpoenas-b8082283fc599738c92d1f1ec8680924

Claire England
Claire England
1 year ago

Pakistan?!? My spouse is from there, and had to hire security after death threats were made because of his BOOK that was critical of the then president. I could go on, but any writer trying to compare the two countries has lost any credibility with those who have an even passing knowledge of that nation’s political issues.

And unprecedented raid? A 5 second online search provides ample timelines of the efforts made to retrieve documents before the “raid”:

“After NARA realized that documents from Trump’s presidency seemed to be missing from the material that it received as he left office, the agency requested the records from Trump on or about May 6, 2021, according to a heavily redacted affidavit made public last week”

https://apnews.com/article/biden-donald-trump-mar-a-lago-subpoenas-b8082283fc599738c92d1f1ec8680924

Chris Wheatley
Chris Wheatley
1 year ago

The problem is that we tend to copy everything they do. I still think China is a safer bet than the US of A.

Carl Valentine
Carl Valentine
1 year ago
Reply to  Chris Wheatley

You may be right

Carl Valentine
Carl Valentine
1 year ago
Reply to  Chris Wheatley

You may be right

Chris Wheatley
Chris Wheatley
1 year ago

The problem is that we tend to copy everything they do. I still think China is a safer bet than the US of A.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

The comparison is over-dramatised and theatrical.
The US is NOT a banana republic precisely because it is following. through on the Rule of Law.
Now as regards the political optics were the Democrats fully in charge of the sequencing of legal jeopardy for Trump they would not have the payments to a porn star out first would they. It’s not the worst offence is it and going to obviously be painted as lacking proportionality. But again this sequencing indicative it’s not being managed from some central control centre. It shows the centre of legal power is dispersed.
What would be preferable is the worst crimes should be first up – deliberate seeking to overturn fair election results. This was without precedent and if Trump gets cuffed and stuck in an orange jumpsuit it should be for that. (Perhaps better just barred from public office and can play out his days on the golf course)
The retaining of Top Secret and classified papers probably second most important issue where whether serious criminality occurred must be concluded. How much was just ignorance and Trumpian chaos and how much potentially more malign (information to ‘sell’ or use with other interested parties) remains to be seen. Fact it appears some ‘insiders’ conveyed details to FBI suggestive there was serious concern as to what Trump intended to do with this information. We’ll see.
Remember the Republicans are poorly placed also to argue all this is political after the way Gingrich and Starr went after Clinton for much less. But nonetheless it would be better one thinks if Trump’s legal threats were just focused on the most crucial elements to the US constitution.

Last edited 1 year ago by j watson
Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

1. In a democracy a candidate has every right to argue, however wrongly, that an election has been conducted unfairly.

2. The argument vis a vis documents was clearly a complete confection. Besides, if you’re going to try Trump for that then you must also try Biden for the same offence.

3. Astonishing that anyone should still be defending either Clinton given what we know about them now.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

Re:1 – yes indeed. But that’s not the allegation is it and you well know that.
Re:2 – there appears to be considerable difference in volume and classification but nonetheless let’s see if evidence presented a more malign reason for retention. If nothing then I think an indictment does not proceed.
Re:3 – there wasn’t any attempt to defend. He lied about his affair. Hardly though an issue of national security or Constitutional threat.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

“But that’s not the allegation is it and you well know that.”
There is no evidence at all that Trump tried to overturn the US Constitution on Jan 6th. He even demanded that troops be sent to the Capitol. It’s a false narrative.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

They’ve been investigating the damn thing for two years now and they got nothing

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

Remarkable you seem to have an advance sighting of all the evidence.
But given what is in the public domain already your thoughts on the pressure put on Raffensperger in the recorded phone call about finding 12k votes in Georgia? I guess you’d argue a bit of pressure not the same as criminality and perhaps that’s correct. We’ll see.
There is no evidence Trump called in the National Guard either until after the riots and he had a different desire for the optics.

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I completely agree with you, but you’re banging your head against a brick wall, if anyone can say after all of the evidence that is in the public domain about January 6th that Trump didn’t try to steal the election. Alternative facts, alternative realities.

John Murray
John Murray
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I completely agree with you, but you’re banging your head against a brick wall, if anyone can say after all of the evidence that is in the public domain about January 6th that Trump didn’t try to steal the election. Alternative facts, alternative realities.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

They’ve been investigating the damn thing for two years now and they got nothing

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

Remarkable you seem to have an advance sighting of all the evidence.
But given what is in the public domain already your thoughts on the pressure put on Raffensperger in the recorded phone call about finding 12k votes in Georgia? I guess you’d argue a bit of pressure not the same as criminality and perhaps that’s correct. We’ll see.
There is no evidence Trump called in the National Guard either until after the riots and he had a different desire for the optics.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

“But that’s not the allegation is it and you well know that.”
There is no evidence at all that Trump tried to overturn the US Constitution on Jan 6th. He even demanded that troops be sent to the Capitol. It’s a false narrative.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

Re:1 – yes indeed. But that’s not the allegation is it and you well know that.
Re:2 – there appears to be considerable difference in volume and classification but nonetheless let’s see if evidence presented a more malign reason for retention. If nothing then I think an indictment does not proceed.
Re:3 – there wasn’t any attempt to defend. He lied about his affair. Hardly though an issue of national security or Constitutional threat.

Saul D
Saul D
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

One of the elements in the Podesta emails was the high level of co-ordination on the Democrat-side for the HRC campaign between campaign staff, sponsors and funders, spin-off campaigns (PAC and non-PAC), surrogates, field co-ordinators and journalists. The funding influencers at the top pull strings, give posts on committees and foundations, speaking slots, research trips, academic posts, grants, fund think tanks and NGOs. My guess is the same on the Republican side. All of these actions require funding and resources – no money, no play – it’s not necessarily as local as you think.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Ugh. It’s not against the law to dispute election results, no matter how unhinged and selfish the person is for doing it. Here I go again being forced to defend Trump.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

It may not be illegal – but a democratic system can only function if both sides more or less accept the rules and the result. The whole point of elections is to decide who wins in a manner that people accept. Come to that, it is not illegal either for (politically elected) prosecutors to selectively pursue enemy politicians, – as long as they follow the rules and they find probable cause to think that laws have been broken. Or for Supreme Court judges (from either side) to decide based on political bias, as long as they stick to the letter of the constitution. If the system is to endure, ‘not illegal’ is too low a bar.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Veenbaas

It may not be illegal – but a democratic system can only function if both sides more or less accept the rules and the result. The whole point of elections is to decide who wins in a manner that people accept. Come to that, it is not illegal either for (politically elected) prosecutors to selectively pursue enemy politicians, – as long as they follow the rules and they find probable cause to think that laws have been broken. Or for Supreme Court judges (from either side) to decide based on political bias, as long as they stick to the letter of the constitution. If the system is to endure, ‘not illegal’ is too low a bar.

Dermot O'Sullivan
Dermot O'Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

‘What would be preferable is the worst crimes should be first up.’

Not sure about that. The drawn out Starr/Gingrich campaign did do lots of damage (I’m no defender of Clinton BTW), and in the current climate, at least looking in from the outside, things appear to be so toxic that one fears something is going to blow.

Last edited 1 year ago by Dermot O'Sullivan
Peter Lee
Peter Lee
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

The sky is blue and all is right with the US: at least that the way it looks through my rose-tinted glasses. Lets just forget about everything that has happened to Pres, Trump in the past seven years. (satire).

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

1. In a democracy a candidate has every right to argue, however wrongly, that an election has been conducted unfairly.

2. The argument vis a vis documents was clearly a complete confection. Besides, if you’re going to try Trump for that then you must also try Biden for the same offence.

3. Astonishing that anyone should still be defending either Clinton given what we know about them now.

Saul D
Saul D
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

One of the elements in the Podesta emails was the high level of co-ordination on the Democrat-side for the HRC campaign between campaign staff, sponsors and funders, spin-off campaigns (PAC and non-PAC), surrogates, field co-ordinators and journalists. The funding influencers at the top pull strings, give posts on committees and foundations, speaking slots, research trips, academic posts, grants, fund think tanks and NGOs. My guess is the same on the Republican side. All of these actions require funding and resources – no money, no play – it’s not necessarily as local as you think.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Ugh. It’s not against the law to dispute election results, no matter how unhinged and selfish the person is for doing it. Here I go again being forced to defend Trump.

Dermot O'Sullivan
Dermot O'Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

‘What would be preferable is the worst crimes should be first up.’

Not sure about that. The drawn out Starr/Gingrich campaign did do lots of damage (I’m no defender of Clinton BTW), and in the current climate, at least looking in from the outside, things appear to be so toxic that one fears something is going to blow.

Last edited 1 year ago by Dermot O'Sullivan
Peter Lee
Peter Lee
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

The sky is blue and all is right with the US: at least that the way it looks through my rose-tinted glasses. Lets just forget about everything that has happened to Pres, Trump in the past seven years. (satire).

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

The comparison is over-dramatised and theatrical.
The US is NOT a banana republic precisely because it is following. through on the Rule of Law.
Now as regards the political optics were the Democrats fully in charge of the sequencing of legal jeopardy for Trump they would not have the payments to a porn star out first would they. It’s not the worst offence is it and going to obviously be painted as lacking proportionality. But again this sequencing indicative it’s not being managed from some central control centre. It shows the centre of legal power is dispersed.
What would be preferable is the worst crimes should be first up – deliberate seeking to overturn fair election results. This was without precedent and if Trump gets cuffed and stuck in an orange jumpsuit it should be for that. (Perhaps better just barred from public office and can play out his days on the golf course)
The retaining of Top Secret and classified papers probably second most important issue where whether serious criminality occurred must be concluded. How much was just ignorance and Trumpian chaos and how much potentially more malign (information to ‘sell’ or use with other interested parties) remains to be seen. Fact it appears some ‘insiders’ conveyed details to FBI suggestive there was serious concern as to what Trump intended to do with this information. We’ll see.
Remember the Republicans are poorly placed also to argue all this is political after the way Gingrich and Starr went after Clinton for much less. But nonetheless it would be better one thinks if Trump’s legal threats were just focused on the most crucial elements to the US constitution.

Last edited 1 year ago by j watson
Ian Lessard
Ian Lessard
1 year ago

Florida. Tis a silly place.

Monty Mounty
Monty Mounty
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Lessard

Ian is so wrong.

Monty Mounty
Monty Mounty
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Lessard

Ian is so wrong.

Ian Lessard
Ian Lessard
1 year ago

Florida. Tis a silly place.