Even if you’re an avid follower of the news, it’s hard to keep track of Donald Trump’s scandals. The president’s singular governing innovation has been to engage in grift so baroque, so galactically expansive, that trying to comprehend it all at once tests the limit of the human mind. Revelations that would have been shocking in the world we all lived in a few years ago — for example, news that the president overruled his staff to insist on security clearances for his fashion designer daughter and her husband — now take up half a news cycle, at most.
Still, it’s worth trying to summon whatever is left of our pre-Trump sensibilities and pause to consider the epic sleaze of the unfolding story of Li Yang, also known as Cindy Yang.
Yang, in case you haven’t heard of her yet, is a Florida businesswoman whose family owns a chain of massage parlors that,?as The Miami Herald put it, “have gained a reputation for offering sexual services.” Last month, Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots and a close friend of and donor to Trump, was charged with two counts of soliciting prostitution at a spa Yang founded, Orchids of Asia. （She reportedly sold it around 2013, but online reviews indicate it was known as a place to buy sex before that.） Kraft pleaded not guilty. The authorities have said that Orchids of Asia is part of a?major sex trafficking operation.
如果你还没听说过她，这里先简单介绍一下：杨莅是佛罗里达州一名商人，她的家族拥有一个连锁按摩院，如《迈阿密先驱报》（Miami Herald）报道，“以提供性服务著称”。上个月，新英格兰爱国者队（New England patriot）拥有者、特朗普的密友兼捐赠人罗伯特·克拉夫特（Robert Kraft）被控在杨莅创办的亚洲兰花水疗中心（Orchids of Asia）参与两项卖淫活动。（据报道，杨莅在2013年左右卖掉了它，但网上评论显示，在那之前，它就是一个以性交易而闻名的地方）克拉夫特否认有罪。当局表示，亚洲兰花牵涉一起重大的性贩卖交易。
On Friday, The Herald reported that Yang attended a Super Bowl party at Trump’s West Palm Beach country club, where the president was cheering on Kraft’s team. It turns out that Yang was something of a regular in MAGA-land, posing for selfies with Trump, his adult sons, Kellyanne Conway and others. According to The Herald, she and her relatives donated $42,000 to a pro-Trump political action committee and more than $16,000 to Trump’s campaign. Last February, she was invited to the White House for an event put on by Trump’s Asian-American and Pacific Islander Initiative, an advisory commission.
周五，《先驱报》报道，杨莅曾参加特朗普在西棕榈滩乡村俱乐部举办的超级碗派对，总统在那里为克拉夫特的球队加油。事实证明，杨莅是这个圈子里的常客，经常和特朗普、他已成年的几个儿子，以及凯莉安·康维（Kellyanne Conway）等人合影自拍。据《先驱报》报道，她和亲戚曾向一个支持特朗普的政治行动委员会捐款4.2万美元，向特朗普的竞选团队捐款1.6万多美元。去年二月，她获邀到白宫参加一个由名为“特朗普的亚裔美国人和太平洋岛民倡议组织”（Trump’s Asian-American and Pacific Islander Initiative）的咨询委员会举办的活动。
Now, there’s nothing new about donors paying for photo ops. But Yang was more than just a hanger-on. Both?Mother Jones?and?The Herald?found evidence that Yang, who emigrated from China, ran a business, GY US Investments, selling Chinese executives access to Trump, his family and Republican officials. According to Mother Jones, she claimed to have gotten her clients into the most recent New Year’s Eve party at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort. The Herald reported that Yang arranged for a group of Chinese businessmen to attend a Trump fund-raising event in 2017 in Manhattan at which tickets, which foreigners can’t legally pay for, started at $2,700. Her Chinese-language website, which appears to have been taken down, said she was hosting a conference at Mar-a-Lago later this month; Trump’s sister was listed as the guest speaker.
现在，捐助者出钱换取合影机会已经不是什么新鲜事了。但是杨莅不仅仅是一个逢迎权贵的人。《琼斯妈妈》（Mother Jones）和《先驱报》发现证据，表明从中国移民到美国的杨莅经营着一家名叫GY美国投资（GY US Investments）的公司，向中国高管出售与特朗普、他的家人和共和党官员接触的渠道。据《琼斯妈妈》杂志报道，她声称把客户带进了特朗普的马阿拉歌庄园（Mar-a-Lago）最近举办的除夕派对。《先驱报》报道称，杨莅安排了一群中国商人参加2017年在曼哈顿举行的特朗普筹款活动，该活动门票起价2700美元，但外国人买票进入是不合法的。她的中文网站似乎已被撤下，该网站曾称，她将于本月晚些时候在马阿拉歌庄园主持一个会议；特朗普的妹妹被列为特邀发言人。
News that the owner of a chain of dubious massage parlors was brokering foreign access to the president of the United States should be a big deal. It has the potential to be a sex scandal, an intelligence scandal and a financial scandal all at once.
“There are profound national security implications to this kind of relationship,” Jeffrey Prescott, a senior director on the National Security Council under Barack Obama, told me. “It goes to the obvious opportunities that foreign governments and interests are going to see to have influence over this president because of the way that he’s arranged his business practices.”
“这种关系对国家安全有着巨大影响。”贝拉克·奥巴马（Barack Obama）任内的国家安全委员会（national security Council）高级主任杰弗里·普雷斯科特（Jeffrey Prescott）告诉我。“外国政府和利益集团显然有机会通过这位总统安排商业活动的方式，发现如何对他产生影响。”
Mother Jones has reported that Yang is an officer in local branches of two groups tied to the Chinese government: the Council for the Promotion of the Peaceful Reunification of China and the Chinese Association of Science and Technology. It’s hard to know what to make of these connections. Chris Lu, a former deputy secretary of labor who was a co-chairman of the White House Asian-Americans initiative during the Obama administration, cautions against casually imputing dual loyalty to Yang or anyone else.
据《琼斯妈妈》报道，杨莅是与中国政府有关的两个组织在当地分支机构的官员，它们分别是促进中国和平统一促进会（Council for the Promotion of the peace of China）和中国科学技术协会（Chinese Association of Science and Technology）。很难说应当如何把这一切联系起来。前美国劳工部副部长、奥巴马政府期间的白宫亚裔美国人倡导组织联合主席卢沛宁（Chris Lu）警告说，不要轻易认为杨莅或其他任何人是两面派。
What’s clear, however, is that Trump owns a club where all sorts of characters can purchase access to him. Lu said that when he served in the White House, his rule was that “anyone who comes in contact with the president or is in the room with the president needs to be vetted. Who the hell is vetting people that are going into Mar-a-Lago?”As Prescott points out, when Trump met with?Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan at Mar-a-Lago in 2017, a club member snapped photos as the two men discussed a North Korean missile launch. “If you were interested in information about how the president is conducting the public business while at the club, there are a number of routes in,” Prescott said.
This goes beyond Mar-a-Lago. On Friday, The Guardian reported on?foreign nationals using shell companies?to donate to the Trump inaugural committee. Sam Patten, a lobbyist, has pleaded guilty to?illegally helping a pro-Russian Ukrainian oligarch?buy inauguration tickets for $50,000. Under Trump, America’s leadership and its secrets are for sale. Maybe that’s why the news about Yang hasn’t been earthshaking. When it comes to Trump’s clubs, she seems like someone who would fit right in.
还不仅仅是马阿拉歌庄园。周五，《卫报》（The Guardian）报道称，外国公民利用空壳公司向特朗普就职委员会捐款。游说者萨姆·帕顿（Sam Patten）承认，曾经非法帮助亲俄的乌克兰寡头以5万美元购买特朗普就职典礼门票。在特朗普治下，美国的领导层及其秘密可以被出售。可能正因如此，关于杨莅的消息才没有引发世人震惊。说到特朗普的俱乐部，她似乎是会在其中如鱼得水的那种人。