Monday, July 1, 2019

What did Donald Trump do today?

He got mad about law enforcement enforcing laws.

Trump took 27 minutes out of his mid-day "executive time" today to tweet one thread in particular, on the subject of investigations into his now-defunct fake charity. It read:

It is very hard and expensive to live in New York. Governor Andrew Cuomo uses his Attorney General as a bludgeoning tool for his own purposes. They sue on everything, always in search of a crime. I even got sued on a Foundation which took Zero rent & expenses & gave away.......more money than it had. Going on for years, originally brought by Crooked Hillary’s Campaign Chair, A.G. Eric Schneiderman, until forced to resign for abuse against women. They never even looked at the disgusting Clinton Foundation. Now Cuomo’s A.G. is harassing all of my........New York businesses in search of anything at all they can find to make me look as bad as possible. So, on top of ridiculously high taxes, my children and companies are spending a fortune on lawyers. No wonder people and businesses are fleeing New York in record numbers! That’s right, The Trump Foundation gave away 100% plus, with Zero rent or expenses charged, and has been being sued by Cuomo and New York State for years - another part of the political Witch Hunt. Just in case anyone is interested - Clinton Foundation never even looked at!

It's safe to say that Trump is a little confused.

Barbara Underwood, not Eric Schneiderman, was the New York Attorney General who forced Trump to dissolve his "charity." Schneiderman was never part of Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. "Campaign Chair" was the title held by Paul Manafort in Trump's 2016 campaign. (Manafort is now in prison.) Clinton's campaign chair was John Podesta, whose emails were hacked and then released by Russia as part of their efforts to elect Trump.

However, Trump is correct that Schneiderman resigned after four women accused him of physical or sexual violence against them. Trump, who bragged on tape that women had to let him "grab them by the pussy" because of his fame, has been accused of sexual assault ranging from unwanted groping to rape by at least fifteen women.

It's true that the Trump Foundation eventually "gave away" all the money it had. (Every nonprofit organization eventually does, by definition.) The reason that the Trump Foundation "gave away" its remaining assets recently is that it was forced to dissolve under court supervision. As part of the settlement, the Trump Foundation admitted to a number of criminal acts, most of them having to do with illegally acting to benefit Trump himself politically or financially.

It is very likely true that Trump's children, who were officers of the Trump Foundation, are spending money on lawyers. People likely to be sued or indicted generally do, if they can afford to. Trump's son Eric may be spending more than Ivanka and Donald Jr., since the separate Eric Trump Foundation has also been caught breaking the law and being used to make money for the Trump family directly.

It's also true that neither New York nor any other jurisdiction has ever "looked at" the Clinton Foundation for criminal activities, because it has never been accused of any wrongdoing, except by Trump himself. During the campaign, Trump floated a rumor that the Clinton Foundation had somehow laundered Saudi money for Clinton's benefit. (Trump himself is deeply financially entangled with the Saudi royal family.)

Why does this matter?

  • Presidents aren't above the law.
  • Fake charities are bad, and it's right to punish people who abuse charity laws for their own benefit.
  • Accusing other people of bad things you have done is called projection, and it's not a sign of good mental health.