Fascinating. Repulsive and Fascinating.
I think Chump snookered himself in lots of ways. I have no CIA experience but reading folks here, a compromised Chump is a compromised Chump. That he was Real Estate and working with high dollar properties makes him almost too perfectly formed as a Russian Laundering prostitute - to be used and used and used. Most of what we attribute to Chump's free will and "style" and way of doing business are just as suspect as everything else. We don't know that anything he did in the last 20 years was really his idea or what %. I think a side benefit in a very bleak existence was he got to use Russian and The Enquirer's dirt system and he was turning dirty tricks on that side of the tracks too. Cohen seemed to have a whole side gig skimming from Chump's transactions and every other cesspool. Hey, their cesspool orbits just seem to mesh, and hey, since we are here anyways lets never miss a chance to extort someone.
Which makes me think Chump was at least a fair success in keeping his loud mouth from getting caved in numerous times (although who knows where\when he got the dentures and we should check if he disappeared from public for any length of time)
And a fair success at moving in a horribly filthy world and somehow staying afloat by being as horrible as any mob boss, drug kingpin, and finally mixed up with the most horrific international thugs. I still cannot countenance him with anything other than abject subservience to those players. He had no way to "hit back" to anyone with real money or real muscle. He may be beating up on Rosie O'Donnel and squeezing extortion money out of D listers and stealing from renters and ChumpU back here, but Bone Saw and Vlad are playing a game he can't even get in the room.
Back to his Free Will. I don't know how completely animated by Russians he was going back. I feel he is almost completely owned now. Again, his own doing. He may have had to go along with money laundering but was otherwise a pretty free agent. Now, all the stakes have gone up and our Chumpy was never gonna do the smart thing and climb off the rocket. Not gonna take the hit, explain what happened, take his lumps, or suddenly find his courage and be a hero. He is compromised now in ways he could never imagine, and his exits are all stopped up.
I think he loved flirting with running. No cost, no downside, all that mic time. He got to lambaste everybody and paid no price for his bloviating and we can see that any adulation is like cocaine to him. I think the Russians may have been very ready to pounce as he got his ass in a crack more and more with them 2013 2014 2015 and suddenly seemed possible in 2016. Not that they were pulling any strings 2013-15, just that he was definitely someone they had a good hold on and WTF suddenly he is in the top20, top10 for president and they saw the most amazing chance in world history to hit an inside Royal Flush.
Now we get to how he could possibly think he could survive the scrutiny. I think he is too dumb and just has no idea how the legitimate world works. I know, it's not a VERY legitimat world, but he had no clue. He had pretty good instincts and eyeballs for his gold plated cesspool scumbaggery, but his ignorance and ego made him think The Elevation was all perks and no downside. He has found out he is more trammeled than ever before. Great Power that he cannot use to punish his enemies and brown people. No way to give him 'soldiers' to match Putin and enrich himself. He was vested with all the legitimate power of the most powerful position in the world and has whiffed.
Unrelenting scrutiny, and inability to use the power he was counting on. The guy is a failure at everything. Even when gifted with the presidency. He only survived before that by racking up enough bodies so he could keep his head above water. And he is doing the same in govt. Everything he touches dies, and gets added to the rotting pile he stands upon.
This is a completely self inflicted and possibly fatal wound. Completely owned by R lawmakers and a moronic populace (mostly Rs). That we would allow a completely criminal cartoon of a human anywhere near our elections. If you put a vicious punisher of brown people, who throws in some "I'm an outsider and will shake things up", the R herd will trample everyone else in the field rushing to vote for him. R politicians and R party leaders allowed a complete criminal with 0% legit history to head their party. Wonder if they learned anything by that.
Just my take. Snow day here in WI. I have no experience in NY, mafia, govt. or international affairs.