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The best people

April 10, 2018

Though Trump turned his ire on Mueller, the search on Michael Cohen was done by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. The US Attorney heading that office is Geoffrey Berman. Appointed by Trump. Ron Rosenstein, who is overseeing Mueller’s investigation and who has not recused himself, is a Republican. Appointed by Trump. Yet the right-wing blogs discuss them as part of some Obama-era conspiracy to bring down Trump. Which strangely depended on them receiving appointments by him, and acting against the rules they had spent a career enforcing. Those conspiracies are absurd. Of course, those who make them and propagate them are well practiced in absurd conspiracy theories, such as Pizzagate.

There is a deep state here. That much is real. It is not some nefarious conspiracy. It is simply the traditions and institutions and working documents that provide our nation with the rule of law. A corrupt head of state will find that even when those offices are filled by hand-selected members of his own party, some still execute that law within that rule, and it bites at his own corruption. Trump’s response to being bit was easy and automatic. He calls them — his own appointees — corrupt, and urges his followers to weave conspiracy theories around that. Those so doing are directly attacking one of the most important elements of American freedom.

I don’t know that Berman and Rosenstein and Mueller are the best people. So far, they all seem professionals intent on the rule of law. That is the what Trump fears the most. That is the swamp that the Trumpistas want to drain.

Update: It may have been that Berman was recused from the matter. Adam Serwer delves into the technical issues.

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