It is a basic contention of this blog that Donald J Trump is not fit for office.
A crooked real estate developer with a dubious past and highly questionable finances. he has systematically lied his way into financial or other advantage. His personal qualities include vulgarity, sexual assault allegations and fraudulent statements on almost every subject.
He lost the popular vote by nearly three million votes.
He has, of course, been under criminal investigation practically since before he took the oath of office. The indictment of some of closest advisers is just the beginning. His track record suggests that in due course there is no action he will not take, whether illegal or unconstitutional in order to derail his own inevitable impeachment and the indictments that must surely follow the successful investigation of Robert Mueller into his connections with Russia.
However, all of that is a matter for the American people.
It is also a matter for the American people that Trump is cheating the US Treasury with his outrageous, self interested tax bill. Robbing the average American to benefit the corporate interest is the settled will of the Republican party, and at present they have every right to enact the legislation, however unjust, however economically wrong headed, however loathsome. It will continue to undermine American democracy by making it ever more impossible for the poor to get on the ladder to a better life. The American dream is being crushed by greed and selfishness: the perfect metaphor for the catastrophic Trump Presidency.
Yet even this act of economic and political vandalism is not the low for this vile administration. Defying the studied ambiguity of the past fifty years, Trump unilaterally decided to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel. It is a potentially very dangerous move, resisted for decades by all previous administrations. As always Trump rushes in where angels fear to tread. Yet having committed this act, he then turns on those who criticised the move in the United Nations general assembly, saying that aid would be suspended to those who voted against the move. Since the United States was forced to veto the Security Council resolution, it is clear that the US has very few friends on this issue.
Trump's threat is the end of the United States as a force for good in the world. It is an abdication of a policy of freedom and seeks to place the US as a hegemonic power without consent. Nothing could reduce the influence of America more quickly that to attempt to impose Trumps bullying and injustice on the international order. It turns willing allies into sullen satraps, and it will fail.
The problem now is that Putin's puppet can still cause immense damage before he is removed from office. Every day this thug remains in the White House is a national humiliation for the United States. The image of the US is being trashed, and the reality of alliances formed to support freedom and justice in the face of Soviet tyranny is being undermined- perhaps fatally.