I am reminded that Nixon’s plumbers were called “plumbers” because their job was to fix leaks. Like many off-the-book operations, they almost immediately suffered from mission creep. The same would happen with Poindexter and North on behalf of Reagan, Bill Clinton on behalf of Bill Clinton, and the practitioners of “enhanced interrogation” on behalf of president Cheney.
All presidents suffer from leaks that seemingly come from their inner circle. This fact has kept Bob Woodward in business for 40 years. Although some leaks are not really leaks and some leaks are whistle-blowing, the rest are usually self-serving for the leaker or their “faction” within the administration.
The White House of Federal Employee, Trump, is already leaking badly as staffers jockey for their power positions. There is a very Woodwardish piece in the January, 24th Washington Post that actually gave me some hope. The flaws of human nature and the bravery of humans might save us yet.
The move away from a constitutional republic will not be easy. I don’t think it’s impossible, and watching the moves the new administration has made in just a few days, I don’t even think it improbable. I just don’t think Bannon will be able to sufficiently cloak enough of their efforts in secrecy before Trump is either voted or forced out of office. Bannon’s experience and ideas are theoretical. He hasn’t the actual experience in the halls of power to pull it off without people disappearing, an enemy attack on the homeland in which a significant number of Americans die, outright war, or a combination of these, probably all three.
The timing is critical. The tragedy must happen before the momentum to remove Trump, one way or another, gains too much power; but it should happen close enough to the next election to ensure re-election. In preparation for this, what Bannon really needs is for a protest to turn into a violent and prolonged riot, something that will be easy to manufacture in the current political environment, which promises to only get worse. Bannon need only send in the violent equivalent of the clappers he sent to the CIA. After two days, the National Guard is called in and you know the rest of the story. A National Guardsman is killed, which causes an increased clamp down on the local population, which not only leads to more violence but protests erupt in other places and the pattern is repeated. The whole time, Trump is the father leader who is saving us from ourselves.
The key moment comes when it is revealed that Muslim terrorists are actually behind the “disturbances,” inciting the riots, the enemy within. The story writes itself. The terrorist cells that incited rioting and also direct attacks will be traced back, not only to Syria, but Palestine, Iraq, southern Pakistan, and Afghanistan, where Russian forces will be invited to help us defeat the enemy.
There are some good people in Congress on both sides of the aisle but they won’t be enough. I think the people who finally defeat the beast will be the leakers and obstructionist inside the government, people who make great personal sacrifices of their careers and well-being, their standing, perhaps even their personal safety. At the same time, the self-serving leakers will do their part.
Here’s to the people who cannot keep their mouths shut, for whatever reason.