Just because you can do a thing doesn’t mean you should do that thing.In case you missed it, the Washington Post broke a story about Donald revealing classified information to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador. In response, Donald tweeted that he has the “absolute right” to share classified information with anyone he likes.
Donald is right. The President is the ultimate authority when it comes to deciding what to share or not. If the President wants to burn an intelligence source (resulting in the imprisonment or death of that source), the President has the authority to do so. If the President wants to publish detailed notes describing exactly how an intelligence agency does gathers their intelligence, the President can do so. There are only two checks on the President’s ability to do this. The first is the President’s advisors convincing the President not to share sensitive information. The second is the Congress’ Constitutional authority to impeach, find the President guilty of treason or other crimes, and remove him from office.
Ultimately, though, this is an issue of what a President can do, vs. what a President should do. And that’s the problem with Donald – so far as I can tell, he’s never bothered asking himself whether he should do something. If Donald could, Donald did.
Donald could share classified with the Russians, so he did. Donald shouldn’t have, but he did anyway.
Donald can retain his own Twitter account parallel to the POTUS account (realDonaldTrump). Donald shouldn’t, because his brain droppings are exponentially more dangerous than pretty much anyone else’s, but that hasn’t stopped him.
Donald could stiff contractors whose work he didn’t like, so he did. Donald shouldn’t have, but he did anyway.
Donald could attack Judge Gonzalo Curiel for Curiel’s Mexican heritage, so he did. Donald shouldn’t have, but he did anyway.Donald could fleece thousands of investors in Trump University, so he did. Donald shouldn’t have, but he did anyway.
Donald could brag about committing sexual assault and propositioning a married woman while newly married (to Melania Trump), so he did. Donald shouldn’t have, but he did anyway.
Many commentators and a bunch of personal friends have pointed out that Donald is behaving like someone who was never denied anything as a child, or at least never got told “no” by someone who could, or would, stick to it. Like someone who learned that money could get you out of everything, even legal troubles, if you had only enough of it. Someone who discovered the prosperity gospel and found a religious and heretical “Christian” justification for being a horrible human being. Someone who spent his early years in business under the tutelage of Roy Cohn, who himself was involved in many of the excesses of Senator Joseph McCarthy’s anti-Communist witch hunts, failed as a businessman, and who was ultimately disbarred for witness tampering and lying under oath, among other things.
In essence, Donald is behaving like a spoiled, temperamental 6-year old with impulse control issues. Calvin, of Calvin & Hobbes, but without Calvin’s brilliance and moral core.
Everyone should have recognized this before the election. There were plenty of warning signs. So we shouldn’t be surprised now.
If there’s a silver lining of any kind in the mess that is Donald, it’s that his scandals and idiotic moves will dramatically slow the progress of his legislative agenda through Congress. He can still do tremendous damage via regulatory “reform,” but most of the truly horrible things Donald has proposed need Congressional help, and he’s getting less and less likely to get it.