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Nov. 8, 2016, was despair day, tears and groaning day, disbelief day. Donald Trump had been elected president although everyone knew that could never occur. So now, in the minds of some, it was time to undo what happened, no conscience needed. The old norms? The rule of law? Sorry, but that would just slow them down, and here came the anti-Trump crusaders more threatening than Trump.

There’s no question about the overreaching. Incriminating, perhaps felonious leaks from intelligence agencies poured forth in unprecedented numbers. Courts intervened to stop legal Trump actions. Some news outlets became blues outlets. Free speech, already struggling, disappeared at some universities. Some psychologists in need of examination said Trump was loony. A comedian aimed for giggles by pretending to be holding up Trump’s severed head.

As it turned out, however, it was “impeachment” instead of “decapitation” that became the word of the moment, and then there was this conspiracy theory about collusion with the Russians. Some questions had been asked before the election, but the speculation now reached a boiling point. Soon enough we had a special counsel investigation.

And now we have a stranger-than-fiction development.

It seems that an actual Russian collusion with the Hillary Clinton campaign produced mostly discredited dirt on Trump that the FBI then used to help enable its spying on a private citizen suspected of aiding the imagined Trump collusion. The FBI did not want to talk to a congressional oversight committee about it because, after all, why should it be answerable to anyone?

Finally, the agency had to and then there was this Republican memo summing up some of the testimony and classified documents, telling us how a dossier of the Clinton campaign dirt was used as evidence to persuade a Foreign Surveillance Court to give the go-ahead to do the spying.

The FBI screeched that none of the memo should be released because it would endanger security, which it didn’t. Then we had a war of interpretations as Democrats said the GOP misrepresented the truth and Republicans talked about liberal politics superseding fundamental demands of ethics and law. Former FBI director James Comey jumped in.

“That’s it?” he asked in a tweet about the GOP memo. “Dishonest and misleading memo wrecked the House intel committee, destroyed trust with Intelligence Community, damaged relationship with FISA court, and inexcusably exposed classified investigation of an American citizen. For what? DOJ & FBI must keep doing their jobs.”

Well, that’s bosh, but they should keep doing their jobs despite what Comey has done to them. He broke every protocol there was when, as FBI director, he gave a press conference essentially telling us that Clinton as secretary of state violated security laws by using her personal email server for classified materials.

He then said no prosecution would work because of an inability to prove criminal intent. It turned out he had not tried to prove much because, in an FBI interview with Clinton, she was not required to take an oath and nothing was recorded. Later, when Comey decided to publicly reopen the Clinton case pretty much on the basis of nothing, he just may have cost her the election.

After Trump fired him, Comey arranged for his own memo on a talk they had to get in the hands of the press, a matter of legal dubiety, and he is now serving as a top witness for his friend Robert Mueller, which is highly questionable. Mueller, the special counsel, may not have much of a collusion case against Trump and may instead be focusing on obstruction of justice. He wants an interview. If Trump agrees, this man with a roulette wheel for a mouth could end up facing charges on just about anything.

Meanwhile, everyone is focused on the November midterm elections, saying the Democrats may retake the House and, if they do, impeachment is certain.

We may at least be spared a guillotine.

Jay Ambrose is an op-ed columnist for Tribune News Service. Readers may email him at


(10) comments

Rick Czeczok

Swing...and a miss. Swing....and another miss Swing....and a're out!!!!


I agree whole-heartedly, Rick. Jay Ambrose hasn't been able to touch a pitch since I first noticed him on the Tribulne's roster of regular columnists. My God! He revives the charges against Hillary that were discredited and discarded long ago, but he is certain that the Russian investigation should be quashed immediately without knowing what it is pulling together in its meticulous but lengthy procedure. Maybe it will totally absolve Trump. Trump seems to think so, and if anybody should know, certainly it would be him -- even more than Mueller. So what is the hurry to close it down?


#45 keeps pitching fat ones right down the plate, with the way people are resigning from this administration at record pace, it looks like the anti Trumpers are connecting. only a matter of a short time before before you will hear its up up up up and he's outa' here, a grand salami! Can't wait for baseball to start!

Rick Czeczok

You have a long 7 years ahead of you my friend. Get over it and move on. You don't always get what you want in life, sometimes you have to adapt. The other option is Canada or somewhere else to live. Like you always say, it's your chose. I made it through the Obama years and you will to.


Rick, thank you for your empathy. I have been having a tough time in this first year of Trump, a man I did not choice, as I think you might put it. Just like you did not choice Obama. How did you EVER suffer through those eight bleak, awful years, in which Obama acted horribly toward everybody, lied constantly on a daily basis, destroyed mutual defense and trade agreements with all of our allies -- who just HATED Obama for his senseless behavior --, choiced totally inappropriate and inadequate, inept people for his cabinet, and took a broken economy left behind by George W. and only tripled it over the next eight years! And I am SURE he assaulted every moral fiber in your body! Gosh, I can see why you are glad to get a class act like Trump back into the White House. It was, as you say, your chose.


oh I'm not worried. I have lived a good long full life full of many happy moments and some struggles too along the way. I have learned you should only worry about what you can control. I do hope my children and generations after have a country they can be proud of and one where they can prosper as an individual and as part of society. I hope my country holds onto those things that make it great like freedom of religions, of speech, of assembly and liberty, the pursuit of happiness. I hope this country lives up to the words on the statue of liberty, the bill of rights, and treats all people with decency and humaneness.

Rick Czeczok

Everything is never going to come out in the wash. This last election was so full of bitter, lying and deceit by both parties. Unfortunately that seems to be the norm in politics. So let's do something together and make these people in politics accountable and stop just running them through in elections. Nobody wins here and our children and grand children loose. That's the hurtful part of it all.


you have to get big money out of politics, the only way I know of doing that is over turning citizens united. If the super rich get to legally bribe our elected officials with unlimited amount of money, the rest of us will not have a voice. Gerrymandering is another election tool that has to go, and it looks like it is slowly being reformed.

Rick Czeczok

So stinky brains(homey) who was even talking to you, It's good to here you are finally going to Canada, I'm sure they will be proud to have you, at no loss to us. Your parties time is soon coming I feel, and I don't mean for the good.


Oh, for Pete's sake, Rick! Why would I go to Canada in the middle of the winter? If you haven't noticed, your friend Buggs would be happy to tell you we have had more than enough cold and snow around here this winter. But your 8:52pm post makes me think that I should reevaluate my estimation of your intellect. The moniker you choiced for me, as I think you might put it, stinky brains, puts you on another plateau than the one I had you on. It should be warmer there for you, but more prone to flooding.

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