Trump’s Tax Returns And Trump Derangement

I’m using the Fredo clip from the Ethics Alarms clip library because I was right in my assessment of the Trump tax return nonsense when it surfaced in 2016. So were a lot of other commentators. I didn’t write all of the conclusions down on Ethics Alarms, but I had plenty of discussions about it with my Trump Deranged friends and others. A summary:

  • Trump was obviously lying in 2016 when he said that there were legal reasons he couldn’t release his tax returns as had become the norm for Presidential candidates, but that he would release them as soon as the issues were resolved. He’s the first business tycoon to run for President, and he knew that the returns would show exactly the kind of legal tax avoidance that the returns of every other wealthy, risk0taking, entrepreneurial individual shows. This would arm Democrats and others to make the usual “rich people are crooked and evil” attacks, as is their wont, and he judged, probably correctly, that his chances of being elected were better if he kept the returns private, as he had every right to do. He could have and should have done this and been honest about the reason.
  • Everyone should have known not going to be anything illegal in the returns, because the IRS accepted them. Sure enough, when they were released this week, there wasn’t.
  • The Washington Post headline, “House panel releases Trump tax returns in another setback for former president,” is incompetent, biased, and insulting to anyone who isn’t Trump Deranged or ignorant. The returns are a triumph for Trump. I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if he was counting on their being released. Democrats had essentially promised that there would be evidence of dark doings: as with the Mueller Report, it is a dud. Now the question is why Democrats were allowed to breach the guaranteed confidentiality of a citizen’s returns when there was no evidence of a crime.
  • The returns show that Trump lost money while he was President. Of course he did…yet the Big Lie spread by the Axis of Unethical Conduct is that he became President to enrich himself. A Trump-Deranged troll on another thread repeated that talking point yesterday. Becoming President made the Obamas rich; it made the Clintons rich. Trump was rich already: his Presidency made him poorer, and he almost certainly knew it would.
  • Now come the tit-for-tat arguments demanding that members of Congress explain how they have become wealthier during their tenures in office. Well, good. Liz Cheney’s net worth reportedly increased from $6M to to $36 in six years. How did that happen? The House blood-lust just handed Trump a potent weapon to expose his enemies.
  • David Cay Johnston wrote a Trump Derangement classic for the Daily Beast headlined,  “Trump’s Taxes Are the Best Case Yet for Putting Him in Prison.” It’s a funny headline, because the “best case” is in fact lousy: if the Justice Department is foolish enough to indict Trump based on the weak investigative tea brewed by the January 6 Commission witch hunt, it might be a tie. It reminded me why I no longer waste time with the Daily Beast, which is like an online MSNBC now. Seth Barrett Tillman wrote an easy and unduly respectful rebuttal of Johnston’s desperation post, and concludes,

“At this juncture, can you point to even one specific entry in any of Trump’s tax filings which you know to be fraudulent or, even, merely in error? That being the situation, your article’s title mentioning “prison” seems overly ambitious given what is now known about Trump’s past tax filings.”

Ann Althouse was a bit nastier, calling Johnston’s piece “screwy” and writing, “What had stood out to me was that no one seemed to see any crimes, so it’s certainly cheerful to have The Daily Beast come along and declare — who needs crimes? — that there’s never been a better reason to throw Trump in prison.”

In short, the House’s pursuit of Trump’s tax returns, aided by the efforts of the New York State Attorney General Letitia James, who campaigned on a promise to convict Donald Trump of something, anything, makes a victim of Trump, while pulling the courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court, into their unethical “Get Trump!” obsession.


Partially as a result of the latest fiasco, I revised the Ethics Alarms Comment Policies today, adding this (among some other changes) under Banning:

Trump Derangement (added 1/1/23): Once a commenter has made it clear that he or she is eager to suspend all objectivity, fairness, standards and ethical principles when it involves the 45th President, he or she is no longer capable of ethical analysis. I will flag this malady when I think it has appeared, giving the infected commenter an opportunity to seek help or suppress the symptoms. If that fails, banning will follow.

7 thoughts on “Trump’s Tax Returns And Trump Derangement

  1. I knew there was going to be nothing in the when they were released on a Friday right before a holiday weekend. Stuff that’s going to have an impact gets released on Sunday so it can be in the Monday headlines and have all week to be hammered on by the news media. Stuff that isn’t going anywhere gets released on Friday to hopefully be forgotten over the weekend.

    You mean the 45th president, right? Biden is 46, otherwise there wouldn’t be all those memes talking about Trump as “Dolt 45” and so on.

    The Democratic party is essentially trying to sideline Trump while at the same time in raging his followers to the point where the Republican Party gets divided. That’s what will get them a second Biden term, or possibly put Kamala Harris in the White House.

  2. Who on earth thought an operator like Trump wouldn’t be audited down to the ground every single year? He’s been in the game for decades. He has folders full of accountants and tax attorneys and tax advisors and tax planners, none of whom are going to let him try to slip anything by the Feds. He’d sue them if they did.

    This is just another example, the prime example, of career politicians being bound and determined to keep anyone who’s actually done anything in the real buy-sell world the hell out of their playground. Businesspeople are for sucking contributions out of, not for taking the biggest electoral prize from the career politicians. Arrogant assholes.

    I can’t believe the Supreme Court didn’t find some way to stop the Dems from using Congress’s duty to oversee the IRS as a means to violate the non-disclosure regulations. The Dems made the Supreme Court look like idiots.

    Speaking of “We won, didn’t we?” the Las Vagas airport has been renamed Harry Reid Airport. That’s awful.

  3. Now that the norm of not releasing the private information on a person’s tax return has been broken, we’re going to see more of it.

    Now that the republicans will control the house committees, their first order of business should be the release of all 9 justice’s tax returns. They authorized this and could have done the ethical thing and blocked the house, but they didn’t. They can reap their own whirlwind.

    Once that is done, there are multiple targets they can go after. You listed several deserving individuals Jack. They can also have fun going after the funders of democrat causes like Warren Buffet and Bill Gates. Fun times all around!

  4. What I have read thus far about the tax returns” validates a presumption of mine. Namely, I worry less about the old billionaire who enters office than the man who enters office “poor” than exists office as one of the 1%ers.
    At this point the gate is. opened. The new 87,000 IRS agents now have a purpose- Find and investigate the tax returns of every politico in the nation, and their monetary supporters, from the county dog catcher to the presidents of the USA

    • I honestly don’t recall which fiasco I was referring to. It was probably the Santos scandal, attempts to somehow blame Trump for Santos, and the two Trump-Deranged trolls who defended David Brooks’ ridiculous attack.

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