This is the shit that happens in dictatorships and banana republics. What happened to the US law and order with due process? Hugs
If he were still running casinos in rough-and-tumble Atlantic City, N.J., President Trump’s demand about Microsoft’s possible purchase of TikTok might be translated this way: I want a piece of the action.
In exchange for blessing Microsoft’s acquisition of the Chinese-owned social media platform, Mr. Trump has said the United States Treasury should receive a “very big proportion” of the sale price. If he follows through, it would signal an effort to carve out an entirely new role for the federal government in exerting its powers to approve or thwart business deals with national security considerations.
In essence, the president is promising to orchestrate the kind of pay-to-play bounty that the United States prohibits companies from making to governments of other countries under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
And he is playing a role that is common among the autocratic leaders on whom he has often heaped praise: using the sheer power of his office to influence the private marketplace without clear legal or regulatory authority.
“It’s protection money. It’s not what the government of the United States should do,” said Avery Gardiner, the general counsel for the Center for Democracy & Technology, a nonprofit advocacy organization focused on digital rights, privacy and an open internet.
“It’s scary to think that it might apply in some parts of business and not in others,” she added. “It becomes a special tax if your business is involved in social media. but you can only do the deal if you pay the protection money. That’s even worse.”
“Very simple,” he explained to reporters this week about his approach to a TikTok deal. “I mean we have all the cards because, without us, you can’t come into the United States. It’s like if you’re a landlord, and you have a tenant. The tenant’s business needs a rent; it needs a lease. And so what I said to them is, ‘Whatever the price is, a very big proportion of that price would have to go to the Treasury of the United States.’”
Mr. Trump added: “And they understood that. And actually, they agreed with me. I mean, I think they agreed with me very much.”
Legal experts said there is also no law that explicitly prohibits companies from voluntarily offering a gift to the government, as long as it is not made under duress and the gift does not benefit any particular individual government officials.
But they also warn that extracting a large cash payment as a condition of a TikTok sale would undermine the integrity of a legal process that operates with specific, objective standards. That could set a precedent that deters similar deals in the future by injecting uncertainty into the prospect of any big business deal.
That appears to be exactly what Mr. Trump wants.
There is more at the link above. It is clear that tRump has reverted to his mob boss roots. He has been involved with the different organized crime mobs from the beginning. Now he wants to use the US government as he has known ever action all his mobbed up life. I do not know what it will take to wake up the 36% of the US are in the cult of tRump, but I do know that if we do not vote overwhelmingly blue this election the experience of democracy is over. Putin is overjoyed that he and his mob may be able to move fully into the US than just the fringes that they are now. Hugs