There are some secrets too terrible for man to know. There are some runes which destroy their interpreters. There are some texts which, when opened, lay waste the minds of those who contemplate them and spread devastation all around.

And yet, knowing this, we still sought the release of Donald Trump’s tax returns. Oh, fools that we were! Fools that we are!

Four years ago, an attempt was made to audit Donald Trump’s taxes. Where are those audits now? What audit takes four years? Some say they sent the auditors in, young and spry, and none of them has returned. Another rumor has it that one of them stumbled out and his auditing hand was missing — no wound, just as though an eraser had been taken to the end of his arm. Whenever he tried to speak, words would catch in his throat. He kept opening his mouth, turning purple with effort, and — nothing, except, in once instance, a frog, which took two feeble hops and fell dead on the spot.

Donald Trump is merely trying to spare all of us this young man’s fate. He has nothing to hide. He has nothing to fear. Every president in recent memory has been glad to share his tax returns, yet Trump persisted in concealing his. He has, as he has repeatedly said, no cause for shame. Then what possible explanation could there be, but that he was trying to protect us from this hideous knowledge man was not meant to know?

It has been said that a single glance in the direction of these tax returns will turn a man into Roger Stone. It is said that before he looked upon the tax returns, Stephen Miller was merely … but we must not panic.

Only Donald Trump himself can withstand years of exposure to the Thing in his returns, and look what has become of him. Even his impeccable health and his great brain are showing signs of strain. (As he himself admitted to Sean Hannity, he recently took a cognitive test whose administrators were “very surprised” to discover the results were as good as they were.) Donald Trump is our last bulwark against this vile minotaur, and when it makes its way out of the protective labyrinth of lawsuits and into the light of day, I only pray it will spare us.

The Supreme Court says he is not above the law, and now he can protect us from the mind-destroying contents no longer. It has been a good fight. Soon, whether we like it or not, we, too, will be forced to look upon his tax returns. Donald Trump did all he could — the gruesome revelation will not occur, in all likelihood, until after the election — but now the day must come.

Do you remember how the world was, before we started trying to look into them? Those years ago, before the murder hornets, and before the forest fires? Do you see what is happening now, as the last efforts to contain them fail? Do you see what wrack lies before us?

Why did we seek to know? Why did we not take him at his word? Ah, fools that we are! Soon we will all know, and we will all be sorry.

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