The Trump Indictment
I have no idea what charges the grand jury in New York has indicted Trump on, and neither does anyone else. But the reports that it contains over 30 counts certainly indicate it is likely to be far broader than we have been led to believe. I’m not very good at predictions but I’m guessing when the indictment is finally unsealed on Tuesday we are going to find out that the case is far more solid than we think.
In retrospect, we will realize that there is no such thing as a “weak” case against Trump because he is a career criminal who commits crime constantly with little fear of accountability. He has been doing it, openly and brazenly, for over 40 years. His crimes are not complex; they are simple and straightforward. He does his best to leave no paper trail but often that’s impossible and the crimes are obvious anyway. And when we finally see the indictment details, we will wonder – just like we did for Jeffrey Epstein, for Bill Cosby, for Harvey Weinstein, for Bernie Madoff – how did he get away with this for so long?
Trump has already given us the answer when he said, “if you’re rich and famous, they let you get away with it”. Just like all the contractors he’s stiffed and all the people he’s fleeced over the years, just like all the victims of Epstein, Cosby, and Weinstein, people know that fighting rich and famous people like Trump will just consume their resources, damage their reputations, and make their life hell. So they will quietly take whatever he wants to give them, if anything, and then get on with their lives. And the same is true for the legal system. Taking on the rich and famous means having to use a lot of state resources, facing reputational abuse and damage, and enduring a long and time-consuming effort with no certain result at the end of all that, especially when so much of white-collar crime revolves around “intent” rather than result. So prosecutors do nothing or take whatever slap on the wrist Trump is willing to endure and move on.
Eventually, when the crimes have become so egregious or when one bold prosecutor decides to step up, we all stare in wonder on how this criminal could have gotten away with it for so long. I’m guessing we will have that feeling on Tuesday.