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The Trump hush-money trial reveals a seedy world shot through with moral rot

There is something important about Trump’s criminal trial in New York that’s not being openly talked about. I don’t mean we’re not getting the facts about what’s happening in Manhattan superior court. But something very big is being left out.

The trial has introduced us to a world of moral and ethical loathsomeness in which people use and abuse one another routinely. It’s Trump world.

Consider Stormy Daniels. Adult film stars are entitled to do as they wish to make money. But when they extort people who are running for public office – demanding huge payments in order to stay quiet about an affair – they’re contributing to a society in which every interaction has a potential price.

Last week we heard Daniels’s story, even more detailed and lascivious than expected. But perhaps the most troubling aspect of her behavior is that the moment the former president ran for office, she saw a chance to extort money from him. She then “shopped” her account of their sexual liaison before finally accepting $130,000 to be silenced in the 2016 election’s final, critical days.

Or consider Michael Cohen. Powerful people often need “fixers” – assistants that carry out their wishes and protect them from legal or political trouble. But when those fixers arrange payments to keep stories out of the media, they’re treading on morally thin ice.

Cohen didn’t just fix. He boasted of burying Trump’s secrets and spreading Trump’s lies. In his work for Trump, he repeatedly acted illegally and found ways to cover up his actions. After he paid Daniels to keep silent and Trump was elected president, Cohen concocted with Trump a means of being reimbursed that involved falsifying records that disguised the repayment as ordinary legal expenses, according to his

Read more on theguardian.com