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-By Caleb Jones
There’s a lot to unpack here, but I’ll give you a very quick summary that admittedly is light on details (if you want those, you can always Google them). A while back, Mike Flynn, President Trump’s national security advisor, was found to be passing secrets to the Russians. He was bounced out of office. Trump apparently has been panicking over this, and keeps trying to contact Flynn for reasons unknown. The theory is that he knows more details which could get Trump in big trouble.
Trump’s advisors keep telling him that he can’t talk to Flynn, as this would be witness tampering. Oops.
On Feb 14th, Trump asked FBI head Comey to stop the Russian investigation. I’ll give you the exact (alleged) quote:
I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go. He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.
Delusional, angry left-wingers say that this is obstruction of justice and Trump must be thrown in prison immediately. Delusional, angry Trump worshippers say this is NOT asking Comey to stop anything and that clearly he’s just stating his sadness about a friend.
See why both the left and the right have gone insane? Can you seriously read the above statement and come to the conclusion that either he’s literally guilty of obstruction of justice OR that he’s just making a casual friendly statement? As usual, the answer is somewhere in the middle. It sounds to me like Trump indeed wanted Comey to stop the investigation, but he didn’t technically “order’ anything; he instead was making one of his usual stupid, from-the-gut, off-the-cuff statements where he speaks before he thinks.
Anyway, as I’ll soon explain, none of this matters.
Comey refused to end any investigation. A few weeks after this, Trump fired Comey, completely out of the blue, without telling anyone in his inner circle, including the clownish press secretary Sean Spicer, who literally hid in the bushes away from the press, since he had no information on any of this and had no idea what to say.
Trump responded to all of this by murdering innocent civilians by bombing Syria for no reason. Thanks, Trump. You’re now a murderous piece of shit, just like Obama and Bush before you. I’m so glad he’s for America First and is going to get us out of the Middle East. Oh wait...
There’s a lot more to this story and I’m only scratching the surface. The bottom line is that this all looks really bad for Trump, a dishonest authoritarian with zero emotional control who supports government health care, hates freedom of speech, and is terrified you might find out what’s in his tax returns. Poking around the internet in the last week or two, I’ve noticed that even Trump’s most die-hard defenders are having a tough time explaining all of this.
I don’t know all the facts, and neither do you, but it’s obvious to me that A) Trump is guilty of something inappropriate and likely illegal, and B) he’s not behaving very competently at hiding it. That’s just my guess based on everything I’m seeing; feel free to draw your own conclusions.
This brings me to the issue of impeachment. When Trump was first elected, some left-wingers were screaming that he’d be impeached. I didn’t buy it and placed his odds of impeachment at 5% or less.
About two weeks ago, when more details of this story kept being leaked by the FBI (who hates Trump, and the FBI is not a good enemy to have), I raised this to 20%. As of today I place the odds of Trump getting removed from office (or voluntarily resigning before things get really bad, al la Nixon) at 25%.
This is the highest odds I’ve ever given a president for this in my lifetime. Even when Clinton was being impeached, I guessed he only had a 20% chance of actually being removed from office.
Here’s why I think there’s a 25% chance Trump’s days are numbered:
1. It doesn’t matter if he’s guilty or not. Let me repeat that for the Trump defenders: it doesn’t matter if Trump is guilty or not. The reason is that if they actually get Trump into a deposition where he has to give statements under oath, he will lie, and that will be the end of him. For all of his positive Alpha Male qualities, Trump is also a pathological liar, and there’s absolutely no way in hell that he’ll be able to tell the truth if he’s under deposition for three hours. Ha! He’ll lie, his enemies will fact-check, he’ll get caught, and congress will impeach his ass just like they impeached Clinton for lying under oath. (Though like Clinton, Trump may not actually be removed from office; thus my guess of 25% instead of something like 50% or higher.)
Seriously. If Trump ever is forced into a scenario where he has to speak at length while he’s under oath, he’s fucked. Just watch.
2. All the Democrats in congress are against him. They’re not in power right now, but with Trump’s historically low approval ratings, they likely will be right back in power when the 2018 midterm elections arrive. (This is to say nothing of the real danger: our next president after Trump/Pence. Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, I don’t know who that will be yet, but I know he/she will be a true and open socialist, as I predicted a long time ago.)
3. Most of the elites are against him, and always have been. They’d love to see him go.
4. Many Republicans in congress are also against him. Worse, as far as I know, no Republicans in congress are against Mike Pence, and would happily see Pence as president instead of Trump. Unlike Trump, Pence is an establishment corporatist and a religious extremist. Oh, Republican elites would love that shit.
That’s how I see things at the moment. If I had more time, I’d do some research on which stocks might spike upward or downward if/when Trump is removed from office, and buy or short them, but I really don’t have time, this time around anyway, to take advantage of my nation’s further collapse. (My bitcoin gains will have to do.)
Granted, 25% isn’t very much, but it’s more than I originally expected. And here’s the interesting thing; we’re only five months into Trump’s term as president. We’ve got another 3.5 years to go. Do you really think this will be the only scandal we will see with Trump?
Enjoy the decline!
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joelsuf 2017-05-23 06:49:51
This is to say nothing of the real danger: our next president after Trump/Pence. Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, I don’t know who that will be yet, but I know he/she will be a true and open socialist, as I predicted a long time ago.I'm legitimately afraid of how the US is going to be in the 2020s because of this. I mean if socialism was historically good, I wouldn't mind but I really don't feel comfortable having the state control every resource, which is what will happen. The US is going to become a poor man's USSR by the 2020s and that is going to SUCK for everyone. And the same anarcho-communists who were nuthugging Sanders and his ilk will be violently opposed to his types when they realize that they aren't going to get the free healthcare and free schooling, and then there will be widespread riots and martial law. Its almost like moving out of the US isn't gonna be much of a choice going into the 2020s...I'm now officially on the fence of moving out of the US, I just would like to know what the first steps for getting the information about moving out of the US would be.
Tony 2017-05-23 08:21:04
Your point 4 is why even before he took office it was clear there was a very real chance of him being impeached. The one barrier is that Trump fans represent a large part of the Republican party, and the establishment Republicans know they need those votes to win. Trump fans are so fanatic that I don't think the Republicans could ever vote for impeachment unless he literally killed somebody or robbed a bank or something. Even in the worst case scenario, I think enough Trump fans will stick by him that the Republicans will have a tough time voting to impeach. As a left winger, it will be enjoyable to watch the Republican party have to deal with this mess, but the Democrats are so ineffectual that they won't be able to hit this easy soft ball. That will be frustrating.
Leo 2017-05-23 13:22:53
I can not understand this: How a person who zero emotional control became rich? I always thought that one should be calm, control his emotions to become rich. Trump is the exact opposite. I believe his crazy moves is a guarantee for the next president. He or she will be a Democrat. Even Trump supporters started to see what is going on.
Caleb Jones 2017-05-23 13:43:42
How a person who zero emotional control became rich?Very hard work, strength of will, perseverance, loving what you do, and getting head start by having a rich father.
I always thought that one should be calm, control his emotions to become rich. Trump is the exact opposite.Not at all. I've met rich people with zero emotional control. Of course it's possible to get rich that way. You won't be very happy or balanced, and your relationship life will suck, but you'll be rich.
Shubert 2017-05-24 11:04:15
He fucked up really bad. Pissing off the intel community does not make you many friends. The whole Russia/Putin bromance is equally bizarre. Russia is a dying nation, why bother? The Chinese will take over Siberia. Why even bother beyond the necessary formalities? This is the first time that an entire family is running the executive branch. This is worrisome since many fucked up countries have had the same setup right before crap hot the fan. Then there is Scott Adams... he's saying that a Republic is outdated. Wait, what? I get it that Trump could encounter quite a bit of flack when he became president, but when he keeps getting shit thrown at him, it makes me wonder.
Kurt 2017-05-24 12:43:49
Caleb, you mention Trump's 'positive Alpha male qualities'. I don't see them. He is outcome-dependent, authoritarian, has no emotional control, tries to assault women for sex and his wife won't touch him much less fuck him. While he has devoted followers as any authoritarian will, he seems to lack personal charisma beyond a very superficial sort that apparently washes off quickly once someone gets to know him. He is needy as hell for attention and validation and has the mental and emotional maturity of a small child. I don't deny he plays the role of an Alpha, but in what positive way? To be clear I'm talking about Trump right now. 30-years-ago Trump was a different beast. I still hated him, but he had it together more and I admit one could have argued that he had positive AM traits back then (more charisma, outcome-independence, attractive to women, etc.).
Caleb Jones 2017-05-24 13:36:05
He fucked up really bad. Pissing off the intel community does not make you many friends.Correct. See how well it worked out for JFK.
This is the first time that an entire family is running the executive branch. This is worrisome since many fucked up countries have had the same setup right before crap hot the fan.This nepotism is really disgusting. It's the same thing third-world dictatorships do. You're going to choose your 35 year-old son-in-law with no government experience as your key advisor? Jesus.
Caleb, you mention Trump’s ‘positive Alpha male qualities’. I don’t see them.I meant positive Alpha Male 1.0 qualities, not 2.0.
He is outcome-dependent, authoritarian, has no emotional controlYep, all Alpha 1.0 traits, but those are the negative ones. The positive ones are he's strong, aggressive, masculine, socially skilled, and successful.
tries to assault women for sex and his wife won’t touch him much less fuck himYep, that's because he's monogamous, which is stupid. Yet another mistake Alpha 1.0's make. Of course his wife is going to beta him or get upset with him eventually. That's what happens in monogamous marriages.
While he has devoted followers as any authoritarian will, he seems to lack personal charisma beyond a very superficial sort that apparently washes off quickly once someone gets to know him.I disagree. I think he's very charismatic in an aggressive, New York kind of way (which granted, a lot of people don't like).
Walter 2017-05-24 16:59:34
Damn I hope you are wrong. You wrongly predicted Romney would be president. You said Trump would not get the nomination. Then you predicted Hillary would become president. You are not exactly Nostradamus. If you had a better track record at predicting the future, I would be worried!
Caleb Jones 2017-05-25 10:32:05
Damn I hope you are wrong.You mean you want Trump to be impeached? I said he only has a 25% chance.
You wrongly predicted Romney would be president.Yes, I got that one wrong. Though to be fair, he only lost by 1% in 3 states. He lost by a hair.
You said Trump would not get the nomination.No I didn't. On that one day he first announced I said that, but everyone said that and thought that, including Trump. After that I said his odds were fair.
Then you predicted Hillary would become president.No I didn't. I said her odds were 60%. I also clearly said, more than once, that I would no longer predict definite outcomes of presidential elections because the American electorate had become too insane and unpredictable. Please stop misquoting me if you want to make an actual argument (which perhaps you don't).
If you had a better track record at predicting the future, I would be worried!Why? I said Trump had only a 25% chance of getting impeached. That means the odds are he won't. Honestly, you really need to learn how to read.
Walter 2017-05-25 13:24:58
You mean you want Trump to be impeached? I said he only has a 25% chance.What I meant by that is "I hope the chances are lower than what you estimate". 25% is too much.
Please stop misquoting me if you want to make an actual argumentIf you say "Chances of A event happening are 60%" you are saying "the most likely outcome is A". In a certain way, this is predicting A will happen. (And yes, I know we never talk about absolutes when we talk about predicting the future. I have some basic understanding of statistics)
Honestly, you really need to learn how to read.Thanks for the advice.
Caleb Jones 2017-05-25 13:40:44
What I meant by that is “I hope the chances are lower than what you estimate”.Ok, but that isn't what you said. If you're going to debate a topic with me, you need to use precise language.
25% is too much.Bookies disagree with you. They're giving him 33% to 55%, which is far beyond my 25%. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/trump-impeachment-odds-increasingly-point-to-an-early-exit-2017-05-17 Granted, bookies can be wrong too, but I think you're stating an emotional hope, not anything based on objective analysis.
If you say “Chances of A event happening are 60%” you are saying “the most likely outcome is A”.Correct.
In a certain way, this is predicting A will happen.Incorrect, and this again goes back to your reading and writing ability. If I predict something has a 60% chance of occurring, I am not predicting it.
Walter 2017-05-25 16:51:23
I think you’re stating an emotional hopeMy words were literally "I hope you are wrong".
A Man 2017-05-25 18:57:54
Correct. See how well it worked out for JFK.I am intrigued. what do you mean?
Caleb Jones 2017-05-25 19:32:18
I am intrigued. what do you mean?I'm not going there. Too off topic and it will bring out the internet crazies. The bottom line is going against the intelligence community, which is almost an independent 4th branch of government, is extremely dangerous and literally a no-win scenario for any president. Trump should have been smarter than that. He really shot himself in the foot with this FBI stuff.
Walter 2017-05-25 19:38:00
If I predict something has a 60% chance of occurring, I am not predicting it.If I predict something has 99.999% chance of occurring, am I predicting it? If not, then at which number does it become predicting it?
azog 2017-05-25 19:46:55
If you say “Chances of A event happening are 60%” you are saying “the most likely outcome is A”. In a certain way, this is predicting A will happen.Oh, you sad Trump supporters. I haven't seen this kind of word parsing in defense of a president since the liberals were white-knighting Clinton getting blowjobs. Do you even know how you sound mate?
Caleb Jones 2017-05-25 23:38:49
If I predict something has 99.999% chance of occurring, am I predicting it? If not, then at which number does it become predicting it?If you seriously want to think that saying something has a 40% chance of not happening means I’m predicting it’s going to happen, then you’re welcome to that insane belief. I’m done discussing this silly point. If you have anything actually substantive, I’m happy to continue.
Do you even know how you sound mate?Eh, I’m used to it. Irrationality from both the right and the left when you present data they don’t like about their messiahs is standard practice these days. One of the many reasons America and Europe are both fucked.
Walter 2017-05-27 23:52:38
How do you define "predicting"? My point is three different times you have said "the most likely outcome is X" and then X did not happen. Maybe it was statistics or maybe you are just not very good at laying odds.