Friday, August 28, 2020

All They've Got

It’s doubtful Trumpists want their children and grandchildren to die of the carcinogens he has deregulated. Because it’s likely they share other human characteristics, too, we assume they, like the rest of us, prefer a livable planet for their progeny; unflooded cities, temperatures compatible with human life, oceans able to support sea life. 
If forced to make the choice, one can’t doubt most Trump voters would choose the health of their grandkids over the pleasure of seeing undocumented children in cages at our borders, shouting “Lock her up,” or calling Democrats stupid names.
It’s pretty certain that, faced with the known consequences, they’d rather see money spent on education, roads and bridges, sustainable energy – maybe even childcare and programs aimed at helping people overcome poverty – than on enriching the already rich and tax cuts that increase our national debt while doing little for everyone else. 
Those would be logical choices for any thoughtful person, if Fox “news” were turned down and Trump stopped tweeting long enough for people to hear themselves think.  
Though Trump’s capacity for empathy is congenitally absent, we presume it’s present in many of his previous voters. It’s possible they could come to understand how having large numbers of people struggling without hope is a threat to our economy, democracy, and, therefore, eventually to themselves. 
Willingness to think beyond the short-term and past their current cloistered comfort is all that’s required. The ability was once inseparable from American greatness. Their current unwillingness is what separates Trumpists from everyone else.  
The point is this: except for conspiracy theorists, the already-rich, and people who need someone to hate in order to validate themselves, there’s nothing at the core of today’s Republican Party to attract “regular” Americans. Party leaders know this. 
Which is why they’re focused on making voting as hard as possible for likely Democratic voters, and on pre-discrediting election results, should they lose. Not to mention turning attention away from their absence of ideas and toward the tiny part of our population throwing rocks at police.  
First, it was egregious gerrymandering. When some plans were struck down by courts, they turned to voter ID laws, aimed at disenfranchising minority voters “with surgical precision,” as an ethical judge wrote while disallowing North Carolina’s. 
Undaunted, encouraged by SCOTUS gutting the Voting Rights Act because there’s no racism, red states set about removing polling places in minority neighborhoods, forcing citizens to travel far and stand in line for hours.  
But they forgot about voting by mail, which circumvents their favorite suppression methods. Quickly, that time-tested, virtually fraud-proof way of voting, used for decades by US citizens overseas, especially military members, and by several states, was declared corrupt. Despite being used by Trump et uxor and White House staffers, including those repeating his lies about it.  
Ah, but Trump came up with an answer to that, too: unable to force states to abandon vote-by-mail (he’s suing some), he called upon another ultra-rich, inexperienced donor; this time to delay mail by gutting capacity. 
Now, seeing states distributing ballot drop-off boxes that don’t require the USPS, he’s lying about them, too. Classic Trump: claiming Democrats are trying to “steal the election,” when it’s he and his doing just that.  
Not satisfied with Republican plans to deploy intimidating “poll watchers,” (and affirming his disregard for the Constitution), Trump threatened to send troops to polling places, too; sowing distrust of voting and Squaring the circle of repression he’s been employing since day one. As in Red- and Tiananmen-Squaring.  
They’ve admitted they have nothing else. In remarkable capitulation, Republicans wrote no party platform for this election other than pledging unconditional, abject fealty to Dear Leader. They’ll run on the fact that he kept the Obama recovery going (till he didn’t), neglecting to mention that, unlike President Obama, Trump did so by way of exploding deficits and damaging deregulation. 
Otherwise, as their convention demonstrated, it’ll be Trumples all the way down: ignoring the current economic pain of millions and the consequential future problems we face, in favor of peddling fear of, hate for, and lies about Democrats. By the outhouse-full. Plus “up-is-down” fabrications about the pandemic and the economy.
The contrast with the DNC was stark, as Trumpists set aside reality, literally calling Trump their savior. It’s beyond a cult: it’s religion turned upside down. Under Trump, Republicans have become prostrate idolaters, eschewing positive ideas in favor of outright lies. Trump’s incendiary doomsday demagoguery ties directly to the violence we’re seeing from rightwing militias. 
Calling him “the savior of Western civilization,” Trumpists are, in fact, all but ensuring its downfall. Cheering Trump’s flagrant, confident mendacity and his televised law-breaking, their convention proved it.

[Image source]


  1. Very well written, Sid, and your cartoon choice is perfect.

  2. Quickly, that time-tested, virtually fraud-proof way of voting, used for decades by US citizens overseas, especially military members, and by several states, was declared corrupt.

    From CBS News, July 14, 2001

    "A New York Times investigation into overseas ballots that helped George W. Bush win the presidency found that Florida election officials, facing intense GOP pressure to accept military votes, counted hundreds of overseas absentee ballots that failed to comply with state election laws."

    but hey, it was only a few hundred votes, "What difference does(did) it make??(HT Hilary Rodman)

    Frank "already voted(twice!)

  3. They weren't fraudulent, Frankie. They arrived late because they were, you know, US troops overseas. How long did it take your mail home from Germany take?

  4. It comes as little surprise that a Trumpenkleinkopf would declare himself an instant expert on corruption. Projecting as per the example of Dear Leader!

  5. While the GOP did not publish any platform for their cult-fest this week, they most certainly have a platform and agenda. Please read this piece by David Frum which delineates clearly what the GOP is really hoping to achieve. Oh, BTW, Frum is a Republican.

  6. @Mary Ellen: An excellent but greatly disheartening article by Frum. I think that there's at least one plank missing (triggered by the last one) —

    14. A president cannot lead if he does not have universal support throughout the government. The deep state must be ruthlessly pursued and purged until all federal servants swear allegiance, first and foremost, to the president himself.

  7. Hey, Strangelove! Yeah, it was sort of a gut-punch piece. I may be sort of a Pollyanna, because I didn't want to believe, really believe, that an American political party was so venal. But they are. They don't love our country in all its multi-racial, multi-cultural beauty. I will feel sorry for how much they are missing after we crush them like bugs.

    Your last platform plank is very appropriate to Frum's list.

  8. Hi Strangelove! Yes, that piece was sort of a gut-punch. Seeing it in black & white, just re-affirmed the little nagging in my consciousness of what we all see and hear every day. It has fully and completely set aside any doubt that Republicans are just plain old evil and anti-American.

    Love your additional plank!

  9. Interesting article. A record-setter in its brevity, not typical at The Atlantic.
    I keep wondering, since it is commonly spoken that no more than 30% of America supports the current whacky-dumb, then why is it even an issue for concern? What is it about the required 20% plus 1 electoral vote that prompts fear of the upcoming rout by Biden/Harris?
    Less than two months now, time to start measuring in weeks (not weaks). (OK, 9 weeks as I'm taking advantage of a 5-week month).
    Have faith folks. The end of the strange-ness monster is at hand!
    Joy!, is just around the corner...just through the next door...just over the hill...
    I can't wait for that day, since people are getting hurt/maimed/killed in the posturing going on now.
    And, was it just my imagination (?), or did Nancy look very old with her mask down just yesterday? Who is the he(i)r-apparent for her? At this point, that's a more important choice upcoming than the thrashing of the false one in embers of November.

  10. seeker of wisdom and truthAugust 29, 2020 at 12:11 PM

    The American colonial loyalists, who opposed the revolution against authoritarian British rule, have been resurrected by the MAGA leadership headed by wanna-be king Donaldo. They long for a autocratic government because they know they can never achieve absolute power in a democracy.

    The vast majority of voting citizens (in our greatest nation in history) love the freedom and justice they enjoy here. That they would give it up and accept a dictator or president for life tyrant as leader is not possible, if we just vote.

    The transition back to sanity and reality will likely be a little messy for a couple of months, but it must be done. This fiasco must be stopped, NOW.

  11. Well, Nancy is nearly 80 years old. Frankly, I think she looks great for any age but who among us hasn't aged some in this administration?

    Faith. I have none. Haven't for some time, which doesn't factor in logically with my previous comment about being a Pollyanna!

    Sorry for the duplicate post--somehow, the original got saved somewhere and I couldn't find it and then it posted alongside the second one. I guess it's okay though, as I am somewhat known for repeating myself.

    Good weekend to all.

  12. Fantastic cartoon! Wonderfully inspired piece.

    Since the writing of this, some 17 year old kid in a state that requires you to be 21 to buy a gun, decided to kill people for no reason.

    You can't feel threatened 4 states away. Or 1 city away. Or 6 blocks away. No, you can only have your life threatened if you go to where it's most likely to be threatened and then escalate the situation once you get there. That is the surest way. The cops coddled him and his conspirators. Shocking that the cops would do that, I know.

    The kids was saying before he started killing people that the cops green lighted the massacre. "The cops told me they'd push them, this way and let us deal with them." In a preemptive, give self permission approach to justify his killing 'libs' in cold blood. Help himself get it all straightened out in his own head as to the justifications needed to kill indiscriminately. I assume he was sober through all this. Him and his traveling band of idiots didn't bring food and water. They brought guns and bullets though.

    This is about "White Rage". A black POTUS is the ultimate affront. "There was no racism until Obama was elected" they'll say. Nobody said they were geniuses.

    As for "Frankie no facts" up there. Do you ever have your facts straight?

  13. In the video you linked to above you can watch the 2nd guy getting killed, and the 3rd guy getting his arm all-but-shot-off. The 3rd guy had a gun, so that will complicate things somewhat for him. The 2nd guy hit the kid with a skateboard in attempting to take his gun when the kid tripped.
    The news is reporting the 1st guy killed as a convicted and served 12 years child molester (Arizona), and the 2nd as a convicted domestic abuser ("strangulation and suffocation"), and the 3rd guy a convicted burglar carrying his gun illegally.
    Antioch, IL is only 21 miles from Kenosha, WI. The kid was an utter idiot for doing what he did, since he has destroyed his life now no matter what happens to him in court (probably multiple-life sentences).
    The situation should cause those who open-carried in Snohomish to think a bit about what they did (I hope). There are all sorts in and among the protesters, certainly those who set fires to buildings and threaten others are something other than the intent of those who march.
    I fear for the innocents who have no idea of what and who our police are faced with in their at times very difficult jobs.
    As for me, I'll remember patrolman Shoop, and will continue my respect for the police in our cities and state; and wherever I may travel, the same.
    I think there will be a repercussion to all this unrest, and think police budgets will increase instead of decrease. Nationwide.

  14. Worse than the act itself, in many ways, is the rush from such leading lights as Tucker C., Laura I., Ann C., etc, to praise the shooter. There will surely be more.

    And it's doubtful the kid knew the backgrounds of the people he hunted down. Whoever they might have been, they were murdered in hot blood.

    If Trump and those rightwing excrements didn't pull the trigger, they secured the weapon and handed him the bullets. And they're giving permission and reason for the next and the next and the next.

    Not to mention the evidence that police departments are increasingly populated by militia groups and white supremacists. There will be hell to pay after the election, no matter the outcome.

  15. I assume that's "Frankie no facts" responding to me...

    "In the video you linked to above you can watch the 2nd guy getting killed, and the 3rd guy getting his arm all-but-shot-off. The 3rd guy had a gun, so that will complicate things somewhat for him. The 2nd guy hit the kid with a skateboard in attempting to take his gun when the kid tripped."

    What you witnessed was a frightened murderer running from the scene of the crime and people yelling "He just killed somebody" as they try to catch him.

    "The third guy had a gun..." And? A good guy with a gun can't stop a bad guy with a gun?

    Then this beauty...

    "The news is reporting the 1st guy killed as a convicted and served 12 years child molester (Arizona), and the 2nd as a convicted domestic abuser ("strangulation and suffocation"), and the 3rd guy a convicted burglar carrying his gun illegally."

    Ummmm...So you trying to justify the murders? Who cares what their crimes were. They paid their debt. It doesn't allow for vigilante violence either. So why mention it? Because, just like that 17 year old, you need to justify it any way you can. Except you need to completely disregard the facts and the laws to justify it. No problem for the alt right.

    "The 2nd guy hit the kid with a skateboard in attempting to take his gun when the kid tripped.""

    Yeah, cuz he's murdering people. Duh...

    A black dude jogging is reason to chase him down in a truck and "arrest him" and if he resists, to kill him for trying to take the gun away from a guy saying he is about to murder you. Then make up a reason to justify the crime. They even taped it. Then lied about why.

    Thanks for proving my point...Alt right violence is OK in their eyes. The alt right wants a war. That's what everyone sees on the news. Alt right nut jobs armed to the teeth and supported by the cops.

  16. Excellent speech by Pete Carroll yesterday.
    Let's hope many hear it, and that it helps all of us overcome this craziness.

  17. Are we tired of the alt right racist cult and it's followers? Many of whom are cops of all stripes. I got a lot to say after this week, but this is better than I could do.

  18. You know, all the Rittenhouse defenders I see online start their arguments with Rittenhouse running from the crowd that was chasing him after he shot the first person. I can get that he felt his safety was in jeopardy, but since he created the situation, it was his bed to lie in.

  19. He needs to be tried as an adult.
    He won't get pardoned if Drumpf loses.
    I'm sure he'll be a hero in prison...heheh

  20. "...that police departments are increasingly populated by..."
    Heard on KOMO4 news tonight that new Chief of Police Diaz takes over tomorrow, and, first thing he'll do is increase headcount by 100.
    This, in response to citizen requests coming in due to the current unrest.
    It wasn't a prediction of mine, rather, it's simply recognition of cause and effect.
    Expect this in other cities as well, and, imagine the problems screening new applicants for what you mentioned, Sid.
    Law of unintended consequences I suppose.

  21. What a coinkydink.

    It seems someone else takes "Frankie no facts" ridiculous defense of a double homicide by the alt right 17 year old. The only difference to what I wrote in reply and this video is that she takes it to the logical conclusion. I stopped at the point Frankie did. That it's justified self defense. It's premeditated murder. Even his lawyer didn't believe his own words. See for yourselves. This is a serious takedown.

  22. Local guy makes good!
    And, Morgan had another letter published at The Herald recently too!

  23. You know, tying together what you wrote about the high overtime wages police are getting due to the constant unrest, they are pocketing 100,000's of monies with their regular salaries (the Fed gets a great cut of OT wages, of course!).
    Another unintended consequence may be that the very police being dissed are accumulating massive riches, and the older ones may opt to retire early and move away. With NW housing prices they'll be doubly enriched, too.
    In most small cities between the coasts, the "flyover states", a person can buy a palace of a house for $200K, and most houses here start at $700K and go up over a million quickly. Policemen owned type houses that is.
    In this way, diversity might hit police departments across the country. All will depend on their hiring polices I suppose. Again.
    Interesting, no? The Goal may still be achieved!

  24. I didn't say this.

    Anonymous said...
    "You know, tying together what you wrote about the high overtime wages police are getting due to the constant unrest,..."

    Stop putting words into my mouth. I do not agree with your opinion. Therefore I couldn't have possibly said anything you agree with either.

    Drumpf wants to talk about "how we used to treat...x,y and z..."...

    This is how we Americans used to treat white supremacists.

  25. "I didn't say this." But you did refer us to an article detailing the wages of a number of the highest paid Seattle Police. In that article the writer did a break-down of the wages, detailing their regular salaries, and their extra amounts, which were well more than half of their salaries. You then wrote "they're not worth half that amount".
    I did my usual diligence in checking the data, and then following through to see if any were living in opulence, which by Google Map "drive-thru's" of their neighborhoods, they're not. Conclusion, they're pocketing they're immense riches from the incredible overtime they're earning having to deal with crazed fools among the protesters every night (it seems), you know, putting out fires and the like. No wonder temporary C.O.P. Diaz is increasing manpower by 100 in those areas, to decrease the total amounts paid from his budget, which the Seattle City Council can't affect due to Mayor Durkan's veto.
    If you didn't want me and others to read the article(s) you link to, perhaps just give the synopsis.
    And, yes, fundamentally, you and I will disagree on many things. since I don't hate the police. In fact, I like the police, I respect the police, and I want all good things for our police who stand the line between me and the incredible despair that exists "out there" where I wouldn't go, even if I received the ballooned overtime they're getting as a direct result of the horrible things going on in a few of our cities.
    Or, should that be fun-da-mentally? That's a fun word we could have fun with. (life is fun for me in my old age. It's why I like Jack so much, and, the Docs, both of them. And, the others, too, it would be great if THEB would open their comments up again, but I don't think they will at this point. Still)

  26. Smoothie expresses a radical view of policing. I believe he is ignoring the obvious role they are commissioned to perform in our justice system. The inhumanity they are forced to confront as a group each day is daunting. I am thankful for the courage they display on behalf of the community they serve. As a necessary force in civil society, they must be respected and honored.

    Justice demands that they, like every government official, are NOT above the law. The police who break laws must be held accountable just like the criminals they are expected to confront.

    The financial compensation of policing is a matter of supply and demand in a capitalistic society. Are we willing to pay the cost?

  27. On this here blog o' mine, it's fine to disagree with each other and present counter-arguments. But there's no need to do so with direct insults, of the sort that ultimately shut down the Herald's comments.

    Is how I see it.

  28. "Now, seeing states distributing ballot drop-off boxes that don’t require the USPS, he’s lying about them, too. Classic Trump: claiming Democrats are trying to “steal the election,” when it’s he and his doing just that."

    People are always down on this president and his enablers being ignorant, but here we have an example of their deep historical knowledge, and we just overlook what they're trying to tell us. These folks are clearly referencing the 1876 election, which failed to give either the R or the D an EC majority because four formerly Confederate states sent in two different EC tallies. In at least one of these states (and only one of them was needed to create an EC majority and end the dispute), it could not be determined which candidate had the majority of the state's voters because several ballot boxes had been stolen after an armed confrontation with a group of masked men as the boxes were being brought to the state capitol for a recount.

    Look, they're telling us that they're going to send masked men to steal a bunch of ballot drop-boxes. Icing on the cake if they can get some friendly court to declare that the lost votes would have put Trump over the top in the affected state, but they don't need that outcome for this to work for them.

    All the Rs have to do is to repeat 1876, and create a situation in which Congress has to vote to determine which EC vote tallies to accept. However much it's the rules that presidential elections are actually, legally, decided on January 3 by a vote of Congress on which EC tallies to accept, people most definitely do not think that's the way presidents are elected. The ironclad norm in people's minds, the unwritten constitution, says that a president is elected by a vote of the people, filtered maybe through this EC vote nonsense, but still ultimately a vote of the people. If Biden or Pelosi only becomes the president by the written rules, by a vote of Congress, that is all the Rs will need to keep in office Trump, who they will claim really won, by force of arms. It was those masked Ds who stole the ballot drop boxes who started it, don't you know.


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