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Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Oh, shit

While Trump spins yesterday as a victory, I can only hope inside there's a gnawing "oh, shit" churning out some ulcer-inducing tension. It's only fair since he's done it to so many of us. But as I wrote on the 5th, there is some truth backing up his smugness: yesterday was no nationwide condemnation of a divisive, lying narcissist. Like I wrote in my response to Merry, a lot of those who backed Trump, still love him. Hell, they prefer Ted Cruz over Beto O'Rourke! Cruz.....who even Trump used to hate.

To me this is astounding. I mean, OK, we can all debate policy and best routes for legislation and economic growth and I think a lot of Democrats would not like what I'd have to say about some of their ideas, but look at the man! Here is someone who leads by bullying and division, who communicates through almost compulsive falsehood, and whose character is, well, does he actually have ANY character at all?

I look at him and I see this:

But a Red Stater looks at this same individual and sees this:

I have to question that level of impairment in a person, and that is not just one person but half of the country! I mean, I don't like Pence either, but if he was the president, I doubt I'd have to worry about inane Tweets, and gaslighting on a scale never before seen. And that's sort of my point with the so-called "religious" conservatives. At least Pence fits the bill. If they said, "hey, maybe we should get this corrupt piece of garbage out of office and let someone like his VP run things." I could respect it. Pence would appoint the same judges and legislate similarly, but without all the duplicitous drama. So why isn't that what's happening?

What is this Svengali hold Trump has over these people?

One day this past Summer I was fishing and a guy I had seen around but never spoke to ended up fishing next to me.  We got to chatting and eventually got around to politics in general and Trump in particular. He supported him. But rather than argue, I asked him questions. A lot of his arguments were born of frustration with government. Some were personal suspicions of people like Hillary Clinton. Now, if I was a Democrat I think the conversation would have quickly degenerated into a local bass-fishing version of any political debate show you can see on TV, but because I was able to agree on these things, those arguments never materialized. And then it was my turn to ask him about Trump and his environmental policies and his general nature of mendacity and divisiveness.

This gentleman then did something I have had happen with every person I have had a similar discussion with.......he conceded point after point. He admitted Trump lied incessantly and that he didn't really like that. He admitted that he didn't really trust him or the things he says. He also wasn't crazy about the bullying way he spoke and antagonized people, and he flat-out stated that he wished "someone would take away his phone" so he couldn't Tweet anymore.

In essence, he was looking at the same piece of shit I was. He smelled it, and like the old Cheech & Chong routine, established that "looks like dog shit, smells like dog shit...." and yet when he bit into it, while I believe he tasted the shit too, he claimed he was being treated to the most expensive Belgian chocolate.

I am at a loss as to how to combat that level of self-deception..........UNLESS, backing Trump is really about something else? It's not about him being a successful businessman (he' not) or a moral religious man (he's not), or a great negotiator (he's not) or a reformer out to end corruption (I'm laughing too hard at this one to even type). No, more and more I am convinced that those who back him in spite of everything that is plain to see, are doing so with ONE goal in mind: to somehow re-establish a sense of White Privilege & conservative Christian theocracy. It is xenophobic racism & homophobia....but because it is not easy to come out and admit that, they have to say it's something else. They are lying just like their hero....which is probably why they don't hold lying against him.  Like I said in my last post, I am not as afraid of Trump as I am of the people who are still backing him, because this sort of thing has happened before.............and it didn't end well.


  1. A mind is a terrible thing to waste and all those who support Trump have proven that point. Jack

    1. I am more convinced they know exactly what they are doing. And that is why I am saddened.

  2. While I think that racial animus and wanting a "Christian" government come in to play, I think it's simplistic to attribute his success to those factors, because however many may believe those things it's not 50% of the country. I think it's a host of factors. First, a whole bunch of people are sheep who genuinely like strong authority figures. Remember, Hitler and the Nazi party were ELECTED, and people voted for them knowing they were anti-democratic. In other words, people voted for the Nazi's knowing it was the last vote they would ever cast. Some people positively want to be dictated to, and Trump is a dictator at all. Second, there is an "us versus them" impetus that makes immigration a hugely compelling issue for some, even if for them it's genuinely not about racism per se. It's more about a chronic sense of insecurity that the pie is fixed and that someone from another tribe is coming to take your piece. And, some people genuinely do believe that we were letting China and others walk all over us on trade, and I think there is some truth to that, even if I don't agree that the mechanism to fix it is tariffs. And, let's face it, the Democrats did basically abandon the working class cycle after cycle, focusing on narrower and narrower divisions of identity politic, effectively ceding a lot of the working class vote to the Republicans. And, there are a lot people out there who really are good and sick of political correctness in all it's forms, so they do see Trump's shtick as refreshingly honest.

    I think those reasons explain why your fisherman can acknowledge that Trump is full of shit, and yet support him, because it's not really supporting "him." It's more about being willing to hold one's nose if it gets you the policies you want. But, no one wants to be seen as quite that craven, so they start filtering everything in the most positive way possible.

    1. I don't think it's a coincidence that Red States are geographically located in places where racism was (and obviously still is) very much part of the culture. And I definitely disagree with the sheep analogy on this one because people have a lot of shepherds to choose from if they merely are looking to follow someone. They are following the worst choice. I do agree with the Hitler/Mussolini comparisons because they are accurate. Frighteningly so. But the message of "us versus them" was precisely how Hitler rallied his base, and that strategy is rooted in racism. That 'someone else is coming to take your piece of the pie' works best when the "someone" can be easily identified as part of an undesirable group. So again, it's rooted in racism.

      I do agree with the political correctness backlash being a real thing. But statistics show that the frustration with PC culture is pervasive across ethnic lines, yet that doesn't mean that Blacks are embracing Trumpian rhetoric as 'refreshing'. The only people who would find it refreshing are people who want to come out of the closet with their own suppressed racism and he is giving them that opportunity.....even if many are still "coding" it. This isn't "lynch that boy!"'s subtle nod-and-wink racism like in "Gentleman's Agreement".

      Your point of how Democrats essentially handed over their prior base is spot on and one of the primary reasons I am not a Democrat (except by necessity now). I can't wait for things to get back to an acceptable level of abnormal so I can return to my Independent leanings and advocacy. Right now however, I feel I can't afford to do that......and I HATE IT!

    2. I still think it's too simplistic to link it all to racism. The former confederate states are all red, but not all red states are former confederacy states. Pockets of even California have been solidly red for years. The Dakotas, Michigan, Wisconsin . . . Trump picked up large amounts of support in lots of states that do not have histories of systemic racism. The historical examples don't quite fit either, because while Hitler was openly racist and anti-Semitic and the Nazi party very openly promoted racist policies, that's not really so true with Mussolini in Italy. The point I was making is there are some very substantial proportion of the citizenry who like strong men with strong messages, and they aren't all that discriminating about the content of those messages. The Republicans have just been better about nominating "men's men," while the Democrats give us Mike Dukakis riding around in a tank looking like Snoopy with his cute little helmet.

      I also don't believe that the "only people" who would find rejection of PC culture refreshing are racists. Sure, Trump gives license to a lot of formerly closeted racists to come out and be far more open about their racism, but large numbers of non-racist people are pretty fed up with being dictated to by Yale professors about "triggers" and "safe zones" and all the other whiny prohibitions on expression that have created this new "right" to go through life never being "offended" by anything. Hell, I hate Trump with a passion, but I myself am totally sick and tired of the self-appointed scolds in PC world.

    3. Hey! I thought you got off on being scolded? ;-)

      On your points? You may be right. I am just very angry right now in a lot of ways over a lot of things. I may just need to take a "political break" before I have a stroke.

    4. I do get off on being scolded, but maybe this is an area in which I am uncomfortably like some Trump supporters . . . Getting scolded by your average PC advocate is about as punishing as getting whipped with a wet kleenex.

    5. You are as particular and selective about your scolding as I am. LOL ;-)

  3. Couldn't you have used a picture of cartoon poop instead?

    1. I used the picture that most accurately represents the person in question.

      (I also had to find two of fecal matter and one of chocolate, that seemed to resemble each other.)