So that’s the loop.

Jeff Flake was assaulted in an elevator by an angry rape victim, Maria Gallagher, who has clearly made up her mind about Kavanaugh’s guilt on the basis of Professor Ford’s words and statements, and no other evidence. And anyway, it’s all symbolic don’t you see? He’s conservative, Catholic, and played football and basketball in high school. How could he be anything else but a predator, right? Her furious demands that Flake look her in her eyes will become the next MeToo rallying cry.

So now Flake has demanded – after voting Judge Kavanaugh out of committee along with the rest of the GOP – that there be an FBI investigation, as Senator Durbin demanded Kavanaugh himself ask for, in Thursday’s hearings’ most audacious move by Democrats. One that finally prompted Senator Graham to speak the words that had to be spoken that day.

But guess what? Flake’s wishes have come to fruition and we now have what the Senate Judiciary Committee’s statement calls:

The supplemental FBI background investigation would be limited to current credible allegations against the nominee and must be completed no later than one week from today.

Senators Murkowski and Manchin quickly expressed support for Flake’s idea before the rest of the Senate decided whether to go with Flake’s plea for what will be a rushed and inconsequential piece of political theatre. Democrats like Jeff Flake’s idea, shockingly.

That’s the loop. A background check by the FBI so that Manchin, Murkowski, and Flake can vote yes sometime next week. Or the week after. Maybe. While Collins seems to be leaning towards no, given her silence.

Do you think people like Maria Gallagher will approve of Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation because the FBI do a perfunctory 1-week background investigation? Does Senator Flake think this will somehow help to calm passions?

The answer to that question comes in the form of a rumor that Democrats are planning to launch impeachment proceedings against Kavanaugh should he be confirmed as a Supreme Court Justice. It is a given that Justice Kavanaugh would have to, and will have to if he is confirmed, live with round the clock security for at least the first year of his tenure. And perhaps for far longer.

Flake himself, as well as Grassley, have received threats and are under protection as well. Could we arm the Texas Rangers and have them provide protection?

How about we protect them like the overturned vehicles that surrounded Boris Yeltsin in the summer of 1991? Who gets to be that mythical architecture student who was crushed to death under the wheels of a Soviet Tank? Metaphorically speaking, of course. I think. I hope.

Which makes me think. Maybe there is a Russian connection after all, and it’s this one.

President Trump in fact really is the Boris Yeltsin of 21st century American politics.

Gorbachev the great reformer did not preside over the Soviet Union’s collapse. He desperately tried to keep it together under a collapsing command-and-control economy with a bloated military budget and a kleptocratic bureaucratic class. A supposed clown like Yeltsin was the one with the cojones to actually change it. And Yeltsin was more than clear about what he was up against. Despite the drinking. The silly dancing. The bumbling privatization schemes which helped created the oligarchs who are now firmly under Putin’s thumb.

The Soviet Union collapsed under the weight of its absurdities, but it was Yeltsin that forced those absurdities to the surface. Like Trump does on a daily basis it seems.

The good news is that America is America and that what Trump is presiding over is the collapse of institutional process – not the collapse of institutions themselves; I’m not saying that – in Washington D.C. Consider:

  • A senator is trapped in an elevator with a raging sexual assault victim.
  • That event perhaps changes the way the Senator will vote on the confirmation of a Supreme Court Justice.
  • The UN general meeting with the gathering of the world’s nations becomes a boring little footnote.
  • The Democrats seem to be planning impeachment proceedings against a possible Justice Kavanaugh, should he gain that position.
  • Violent threats from both ends of the spectrum cause increased police protection across the Hill.

And a 1-week background investigation will bring peace to the land? Sorry, don’t think so. This could get much worse. When do the tanks start rolling? Metaphorically of course.