Thursday, May 20, 2021

They'll Never Change

The more things stay the same, the more nothing changes. Isn’t that what they say? Whatever. The point is, everything that can be said about Trumpism and our democracy has been said. Written. Filmed. Sung. Satirized. Tweeted. By politicians, historians, pundits, celebrities, comedians, influencers (whatever that means). Yet Trumpists still believe. If the Republican Party won’t renounce Trump’s big lie, democracy’s death is inevitable.

They won’t, and it is. To secure unpopular policy, their leaders are squarely on the side of untruth, committed to ensuring that their minority views will continue to override those of the majority of Americans. And why not? From their politically-packed, Roe-v-Wade-threatening Supreme Court down to state legislatures and local elections, it’s working. Two-thirds of Republicans still believe Trump’s election lie; half favor continued jiggering of election laws over presenting compelling policy. We’ve run out of gobs to smack. 

Unless Republicans acknowledge the no-fraud legitimacy of President Biden’s win, election-related laws pullulating in red states should be understood as ways to maintain their policy-lower but electoral-upper hand, undisirregardless of what they say about “restoring faith.” Lost faith in democracy has been their goal all along; it’s their excuse for voter suppression. It’s as if… Nope. There’s no analogy to such an obvious ruse.

Their latest are laws designed to intimidate poll-workers and observers. By the preceding understanding, it’s to prevent their chicanery from being reported. The intimidation also applies to those watching ballot drop-boxes, while requiring 24/7 observation thereof. Fewer watchers, fewer boxes, already disproportionately lacking in red-state Democratic precincts. 

Those are only the most noticed attacks on fair elections. Less publicized are laws that could have Republican legislators, not voters, deciding who wins in their states. As the non-partisan Protect Democracy reported: “… In 2021, state legislatures across the country—through at least 148 bills filed in 36 states —are moving to muscle their way into election administration, as they attempt to dislodge or unsettle the executive branch and/or local election officials who, traditionally, have run our voting systems… American democracy relies on the losers of elections respecting the results and participating in a peaceful transition of power. If, instead, the losing party tries to override the will of the voters, that would be the death knell for our system of government…” 

Notwithstanding attempts to erase what happened, we came close in January. Fearing the truth, with whataboutist excuses and acceding to demands by the Instigator-in-Chief, Republican leaders are lining up to prevent meaningful investigation. Even without a 9/11-style inquiry, though, it’s easy to know the what, why, how, and who of the insurrection. All Trumpists need is to detox from Fox “news” and its replicants. Timely example: last week, Hannity showed a clip of President Biden being asked about the Colonial Pipeline hack, edited to make it appear he gave a “bizarre” answer. It’s the kind of lie his viewers absorb like a sunburn.

So what shall we expect from the Arizona “recount,” dark-money paid and subcontracted to a rightwing business with no relevant experience, whose owner believes the election was stolen? Whose rules are lax, methods constantly changing, workers untrained. Using UV light to find secret Trump-placed watermarks; concerned about 165-thousand incinerated chickens (not kidding); hunting, by looking for bamboo droppings, for forty-thousand forged ballots they believe were shipped (beamed?) from Asia. (Possibly off-point, your columnist won’t be repurchasing bamboo toilet paper anytime soon.)

If they uncover nothing, will the two-thirds of Republicans who believed the big lie be convinced? History says no. And, given by whom and how it’s being conducted, if the recount “finds” fraud it’ll be suspect. 

Committed to a lie and the damaged man who promotes it, today’s non-conservative, democracy-rejecting Republican leaders show no sign of reacquiring their decades-past sanity; nor do the majority of their voters. There’s money to be made, by Trump and the conmen and propaganda networks around him, in keeping the delusions alive, no matter the damage to America. Or their trusting followers

The only way we’ll return to a functioning, two-party Congress is if those who still believe Trump cares about them, and that he made America great (and that liberals are communists and Fox “news” is truthful), will un-scale their own eyes; unimaginable though it be. By now, it’s clear: no amount of pleading, cajoling, or Demosthenesing from without will make it happen. (Check this, if no others.)

Absent bottom-up reformation from within, no one – least of all a small-town columnist with too much love for tinyurls and creating hapax legomena – can effect the Republican awakening that America so urgently needs. Which begs the obvious question. 


  1. Here's the pharma is also good for every other part of government and just good all around life advice.

    Use facts, common sense and full transparency to solve problems...

    My girl Katie tells us how...As only she can :O)

    1. I adore Katie Porter. Smart as a whip, prepared for any situation, and clear in her point of view.

      Fun fact, well, at least to me. Her mother is my quilting idol, Liz Porter. She and her friend, MaryAnne Fons, were instrumental in reviving interest in quilting arts in the 70s. An empire was built.

    2. Are you familiar with local quilting hero Kathy McNeil? Does amazing, award-winning stuff, and teaches all over the planet.

    3. I had not heard of her, but I have her webpage open right now. Thanks for the tip!

  2. The AZ Secretary of State wrote a letter to the seditionist "President" of the AZ Senate a couple days ago, notifying her and the Senate proper that because their "auditors" have not followed chain of custody with the Maricopa County voting machines, they must be destroyed. The machines, not the Senate or "auditors", that is. Sadly, because destroying the former and not the latter is short-term. I only hope it will be a deterrent to other Republican seditionists that a waste of millions upon millions of dollars of perfectly good equipment is antithetical to fiscally conservative values. You know, those of which the Republicans used to care about. However, I saw reporting that similar Faux Audits are being undertaken in Georgia and Michigan.

    I am frightened and worried. I wrote just that to Senators Murray and Cantwell, and Congresswoman DelBene, my peeps in DC. It seems one of the only remedies to all this is to speak more loudly and more often than the seditionists. I implored them to do so and not be so damned polite. Dems need to be talking about the insurrection every day. They need to be talking about the voting rights thievery attempts every day. They cannot rely on the efficacy of policy to carry the day. Unfortunately.

    1. Yes to everything you said. It's very scary. And not only to Rs have the electoral upper hand, they have the advantage of being less inhibited about lying and playing dirty than Ds. At this point, salvage seems impossible.

    2. I hate to think we are lost. I can't really accept that yet.

    3. I hate the thought, too. But if the multitude of flashing red lights hasn't awakened the Foxified, what will?

    4. Nothing? Too late? I finally accept the fact that the party is over. It's sunk in. Yup, too many turds in the punch bowl. I'm just trying to sort out how it'll all warsh out, what's next, and how to prepare for it. At this point there is simply no going back. It's still sinking in, like a dull knife in the back. Maybe we have a few years, maybe not. Will it be safe? Given the escalating gun violence in this country, I don't think so. It's not all that safe right now. Have I shot my lose cannon mouth off too much? Will our corporate overlords accept an autocracy? They squeak like mice now, barely heard. Is autocracy good for profits? Perhaps the Fox corporation is THE corporate overlord all others bow to? I wish I could do a runner, New Zealand might be safe for a while. I'm sure someone smarter than me could present a few scenarios to chose from, how this will progress. I'm lost. I don't feel secure for the freedom of my children and grandchildren. Especially with the likes of Tucker and Hannity calling the shots, they despise themselves as cowards, therefore despise the responsibility of freedom. It's so fucking surreal. Social and political sanity are illusions. I'm purdy sure I've never done LSD, but I imagine it could feel this way.

    5. Hard to disagree with any of that, Cory.

      One bit of good-ish news: Trump's blog, that was gonna "revolutionize" social media, has been a big flop, garnering a tiny fraction of the following he had on twitter, etc.

      Which makes it even more inexplicable that R leaders refuse to reject the big lie.

  3. A great bit with Michael Steel whom I love. He's hilarious. The lady also seems sane.

    1. Michael Steele is so over his party! Yet, he stays a member attempting to reform it. There are many of them now, and I wish them great success. Remember when we thought Dubya was such a dummy (he is) and horrible at his job (he was) and that was the worst they could come up with? How naive we were.

    2. "Kinzinger said that Republican voters have "had their patriotism abused by somebody that simply wants to use it to maintain power."

      There's a few who are trying

  4. Just another reminder that you can't trust these people. They can't see through this guy. They send him money and attend alt right conventions. This black dude is their "faith leader".

    They are too stupid to see through it all and dangerous as a result. Or they are corrupt. None are "honest" in any sense. We simply need to out work and out smart them. We need to stop this need for cooperation at all costs. NO! Being stupid, naïve, ignorant etc. all has costs. We all know this. Being able to rid yourself of those has benefits. We all know this. We need to vote them out and replace them where they are. They'll never agree or compromise because it's about race and money. We the people need to do everything in our power to vote and stay focused on the prize. It's easy to dwell for money and racist desires. If we don't move forward we lose America.

    “If we are to have another contest in the near future of our national existence, I predict that the dividing line will not be Mason and Dixon's but between patriotism and intelligence on the one side, and superstition, ambition and ignorance on the other.”

    Ulysses S. Grant

  5. On the edge of your topic, Sid, but if we should be waiting and hoping for a bottoms-up reformation, today's letter to the Herald seems to disabuse us of hope. His Cliff Notes are missing a couple of pages, but given the lies and distortions so firmly held in today's GOP, I seriously doubt that he will initiate any reformation.

    I hope to soon read a letter from a better history student than I was that takes him to task.

    1. As it happens, Gary, I've changed the planned topic of my next column, to a response to that letter.

      A middle paragraph, sure to be revised many times:

      "His accounting was quite impressive; we may suppose he got high marks in high school history. However, his lesson about Southern Democrats stopped somewhere around the year 1965. From that point on, it could use a little filling in, so let’s. Some key terms to keep in mind: Southern strategy; LBJ; Voting Rights Act; Civil Rights Act; Shelby County vs. Holder. We’ll try to cover them all."

    2. Give him hell, Dr. Schwab. This guy thinks Drumpf is a moral person.

    3. Hey brother...What letter?

      I can't find it. Can fire off a link please?

      There's a lotta things I lost now that I think about it.

    4. It's the letter in the Herald about Democrats and racism; the one you provided a link for. Unless there's a reference here I missed.

    5. A supposedly mature and educated person is spewing this historical anachronism as current fact. I got nothing...

    6. Oh OK! Thanks man...Yeah, I wanna meet this dude and have a discussion.

      "Underestimate me...That'll be fun" said someone once.

      Even a blind squirrel finds a nut and that rodent is me!

    7. Hey Sid, there is an article in The Nation that is apropos to your new opinion piece.

    8. Wow Mary, that was sweeet! Finally an article about "We've been here before". I'm a history nerd. I love anything history related. Like ancient alien theory etc.

      Here's a comment from that article you suggested. Does it sound like anyone we know? This wonderful human being, "Walter" is a-typical garden variety racist garbage that permeates the party of Christian values, states rights of snowflake whitey.

      He uses an F-bomb and I did not edit it for clarity and complete context. I don't wanna be accused of canceling him or being "PC". I'll let him speak for himself. I'm getting completely out of the way.

      "Walter Pewen says:
      May 27, 2021 at 3:39 pm
      I did not want to read this through and I'm glad that I did not. A few comments submitted from people I know who regularly show up here affirmed all I need at this particular moment. What a stressful piece to put out at this moment in time. "The White Party." Well, not exactly.
      You will never make sense if you go on like this for all your days, but maybe that is not your goal.
      At 63 years old I will emphatically say the Democrats are not just as bad as Republicans when it comes to racial equality. How fucking stupid."

      Need I remind everyone what Drumpfs presidency was, exactly as I predicted? Not us...But this guy defiantly does...

    9. Forgot to highlight the quote...

      "I did not want to read this through and I'm glad that I did not.

  6. Excellent! I am anxious to read it. I suspect that poking him will yield a bit of a spike in your love letters.

  7. This guy is quite the story teller. It's usually the racists that use this tired exercise to prove their righteous bona fides.

    As always...The argument is actually liberals vs. conservatives. Not Democrat vs. Republican. Odd how these righteous folk deliberately project and deflect onto their enemy.

    Disingenuous at best. Diabolical to be accurate.

  8. "The question that Biden, Manchin and others obsessed with bipartisanship must ask themselves is this: If Republicans will filibuster and block a thorough investigation into a shocking, violent, unprecedented attack on our democracy, why would they hesitate to obstruct everything else the Democrats might propose, no matter how worthy or necessary?"

    I read this in a Post article...

    It was a great article but he missed it by a little

    What's to keep them alt right messes from promoting more violent attacks? "Poll Watchers". Random violence. Running down protestors in cars. Stealing votes and elections. Assassinations. It's all happened before. It's happening now. Ask Gabby Gifford sometime. I'd say ask a few others but, they are dead. They tried killing Ronnie. Odd how the alt right fears their own voters as a result of their hate spewing. So they carry firearms as a prop and protection both. Insist on defying the Capitol ban on firearms on the floor. Well, someone's gonna die on the floor someday because these people are radicals bent on overthrowing the govt. because it's not going their way politically. Today it's let them in through the back door to breach the building. Assault sieges. Tomorrow? Simply start "the war" on the floor by killing Nancy and Chuck plus other key Dems. Why not? It only costs 5k for carrying a gun onto the floor where the worlds most powerful and influential work daily. Like FedEx, right?

    These people are desperate. They are just smart enough to know that this time there's no "We'll get em' next year." Because 'merca isn't as white as it used to be. Another reason is it's getting less white by the second literally.

    The final plan is to etch out a homeland of their own. They can't take on the real Americans. So they will do the Bundy Bunch and Ruby Ridge crap. Like the Polygamists'. Their own lil' phantasy land of pure whiteness like that place in Florida with all the golf cart Nazi's.

    They will lash out in cowardly attacks. Shooting up Democrat offices around 'merca. Especially in the Confederacy. That's another thing. These people are STILL dwelling on THAT war that they lost 150 years ago. The hate has done nothing but grow in their souls.

    They know they won't be around for climate change. They have no kids in school. No kids that visit them anymore. They are angry people who gravitate to what's angry. To what feeds that habit. To a personal network that supports that habit and partakes with you in bathing in hate while golfing. They have disinvested and feel like they are about to be robbed because we need money for roads and schools. They are so angry they will kill anyone they deem responsible.

    Maybe they'll lop off all the younglings heads with light sabers as the younglings study science and human behavior in class like Darth Vader. We wouldn't need schools or daycare or healthcare...


Comments back, moderated. Preference given for those who stay on topic.

Popular posts