Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced she is supporting an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.
How did we get here?
Russia, Russia, Russia
But first, global organized crime. Does my invocation of Russia bring up a political fervor? More likely you are exhausted with the headlines following the story over time. That’s a feature, not a bug. It satisfies an objective of many a demagogue: provoke anger in one, apathy in another, rob them blind while they’re distracted. What makes someone angry makes someone take action. That’s why I hope my readers understand that it’s good to be angry, but do not sin in your anger.
Trump’s history in organized crime is well-documented. I’ve shared stories about it on social media in the past and am willing to follow up with a list of those posts in a future article. That’s how I came to believe Trump’s methods are not part of a grand design; they’re the shadows of grander designs.
America has learned a lot about counter terrorism on the home front lately, but before that we were learning a lot about organized crime through the work of the intelligence community. I have read enough of Robert Mueller’s public statements from his time as FBI Director to understand that globally organized crime requires complex strategy relying on a multinational understanding of the world. There are helpful articles and links to the relevant press conferences where Mueller discusses topics like organized crime at length, but the responsibility to explore that topic is up to the reader since the material is publicly available.
Geopolitics is a fickle field, so I’ll invoke the adage: history repeats itself. Alternatively, some have said that history does not repeat itself, it simply rhymes. Understanding the difference between these two thoughts is important because I want to draw your attention to the fact that they are mutually exclusive. Being able to hold opposing thoughts in one’s mind is how humans solve problems. Global organized crime thrives when the stories surrounding its trails are obfuscated into complexity so that the problems surrounding proving their stories is too difficult to reconcile. Stories that take on lives of their own and continue to live on in the collective mind should be enough to invoke enough anger to take action against a criminal president: like the murder of the American journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Saudi Arabia and the Trump administration’s cruel indifference to take action, despite the fact that Khashoggi was killed because he was a journalist for The Washington Post.
My simple claim is this: if you ignored the disaster of the Russia story for the last four years, you should pay attention to Donald Trump’s recent crimes. But what are his crimes? There are more to cover, but I will choose to name two here: campaign finance violations (before Trump was president) and Trump’s flagrant abuse of spending government money to make himself rich (which is only a crime because he is president). There will need to be many, many stories you give this intentional amount of attention to if you don’t understand how these two crimes are rooted in Donald Trump’s history in organized crime, and that there are plenty of other crimes to cover in future articles.
Campaign Finance Violations
Donald Trump paid legal fees to Stephanie Clifford to avoid public discussion of his extramarital affair with her knowing it could damage his reputation in the months leading up to the 2016 presidential election.
- Trump Lawyer Arranged $130,000 Payment for Adult-Film Star’s Silence
- Prosecutors Say Trump Directed Illegal Payments During Campaign
Violations of the Emoluments Clauses
This one is a bit more complex, which I will remind you is a feature of stories surrounding organized crime.
The Trump Administration has famously left cities and states footing the bills for the security costs associated with his political rallies. Why, then, does it seem that the Trump properties that are frequently visited by the President have never missed a paycheck from the Trump administration?
From a whitepaper on the legal grounds for impeachment, please read the following explanation of how Donald Trump is violating the foreign emoluments clause and domestic emoluments clause of the United States Constitution:
“Through his businesses in the United States and abroad, the president receives payments, regulatory approval, and other forms of direct and indirect financial benefits from foreign governments. These violate the Constitution’s Foreign Emoluments Clause, which prohibits federal officials, including the president, from receiving a “present” or “emolument” from any foreign government or official. The president’s businesses also act as a conduit for enrichment from federal and state government coffers. These violate the Domestic Emoluments Clause, which prohibits the president from receiving, beyond his official salary, any emolument from the United States or any state” (Source).
Trump is using his hotels and condos as a conduit for foreigners to pay him in questionable amounts of money.
This comes down to what each American believes is right or wrong.
We are like a nation at civil war without a formal declaration — or perhaps we are at the moments leading up to it. The truth America hasn’t confronted is that it elected a criminal president with almost willful ignorance of his true nature.
I should say: I am not writing these words to malign Donald Trump as a good or bad person. This is not so fundamental. At the behest of my conservative friends, I have prayed for the man because he is the President of the United States. My prayers have been my observations, and those are what I am writing here to share with you now.
Pay attention to the characters of the Trump administration now.
Rudy Giuliani has publicly admitted that he has acted as a back channel communicator for Donald Trump the 2020 Republican presidential incumbent in an effort to pressure the government of Ukraine to put on a farce investigation so that Trump can sling mud on Joe Biden.
This is the most recent scandal. The tactics may not be obvious to you now, but Trump cannot avoid this scandal any longer. We have reached a tipping point in his presidency, and it is time to discuss what’s going on. This kind of confrontation in the United States government deserves every American’s attention, because the truth may very likely make you angry.
Be angry. Do not sin.