Is Donald Trump too stupid to sell America’s secrets when he’s out of office?

Trump Discussion with State Attorneys General on Protecting Consumers from Social Media Abuses

Even back in 2016-17, experts in espionage and intelligence were referring to Donald Trump as a “useful idiot.” It’s sort of slang-classification within the spy community. A useful idiot is someone who doesn’t have the actual intelligence or capability to be an asset, but through sheer dumb luck and utter spineless malleability, finds themselves in positions of power. The useful idiot has power and doesn’t know what to do with it, so they make terrible, treasonous decisions. Trump has always been willing to sell out America for his own narrow personal interests, or worse yet, he’s sold out America out of sheer stupidity, without even understanding what he’s doing. Russia played him, over and over, and we can never get back the four years of an American president acting as Russia’s pawn. We’ll never get back the damage he’s done to our country and our longtime allies and strategic partners.

So what happens now? What happens when Trump is an ex-president and he managed to heist some classified documents on his way out the door? Well, that’s something intelligence experts are worried about, but not *too* worried because everyone knows Trump is absolutely the biggest moron out there.

As president, Donald Trump selectively revealed highly classified information to attack his adversaries, gain political advantage and impress or intimidate foreign governments, in some cases jeopardizing U.S. intelligence capabilities. As an ex-president, there’s every reason to worry he will do the same, thus posing a unique national security dilemma for the Biden administration, current and former officials and analysts said.

All presidents exit the office with valuable national secrets in their heads, including the procedures for launching nuclear weapons, intelligence-gathering capabilities — including assets deep inside foreign governments — and the development of new and advanced weapon systems.

But no new president has ever had to fear that his predecessor might expose the nation’s secrets as President-elect Joe Biden must with Trump, current and former officials said. Not only does Trump have a history of disclosures, he checks the boxes of a classic counterintelligence risk: He is deeply in debt and angry at the U.S. government, particularly what he describes as the “deep state” conspiracy that he says tried to stop him from winning the White House in 2016 and what he falsely claims is an illegal effort to rob him of reelection.

“Anyone who is disgruntled, dissatisfied or aggrieved is a risk of disclosing classified information, whether as a current or former officeholder. Trump certainly fits that profile,” said David Priess, a former CIA officer and author of “The President’s Book of Secrets,” a history of the top-secret intelligence briefings that presidents and their staff members receive while in office.

Many concerned experts were quick to note that Trump reportedly paid scant attention during his presidential intelligence briefings and has never evinced a clear understanding of how the national security apparatus works. His ignorance may be the best counterweight to the risk he poses, they said. “A knowledgeable and informed president with Trump’s personality characteristics, including lack of self-discipline, would be a disaster. The only saving grace here is that he hasn’t been paying attention,” said Jack Goldsmith, who ran the Office of Legal Counsel at the Justice Department in the George W. Bush administration and is the co-author of “After Trump: Reconstructing the Presidency.”

“He probably doesn’t know much about collection details. But he will have bits and pieces,” said retired Brig Gen. Peter B. Zwack, who served as a military intelligence officer and was the senior U.S. defense attache to Russia from 2012 to 2014.

[From WaPo]

The whole piece is a pretty interesting read, because there ARE reasons to be genuinely concerned and God knows, the worst despots in the world are probably on the phone with that fascist loser right now, trying to convince him to send them reams of classified material. But it’s also a good read because it’s just named source after named source calling Trump a moron, saying that he’s never paid attention to briefings, that he’s too stupid to even understand how any part of the national security apparatus works. So, just something to keep your eye on. A dude with $400-500 million in debt with access to a nation’s secrets will always be dangerous. But if that dude is literally too stupid to function, how worried should we be? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Trump Delivers State of the Union Address

President Donald Trump holds a news briefing

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48 Responses to “Is Donald Trump too stupid to sell America’s secrets when he’s out of office?”

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  1. Sierra says:

    I want him to sell the Republican’s secrets and take down the whole party with him.

    Other than that, I foresee Putin putting a stop to Trump KGB style.

    • Snuffles says:

      Exactly, it goes both ways. Cheeto probably knows stuff about Putin too. Putin probably already got everything he wanted out of him and might decide to take him out and make it look like he died from natural causes.

      • Ivy says:

        My BFF had the same theory about being erased minus Putin.
        I doubt Putin would bother bc Cheetos is a bumbling goof who needs to be fact checked.

        I want to see the military March into the White House to escort the Cheetos baby out.
        They rest of the family is smart enough to be gone by then. Then have Nancy P come out with her iconic red cape and sunglasses to hold a fist up in victory.

      • pottymouth pup says:

        TBH I could see Junior having daddy offed to get the red hat crowd to anoint him as the head of the GOP & try to get him into office “to avenge his father” Putin may or may not help w/this depending on whether he thinks Biden-Harris is being too effective handling the chaos he created by helping to install Trump

      • NeoCleo says:

        Cheeto knows only what Putin WANTS him to know. Trump’s playing checkers while Putin plays three-dimensional chess.

  2. Truthiness says:

    Of course he would, he already let the Russian state media, the Russian ambassador and his friends into the oval office. Plus he has a history of leaking confidential details. It’s just a matter of when.

  3. Michael says:

    I am sure the national security apparatus will be keeping a close eye on him. He also will have Secret Service protection for life so they can also act as an alarm if he starts hangs out with known go between for dangerous governments

  4. ChloeCat says:

    This is what happens when you elect a moron. I blame each & every jerk who voted for him. The only saving grace may be is that he’s too stupid & too lazy to be of any real value to foreign adversaries. We can only hope.

  5. Sumodo1 says:

    Trump’s mental state depends, from what I understand, on high-quality stimulants. If he has access to them after he leaves office, we’re in trouble. If he becomes Putin’s Ritalin whore, we’ll have problems.

    • AbbeyRoad says:

      I just wanted to thank you for the phrase Putin’s Ritalin Whore, it’s raining very hard where I live and that just brought light to my day.

    • BearcatLawyer says:

      I am adding Putin’s Ritalin Whore to my list of preferred epithets. Thank you!

    • Silent Star says:

      I don’t buy into the narrative that he relies on drugs to function. People (formerly) very close to him such as Michael Cohen have said he is not a drug user, except for ordinary prescriptions. These are people who have every reason to reveal all of his faults, yet his being a drug addict is not one of them.

  6. Lizzie says:

    Would this be treason or accepting a bribe?

    • fluffy_bunny says:

      I’m guessing treason.

      • Blairski says:

        He is not interested in details, and he’s not “smart” in certain ways, but his instinct for self-preservation is absolutely amazing. I think that someone in his orbit will very clearly explain to him what “treason” mean (given his particular personality disorder(s), he won’t know unless someone tells him). And I think once he understands what “treason” is, he will avoid doing anything that will get him taken down for that specific crime.

  7. cassandra says:

    I mean his team wasn’t smart enough to have their post-election legal team set up ahead of time when we all knew Trump was going to contest the results (and the argument they would use!!) sooooooooooo

    • AMA1977 says:

      They ALSO chose a non-lawyer (Bossie) as the head of the legal team AND he has CV-19 from the election-night super-spreader event. Why would you have someone with no understanding of the law leading the legal team? For the same reason you’d have someone with no experience in education leading the Department of Education and why you would have a smug, caustic, pompous a$$hole as the nation’s top diplomat. This is an administration full of incompetents, sycophants, losers and idiots, starting at the top.

      Also, I believe that the NYT updated their estimate of Trump’s debts to close to $1 billion…

  8. Godwina says:

    Trump wasn’t alone in those briefing meetings, or in rooms when classified info was discussed. Trump isn’t several scary GOP staffers in the DoD and CIA, even before last week’s turnover. And quite a few of that inner circle have lots of reasons to sell out to foreign powers now that they face recriminations on the other end of their shit parade, or the least loss of status. People have GOT to stop thinking of the last 4 years as Tump Alone. Don’t fall asleep.

    • Becks1 says:

      This is my bigger concern, and I said a few days ago I think that’s what’s happening in the Pentagon – its about stealing intelligence.

      I don’t think Trump is smart enough to know what he knows, you know? (lol that was a sentence.) Like someone could tell him about all our assets in Russia and he’d be like, “my hotel is beautiful.” But like you said, he wasn’t alone in those meetings, and people got security clearances in his administration who should not have (cough Jared cough).

      • AMA1977 says:

        Jared is also real dumb. Like, really, really dumb. He’s been propped up by his family’s wealth of questionable provenance just like his father-in-law. I would be worried about his close friendship with MBS, but I just think Jared is as feckless and stupid as the orange idiot. Remember, too, that nobody surrounding this dumbass will have the protections of being an ex-President; one false move and they’ll be in deep, deep trouble. There will be eyes on them from all sides.

  9. SueBee says:

    Maybe the federal government should have Trump sign an NDA ;)

  10. Chris says:

    You had me at “is Donald Trump too stupid.” The answer is always yes.

  11. Seraphina says:

    HAHAHA, love the pic of him sipping water. We will know if he read the secrets if there are grease stains on the pages from his McDonald’s Big Mac.
    On a serious note, I think there are some with enough smarts to be watching him VERY closely right now, watching the entire Trump Clan.

  12. Rapunzel says:

    Trump’s gonna need Tiffany or Eric the slow one to serve as royal taster after leaving office. Putin has what wants already. Trump is useless to him now.

    He’ll have a “heart attack” or a second, worse attack of “COVID-19.”

    I really don’t care, do you? As long as he doesn’t become a martyr, and there’s no conspiracy theories blaming Dems, I not gonna cry if the orange one has an “accident.”

  13. BearcatLawyer says:

    What worries me is not that Cheeto Mussolini will expose or sell ACCURATE information/secrets but that he will create more chaos and problems by passing along INACCURATE information. For example, I could totally see him putting thousands of innocent civilians in harm’s way by lying about the locations of secret military installations. He really is that stupid, and we all know he believes his own bullshit. I just pray the Secret Service keeps a tight leash on him after he is chucked out of office. But I fear it is more likely that Putin or Kim Jong Un will arrange for his mysterious demise once they have gotten everything they can out of him.

    • Silent Star says:

      @bearcatlawyer, I think any foreign interest group knows full well that whatever he says cannot be trusted. I’m not worried about what he tells them. But I am worried about him getting others who know better to sell actual reliable information before he leaves office.

  14. Lizzie says:

    Anyone else think that some info has always been held back from him?

    • Seraphina says:

      I think that may well be the case Lizzy. He zeal to post every thought on Twitter alone should have signaled a bell to those behind the scenes that info should be filtered. And when I say Behind The Scenes, I don’t mean Jared and Ivanka.

    • grabbyhands says:

      I meant to add that to my comment as well. Hopefully national security recognized early on how much of his stupidity was a liability and just used his disinterest in the briefs to withhold sensitive information where they could.

    • liz says:

      I’d bet the house on it.

      And one of the first things Biden should do is sign the paperwork revoking all of Trump’s access to everything and anything (other than barebones Secret Service protection). Former presidents have historically been given highly classified intelligence briefings, so they could provide context and private advice to whoever was in office. Trump should not (and almost certainly will not) be given that courtesy.

    • Thirtynine says:

      I’ve always thought that. In sheer self-preservation. I don’t think he’d notice.

  15. Ellie says:

    You know what? Trump lost the election fair and square so I’ve decided that I’m not going to let him live in my head rent free anymore. We selected Biden/Harris. I’m sure they’re aware that Trump is a walking national security problem and the fact that he knows so much classified info is an issue. I also trust Biden/Harris to deal with this issue for us. I’m sure they’ll have a plan in place.

  16. Nini says:

    He has frontotemporal dementia. I extremely doubt he’s able to remember more than a very small percentage of the fraction he even paid attention to.

  17. grabbyhands says:

    HE doesn’t have to be smart. All the situation needs is for someone ELSE to be smart enough to wheedle information out of him and sell it themselves for the situation to unravel.

    Just because he pays scant attention to the briefs doesn’t mean he doesn’t know anything or can’t get his hands on sensitive documents to show someone else. The right person saying the right kind of thing (applying to his vanity or childish sense of revenge, say) could probably get access to any number of things. Look at his very first term when he and his entire family kept using their personal cell phones and they all got hacked?

    I don’t know why everyone thinks he has to be some kind of evil mastermind in order to do damage – he just has to be dumb enough and shallow enough to be manipulated and he is.

  18. Franny says:

    Mini-Mussolini’s pea brain might be too Adderall-addled to string two thoughts together. However, I’m concerned about Jared and Ivanka. Those two are smarter than Trump and they will sink just as low.

  19. Just a thought says:

    How worried should we be? Very f&@king worried. The Constitution needs to be updated to allow for the complete muzzling and (if necessary) monitoring of a previous president. If anyone thinks he is not already selling state secrets, they are idiots. He has no moral compass and does not give a sh&t about anything or anyone but himself.

  20. Izzy says:

    He might be too stupid, but I could see Jared or one of Trump’s spawn doing this, and they might be able to remember more details.

    • AMA1977 says:

      They’re all stupid, too. Born on third base and think they hit a home run, just like Orangino. And while Jared and Ivanka may have been in high-level meetings where such things would have been discussed, the other dummies weren’t. And I am confident that Jared and Invanka will be watched very, very, very closely by people much MUCH more intelligent, efficient, and covert than they are.

  21. Miranda says:

    Even if he (or someone else in his administration) steals some documents and plans to sell our secrets, we could probably catch them before they’re able to do much damage, because Trump can never keep his stupid mouth shut. He has a habit of “saying the quiet part loudly”. Just the other day, my dad and I were wondering how much he could’ve gotten away with if he hadn’t felt the need to share everything with the whole damn world and expect praise for it.

    • Blairski says:

      This. How much damage did an incompetent wanna-be autocrat do to our system? How much damage could a _competent_ one do?

  22. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    He’ll make a fast buck wherever and whenever he can. If he has to, he’ll turn Maralago into a petting zoo with moonwalks and revival tents.

  23. Tim Whatley says:

    I’m more worried about Kushner. That sneaky motherfucker needs to be watched like a hawk.

    • Lady2Lazy says:

      @ Tim Whatley, I agree!! There was a reason why he and Ivanka didn’t pass security clearances! Jared is certainly a fox in the henhouse!!

  24. Silent Star says:

    Yes! I have posted this here and elsewhere. He never really understood or listened to enough national secrets to really have any valuable information, and secondly, he is too much of a liar for anyone to believe what he says. I think he’s useless to foreign intelligence. That’s why I firmly believe he will not be sheltered by a foreign government after his presidency. I predict a terrible demise for him in jail. He will be a hateful, pitiful has-been with no money, no power and no influence. Ditto his two older sons. At least Don Jr. may find peace in a secluded hunting lodge somewhere as a survivalist, if he escapes imprisonment.

    I am more worried about Javanka and Stephen Miller.

  25. Nic919 says:

    Jared likely already has sold secrets to the saudis or Qatar or whoever gave him money to bail out his bad real estate deals.