Thursday, July 16, 2020

We Have Met The Enemy

As Trump’s unfitness and venality become more apparent every day, there’s someone emerging who’s an even greater danger. It’s you.

Yes, if you still support him, it’s you. You’re the reliable enabler of his cyclonic destruction. He knows it. He counts on you to let him get away with his uncaring ruination, and unless you tear off the blinders, broaden your sources of information, you remain inextricably part it.

If you’re unbothered after what’s happened even in just the last few days, you can’t claim to care about America or the rule of law (the actual rule of law, not Trump’s counterfactual “law and order” campaign doublespeak). Not to mention the health of our planet and people. Ask yourself if you’d have been equally unbothered had President Barack Obama done what Trump is doing.

Consider Roger Stone, the smirking embodiment of Republican electoral trashing since the resignation of the malefactor whose face is tattooed on his back. For decades, he’s gloated about his lies and corruption. Convicted by a jury, unanimously, of seven felonies, ones that threaten the integrity of our justice system – obstructing Congress, perjury, witness intimidation – all to hide Trump’s crimes, Trump let him off, and he’s gloating even more. “He knows I was under enormous pressure to turn on him,” he said. “... But I didn’t.”

Consider that as you accept Trump’s claim that Stone was “treated very unfairly.” Understand that when he says he could have turned, he’s acknowledging he knows the crimes. Like a Mafia don, Trump rewards silence, telling his other made men, too: lie for me, I’ll take care of you.

If you vote for him anyway, you’re complicit. When you cast your non-corrupt, not-counterfeited-by-a-foreign-country mail-in ballot, check the box that says presidential crime and cover-up is okay by you. Have a look at the photo of Stone flashing the white power sign, surrounded by neo-Nazis pals doing the same. If you have no objection, your unqualified devotion puts you in the picture, too.

If you were unconcerned when Trump’s (not our) Attorney General fired every US Attorney looking into Trump’s and his family’s and his consigliere’s crimes, and the one investigating Mitch McConnell’s wife, you’re hastening the unchecked power and unpunished criminality he seeks. For this is definitional autocracy; it’s Putin’s Russia, Kim’s North Korea, Saddam’s Iraq. By pretending otherwise, convincing yourself it doesn’t now and won’t ever affect you or your children or theirs, you join history’s collaborators, by whose acquiescence dictators have always taken power. People like you, the silence of the cowed, are the reason it happens.

How about Trump’s thersitical attacks on Dr. Anthony Fauci? Like Trump, do you share Gameshow Chuck Woolery’s take: everyone is lying but Trump? If so, let’s talk about that, too, because here’s the thing: changing his message when facts change is to his credit: science isn’t static. It looks for errors, admits them, evolves with new information. Does Trump? Do you? (Update: Woolery deleted his Trump-retweeted tweet: his son just got the virus.) 

Dr. Fauci’s early statements can be questioned, when he still hoped Trump would become a leader. And Trump brags about “closing” entry to the US from China (late and only partially), after Fauci said it wouldn’t help. That’s Trump’s indictment. Two million cases and one-hundred-forty thousand deaths later, who was right? When he turns reality upside-down, asserting he saved “millions of lives,” Trump figures you’re willing to forget his delayed action, absent planning, and mockery of and refusal to follow the recommendations of Dr. Fauci and governors like ours. 
And now he’s cutting the CDC out of its longstanding business of data-collection and analysis. Confident of your gullibility, Trump’s only plan is to hide facts and overwhelm you with disinformation. (But if you praise him, he’ll turn the Oval Office into QVC for you.)

As with climate change, Trump’s incapacity is confirmed by his resorting to impugning coronavirus science and scientists. Having spawned the planet’s worst response to Covid-19, he’s trying to avoid blame by discrediting and silencing one of his only credible voices. Who, unlike soulless sycophant Mike Pence, thinks you need and can handle the truth. Trump’s attempted Maoist-like purge of Dr. Fauci is a humiliating admission of failure. As always, Trump defaults to his lifelong behaviors: attack, blame, deny, lie. And grift. Always the grift

To continue his transgressions against America for his own benefit, Trump counts on you to be not just part of the problem, but the problem itself. Are you, still?


  1. seeker of wisdom and truthJuly 16, 2020 at 11:23 AM

    Even today, there are people in Germany who would eagerly support the Nazi regime under Hitler. Despite the overwhelming evidence of the evil forces the Fuhrer launched on the world, those fools remind us of the gullible minority of American voters who currently persist on supporting Drumpf's tyrannical assault on our precious democracy.
    We should not be led by a self-admitted amoral person. Hoping for a miraculous conversion is not impossible, but in Drumpf's predictable past performances, only fools drink the Kool-Aid.

  2. History demonstrates the only thing that's ever created meaningful change, policy and otherwise, in this country is protest. Feet in the street. Civil Rights, Vietnam, and oh, BLM. Lately I've been hopeful there will be more significant change to come with more protests. Protests against failed leadership and everything you've railed against for years. I'm no leader on these issues, but when the American public collectively decides they've had enough of trumpism, I'll follow, I'll be there marching again. To spite our governments tear gas and rubber bullets. To spite Bill Barr. Now is the time. It's past time. Bunker boys head would pop. That would be nice. However, CV19 and conservatism have a wonderful allies- stupidity and intentional ignorance. There's another battle going on against living memory, those of us old enough to remember when truth was a thing, that it mattered. Millennial's and those going forward have little experience with such things. So we get back to Asimov quotes. Or Vonnegut quotes. And so it goes.

  3. PBS just did a great show ("American Experience," I think) on woman's suffrage, confirming your point on protest as the vehicle for change.

  4. Mary Ellen HardyJuly 17, 2020 at 8:48 AM

    Great column, Sid. A Houston physician, Dr. Hotez, spoke of the disinformation campaign on Nicolle Wallace's show a couple days ago, warning that the change of hospital reporting to HHS on CV19 is further evidence of the administration gaslighting us. He knows what he's about too, as he has been fighting disinformation on vaccines for years. He has a child on the autism spectrum and wrote a book, "Vaccines Did Not Cause Rachel's Autism" because of all the crazy conspiracy talk about it over the years. He adds the change from CDC reporting to HHS reporting to the following evidence of disinformation: Sidelining then discrediting Dr. Fauci, offering dangerous and junk science (bleach, anyone?) and untested medications as cures for the virus, constantly lying about the trends in infection, hospitalizations, and deaths from his own megaphone and now, others like Kayleigh McInane-y and Peter Navarro.

    I just hope hospitals will be wise enough to continue reporting to Johns Hopkins for data collection so we will have accurate information going forward. The virus is what is going to kill his "presidency" and while I would like to see everyone in America in compliance with masks and physical distancing, as long as that moron keeps talking, he seals his own fate. Note: I am not relaxing my efforts to defeat him in any way. Until Biden's hand is on the Bible on January 20, 2021 I am in this fight.

  5. What goes around, comes around ! This is starting to resemble the early 30's. When you forget the past, you will never see the repeat coming have said what I have said for over three years. He is N.G. and always has been . Time to flush them.

  6. I fear that, like ww II, this will end in blood. Who sheds the most will be the loser. We are faced with a mounting white power movement. People are being kidnapped by unidentified men in white vans in Portland, What the Fxxx!!

  7. The column is great, comments are too. It is exhausting trying to deal with people that think Trump is being so abused, ect. I didn't even bother to look up your dollar word Schwab, that is exhausted. Have nothing to add the the excellent comments, just wanted to say it is a pleasure to read them. Linda Schrier

  8. (temporary reappear)
    I saw my first article extolling Susan Rice for Biden's VP choice.
    My own high praise for that.
    Joe needs to break the pattern of the media determining things, i.e. everyone thinking it should be any of those who were on the debate stage with him.
    There are other good choices, but we would do well as a nation if Susan Rice were with him when (not if) he destroys the recent aberration in November.
    Almost only 3 months away! We'll need much help after Nov. 7 thru Jan. 20, as it will be a time of intense weirdness, no less difficult than recovering from a quadruple bypass.
    (OK, back to self-exile :-)

  9. I like her as a candidate, too, ks. Smart, experienced. And don't be a stranger. If I may say so, I think you kinda overreacted. I like reading your thoughts.

  10. (one more, because of your encouragement...)
    The picture is a seal for me. What a beautiful family, with one who also has a beautiful family. Those things matter to me like none other. Wouldn't it be great to see a current one! Perhaps the President would bring his like family, too! And, well, Joe's, too!
    ALL of the people considered "for" Joe are smart, witty, capable, etc. But, Mrs. Rice has been married since 1962 to one person, and, well, in those arenas I find much to like about her.
    When people try to ruin a beautiful picture with graffiti, the canvas is all important to the restoration. Foundation.
    (I'm no less weird than I was, thankfully. Thanks for the kind words)

  11. That's a great picture, and speaks greatly.

    These days, whenever I see a picture of Obama I'm likely to weep for those days.

  12. I heard second hand today from my most reliable source that gunshot wounds are up, and that overdose deaths are up among young people. I am sure that there are other secondary and tertiary casualties that also deserve to be combined with the COVID-19 totals due to Trump's complete incompetence and criminal dereliction, and indirectly the Trumpist's complicity.

    Good to hear from you, too, ks. Rice would be an excellent choice. Biden needs to select a strong woman.

    Let's hope and pray that Ruth Bader Ginsburg recovers soon from her latest setback.

  13. Take care ks,

    I like Susan Rice too, and your judgement on her character of sustaining a long term commitment is what many of us weigh character.I'm not one to think grabbing a bible and finding God at a convenient time shows much character, quite the opposite. Speedy Recovery to all in need of health, it helps to stay interested in our countries survival as well as its 'citizens.

  14. Modern version of the SS in PDX.
    DOJ no longer independent (including use of secret private army)
    CDC no longer reporting CV19 data on administrations order.
    Not allowing CDC or other scientists to testify on school reopening.
    Add the rest of the orange ones abberational, unethical, immoral, and law breaking behavior the last five years. The complicit GOP, particularly McConnell, has sold the country down the river at a price yet to be determined.
    I’m itching to find a venue near me whereby I put my feet in the street so I can chew on some rubber bullets and breathe teargas.
    I’m ready and willing. Enough is enough. I’m such a hot head.

    Whew. Very angry. Had to get that off my back. Thanks. Looking for my gas mask and sturdy walking shoes.

  15. Totally agree, Cory. It's exactly the kind of government rounding up citizens that our "patriotic" militias were warning about and arming themselves against. Their sudden silence says it all.

    Trump needs to lose. Not just lose, but get crushed. And the Senate needs to flip. Otherwise the people who are excusing this shit will still be voiced. It's scary as hell.

  16. seeker of wisdom and truthJuly 18, 2020 at 10:31 PM

    The Nazi "Gestapo" has been resurrected in our country today under the leadership of the presidents chief advisor, Stephen Miller. He is a rabid white-nationalist bigot who is responsible for the immigration fiasco of separating children from their parents in concentration-camp style prisons.
    The unwarranted use of untrained federal agents in Portland is truly un-American. What could go wrong? Have the immigrant children been reunited with their families after 2 years?

  17. All voters are enablers.
    You can’t eradicate cannibalism by eating the cannibals; there is no better analog for what voting is.
    The voting booth should reconfigure the ballot lever to a dildo and require the Helots to use their mouths to make the selection of their next master, it also provides a keen preview of things to come for the voter.
    “A ballot is just a substitute for a bullet. If your vote isn’t backed by a bullet, it is meaningless. Without the bullet, people could ignore the election outcome. Voting would be pointless. Democracy has violence at its very core!” ~Muir Matteson, “The Nonviolent Zone”
    "Free election of masters does not abolish the masters or the slaves." Herbert Marcuse
    "Working within the system means to become a part of the system. When you go into the voting booth, the only meaningful significance that your action will have is to show that one more person supports the state". ~Mark Davis
    "Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich, by promising to protect each from the other." ~ Oscar Ameringer
    "An election is a moral horror, as bad as a battle except for blood; a mud bath for every soul concerned in it." ~ George Bernard Shaw
    "If the right to vote were expanded to seven year olds ... its policies would most definitely reflect the ‘legitimate concerns’ of children to have ‘adequate’ and ‘equal’ access to ‘free’ french fries, lemonade and videos." ~ Hans-Hermann Hoppe

  18. Biden's Family Members Have a Long History of Crime, But Serve No Jail Time

  19. Thanks for dropping by, Ed. First a libertarian/anarchist screed that makes, give or take, zero sense, and then a list of horrifying crimes by the Biden family: smoking a joint, shoplifting, by a few relatives.

    I assume you find those crimes equivalent to the crimes I've listed in the post, and those that were, until Barr stepped in, under investigations by grand juries and US attorneys. Sorry, Ed. That doesn't fly.

    As to those voting quotations, well, it's true that the rule of law requires buy-in by citizens. We're seeing what happens when a "president" ignores the law, and when he encourages citizens to ignore simple rules for controlling the virus.

    Maybe it's the difference between liberals and Trumpists: the former don't need the threat of violence to recognize the value of certain rules, whereas Trumpists prefer marching around, armed to their carious teeth, as a warning that they'll follow only those laws they like.

    In any case, it's nice to be reminded of the "thinking" we're up against if we ever manage to restore sanity. So thanks for that.

  20. Hey, Ed, you want guns backing up elections? How does this strike you:

  21. Speaking of guns, and to compliment your Ed argument more clearly (to me anyway) - I find it interesting that gun rights activists claim their 2nd amendment rights allow them to keep guns to protect themselves against a tyrannical government. Yet we see the evidence of the tyrannical government in Portland with storm troopers, but where are the gun rights activists now? Will they be there during the elections at polling places? In this case it foils their argument as complete hypocrisy, using the gun rights argument to support a tyrannical government. It's jacked.

  22. That's gonna be the subject of my next column, Cory, unless something even worse happens in the meantime.

  23. Thumbs up to Cory and to you, too, Sid. I am anxiously waiting for your next column.

  24. Something I've said before, and worth saying again. In my experience, there are two "seconds" that trip the yellow flag on my "nutjob" detector. First, in a religion-themed discussion, participants that are overly preoccupied with the second chapter of Acts. And second, in a political discussion, participants that are overly preoccupied with the Second Amendment. (Since that's the topic of the next column, next week's comment forum will be an exception.)

    On Twitter last week I saw a COTP congressional candidate who had in her profile "Christian", "MAGA" and "2A". I was tempted to ask her what her feelings were about the second chapter of Acts, but I figured I'd already given her brain enough of a tilt for one day by calling out the contradiction in her identifying as Christian, yet supporting the First Spiritual Boogerhead.

  25. No worries, Mythigator. The subject isn't the 2nd Amendment. It's the lack of outrage among so-called patriots who were ready to fight an authoritarian government.

  26. People bitch, whine, moan and complain about my loud, straight ahead, damn the torpedoes, now let's hear what you have to say attitude. Well, it's life and death, that's why anyone claiming that peaceful protesters were heavily armed specifically. Well? Now we have the secret police arresting peaceful protesters and bystanders w/o any probable cause. What if one, just one had a gun and started shooting cops? It'd be a fucking massacre with dozens of secret and not secret police's retaliation...THAT'S why! Kent State on steroids. And lo and behold here we are. Or how about this? Unwanted secret police in the city/state and the gov/mayor wants them gone. A war between secret police and the regular beat cops. Is that a better outcome as a result of ignorant stupid that harms everyone? Nope, it's not.

    I say we instead quit thinking stupid shit is true by not being ignorant. I say we learn from history. If you can't read? Then have someone read this blog for you. If you don't know what "stupid" "Ignorant" or "Fuck" actually means, look it up in the dictionary, then head over to the thesaurus(look up the definition of "thesaurus"). Then you begin to gain true perspective. But, if after all this you still wanna roll with the alt right, then go ahead and don't cry when people say you are full of it when you constantly claim to be a Democrat, and more of a democrat than myself. You can make that claim, but it's self evident, I am a fully evolved modern progressive w/a keen intellect and equipped with more comebacks than a paddle ball...And if you do/don't know that about me, then don't engage me, or wake me up by endangering us all with stupid, ignorant shit that will cost lives of innocent people and bring down our entire govt...I'm way more calm and polite otherwise. I can't be all bad. 'Lil old ladies ADORE me. I'm serious. Kids, animals and 'lil old ladies are my core voting block, always has been. OH! And Kids, animals and 'lil old ladies are among the most harmless in any society, including the animal kingdom...and 2 outta 3 are the cleanest as well!

    So that's me and how I deal with things and how I see it in real world terms and apply it. Life is a learning process that never ends. So standing pat and being defensive, pitiful and unwilling to set me or anyone else straight is on you, not me or anyone else.

    I have never been a silent wall flower. I certainly ain't gonna change now. Especially with so much recent affirmation that has supported my claims for decades. All of which are in the blog here.

    I encourage everyone to make the effort to help in some way. For example...Poll workers are in desperate need. In some states you can be 16 years old.

    I thought this is a perfect pairing with your brilliant perspective.

  27. "These days, whenever I see a picture of Obama I'm likely to weep for those days."

  28. Which presages the opening of my next column:

    "Maybe it was a dream. When Barack Obama was president, and now it sure seems like a dream – intelligence, integrity, competence, humor, nice family, no indictments – weren’t a bunch of self-described “patriots” hoarding guns and ammo like toilet paper in a pandemic?..."


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