Friday, March 17, 2017

Continued Stray Thoughts on the Current Political Climate

With the cascade of stupid, immoral, illegal, subversive, un-American, and possibly treasonous things emitted by der Sturmtrumper, his pet Congress, his supporters, and his administration reaching levels that make it nearly impossible for any sane person to keep up with, I’ve started just keeping a running list of observations on the matter.  Every time the list reaches critical mass, I suppose I’ll post it and start a new one.  Can’t hurt; might help.  Here’s the most recent list:


1. It’s actually kind of refreshing how the GOP under der Sturmtrumper has decided not to bother hiding the thuggish core of racism that is at the heart of the modern right-wing movement.  Back in the day, of course, they’d dog-whistle it with code phrases like “law and order,” “welfare reform,” “school choice” or the like, but now it’s right out there in the open and they’re proud of it.  Iowa Congressman Steve King – always a reliable source of right-wing insanity – recently voiced his approval of Dutch embarrassment Geert Wilders, saying “We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.”  Whose civilization is he talking about here?  Whose babies?  What does he want restored?  In case the answers aren’t immediately obvious, you should know that King’s tweet was immediately retweeted with glowing approval by David Duke, whose previous claims to fame were leading a large branch of the KKK, losing a Louisiana gubernatorial election to a convicted felon (“Vote for the Crook!  It’s Important!”), and explicitly endorsing der Sturmtrumper as a man his agenda would be safe with.  Say one thing for racists – they recognize their own.

2. I’m not even going to go into the fact that anti-Semitic attacks have doubled since der Sturmtrumper has seized power.  Think of it, folks – actual, honest-to-God Nazism.  You know, there was a time when this country awarded medals to people who shot Nazis.  Just saying.

3. You’d think that people in political office would know better than to have Twitter accounts by now, but then you’d be wrong.

4. Microwave ovens?  Seriously?  I suppose it is true, after all, that you can’t wear a tin-foil hat inside one of them.  Maybe that’s part of it.

5. Do you ever get the feeling that der Sturmtrumper and his minions, cronies, and lackeys, are just making things up as they go?  It astonishes me just how stupid they think people are, and how right they seem to be.

6. So Republicare is going to be more expensive, cover fewer things, and kick 24 million people off health care coverage completely in the next decade or so if it is enacted in its current form – 26 million if you go by the White House’s own estimates – and this is the party of “values”?  As my dad used to say, “Hitler had ‘values.’  Talk to me when you have ‘morals.’”

7. According to PolitiFact – a non-partisan fact-checking source – of the 375 statements from der Sturmtrumper that they have checked, only 4% of them have been rated as “True.”  17% - more than four times that number – have been so outrageously false that they’ve been rated as “Pants on Fire.”  Even if you combine True, Mostly True, and Half True you still only get 32%.

8. This is why the modern GOP has been on such a rampage against fact checkers for the last two decades, going back to W’s criticism of the “reality-based community.”  It’s a pretty straightforward tactic, really – discredit the people who actually know what’s going on and you can get people to believe whatever you tell them, no matter how vile, immoral, deluded, or hallucinatory.  And this brings us back to the GOP platform, after all.

9. So der Sturmtrumper is now 0-fer-2 on Muslim bans, according the federal court system.  One more and he strikes out.  Of course, he could take the blatantly unconstitutional and criminally subversive stand that professional morality sinkhole Mike Huckabee, the man who keeps running for the presidency of the Southern Baptist Convention instead of the US presidency because he can't seem to tell the difference, tweeted out in the wake of that decision (seriously – some grown-up needs to take away these guys’ social media accounts) and just ignore the direct order of the federal judiciary and go full-fledged tin-horn dictator.  Because FREEDOM!  I just love how the GOP pretends to love the Constitution right up until it keeps them from absolute tyrannical power, and then it’s just something to ignore.

10. Anyone who seriously complains of “judicial overreach” might as well staple a big sign to their forehead that says “I have no fucking clue how the US Constitution actually works and I will waste your time until you figure that out and walk away.”  It would save those of us who have actually read that document a lot of time and spare us the ordeal of cleaning spittle off of our clothing.

11.  So we’ve already had a miniature Saturday Night Massacre and der Sturmtrumper hasn’t even been in office two months yet.  It’s customary to replace US attorneys when an administration changes, but to fire the lot of them with no replacements ready to come in – and to go out of your way to fire the one who was investigating your own crimes, particularly after you explicitly asked him to stay on after meeting you in November – is rather unusual and frankly suspicious.  For an administration that doesn’t seem to care about the appearance of conflicts of interests – they have too many actual conflicts of interests to worry about appearances, really – I suppose this is par for the course, but it is disturbing nonetheless.

12. Say it with me, folks: “Fake news is not defined as ‘news you don’t personally want to hear.’  That’s called journalism.”  Things that provide comfort to preconceived world views without reference to reality are not journalism and may be labeled fake, but the fact that your ideological bubble is being punctured does not automatically qualify the sharp object doing the deed as fake news.

13. That’s not a budget.  That’s a declaration of war against the United States. 

14. What do you see when you look at that abomination of a budget unleashed into the world by der Sturmtrumper and his minions?  You see an attempt to keep Americans poor, sick, and ignorant.  You see an attempt to undermine American communities and strengthen the billionaire boss class who regard the rest of us as their property to be used and disposed of at their pleasure.  You see the logical culmination of the Republican Party’s ideological progression from conservative to neo-Fascist over the last quarter century.  You see that the New Freedom is just another name for serfdom.  And no doubt you’ll see a great many toxic people shouting about how lovely all that is and how much greater it makes their crabbed little version of America, because there is never anything so morally bankrupt that you can’t find support for it over on the right wing.

15. If you’re looking for a blueprint for how to destroy a consumer economy – an economy reliant on consumer spending to generate prosperity, create jobs, and provide wealth – you could do no better than to follow this budget.  This is a textbook example of taking money out of the hands of the poor and middle class, who would spend it and drive the economy forward, and giving it to the parasitical wealthy, who have many flaws but stupidity isn’t one of them and will simply hoard it rather than spend the money to build factories to create things that the poor and middle class can’t afford to buy.  The mechanics of economics are tricky, but the general ideas really aren’t that hard.  One of the signal victories of the American right wing in the last fifty years has been convincing 47% of the American electorate that slitting their own economic throats is their patriotic duty, and this budget is the logical product of that.

16. And as if on cue, der Sturmtrumper’s budget director gets up in front of the press and announces that they’re cutting Meals on Wheels because feeding the elderly and the shut-ins isn’t giving a high enough return on investment.  You know, if you saw this in a movie you’d be angry with the director because this level of cartoonish villainy is just too amateurish – no actual human being could possibly say such a thing and expect to walk out of the room without being stoned to death by nuns.  These people are actually evil, and they don’t care if the world knows it.

17.  Also, the GOP war on science is now effectively over and the ignorant have won.  We don’t need to understand the world around us.  We certainly don’t need economic progress, potable water, or cures for diseases.  All we need is to kowtow to the boss class and enjoy our shortened, impoverished lives. 

18. The United States has now officially had to apologize to our oldest and staunchest ally for some of the reckless, irresponsible, and hallucinatory things that der Sturmtrumper tweeted out from the White House shitter the other day.  When you elect a clown, you get a circus.


Unknown said...

David, you made me Google "microwaves and politis." Dutch politics has been huge here the last few days, so I didn't hear all of the lunacy in the States.

David said...

We're a nonstop factory of political lunacy these days. I hope your lunacy ends now that the election there is over - glad to see that the right-wing extremist lost. :)

LucyInDisguise said...

#13. No doubt about it any more. I love you.

#14. What to I see? See Above.

I see that the Girl Guides in Canada will no longer risk their lives by visiting the U.S. The Dutch have proven that the adults are still in charge, at least for the time being. And TexRex appears to be picking a fight with North Korea and China.

Fun times abound in the asylum. I do so believe that John Watson was right. And several years ahead of his time:


David said...

Aw, shucks, Lucy! You make me blush. :)

And the Hitchhiker's Guide reference just seals that deal. At some point, somehow, we will need to meet up for a meal or two.

The Girl Guides are smart people. I see that tourism has already declined and so have international student applications. Dark times.

Someone needs to show Trump The Princess Bride, especially the scene where Vizzini outlines the Classic Blunders.

LucyInDisguise said...

You may endeavor to all your heart's desire to instruct.


(See #5.)