Jail-bound Michael Cohen laid down a warning during testimony to Congress last week.
He told a group of Republican congressmen, determinedly supporting US President Donald Trump by attacking his ruined former "fixer", to think again.
"I did the same thing that you're doing now ... The more people that follow Trump — as I did blindly — are going to suffer the same consequences that I'm suffering." Trump uses bluster to hide setbacks, but last week was an obvious humiliation.
Cohen, in Mob-world language, labelled Trump a con-man, racist and cheat while opening a window into the President's murky finances.
The Hanoi summit between Trump and Kim Jong Un — which experts say lacked enough preparation — was abandoned. The New York Times reports that Trump bet all on the North Korean leader accepting a grand bargain — denuclearisation for sanctions relief — and failed.
Trump started a firestorm in Vietnam by saying he didn't believe Kim would have ordered the mistreatment of American Otto Warmbier. "[Kim] tells me he didn't know about it, and I will take him at his word". Trump has now said at various times that he believes the word of the autocratic leaders of Russia, Saudi Arabia and North Korea over his own intelligence service, the media and public data.
Back home, the New York Times reported that Trump ordered officials to give his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, a top security clearance so he could be a presidential adviser alongside his wife, Ivanka, the President's daughter.
Kushner is a businessman, not a diplomat. He is unqualified to be engaging in the Middle East peace plan he is working on. Last week he met Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the president's son-in-law, an economic minister. The US shouldn't ape the nepotism of autocratic regimes.
More problems are on the way for Trump as Democrats dig deeper into his financial dealings. The House Intelligence Committee said Felix Sater, who Cohen said worked in Trump Tower and was linked to the Trump Tower Moscow project, will testify in an open hearing.
Washington Post writer Greg Miller noted on Twitter that the "Cohen hearing was astonishing for 1) sheer volume and variety of alleged misconduct by the president 2) extent to which it all seems plausible and consistent with what we know of his character 3) how numb we have become in two short yrs to such disclosures."
Trump sets a tone that gives others their cue. To critics, it's a tone without empathy and shame. Trump has helped blur lines between family and officialdom, and between autocratic and democratic systems.
While all the world's problems can't be blamed on Trump, his approach has either influenced or been in sync with populist leaders in Europe, Asia and South America.
Perhaps Cohen's warning could apply to them as well.