Sydney M. Williams
Thought of the Day
“Comey’s Firing – A ‘Man Bites Dog’ Story?”
May 22, 2017
“There are lots of reasons why an election like this is lost, [but] our analysis is that Comey’s
letter raising doubts that were groundless, baseless, proven to be [sic], stopped our momentum.”
Hillary Clinton in a call to donors,
As reported in the NY Times, Nov. 15, 2016
It had been universally acknowledged that FBI Director James Comey over-played his hand last July when he, essentially, indicted Mrs. Clinton, but then exonerated her. In doing so, he acted as investigator, prosecutor, judge and jury. He did it again on October 28, when he re-opened the investigation. His meeting with the President regarding Mr. Flynn was the day after the latter had been fired. Then, with crocodile tears, he claimed to be “mildly nauseous” that he might have “swayed” the election; but, he assured us, he would do it all over again. He played first for the Left, and then for the Right. He may be a qualified investigator, but his power grab was reminiscent of J. Edgar Hoover.
When I first heard that he had been fired, I thought it a “dog bites man” story, something expected. However, the righteous indignation from the supercilious and hypocritical Left has turned it into a “man bites dog” story. Rarely have so many morally bereft politicians, along with their obsequious media accomplices, invoked so virtuously their vexations.
One could argue that the optics in Comey’s firing were bad. But when, with the press Mr. Trump has received, would have been a good time? Perhaps he could have alerted Congressional leaders as to his intentions? But surely that information would have leaked. Could he have prepared his staff, so that a replacement could have been named within a day or two? Perhaps. But, to Washington’s establishment, Mr. Trump is a pariah, an outcast who arrived at the White House without their help; and he belittles them – unforgivable sins for those who work along the banks of the Potomac.
Democrats have made much of the fact that the FBI is investigating possible “collusion” of the Trump team with the Russians. That investigation will go on regardless of Director Comey's presence. Four Congressional committees are looking into the same allegations, suggesting redundancies, especially since some investigations have been underway for almost a year, without any proof of “collusion.” The hiring of Robert Mueller should assuage members of the “Resistance,” though the process will be long and won’t necessarily find an answer. Delay, however, will be injurious to Republicans’ agenda.
This strategy of the Left entails risk for democracy. The goal is to render Mr. Trump rudderless, to cause him to resign or be impeached. They take pleasure in the effects their efforts have produced. Should they succeed, they will widen divisions. They will hurt institutions. My guess is they misinterpret the consequences of what they do. Thanks to Harry Reid and, now, Mitch McConnell, implementation of the “nuclear option” has already meant that political bipartisanship and reconciliation are less likely. Would a forced resignation of a duly elected President for political and retaliatory purposes help heal our wounds? I think not. It would aggravate them. It’s a perilous game they have chosen to play.
Democrats have ignored for years their loss of representation in state governments, a reflection of their failure to connect with mainstream voters. In their bid to compartmentalize citizens for political access, they have segregated us by race, socio-economic position, sex and religion. They have refused to face the real reasons for last November’s Electoral College loss: an anemic economic recovery, which left labor participation rates at four-year lows; the persistent growth in unpaid-for “entitlements;” an expansion of the bureaucratic state; an evisceration of our military, with a new and formidable enemy on the rise; the imposition of moral relativism on a people who believe in moral absolutes; the ignoring of “deplorables” – white, middle-class, hard-working Americans – and a fatally flawed candidate without moral compass. Democrats like Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi and Elizabeth Warren, along with their editorialist buddies in the media and a few Republicans, hate Trump with a viciousness rarely seen, even in Washington.
Headlines in the Washington Post and the New York Times last Tuesday were that Trump had given away state secrets to the Russians. Reporters attributed the accusations to “unnamed sources,” putting rebuttals from Trump officials who were at the meeting deep into their columns. Was that fair and balanced? Excepting for one or two programs, television news has become a joke. Viewers seek confirmation of pre-determined beliefs, whether from the Left or the Right. But, what may be entertaining should not be mistaken as informative. Schools and colleges are not teaching students the principles of democracy. History is viewed through a lens of political correctness. Historical context is ignored, as we saw this week in New Orleans. Students are indoctrinated into liberal causes from an early age, something that should concern all Americans. While more Americans have been to college, fewer are educated.
It is the hypocrisy of those on the Left that appalls – those who speak with moral superiority, like Connecticut’s Senator Richard Blumenthal who lied about his military service in Vietnam, or Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren who lied about her Indian heritage. How can these people pretend to be paragons of virtue as they tilt at Mr. Trump?
This is not a defense of Mr. Trump’s character. He is egotistical and erratic, and appears to be without humor. This is a condemnation of those who risk our democratic institutions – establishment types from Washington, the media and academia – because of a seminal dislike for a man who is not one of them; worse, a man who has contempt for them. From what I know of Mr. Trump, I would not choose him as a neighbor, any more than I would choose the publishers and editors of the New York Times and the Washington Post, or the talking heads on MSNBC or CNN. They are all too smug for my taste. I like successful people, but not those who dress in armors of arrogance. But unlike toadies in the media, I respect Mr. Trump for his straight talk, his willingness to call our enemies by name, and his calling-out of the press for what it has become – a shill for the Left’s elite.
The Left’s defense of Comey would be humorous were it not so destructive to democratic principles. They want Trump gone, regardless of the cost. If that is not possible, they want to impede his policy proposals: tax reform, healthcare and the reconstruction of our highways and bridges. Special counsels, in the past, have proven to be politically biased, ineffectual and expensive. If Congress really believes that Mr. Trump violated the law they should conduct their own investigation and determine whether he should be impeached. Trying him in the media only aggravates dissonance.
Democracies can withstand the bombast of crude politicians who move around Washington like bulls in a china shop, and who are regularly ridiculed in the media. Democracies are at risk to smooth and articulate talkers who hide motives behind eloquent, but deceptive words, words that conceal insidious subversions – those who subtlety and imperceptibly assimilate power under the guise of doing good.
But, when unelected bureaucrats assume powers that are not theirs, they should be let go. Mr. Comey exceeded his responsibilities. He was fired for cause. That was a good thing, an expected thing – a “dog bites man” story. It should never have become a “man bites dog” story. And that is concerning.