Opinion—”Why Everyone should Read the Book “A Warning”
I just finished reading Anonymous’ A Warning.
A Warning is of course the book written by an unnamed high official in the Trump Administration. Anonymous, as she or he goes by, wrote an editorial in the New York Times on September 5, 2018, “I Am Part Of The Resistance Inside The Trump White House.”
Anonymous now has followed up with a book laying out the lack of ethics, morals, intelligence, and consideration for others, the law, the Constitution, the country on the part of President Trump. It demands to be read.
It is painful to read, every page forcing us to revisit the daily flood of hate, lies, and destruction of the past three years.
But it was written by a true insider of the Republican Party and the Trump Administration. Even as such, he clearly is extremely thoughtful, knowledgeable, and, at least by Washington political standards, ethically aware.
Anonymous, I long to know your identity and have coffee with you someday.
Here is a politician who nonetheless is wise enough and sufficiently informed not only to quote but apparently to live by the creeds of Cicero, Aristotle, Adam Smith, George Washington, Karl Popper, and others.
He primarily quotes Republicans and Administration insiders in painting the most complete and completely damning review of the Trump presidency. These are not criticisms from the opposition; these are the people next to him, people who joined the Administration to move a Republican platform forward. Instead, they are watching him destroy the system they have struggled to build since at least WW2.
If the Democrats in Congress submitted his book as evidence, impeachment would be a slam dunk.
But this was not written by a Democrat or other opponent of Trump. This was written by someone who “agreed to serve in the Administration with the hope that President Trump would be successful and remembered for the right reasons.” (location 129)
Those of you who know me know that I hold all politicians in low regard. My Zhivagan sort of Marxist conservative-liberal existentialism does not lend itself to the slogan-driven thoughtlessness of rabble-rousing political parties. The Republican Party of Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, and Eisenhower was one of thoughtful and deliberate federal activism. It took the hard step to end slavery, busted business trusts, established national forests, parks, and wildernesses, and sent Federal troops to Arkansas to desegregate schools. There has not been a true Republican president since Ike, displaced by autocratic tilting opportunists, thieves, and liars… what one prominent if batty observer called “looters.”
Anonymous has worked alongside the looters for decades, plotting and executing the pillaging of America. Yet he has preserved enough of his dignity, ethical upbringing, and integrity to provide us the guidance we need through the nightmare of the past three years. As a nation, we need to listen and follow.
In the end, he has three conclusions.
‘First, he says that without a doubt Trump should not be president.’
‘Second, he says the proper way to remove Trump from office is to vote him out in late 2020.’
‘Third, he blames voters for electing Trump, in some time-worn Puritan way of trying to tell the victims it is their fault they have been robbed, raped, and brutalized.’
Even as he begs for the country to wait for another election to right the ship of state, he admits there are enormous risks inherent in such a move. “I cannot overstate the consequences of reelecting Donald Trump. I’ve seen the impact of his leadership on our government and country, up close and all too personal. The Trump administration is an unmitigated catastrophe,” Anonymous writes (location 3173).
He discusses the reality that Trump is laying the groundwork for refusing to honor a future election by claiming that it was ‘stolen’ from him through voter fraud sufficient to nullify the election. Anonymous practices the bad math of Republican apologists, saying that since 50% of the people voted, the 50% of the people who voted Trump into office are the problem. In fact, around 25% of Americans voted for Trump – half of those who voted – and exit polls showed that two-thirds of those voters actually were voting against Hillary Clinton and the Democrats, and not for Trump. To his honor, Anonymous decries the mindless voting by party regardless of the lowlifes offered up by one’s party of choice.
He runs through the same old tired platitudes of American ‘Exceptionalism’ and acts as if the politicians have not skewed the election process, the districts, the media, and depleted the education system so as to give voters no choice but to vote for self-serving, short-sighted looters. Ultimately, he is begging for people to keep on voting into office whatever social detritus the two parties throw our way.
I reject the second point of his conclusion. His conclusion that Trump should not be president is right, but his view that the country’s fabric is too threadbare to survive an impeachment is wrong. He’s begging for time. He wants the public to find the moral strength the Senate lacks and vote Trump out of office. That speaks volumes about the lack of leadership in our present government.
My view is the country cannot afford to run the risks of a Trump presidency over the next 12 months and that the country is strong enough to weather the political storm. In fact, there may be some valuable lessons learned by individual Americans, the country as a whole, and our elected representatives in wresting the reins of power from a crooked wannabe dictator who has stated repeatedly that he expects his loyal followers to rise up and keep him in office, perhaps even after a legally won second term. In the end, that’s the same tired algebra the looters have relied on since the 1960s to stay in power.