Donald Trump hates to lose.
Which means that he can’t stand being passive, while something as threatening as the Mueller investigation seems to be closing in on him. Which means even that he hates to be on the defensive, just letting something like a “legal process” unfold, presumably to his detriment, while he doesn’t inflict pain on his attackers.
So now we can see Trump flexing his powers, as President, to strike at enemies.
Some of them — like Andrew McCabe, whom the President has shown great glee at getting fired two days short of earning his pension — do have something to do with Trump’s main enemy (the Mueller investigation) that threatens to bring him down.
And some of them — like the shabbily treated Rex Tillerson — have nothing to do with the investigation, but do connect with Trump’s wounded narcissism (at the heart of his overriding need to win) because he’s known to have called Trump a “fucking moron.”
The investigation is not going away, despite the ridiculous tweets from Trump’s lawyer, John Dowd, who seems to have been taking dictation from his client. So the net is going to continue closing in on Donald Trump.
What will this man do if he cannot just let himself be a loser, passively accepting the consequences of his misdeeds? What kind of doing will satisfy the emotional needs of this man — a kind of human monster who, in a blatant demonstration of the pathologies in the American political system, has been handed all the powers of the most powerful office in the world?
It seems to me increasingly possible that, despite its having seemed for some months that Trump was just going to flail around helplessly without crossing any major Rubicon or trip-wire, Trump will ultimately go for broke on shutting down the investigation.
It is becoming harder for me to imagine the man whose conduct we’ve seen this past week allowing Robert Mueller’s work proceed to completion and thereby expose Trump’s utter moral corruption to the world.
But the even scarier thought is that Trump, who is followed around by the nuclear football and who has said that he’ll be meeting with “Little Rocket Man” in an ill-considered and dangerous summit, might find an even more destructive way of showing the awesomeness of his power.
To Donald Trump, I really believe, might well be better that the world be destroyed than that he be humiliated by being made, before all the world, a loser of historical magnitude.