The testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson on day 6 of the U.S. House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol exemplifies courage, composure, consistency, memory, lucidity…courage. We always come back to the courage of one of the finest members of her generation. Her account witnesses evil intent, while additive to descriptions of a dangerously volatile personality.
In 2016, I wrote CIA Chief: Trump “Unwitting agent of the Russian Federation” Quoting,
Trump’s TV show, The Apprentice, is a microcosm of this. Contestants compete in the arenas of property management, marketing, and hospitality. His TV demeanor, combined with the impressions of the campaign trail, are of a person specialized to Darwinian success in these niches of capitalism. Nota bene: Trump is always the smartest guy in the room. This is a form of narcissism, an exploitable trait.
Narcissism and volatility do not completely explain what has transpired. The interaction of POTUS with advisors was amplified by an enabling positive feedback loop that persisted against the urgent warnings of legal council and Justice Department officials.
Hutchinson’s testimony is additive to lurid accounts of criminal behavior of some members of the orbit, extending outwards towards the conservative fringe in apparently random directions, and past politics to the domain of violent extremism. This may be a distraction from complete characterization of a conspiracy:
- Was this a loose affiliation of actors, or did it have clandestine organization?
- Was the initiation a chance remark by one of the actors, or a purposeful injection?
- Was the positive feedback loop powered by Trump’s narcissism, or was there additional impetus from as-yet unknown sources?
- Was there Russian involvement? See Question for the January 6 Committee / Intelligence Community; Russian Involvement?
(CNN) Feds search home of Jeffrey Clark, former DOJ official who pushed Trump’s false election fraud claims. The hearings sketch an apparently autonomous and audacious proposal by Clark to be appointed attorney general. His personality and lack of relevant prior experience are incongruous. Was he a front man?
The confiscation of Jeffrey Clark’s electronic devices, and John Eastman’s phone, are the first visible steps to answer a question that cannot be definitively addressed by the Committee:
Who was talking to who?