American-Style Fascism (Sept. 5, 2017)
The future is already here – it’s just not evenly distributed — William GibsonThe biggest con job ever pulled on the American people, besides the presidency of Hair Füror, was the rhetorical sleight of hand that equated freedom with capitalism. No matter how much lipstick you place on it, capitalism is the antithesis of freedom. Decisions come from the top. Everyone is expected to obey. Disobedience (dissent!) is not tolerated. Information is tightly held and shared only on a ‘need to know’ basis. Everything is done for the benefit of those at the top. Tr/mp and his advisors have brought this ethos into the executive branch of the government. Decisions come from the top or from hand-selected Wall Street advisors. Obedience is required. Disobedience is not tolerated. Information is tightly held, and everything is done for the benefit of Tr/mp, the royal family, and his sycophants. This same ethos exists in the Republican party. We saw their slash-and-burn politics with the confirmation of Neil Gorsuch, and the delight with which they hope to throw twenty-four million people out of our already-hobbled national health plan. While Tr/mp has not fully embraced the idea of a dictatorship in America, he has provided more than ample evidence that the idea is beginning to crystallize in his mind. The dictator-in-training expressed frustration with our government, calling the system “archaic,” and the rules of the House and the Senate “a bad thing for the country.” Following the same logic used by businesses that are opposed to regulations on their activities, the rules of government “forces you to make bad decisions.” Those rules, messy, frustrating, but integral to a country of laws, need to be changed “for the good of the nation.” We already know that the Republicans are on board with anything that changes rules in their favor. We also know that the dictator-in-training is ready to enforce his will with a “good ‘shutdown’ in September.” We are in a race against time to see what happens first. The indictment of Trump and his cronies on charges of collusion with the Russians, or a terrorist attack, whether real or imagined, that will be the lever used to flip the country to an American-style dictatorship.
Our American Hitler (Sept. 6, 2017)With the termination of DACA, our American Hitler signed a death warrant for 800,000 people. His Hitler-inspired advisors are following the Hitler playbook. Removing citizenship from a group of people makes them vulnerable. It removes the umbrella of legal protection. People without legal protection can become victims. Hitler instituted the Nuremberg Laws to codify, in law, who was and who was not German, and therefore who would, and would not be protected by the government. Then he made life miserable for German Jews so they would leave. Then in 1938 he expelled approximately 15,000 Polish Jews who, like many in the DACA program, were more familiar with their host country than their country of origin. Some had not been in Poland for a generation or more. What do we think will happen to 800,000 people who suddenly find themselves without a country? What if they have children that are U.S. citizens. Will they be expelled too? Does that mean anybody can be expelled from the country. Where will it end? How will it end? The future does not look bright.
Hope for the Best (Sept. 9, 2017)We haven’t gone “full Nazi” though, in our own way, we’re accelerating towards a similar goal. Our version of the Nuremberg Laws is the rescinding of DACA and the (re)classification people as “illegals.” Our version of the Gestapo – ICE – has been known to use Gestapo-like tactics, pulling people out of their homes, out of courtrooms, out of the custody of local police, and placing them in detention camps before they are finally deported. Our version of mass extermination will be the defunding of Planned Parenthood and throwing twenty-four million people off of health insurance. However, like some Germans of the 1930s who were appalled by the violence unleashed by Kristallnacht, who helped to hide Jews in their homes and feed those who hid in the forests, we hope that our better nature will prevail. Unfortunately, history has shown us that hope is not a plan of action. “Like some Germans of the 1930s” : This is documented in Konrad Heiden’s 1939 book, The New Inquisition.
Keep Fighting (Sept. 19, 2017)Are we seven months in? Seven years in? We’re already exhausted. Burned out. Call your senator. Call your congresswoman. Call your governor. Call your mayor. Sign petitions. Write letters. March in the streets. Talk to neighbors. Tweet. Share. Like. Post. Scream. Cry. Curse. Pray. Think. Read. How can we continue like this? We have to live our lives. Change the diapers. Cook the meals. Slog through work. Shit. Shower. Pay bills, and protest again, and again, and again. Victory! But only for the moment. Tomorrow, do it all over again. Everywhere you turn, the walls are crumbling, pressing, pushing, crushing the people, yet somehow ‘We the people’ must find the strength to push back. We are the only ones who can save us. Have more coffee. Go for a long walk. Think. Meditate. Refresh. Relax. Then back into the fight, because this is a fight. It is not some hashtag-retweet-digital bullshit. We’re fighting for our lives, our children’s lives, for future generations.
A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in – Greek proverb
A Glimmer of Hope (Oct 16, 2017)I never thought it would happen. We’ve argued over Trump’s policies, argued over what Hillary did or did not do (as reported by Fox News, his major source of information), and we’ve argued over, well, everything else. Today, however, something changed. My adversary, a patron at the diner I’ve been frequenting for more than two years, is a diehard Trump supporter who is tired of the “Russian interference” story. He said there’s no evidence of it. I said that there is evidence, and that there were attempts to hack into voting machines in 15 or 20 states. Further, I said that we need to know definitively if the hack was successful. This isn’t a Democratic or Republican issue. This is a democracy issue. He paused for a moment, then said, “You’re right.”
A Jewish Nazi (Dec 28, 2017)Nazis had no concept of human rights. You were either part of the master race, or you were subject to the master race, which included extracting your labor, followed by your extermination. Even those within the master race faced extermination. Euthanasia programs were aimed at German children and adults who were in mental institutions, and at those who were identified as inferior by school teachers or doctors. It is believed that German soldiers who were badly injured during the war against Russia were euthanized by German medical staff. Within the killing centers (Auschwitz, Treblinka, etc.), murder was one of the products produced in these camps, in addition to extracted labor, and things that could be extracted from the bodies and reused (e.g., gold teeth, hair). Human rights had no place in any of this. Human feelings had no place in any of this. I was shocked when I heard this Nazi ideology come out of the mouth of a religious Jew. You had to be quick to pick up on it, but it was pretty clear. Human rights mean nothing. There is no basis for asserting they exist. Don’t even think about appealing to human feelings because, well, they’re subjective. In other words, they have no value, no basis for guiding human behavior. Here’s a snippet of the discussion between Rubin and Ben Shapiro. You can also view it in the Youtube clip. Ben Shapiro: “Every belief system is based on something unproven, all of them. Human rights means nothing. Where do you get them, your basis of human rights?” Dave Rubin: “From a feeling. How about that?” Ben: “Exactly, which is subjective.”
How Will It End? (Jan 5, 2018)As the Mueller investigation gets closer and closer to the Trump team, the response from Trump has wavered from ‘this investigation is a hoax,’ to ‘the FBI and Department of Justice are filled with Clinton partisans,’ to ‘Michael Flynn and all the others are liars.’ In case the character assassinations and disparaging of American institutions do not have the desired effect, one congressman has floated the idea of a purge of the FBI, an idea that not only echoes McCarthyism, but also decades of Stalinism and other dictatorships around the world. All of this reflects the Trump administration’s contempt for democracy, contempt for precedent, contempt for rules, regulations, and laws. So here’s the question. What do we think will happen if the Mueller investigation concludes that the Trump administration is guilty of collusion? Do we expect Trump to simply say “You got me,” or do we expect Trump to ignore the findings, ignore the results, essentially fight back in any way possible? Do we expect someone who built his business by breaking the law to suddenly obey the law? Let’s take this a step further. Trump is crazy. But there are much crazier people out there. Might Newt Gingrich suggest, through the President’s Daily Briefing, aka, “Fox and Friends,” that Mueller, et al., are enemy combatants and, therefore, should be rounded up and sent to Guantanamo Bay? Is this out of the realm of possibility? I don’t think so.
The End of Democracy (Jan 5, 2018)Our problem is not Trump. It is the entire Republican Party, Fox News, Hate-Talk Radio, Jew-Nazis (Stephen Miller, Ben Shapiro, Sheldon Adelson, et al.), Bannon, Breitbart, Mercer family, Koch Brothers, and much of Wall Street. Trump came into office with no ideas. All of these people supplied him with cabinet appointments and policies. We get rid of Trump, we still live with the Republicans and their henchmen, along with the on-going influence of the Russians. Democracy is crumbling before our eyes. We better hope there is a god who can save us because it sure ain’t gonna be Schumer or Pelosi.
Famous Last Words (Jan 5, 2018)
- The Supreme Court would never overturn the results of a presidential election.
- We know that Saddam Hussein has WMDs.
- Give the money to the banks and they will redistribute it to homeowners.
- No need to campaign in that state. The numbers show Hillary will win.
- The whole point of the Electoral College is to make sure that a madman doesn’t become president.
- The Democrats will sweep the Republicans out of office in 2018.