The Perils Of Treasonitis

“Treason”, like “Nazi”, is one of “those” words. At least, it used to be. Back when the Trump era first started, it was kinda cute how people on the left dared themselves to throw down the word “Nazi” or “fascist” to describe Donald Trump, his inner circle and increasingly the entire Republican Party. We all knew – as we dared ourselves – that we’d be taken to the woodshed where Godwin’s Law would be fully explained to us: whenever a Hitler comparison gets made, the argument we’re having is finished and whoever brought up Nazis loses the argument and probably every argument forever after. “Treason” worked pretty much the same way: whoever blurted out “That’s treason!” first got voted off the island as a dufus and a troublemaker.

Boy, has the world changed.

Treason is like a viral disease. Bacteria can be killed with penicillin (at least, for now) but viruses are much harder to kill in part because they only sorta-kinda “are”. Their dark genius, viruses, is that they survive and propagate by turning their hosts into themselves. Treason works exactly the same way. Regardless of whether one starts out as Typhoid Mary actively spreading the disease or as that more subversive someone who saw something but won’t say something, once one becomes a traitor, it’s as if one’s DNA changed: there’s no going back. Trump World remains chockablock with people who still behave “strangely” toward Russia even as Russia drives the world to the brink.

If we think of treason as working to overthrow America’s legitimate government then everyone involved with the January 6 insurrection, its planning, its financing – and all the other anti-Democratic (and knowingly illegal) activities bent on denying the peaceful transfer of power to Joe Biden, is a traitor, pure and simple. If we think of treason as something that can only happen during war time, we have that covered, too. Anyone who thinks cyber war isn’t war is going to lose very war they ever fight going forwards. If Russia could figure out how to cyber attack our power grid, shutting it down and off, we’d be screwed. With our holiest of holies clasped in their sweaty palm, we’d be forced to sue Russia for peace and hope like hell that they accepted. The terms would be brutal.

One of the big reasons Trump needed an insurrection to hold onto power is because losing power meant he’d (finally!) be prosecuted. Trump has NEVER had that happen; it’s how he became the criminal he is. Trump has refined obstruction of justice to an art form. Even the Mueller Report, limited in scope and handcuffed by Rod Rosenstein’s lies and Bill Barr’s deceit, pointed out that they couldn’t really do their investigation to the best of their ability because of all the damned obstruction of justice (and would the DoJ PLEASE do something about it)!

To this very day, our news media scratches its head hard enough to do physical harm to their skulls when they ask aloud “What’s the deal between Putin and Trump?” For some reason that question can never get answered (if even speculatively). It’s a complete mystery to our press what hold Putin has on Trump that could produce photo ops like this –

“You’re my bitch, right, Donald?”

“Yes, sir, Mr. Putin, sir. I am your bitch today and always will be”.

Words can lie plenty. Body language on the other hand is far, far harder to fake. We can only imagine the body language the Republican Party’s leadership displayed on June 25, 2016, a month before the Republican Party officially nominated Trump to be their presidential standard bearer, when current GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy entered a meeting of Republican leaders with “There’s two people I think Putin pays – Rohrbacher and Trump – swear to God!

No one said “Whaaaaat? Kevin – dude – why on earth would you say such a thing?” That’s because they probably knew. McCarthy had just left a meeting where the Republican Party was talking about Ukraine – and that was McCarthy’s takeaway: “Putin pays Trump”. The correct response should have been to get the bloody FBI on the phone pronto and Trump’s name off their nomination documents. How can you openly agree that the man you’re about to nominated to be POTUS poses a grave national security threat and then choose to keep that terrible secret a secret? I guess if you’re a Republican, it’s pretty damned easy.

A month later – KNOWING that Trump was deeply compromised by a country they knew had a history of trying to subvert our way of life and our government – nominated him to be president anyway. And then, the day AFTER being nominated, Trump made his infamous “Russia, if you’re listening…!” plea for Russia to find the 33,000 missing emails. Did you catch the distinction? That’s a man on Russia’s payroll employing Russia to help him undermine another presidential candidate so as to win election. Something tells me that at least some part of that must be illegal.

And, if it’s not now, it should be pronto.

Once you’ve committed treason, it’s a hard if not impossible road back. There’s no statute of limitations. We The People can always reach out and grab you. And being branded a traitor? That’s not good for anybody – or their brand.

At some point, everyone in the GOP either must have or should have asked themselves that question: why is Trump so beholden to Putin? Those that already knew doubled down on their treachery. Those to whom this was new, owed the country way more loyalty to their oaths of office than they delivered. But they didn’t and that didn’t happen in a vacuum.

The bulk of Trump’s involvement with Russia – and Russia’s involvement with Trump and the exact impact Russia had on the 2016 election’s outcome are unanswered questions demanding full investigation. What happened wasn’t political – it was criminal for a political end. That subtle distinction throws our news media for a loop. But then, they still quote things Trump says as if they had merit or deserved the benefit of our doubt.

Useful idiots can be traitors, too, it should be noted.

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