Two Bits; And A Few Of Mine

Today’s article will focus on the Trump hush money trial – what else is in the American political news today? – and I will finish on a very different note.

Monday the judge in the case found the criminal defendant, Donald Trump, once again in violation of the gag order and fined him the maximum under current New York statute of $1,000. You will have to go back to Sunday’s article to see my methodology (well a nickel version of it anyway) but the $1,000 fine to Trump is the equivalent of fining the median American about a quarter.

It is really obvious that a monetary fine this small on Trump will not have a deterrent effect. This is an issue the New York State Legislature needs to take up. The law should be amended and the maximum fines a judge may impose under it substantially raised.

Among the many interesting facts revealed thus far is that while Trump was president and others were supposedly running his company any checks over $10,000 had to be signed by him personally. When he first “revealed it” (and is there a story/scandal there!) I mocked his “blind trust” as either ignorance of what a blind trust really is or a mockery of it. Well, I’ve certainly been proven to be correct!

We are all playing armchair lawyer these days. From the reports I’m getting the prosecution seems to be right on track. Many of us are thinking they are doing a sort of corroborate in advance. They have backed up Michael Cohen’s anticipated testimony before he ever takes the stand. I’m wondering if they will not have conclusively proven their case prior to the what we assume to be the planned calling of Cohen to the witness stand. Could we actually find ourselves in a situation where it will not be necessary to even call Cohen? (And both expose him to cross-examination and risk his temper getting the best of him.) I wouldn’t bet on that; but I wouldn’t bet against it either.

It is increasingly my opinion – and I’m not alone – that Donald Trump was the worst president in American history. If he was not, he is certainly in the discussion. In my mind -and again I’m far from alone – Harry Truman was among the best. Today is the 140th anniversary of his birth. It is also the birthday (substantially less than 140!) that we assigned to my rescue dog, Truman, who was named after President Truman. Since I’m planning on shuttering this site in mid-December it is my last opportunity to wish them both a Happy Birthday here.

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