On one of the early afternoon shows yesterday on MSNBC, the host had two lawyers on, discussing the Trump Foundation civil charges. One of them was a long time New York attorney, and in just eight words, he described the Trump Presidency absolutely perfectly. He said, “The Trump Presidency is a bust out joint.”
Being born in, and living most of my life in Chicago, I understood him perfectly. For those of you unfamiliar with mob terminology, I’ll briefly explain, and you’ll see what I mean.
A bust out joint is a legitimate business. One way or another, usually through either extortion, or unpaid loan shark money, the mob moves in and takes over operation of the business. Let’s just say it’s a bar. They go on a spending spree, using the bar’s lines of credit. The buy as much booze as the liquor distributor will give them on credit. They buy glasses, new cash registers, bar stools, anything they can buy on credit, until the place is maxed out. And when the bills come due, they empty the register, back up a truck, load everything into it and disappear. They sell everything as pure profit, and the bar goes belly up.
The Trump Presidency truly is a classic bust out operation. Since day one, Trump has leveraged the Presidency for everything he can lay his hands on. Pimping his schlock condos, spending weekends and holding summits at Mar-A-Lago or Trump National, and billing the government for his secret service protection rooms and food. Violating the emoluments clause of the constitution, taking payments from foreign dignitaries and businessmen staying at The Trump DC hotel. Jacking up membership fees at Trump golf resorts. And don’t forget about Ivanka getting Chinese patents up the wazoo.
And it isn’t just Trump, it’s the whole damn administration. Just look at Tom Price, with his private and first class travel to his homes. Then there’s the walking scandal, Scott Pruitt, with his expanded security detail/errand chasers, first class travel, a trip to Morocco with an extended layover in Paris. Trying to leverage his office into a business opportunity for his wife. And don’t forget Ryan Zinke, with his government funded personal travel, and skewing a plum contract to repair the electricity in Puerto Rico to the two bit electrical company of a friend. I wonder how many Puerto Rican souls Zinke has on his conscience over those thirty pieces of silver.
The government of the United States is now The Red Cap Bar, and the Cornholeone mob has taken over. My greatest fear is that even if we still have a few bucks left in the national till when this penny ante crime family blows town, we’ll still be morally and institutionally bankrupt.