The Rule Of Law Never Stopped “Being”; We Stopped Enforcing It…

That’s an important framing. We’ve watched Donald Trump and the Republican Party violate the rule of law with impunity. They act as if the rule of law didn’t exist anymore. We have acted the same way — like the rule of law had ceased “to be”.

That’s not true. It’s a matter of perspective. We’re still inside an active crime scene.

Think of it this way: we’re not talking about our government being hijacked. We’re talking, say, about a car. A bloated orange car thief has just stolen our car at gunpoint. And, as we get back to our feet and watch the car thief drive off with our car, it absolutely feels as if the thief is getting away with the crime — as if the rule of law stopped “being”.

But there were cameras all around, seeing and recording what happened. We have tons of evidence. It’s not a question whether or not a crime was committed.

Let’s say, to keep the metaphor going, that we call the police and report the crime. But the police are shockingly unhelpful. The top cop is worst of all. And while a few of the others in power are going along with him, the majority of cops aren’t. We get it: there’s corruption in the police department.

The rule of law STILL is in effect. We’ve simply uncovered the fact that even more people are violating it — and violating it by not prosecuting it. All duly noted.

The majority of us understand exactly what’s happening. We never agreed to stop prosecuting the rule of law. We’ve come to see however what happens when you don’t follow the rule of law to the letter. If you don’t apply it equally to everyone? It will break down eventually. Not because the rule of law is flawed but because we haven’t followed it. If we had followed it, we wouldn’t have had a problem in the first place.

I think we’ve learned our lesson. Correction — those who’ve suffered from our unequal application of the rule of law — they’ve learned. And, as they take political power, they will insist not that we start the rule of law again, but that we start APPLYING IT again.

See the difference? It means that we’re still obligated by the rule of law to apply it during the times when we’d stopped applying it. The rule of law was still in effect. We also have to ask now WHY we stopped applying it equally — and who was responsible for that. The rule of law will insist.

That’s the thing about the rule of law. It takes the decision-making (whether to apply it or not) out of our hands. The answer’s always “Yes — we apply the rule of law”.

The Moment We START re-enforcing the rule of law again, every single Republicans will have a serious problem. Conspiracy works this way: see something, say something; see something, say nothing? We need to know WHY. Why did you say nothing when you saw something (potentially) unlawful going on? The rule of law says you cannot remain silent. Even if you only suspect someone is violating the rule of law, you are obligated by it to act. If you don’t? You are violating it. And the rule of law demands we act against you.

Back during the 2016 Republican convention, current GOP leader Kevin McCarthy famously entered a meeting of GOP muckety-mucks and said “There’s two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump”. Then Speaker Of The House Paul Ryan just as famously told everyone there to “keep the conversation private, saying: ‘No leaks. . . . This is how we know we’re a real family here’.”

They all agreed to keep a secret rather than call the FBI. They knew what would happen to them all if the rule of law was applied to them. They knew they were violating it.

That’s the thing that will surprise us when it happens — as it should happen. As it must: the rule of law will make it explicitly clear that Donald Trump, in legal fact, was never President of the United States. Not in any legal way. He couldn’t have been because he violated the rule of law in order to become president and the rule of law says explicitly that you cannot do that. Cheating to win means YOU DID NOT LEGALLY WIN.

That, too, is an important distinction to the rule of law and how we apply it. An election is not an abstraction. Its results — from the rule of law’s point of view — belong to the people. The rule of law is all about securing equality before the law for everyone. An election’s results — if they reflect how the electorate actually voted — should be the winning candidate’s marching orders. We elected you to do these things for us, now go do them!

What the Republicans did — with their Russian pals helping significantly — is alter the election’s outcome. Did they flip votes in machines — directly stealing the outcome (the icing on the cake)? We don’t know. No one’s ever done an official forensic investigation. The evidence is mounting that they should. But if that’s the only metric we’ll use for “stealing an election”? We’ll lose every election going forward.

We’ve been living through a new kind of asymetrical warfare using information, data and social media as weapons. Bombs and bullets are completely unnecessary to bring another country to its knees. If the Russians (or Chinese or Saudis or Iranians or North Koreans or some 400 pound guy in his basement) cut off our power grid tomorrow, we’d sue for peace, white flags raised high.

That’s not hypothetical war, it’s real war that we are really losing. But that’s only because we stopped using our most important asset: the rule of law.

It will take longer than it should for all the uncorrupted people at the police department to isolate the “bad apples” among them and hunt down the bloated orange scumbag who jacked our ride. We will get our car back.

And we will prosecute everyone — EVERYONE — who participated in the carjacking in any way, shape or form. It won’t be up to us whether we do that or not. We’ll have to.

Because the rule of law says so.

In Essence, Donald Trump’s Just A Glorified Car Thief — Who’s Stolen America’s Car

Something I struggle with daily is our news media’s raging inability to tell the story we’re all part of. Had our main stream news media not normalized “Mexicans are rapists” and “pussy-grabbing” in favor of “her emails”, we might not be at the precipice right this second. To Donald Trump’s infinite credit, he has the innate ability to ID the most susceptible to his perverse brand of bullshit and then sell those rubes as much bullshit as they can swallow. He’s always known the majority of the press are among those rubes — and he’s played them accordingly.

For reference-sake: back when the GOP-dominated House went after all attempts to investigate Trump’s 2016 campaign and its deep involvement with Russia, they went hard after the Steele Dossier of course. They were desperate to undermine its integrity. One has to wonder why… . The GOP hauled Glenn Simpson, one of the founders of Fusion GPS, the oppo research firm that sub-contracted out to Christopher Steele, before Congress to answer “tough questions” about why Fusion was investigating Trump and his campaign.

Simpson described how Fusion — being pro’s — did their due diligence before beginning their work in earnest. They got their hands on every piece of publicly available material about Trump — every book, every magazine or newspaper article, every TV show or radio interview, every burp or fart Trump committed in public, Fusion got its hands on it. What they found there (Simpson testified) — in publicly available material — so concerned them that they hired Christopher Steele (former MI6 Russia desk guru) to investigate further; Steele, it was agreed upon, had excellent sources inside Russia. Fusion saw money laundering. They saw corruption. They saw criminal behavior.

They saw a car thief.

Maybe our news media’s problem is they just can’t wrap their heads around the enormity of the crime we’re talking about here. It’s epic in its evil. It’s unthinkable. And yet it is. They did it. It’s a fact. Donald Trump and the Republican Party conspired with Russia to pervert the outcome of now multiple American elections. Their intention: to get and hold onto political power forever — in defiance of the wishes and will of the American electorate. It’s as bad as bad can be. Worse even.

But let’s see the crime more metaphorically. America is an amazing car that everyone wants to drive around in. It’s crazy with innovations. It’s fast, too. Big, of course, and roomy. But there are rules to how you get to drive this car. For starters, the car belongs to The American People.

We allow special people — people we vet — to drive the car for four years at a time. If they treat the car respectfully, we’ll let them drive it around for another four years. But, first they have to earn the right to drive the car. Driving the car, you see, comes with rights. And privileges.

And responsibilities. We make you take an oath about how you’ll drive our car. It spells out how important it is to us that you drive our car responsibly and not like some asshole out for a joyride.

If you go through the vetting process to the American Peoples’ satisfaction, we’ll hand you the keys — with the understanding that the car is NOT yours — it’s ours and we retain the right to take back the keys if you violate your oath to drive our car responsibly.

Donald Trump didn’t do that however. Donald Trump pretended to go through the vetting process. But even as he took part in the vetting, Donald was talking to his Russian pal Vladimir. Vlad has always coveted our car. He knows he can’t drive it — but he’d like to have influence over whoever drives our car. If Vlad had influence over the person driving America’s car? He could get them to drive the way Vlad likes, going places Vlad likes, running errands Vlad wants run.

Vlad saw a way to control how America’s car gets driven by getting Donald Trump to do his dirty work. Trump — with Vlad’s help — figured out how to STEAL our car. For real! Vlad figured out how to go around our car’s security system. He even found a way to start the car without the keys. We had another driver in mind for the next four years — a lady named Hillary.

Instead, on the day we intended to hand Hillary the keys, we walked out to the driveway to find our car stolen.

The car was out there all right — but Donald Trump was sitting behind the wheel. Donald insisted he’d done all the vetting properly — and even paid for the car. His friends all agreed. Nothing untoward here. The car, Donald & his buddies all insisted, was legally Donald’s. He would get to drive our car around for the next four years.

From the moment Donald slid behind the wheel, we felt weird about the whole thing. Donald never acted like he had any experience with a car like ours. He didn’t seem to care to be taught HOW to drive it around. He was convinced that however he drove the car — that was how the car was supposed to be driven.

And if the car broke down — which he insisted it was doing repeatedly (though we didn’t seem to think it was happening), he alone could fix it.

So, we’re standing there — in our driveway — staring at the street where Donald is sitting behind the wheel of our car. “You never earned the right to drive our car,” we insist. Donald grins sheepishly for a second then catches himself. He doesn’t have to “earn” the right to do anything. He’s a Trump.

Donald lays on the horn. The car is his, he insists.

“Can we see the papers then?” we ask — “Show us the bill of sale & the new registration so we can ascertain that indeed you are the car’s new rightful driver. Instead, Donald drives off — with our car — laughing as he pulls away, revving the engine too high.

Fearing for ourselves and the car, we call the cops. Problem is, the head cop — guy named Bill Barr — is a good friend of Donald’s. He insists Donald didn’t steal our car and therefore won’t press charges against Donald. In fact, Bill insists that Donald can do whatever he likes with our car. He can drive it dangerously. He can replace all the good parts with crap. He can sell off parts to his friends — or let his friends drive around in it — or drive it even.

Turns out, just after Donald stole the car, he wasn’t even behind the wheel most of the time. Vladimir was. That’s the most worrying part of it. All this time we thought Donald was driving our car? It was Vladimir — and Vladimir is dead set on wrecking our car. He won’t disable it; we’ll be able to drive around. But no one will want to drive our car anymore — the way they all did. They won’t even want to see it near their driveways. Or in their neighborhoods. Or zip codes even.

Donald Trump intends to make our car his forever. He intends for our stolen car to stay stolen. Forever.