The nation’s floundering government is now administered by a gangster regime. It is helpful to have this made obvious as voters contemplate renewing the regime’s lease on the executive branch. Roger Stone adopted the argot of B-grade mobster movies when he said he would not “roll on” Donald Trump. By commuting Stone’s sentence, Stone’s beneficiary played his part in this down-market drama, showing gratitude for Stone’s version of omertà (the Mafia code of silence), which involved lots of speaking but much lying. Because pandemic prevents both presidential candidates from bouncing around the continent like popcorn in a skillet, the electorate can concentrate on other things, including Trump’s selection of friends such as Stone and Paul Manafort, dregs from the bottom of the Republican barrel.
George Will and I do not agree on a lot of things, but I have to give him credit for seeing this administration's ineptitude and danger early on and calling it out.
This nation built the Empire State Building, groundbreaking to official opening, in 410 days during the Depression, and the Pentagon in 16 months during wartime. Today’s less serious nation is unable to competently combat a pandemic, or even reliably conduct elections. This is what national decline looks like.
Will doesn't mention it specifically in this piece, but he implies that Trump is not the core problem, he's a symptom of a bigger problem with the United States. Things don't "go back to normal" if we defeat Trump in November, issues with disinformation, information silos, racism, income inequality, court packing, disenfranchisement, and more will all still be here.
But getting this guy out of office is an essential first step, because nothing gets better with him remaining at the helm.