Topics: Civics, Civil Rights, Fascism, Human Rights, Politics
“All governments suffer a recurring problem: Power attracts pathological personalities. It is not that power corrupts but that it is magnetic to the corruptible.” Frank Herbert
No less than “created realities” Karl Rove and “the room where it happened,” and knock-off Yosemite Sam, John Bolton, have said it’s time to throw in the towel. Twitter has flagged his gaslighting, and is going to have to decide if a lame duck lunatic is beneficial to its bottom-line. Unlike Bolton, I don’t think the GOP (gang of Putin) is “coddling” him.
I think they completely understand their audience.
Mike Pompeo is a West Point Graduate, and Harvard-trained lawyer. He knows the State Department is supposed to coordinate the transition, and magical thinking announced to his boss’s rabid followers only delays the inevitable. He does plan to run for president one day, and he’s trying to “ride the dragon” the right-wing has created over 40 years. 70 million Americans are the byproducts of 40 years of hate radio, Alex Jones, dark Internet sites, and Fox propaganda. They all decided to despite evidence, in the words of Tom Nichols, vote for the sociopath. That for all intents and purposes is their “base.”
Reagan is a paper saint: he started the birth of this dragon in Philadelphia, Mississippi, blocks from where Cheney, Goodman and Schwerner were found. The “wink-and-nod” to white supremacy had begun. It metastasized in four decades to a racist bullhorn after the nation’s first, and, only black president.
Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham used the pushed-on-the-bench Amy Coney Barrett to secure their positions in the Senate, where they do absolutely NOTHING, except hold on to power for mostly their rich constituents, and the poor white rubes that think they hate the demographics shift as racially as they do. They are cynically playing this game because of the close races, that should not be close in Georgia for control of the Senate. The miracles of Jon Ossoff, and Reverend Warnock both poised to oust incumbent Republican senators will cement Stacey Abrams’ Fair Fight as a blueprint that should be replicated nationally, that is if the democrats want to have power going-forward. She will win the governorship in 2022. The House however, lost 10 seats, and Georgia is in a runoff, that shouldn’t have been this close in a pandemic where the leader of their party is woefully inept, and WAY out over his skis. But competence isn’t necessary to authoritarians.
Authoritarianism, principle of blind submission to authority, as opposed to individual freedom of thought and action. In government, authoritarianism denotes any political system that concentrates power in the hands of a leader or a small elite that is not constitutionally responsible to the body of the people. Authoritarian leaders often exercise power arbitrarily and without regard to existing bodies of law, and they usually cannot be replaced by citizens choosing freely among various competitors in elections. The freedom to create opposition political parties or other alternative political groupings with which to compete for power with the ruling group is either limited or nonexistent in authoritarian regimes.
What Republicans should worry about is a more serious run of failure. Republican presidents — Donald Trump and George W. Bush — have now spent almost all of their last nine consecutive years below 50% approval. Add George H.W. Bush’s final year, and that makes 10 of the last 13 Republican presidential years, with the only significant exception coming in the period after the Sept. 11 attacks (we can’t know for sure, but it seems likely that George W. Bush was heading underwater by then).
In other words: Whether or not Republicans have a popularity problem, they certainly seem to have a governing problem, one that at this point could be symbolized by Trump’s utter inability to deal with the pandemic, or by the party’s years-long attempt to dismantle the Affordable Care Act without having any alternative to offer. It is, of course, perhaps just the luck of events that dealt Republican presidents five of the last five recessions. And the Iraq War. And the coronavirus. But my suggestion to the party, if it has lost the presidency, is to spend some time trying to figure out why its presidents seem to have such a tough time in office.
Why Can’t Republicans Win the Popular Vote? Jonathan Bernstein, Bloomberg News
When you cannot win a popular vote, you probably won’t want people voting. Which is why I don’t think we can afford to relax, even after this Herculean effort.
There’s the runoff elections in Georgia’s Senate race, that will decide if Mitch McConnell maintains his majority leadership, or Chuck Schumer assumes it, finally. It will decide if Joe Biden and Kamala Harris can get their agenda done, or this is a unique one-off due to the pandemic. It will decide how LONG we’re suffering from the pandemic long after 45 is fighting subpoenas for his taxes, business practices, and trying to stay out of prison. I doubt his running for president in 2024. There are too many ambitious republicans that want to ride the dragon Kraken he’s summoned. They don’t necessarily NEED him for that, and they are hopelessly dependent (and, afraid) of their base. There’s an off-year election in 2021, where local seats can be decided by the Koch brothers or local citizens. There will be a midterm in 2022, where Kevin McCarthy is already eyeing the Speakership for himself. We don’t get a break, because authoritarianism and fascism will never take a break.
The next authoritarian will likely, not be a buffoon.