Robert Mueller, the Eye of Sauron

Special Counsel Robert Mueller

Monday

Comedy is one of the few things keeping me sane these days as Donald Trump continues to attack democratic norms. Seth Meyers’s “A Closer Look” is one of my must-sees, and recently the late-night comedian wondered how Donald Trump and associates are feeling as Special Counselor Robert Mueller bears down on them.  “Mueller is like the eye of Sauron,” Meyers said.

Frodo’s encounter with the eye in Gadriel’s mirror is terrifying:

But suddenly the Mirror went altogether dark, as dark as if a hole had opened in the world of sight, and Frodo looked into emptiness. In the black abyss there appeared a single Eye that slowly grew, until it filled nearly all the Mirror. So terrible was it that Frodo stood rooted, unable to cry out or to withdraw his gaze. The Eye was rimmed with fire, but was itself glazed, yellow as a cat’s, watchful and intent, and the black slit of its pupil opened on a pit, a window into nothing. Then the Eye began to rove, searching this way and that; and Frodo knew with certainty and horror that among the many things that it sought he himself was one. But he also knew that it could not see him—not yet, not unless he willed it. The Ring that hung upon its chain about his neck grew heavy, heavier than a great stone, and his head was dragged downwards. The Mirror seemed to be growing hot and curls of steam were rising from the water. He was slipping forward.

My worry is that Trump will panic under Mueller’s relentless gaze and do something epically destructive, like start a war with North Korea. In other words, that he will become Sauron.

Following this line of thought, the GOP leaders in Congress have become Nazgul, emptied out of principle and responsive only to the call of their leader. Middle Earth hangs in the balance.

The rest of us must be Frodo-strong. In the mirror scene, Frodo is recalled to his senses by Galdriel–think of her as our higher selves–and when he faces his greatest challenge on Mount Doom, the good that he has done saves him. The Resistance, like Tolkien’s fellowship, can take heart from that.

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