“Retreat Hell! We’re just attacking in another direction!”
— Oliver Pence Smith
Donald Trump is insane. Because he is insane he is immune to logic and discards any evidence that contradicts his delusions and magical thinking. His followers, the base of racists and assorted fascists are the same; delusional, ignorant, and immune to reason.
The refusal of the liberal establishment to accept this fact is one of the major factors keeping the opposition from coalescing into a form that can defeat Trump. The liberal establishment has multiple branches and is not a unified force. But it does have a unified fear of a genuine left alternative to the current status quo in which, to paraphrase Gore Vidal, there is one party with two wings; The Wall Street Party that has a liberal (democratic) and conservative (republican) wing.
Early on in the Trump era, the liberal, anti-left, included among others, Jon Stewart, who as a liberal prince was allowed to escape unscathed when he asserted that he knew many Trump supporters; that they were decent people, that he loved, and who were not, he insisted, bigots. They were only concerned about their inability to pay for their insurance premiums. That this was and remains at best a distinction without a difference, is bad enough. That the liberal establishment media gave him essentially a free pass for making the case that it was acceptable to vote for a bigot because you were convinced that a neo-fascist goon would lower your cost of living while soaking the constitution in a mixture of gasoline and urine, is even worse. It speaks to their hypocrisy and their collaboration with the regime.
But Stewart is not alone. Michael Moore made essentially the same argument claiming that the democratic establishment (HRC) failed to court this vital demographic. What Moore left out is that catering to people who are stupid and/or vindictive enough to vote for a racist and for fascism, in order to protect their place in the hierarchy, is the very example of selling the soul of the party that Moore in every other context deplores as feckless catering to the venal corporate tyranny.
He was, and is of course not alone and multiple establishment media figures have and continue to insist that the greater danger to the public and the institutions of government are in a perceived lack of civility. Tune into Morning Joe (if you can stomach it) and listen to the court jesters display their contempt for Trump and their fear that Trump’s barbarism may incite the unruly mob.
They point to people yelling at Homeland Security drone Kirstjen Nielsen and Propaganda Minister Sarah Huckabee Sanders being (politely) asked to leave a restaurant as signs of a looming civilvility apocalypse. They step to the edge of outrage only to have establishment hatchet man Richard Haas try to invoke Civil Rights as a shield against the First Amendment right to yell at a government employee whose behavior you find abhorrent. Thus they make a distinction between acts of civil disobedience protected by the Bill of Rights and, for example, the police executing unarmed Black Americans, or the Trump regime engaging in state sponsored terrorism using kidnapping and hostage taking as forms of political negotiation. While they offer public displays of outrage about Ferguson et al, and the Border Crisis, at the same time they engage in circling the wagons to protect their turf as members of the establishment.
Consider that since his tweet comparing Trump’s actions and rhetoric to the Nazis, former chief spook, Michael Hayden has become seemingly an unperson. The Morning Joe gang meanwhile without mentioning him by name, denounce such comparisons and then deplore Trump’s fascistic call to suspend due process, shred the Constitution, and start ruling both by decree (tweet) and via paramilitary force.
Consider Michelle Wolf (via Salon.com) pointing out the systemic hypocrisy of the machine placing chips on both red and black and cashing in regardless of the outcome.
“But that’s how these beautifully crafted news dramas come together. You invite someone on your show, because you know they’ll say something crazy, and then they say something crazy, and you get to act outraged,” the comic added. “We all watch it and talk about it. It’s like one long brothel orgy from ‘Game of Thrones,’ where you’re all getting paid and we’re all getting f**ked.”
This in turn brings us back to Trump.
Unable to succeed in dragging even the spineless republican Senate and House along into state sanctioned and sponsored piracy Trump, no doubt following the advice of chief Nazgul and fascist party leader, Steve Bannon, has retreated into the ideological psychosis of his base and called for the suspension of the law and the summary kidnapping and deportation of anyone attempting to cross the border.
Take note of how Bannon has been laying low since the initial border crisis exploded and is undoubtedly urging Trump to gin up the base with calls for a draconian response to fabricated issues. The use of racist language (“infestations”, etc) and calls for the granting of dictatorial powers are not designed to directly achieve victory in the sense of ending the immigration surge and illegal border crossings but are designed to inflame and motivate the base so they can either hold onto the House and Senate or gain even greater control.
As with Occupy and other efforts at confrontation there is no authentic excuse for a lack of unity and a coordinated plan of resistance. There will be excuses, and there will be justifications but they are all illegitimate.
As The Minority Report Broadcast recently put it, the only morally and intellectually legitimate response at this point is to vote democratic and gain control at least of the House as a way to build a wall (sic!) to contain if not control Trump and the fascists.
Any attempt to splinter the vote should be called out as collaboration with the regime.
That the democrats are corrupt and complicit is undeniable but until or unless a viable – truly viable – alternative candidate emerges to successfully challenge the hegemony of the liberal wing of the Wall Street Party comprised of political hacks like Nancy We’re Capitalist Get Used To It Pelosi, Dianne Give Trump a Chance Feinstein and Chuck Has Anyone Seen My Spine Schumer, there is no other reasonable choice.*
The current democratic machine is the less bad alternative to the fascists.
If you are not against the fascists then you are for them and a collaborator with the regime.
See Woolf’s comments here:
*We are painfully aware that words like reasonable are able to contain a variety of sins and ranges of real world applications. We categorically do not rule out alternatives to the corrupt democratic machine. However as we said in another context, when the house is on fire you are either with the fire brigade or the fire. Trump’s calls to suspend due process and rule by decree and with the assistance of paramilitaries is unlikely to succeed but such demands could easily succeed in the sense of destabilizing the rule of law, leading to a “provocation” that allows Trump to declare an “emergency” which then gives him an end run opportunity around the fractured opposition. Therefore, until and unless someone or several figures emerge to lead a genuinely unified opposition, the only alternative to the fascists is the democratic establishment. We certainly welcome any and all thoughtful counter examples.
A perfect illustration of the complicity of the establishment media:
A socialist defeats “likely” successor to Nancy Pelosi.