Broken New Year’s Resolution

Section 230 The End Game

Happy New 2021. Having resolved earlier this morning neither write nor speak anything about Donald Trump this year, I must apologize for failing so soon. I just couldn’t help it.

In Brief

There seems to be more behind the latest demand for the repeal of Section 230 by President Donald ‘Nobody-Ever-Done-This-Before’ J Trump could this be just a theory?


Why is he so keen to repeal a shield that has existed since 1996 while at the same time offering similar immunities to corporations in relations to COVID-19 infections including vaccine makers?


Until an hour or so ago, I had not considered breaking my first New Year's Resolution this fast. As the clock turned into seconds after midnight, I resolved not to think or write anything about the soon to be the former president of the U.S.A, Donald ‘Nobody-Ever-Done-This-Before’ J Trump.  But as I turned my body across my bed on this summer day, my phone alerted me to a CNN breaking news “at least a handful of GOP senators and at least 140 House Republicans expected to join election challenge next week.”


When is this nonsense going to end! I wondered as a jump out of my bed. Screw the Resolution, after all, I am the one who made it, so can easily break it.

By the time you read this, all global time zones would have bid farewell to the year 2020-the Horrible. And yet here I am breaking my first resolution. Something was nagging me deep inside. What would it take to rid this world of Trumpism! I wonder why this fella I once supported was throwing shit all over the place with the hope of some sticking.  I couldn’t just help it, I felt I've been missing something. I fired my computer on and got to work. That something became somewhat clearer just a few hours later. – the demand for the repeal of Section 230. Why now?


Guided with what I had already known of Trump, an ultra-competitive equal opportunity egomaniac plus his tendency to leave crumbs all over his trails, I went into my database where my notes are stored. Trump's latest twisted blackmail attempt to have Section 230 of the Communication Decency Act repealed does not make sense. I know most of his positions don't make sense, but this beats them all. What has he been smoking? I wondered. Can't he see how Section 230 has enabled him to dodge libel lawsuits since he joined Twitter in March 2009. Without Section 230, James D Zirin, a former Assistant US Attorney who authored the book Plaintiff in Chief would quickly release a sequel, Defendant In Chief.


And that's when it clicked for me, the irony of GOP politicians fighting for the repeal of the shield granted by Section 230 to tech companies just days after attempting to provide similar liability shield to businesses that fail to place adequate measures to protect employees and other third parties from COVID-19. Isn't there something like what's good for the goose is good for the gander? So if such shield is good for airlines, why not for tech companies.


That's when I revisited lessons from Sarah Cooper and Trevor Noah. With Trump evidence or pieces of, are often left in plain sight, one just needs to follow and collect the bread crumbs and before long, you would have a whole loaf of bread and that's exactly what I did earlier this morning.


Since Joe Biden was declared the winner of the November general elections, Trump has been busy plotting his next moves, as unrealistic as the moves are he has kept at it. Being a transactional man, he's been calling on the old debts. He has left the Republican politicians running about for covers like headless chickens. Bullying them while banging their heads on whatever solid object he may be close to.


While not attacking the ungrateful Republicans he now feels have abandoned him, he pays more attention to whoever may have some ideas on how to change his political fortunes. But at the same time, his mind must be semi-focused onto how he would handle various sets of debts that would be due in a few months. I recall him publicly dreading what would become of him should he lose the elections to Biden.


He has succeeded in convincing millions of his supporters that he still has some chance (however zero) of overturning Biden's win and all this billionaire needs is a few contributions from the supporters towards 'their' legal funds. [Yes, since Trump never loses, now that loss is definite, he has quickly turned the losses to include his supporters] And dollars have flown in like water from fire hydrants. This is yet another of his grifts.


Why would Trump be opposed to the liability shield granted to online companies against what their users may post through their platforms? This is a law that was enacted in 1996, several years before he had a smartphone. Why would Trump feel offended by this liability protection? Possible answers clicked for me an hour or so ago.


With all doors closing, the Plaintiff-in-Chief has new marks for his next grift, the Social Media companies, (mainly Facebook and Twitter). Knowing the crap he has been up to in the last four years, Trump knows that however much shredding he may be supervising, some shit would still be discovered after he leaves the White House. And such shits would quickly start appearing as posts on various Social Media Networks. A man who has been involved in over 4,000 lawsuits in the last three decades as documented by USA Today. seems to be scheming to institute multiple lawsuits against the Big Tech. How much could he win if he were to sue Twitter and Facebook for every post that links him to any impropriety?


As documented by Zirin in his book, most of his suits are not filed with expectations of wins, but to bully and intimidate defendants. Having previously convinced all of his massive wealth, his lawyers including Michael Cohen sent demand letters to his victims who out of fear often back off. The few who have stood their grounds have won their cases.


All these grifts are performed in plain sight. Despite losing the election to Biden, Trump has successfully taken over the Republican party. This did not happen by chance. It was well worked out. He may not be such a great deal maker, but he is a schemer-in-chief. Right before Republican National Convention, the party's leadership decided not to provide a new Platform instead, simply declaring support to Trump's agenda.


How can we forget of Trump’s favorite poem, The Snake by Al Wilson. That wasn't a dog whistle, it was a gloat to those who had embraced him and given him a home at the party. The poem is about himself. By the time he'll be done with America, there would be no GOP.  with the mentality of 'If I can't have America, then nobody should.' is scary. He is busy burning the house with everything in it.


And who are we to simply forget his performance during the first debate. Yes, the same one CNN’s Jake Tapper described as "That was a hot mess, inside a dumpster fire, inside a train wreck,”. Trump employed his mastery of distraction. And as if stars were aligning for him, instead of spending the subsequent days defending his call for ‘Proud Boys’ to stand back and standby, we spent those days talking about his COVID-19 diagnosis.

The instance that made us forget the 'Standby' memo to Proud Boys

So why are we seem surprised when he appears to be activating the same Proud Boys for a-not-so-secret mission in Washington DC for January 6.


And on the slews of presidential pardons he has been dishing around to criminals like candies on Halloween night, it seems Trump is trying to create a township of misfits. He has finally attained some levels that he admires. The Mob Boss with the key to federal jail houses. And criminals are lining up for a shot to freedom.


As Michael Cohen, his former personal lawyer and fixer repeatedly states on his befitting titled podcast Mea Culpa. Trump (the Snake) has taken over the GOP and has rebranded it to Retrump Party of his small country called Retrumpistan located somewhere in Palm Beach.


Unfortunately, despite taking over the party, he doesn't seem to be done with the hostile takeover of a political party that was known in its early years as the anti-slavery party. Like the good-hearted woman in his poem, most GOP politicians in Congress have all misread him. How can the world forget Senator Susan Collins reasoning for not voting to impeach him that Trump had learned his lesson? She was wrong and the snake was left smiling at the suckers. He has continued to play them like a fiddle.


Though Americans don't seem disturbed by his latest machinations aimed at altering the results of the November elections. I am not as undisturbed. I have seen this play before and I believe my American colleagues who have covered conflicts around the world must have seen it as well. 


In the 1980s, there was an individual called Sam Doe, a former Master Sergent in the armed forces of Liberia who decided to become the president of Liberia on April 12, 1980, in a bloody coup that saw the execution of President William Tolbert together with 26 of his supporters. Since then, Liberia has never been the same again. It starts with a slight remark as 'what if we postponed the elections to the following month or year.' followed by 'now that we are here, how about changing the constitution to remove the term limits? then finally, you can all now bow to the emperor and pledge your loyalties.


In August 2008, Doe’s former justice minister Chea Cheapoo attributed the success of the 1980 coup to assistance Doe received from American agents. So shouldn’t we forgive Trump for assuming that the same agents could help him stay on? And should this snake be aided to serve another term, what would stop him from accepting the two terms limit? Nothing and no one would stop him.


As Cohen reminds us weekly, when it comes to loyalty; in Trump's books, loyalty is a one-way street. Several GOP politicians have recently found themselves on the receiving side of Trump's fangs. From Senator Mitch McConnell, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp.


Since everything is transactional for him, he believes both are in offices because of his generosity. And it's time for the two to pay him back. The same expectations have routinely accompanied his legal suits involving his loss. Believing that all the Federal Judges and justices he appointed owed him. He believed he would knock onto their doors and be granted whatever court orders the strongman desires without providing any evidence. Again, he was wrong. The judges and justices have kicked him to touch as they say in Rugby.


In the last weeks of the campaign seemingly knowing he was going to lose bigly, Trump started plotting on how the Federal judges and justices he had appointed were duty-bound to pay him back  He didn’t hide this plot; he repeatedly made it public on the run-up to the nomination of Justice Amy Coney Barrett. “We would need a full bench to decide election results.” It never mattered whether there was evidence for his claims or not. His instruction to his remaining lawyers seemed to have been something like, Hey Rudy whatever it takes, just get the suit to my judges and justices. It“s time they paid back