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Hullabaloo


Wednesday, May 23, 2018

 
Trumpworld on acid

by digby



It must be in the diet cokes.

This post by Gabriel Sherman in Vanity Fair is mind blowing:
Trump’s scorched-earth strategy has been in place since Rudy Giuliani replaced Trump’s long-suffering lawyers John Dowd and Ty Cobb. At first, it looked as if it were careening off course, as Giuliani gave off a series of erratic and combative interviews. Some speculated that Trump might be unhappy with his performance, but sources I spoke to say Trump is pleased. This is the plan. “Rudy doesn’t do anything without Trump’s permission,” said one Republican close to the White House. The strategy grew out of conversations Trump has held in recent weeks with a group of outside advisers that include Freedom Caucus Chair Mark Meadows, House Intelligence Chair Devin Nunes, Sean Hannity, Dave Bossieand Corey Lewandowski, among others. “People think Trump is angry, but he likes the direction this is going,” an outside White House adviser said.

According to people familiar with Trump’s thinking, his team is attempting to build the case that anti-Trump forces in the F.B.I. entrapped his advisers using informants to plant evidence about Russian collusion. The theory goes that the F.B.I. later used these contacts with the Russians to delegitimize his presidency. Trump’s advisers say the intelligence community believed Hillary Clinton would win the presidency, but in case she didn’t, they concocted this elaborate plot to remove Trump from office. 
“Just when you think it can’t get stranger, it does,” a Trump adviser told me. Stone claims the anti-Trump conspiracy includes senior intelligence officials from the Barack Obama administration. “The guy who will end up burning in all this is [former C.I.A. director] John Brennan,” Stone told me. “If I were him I’d break the capsule and swallow it now. That psychopath is going down.”

(Nick Shapiro, who served as Brennan’s deputy chief of staff at the C.I.A., described Stone’s comment as “contemptible” and said his words should be condemned. “We’re seeing a growing chorus of former national security leaders speaking out to warn us about Trump,” he added. “Instead of attacking these dedicated patriots, we should be concerned about why they all feel the need to speak out.”)

As loopy as this theory can sound, the notion that there’s been a conspiracy among the Obama administration and the so-called Deep State to bring Trump down is more than a legal stalking horse—it’s now a dominant narrative in Trumpworld. The president himself is convinced that the secret F.B.I. informant who reportedly met with several Trump campaign advisers in 2016 was not merely an informant, but an Obama political operative. One administration official told me the theory has become so widely accepted that people in the West Wing are paranoid that the F.B.I. has multiple informants working to take down Trump. “There’s a paranoia about who else is one,” the official said.
[...]
Trumpworld’s current mind-set makes continued extra-legal conflict with Mueller and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein inevitable, and the well-dissected dangers of firing one or both have not served to take this nuclear option off the table. Trump has been bonding over how corrupt Mueller's investigation is. “Rudy is telling him what he wants to hear,” said a Trump ally. But “it would be catastrophic if he fires Mueller.” In the past, many Republicans shared this view. Now, they might not be so opposed.
Nixon was paranoid but he wasn't a fucking moron. I don't know if that makes Trump better or worse.

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