Timely today. Tomorrow, who knows?

These just won’t feel timely tomorrow, by which time, deo volente, President Mike Pence will be making his moving plans.

This is no longer “how, my fellow Americans, could you have elected this guy?” It now has become “Is this the end of this particular brief national nightmare and the resumption of normal restlessness?”

1

Recommended:

  1. Peggy Noonan’s masterfully devastating Trump Is Woody Allen Without the Humor (Half his tweets show utter weakness. They are plaintive, shrill little cries, usually just after dawn). I’m with Rod Dreher: if the preceding link doesn’t work, go to her Twitter feed and click from there.
  2. Rod Dreher, Conservative Woman Publicly Humiliates Trump. You can skip toward the end, to the paragraph that begins “It’s funny, but before I read this, I was explaining to my kids ….”
  3. Kenneth Starr: Mr. President, please cut it out.
  4. Charles Krauthammer, Sessions lessons.
  5. Eugene Robinson, The worst is yet to come.

Robinson is last because all the others are Republican and “conservative” in some sense.

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We need a little comic relief in these midsummer horse latitudes of the mind as the ill-starred Trump Show appears to enter its ceremonial death dance

The mills of the gods grind slowly, but they grind exceedingly fine — in this case, inexorably toward the restorative medicine of the 25th amendment. There is, after all, that hoary old artifact called the national interest lurking somewhere offstage aside of all this colorful mummery, especially as the Russian Meddling gambit appears to be dribbling away to nothing. It’s more than self-evident that poor Trump is in so far over his head that he’s come down with something like the bends, a debilitating systemic disorder rendering him unfit to execute the powers of office. Decades from now, they’ll say he had “the tweets.”

The most economical script would have Trump graciously “resign” and be allowed to return to his familiar money-grubbing activities in real estate, where he can really only do harm to his own bank accounts and family posterity ….

(James Howard Kunstler, emphasis added)

It did feel to me like a “ceremonial death dance” this week — as if Trump is setting the stage for a resignation, blaming all the treachery around him for frustrating his magnificent beautiful plans to MAGA (i.e., get lots of money and limelight and set up Ivanka as future Empress).

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Fiat justitia ruat caelum

There is no epistemological Switzerland. (Via Mars Hill Audio Journal Volume 134)

Some succinct standing advice on recurring themes.

NRO guys on our POTUS

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There is a riddle before us. Back in that simpler time, i.e., the GOP primaries, many people assured me that conservatives could trust Donald Trump because Senator Jeff Sessions trusted him. With varying degrees of rage, snark, and dudgeon (which I think is the official law firm of Hogwarts), these people would say to me: “Do you think Jeff Sessions isn’t a real conservative?”

On at least one occasion, I recall a finger being poked in my chest to fortify the point in ways reason could not.

My response isn’t really relevant (but it was something along the lines of “Sure, but even conservatives make mistakes”). What I find fascinating, however, is how the transitive property now runs the other way. A year ago, I was supposed to trust Trump because Sessions trusted Trump. Now, I’m supposed to distrust Sessions because Trump distrusts Sessions. Okay, then.

While it’s certainly true that there are people sufficiently enthralled with Trump to open themselves up to the charge of being cultists, I don’t think the blind worship of “Cult 45” explains as much as it once did. I mean, sure, if you’re still convinced that everything Trump has done has been brilliant and farsighted, if you can read the president’s New York Times interview and push back from the table with the deep satisfaction that once again the master has out-thought his foes, if you still think his “I alone can fix it!” vow was anything other than the kind of bluster that traditionally leaves you with cider in your ear, then you might as well lead your herd of 50 bulls down to Trump Tower and sacrifice them to your Latter Day Baal.

(Jonah Goldberg)

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Trump isn’t the engine, he’s the hood ornament for a certain movement that now feels liberated from traditional rules of decent behavior. Trump allows us to indulge our id and feel righteous while doing it. We grew up believing that decent behavior made you a decent person — but then we realized that breaking the rules not only makes victory easier, it’s more fun than having to struggle with the moral qualms of using moral means to achieve moral ends. So we’ve constructed a backwards logic to absolve ourselves of moral responsibility.

The first premise: The other side, which wants bad things, cheats and lies and acts in egregious ways.

The second premise: It requires cheating to defeat them.

The third premise: If they are not defeated, the country will be destroyed.

Conclusion: It is morally required to cheat and lie and act in egregious ways.

(Ben Shapiro)

3

Americans and Republicans, remember: You asked for this. Given the choice between a dozen solid conservatives and one Clinton-supporting con artist and game-show host, you chose the con artist. You chose him freely. Nobody made you do it.

(Kevin Williamson)

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Fiat justitia ruat caelum 

There is no epistemological Switzerland. (Via Mars Hill Audio Journal Volume 134)

Some succinct standing advice on recurring themes.