Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The Coming Roy Cohn Presidency

In an important article by Justin Raimondo, The Trump Test,  Raimondo provides a balanced look at the pluses and minuses of Donald Trump, when it comes to foreign policy. I, of course, consider the minuses a serious impediment, much more so than Justin.

But what I want to do here is take a look at one of the defenses Justin makes of Trump. Specifically, when he notes an attack on Trump by Jamie Kirchick:
Neocon character assassin Jamie Kirchick, writing in the European edition of Politico, put a new gloss on it by claiming to detect a Vast Kremlin Conspiracy as the animating spirit behind the Trump campaign.
Which just goes to show that having Roy Cohn as your role model can lead one down some pretty slimy rabbit holes. 
Trump supporters, however, need to be careful of playing the "Roy Cohn card."  

Donald Trump is, in a very important way, a child of Roy Cohn. 

Trump in his early years as a Manhattan operator used Cohn as his attorney and partied with Cohn.

From Citizen Cohn by Nicholas von Hoffman:
Every famous client made him [Cohn] famous and none more so than Donald Trump. The Trump - Roy relationship was the mixture of business and social which Roy sought, and while some people around Roy dismissed Trump as a "user," he stuck by Roy to the end tendering him a farewell dinner in Florida in March 1986... It appeared to Trump's biographer that early in the real estate man's career "Roy Cohn was obviously a social asset"in getting Trump the entree he sought.
And there is a very close connection to Trump's key unofficial (how very Roy Con-ish) adviser Roger Stone that also goes way back to Cohn:
Roger Stone, the political provocateur, visited the bar at the Four Seasons Hotel on primary day last week to reminisce about his long friendship with Donald Trump. It started in 1979, when Stone was a twenty-six-year-old aide in Ronald Reagan’s Presidential campaign. Michael Deaver, a more senior campaign official, instructed Stone to start fund-raising in New York. “Mike gave me a recipe box full of index cards, supposedly Reagan’s contacts in New York,” Stone said. “Half the people on the cards were dead. A lot of the others were show-business people, but there was one name I recognized—Roy Cohn.” So Stone presented himself at the brownstone office of Cohn, the notorious lawyer and fixer.
“I go into Roy’s office,” Stone continued, “and he’s sitting there in his silk bathrobe, and he’s finishing up a meeting with Fat Tony Salerno,” the boss of the Genovese crime family. Stone went on, “So Tony says, ‘Roy here says we’re going with Ree-gun this time.’ That’s how he said it—‘Ree-gun.’ Roy told him yes, we’re with Reagan. Then I said to Roy that we needed to put together a finance committee, and Roy said, ‘You need Donald and Fred Trump.’ He said Fred, Donald’s father, had been big for Goldwater in ’64. I went to see Donald, and he helped to get us office space for the Reagan campaign, and that’s when we became friends.”

Cohn+Stone+Trump. 1979!

Michael D'Antonio reports at FORTUNE:
Trump’s mentor in the art of acting tough and manipulating the press likely was the notorious Roy Cohn, who introduced his protégé around Manhattan society and helped him access exclusive clubs. Cohn rose to fame as the chief inquisitor in Senator Joseph McCarthy’s witch hunts.
As a private attorney he brokered countless political deals while representing a client list that included prominent mobsters like John Gotti and Carmine Galente. Trump kept a photo of the glowering Cohn and enjoyed taking it out of a drawer to show to visitors when he talked about his lawyer. It was Cohn who used the words “Gestapo” and “storm trooper” when he filed a $100 million countersuit against federal authorities; the government had sued Trump organization for allegedly violating fair housing laws. Cohn’s claim was thrown-out by a federal judge, but not before his words reached the public via the press. A Jewish man who surely understood the unique status of the Nazi genocide, Cohn showed he was willing to cross boundaries others respected when he criticized federal officials.
In other words, Trump supporters need to be very careful about what they charge to be a "pretty slimy rabbit hole."

The Trump presidency may be very deep down that rabbit hole.


1 comment:

  1. There's always been those within libertarian ranks who've suggested taking up arms against the government, which is utter foolishness. The American Revolution would never have been successful without the aide of France and that was long before the military industrial complex came about. For me, the alternative to taking up arms is to employ the thuggish type tactics Cohn and Stone have used to their success. Libertarians will never be successful by obeying the rules set forth from the very establishment they seek to overthrow.