I wouldn’t exactly call it a perfect storm of circumstances. It’s more a case of an easily predictable ruling followed by an inevitable reaction. That is, Judge Tanya Chutkan, or one of her colleagues, will finally tell Donald Trump in uncomplicated language, possibly this week, that the next time Trump opens his stupid mouth and violates the terms of his probation he’s going to jail. And then he’s going to open his stupid mouth, violate the terms of his probation and go to jail.
Of course, Trump will think he’s done absolutely nothing wrong. He’ll scream that his first amendment rights are being violated as US Marshals drag him away. Consider one of his latest outbursts on “Truth” Social as an example of what he’s capable of:
“This guy [chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley] turned out to be a Woke train wreck who, if the Fake News reporting is correct, was actually dealing with China to give them a heads up on the thinking of the President of the United States. This is an act so egregious that, in times gone by, the punishment would have been DEATH! A war between China and the United States could have been the result of this treasonous act. To be continued!!!”
Trump’s lawyers, faced with the fait accompli of the above, would argue that Trump was merely analysing a past geopolitical situation. The problem, of course, is that General Milley is a potential witness in Trump’s insurrection trial. The word “death” prominently displayed in all caps represents Trump’s unmistakable relish at the very idea of Milley being murdered. This would almost certainly be considered witness tampering, because that’s exactly what it is.
Trump is threatening Milley with death, just as surely as Trump was threatening New York District Attorney Alvin Bragg with a beating with a baseball bat, when he reposted a picture of himself menacingly wielding a baseball bat juxtaposed with a photo of Bragg. There is no mistaking the intent of these words and images, Trump employs them all the time and they are legion.
As Donald Trump’s legal woes increase and the gravity of his situation becomes more and more apparent, so too will his fury. His fury, in turn, will continue to translate into murderous threats and fantasies of what he would do and who he would have murdered were he to regain power. As time passes his fantasies will continue to leak out in his “Truth” Social posts. Short of physically restraining him and depriving him of his phone, I see absolutely no way of stopping this.
His lawyers won’t be able to stop him. This is obvious. They’ve probably gone as far as they can to warn him away from such dangerous language, and the above post is just a mere sampling of how he has responded to their warnings. If you understand nothing at all about malignant narcissists, understand this: they do not listen to advice.
I have said this for as long as I have been writing for Palmer Report about Donald Trump and I will say it again. Donald Trump is stupid. He simply doesn’t understand that the days of his committing crimes and not having to pay for them are over. Stupid people are often deficient in constructive imagination and Trump is no exception. Because he can’t imagine going to jail he simply doesn’t believe it will happen.
But it will. To employ the slogan of the Proud Boys, FAFO. That is, “eff” around and find out. Trump will continue to eff around. He will inevitably find out. I still see him in jail by Christmas. I could be wrong, but I sincerely doubt it.
Again, I have one special insight into Trump’s psychology. I have years and years of experience with malignant narcissists. Two such people figured prominently in my life for protracted periods of time. I can’t see the various judges in the various jurisdictions where Trump has been indicted letting Trump get away with these outrageous threats. And I can’t see Trump ever heeding their warnings. I see nothing but jail ahead for Trump, and very, very soon.
Of course, many will suggest that he will merely be given an ankle bracelet and confined to Mar-a-Lago. Perhaps, but I don’t see how that will solve the problem. Confinement isn’t the issue at hand. The danger of threats and abuses from the influence of a former president of the United States is. Trump needs to be cut off from society and the internet. Jail is the only way.
Trump lacks the intelligence and maturity to foresee and prevent his imprisonment. I’ve seen it before. It’s a perfect trap waiting for a perfect fool. I can’t wait. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.
Robert Harrington is an American expat living in Britain. He is a portrait painter.