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Country over Party

Six words, that’s it.  If we’re lucky, by 2018 we won’t even need a noun or a verb to finish the thoughts.

Come for the chaos, stay for conflagration.  This is the Dolt 45 fine-tuned machine.

Yesterday’s performance was a guided tour of Dolt 45’s brain. In 77 minutes, he demonstrated what I have so inadequately tried to explain.  He is the San Andreas of emotional fragility.  He’s not going to change.  You saw what stress does.  Behavior patterns become more pronounced.trump-presser

Dolt 45 is not crazy.  He’s a 70-year old man who has never worked an honest day’s work in his life who likes to watch television and tweet.  He believes he’s infallible because he doesn’t know what the word means.

Setting up warring factions in the White House ensures he is the eye in a hurricane of chaos.  It provides him the self-esteem he so desperately craves and the charade of power sustaining his veneer of legitimacy.

Let me try to explain.  Think about the best, mind-blowing, earth-moving sex you ever had.  That is what yesterday’s press conference was for the citrus pustule.  As he said, “I’m having a good time doing it.”

Here’s what I know from studying leadership.  Any organization centered on charismatic leadership (personality-centric) rests upon clay feet.  It is like the Platte River – a mile wide and three inches deep.  It evaporates in the least bit of heat.whats-wrong-with-trump

Crises are not planned via e-invites.  They are coming.  Whether it is a natural disaster, a Horizon oil spill, an incident in the Strait of Hormuz, or a terrorist attack, the time is ticking down.  It won’t just be a failure; it will be a Category 5, Frontline documentary fiasco.  Failure is simply the non-presence of success, but a fiasco is where anarchy apportions anguish and adversity.

This weekend troubles me.  It has been almost 84-years to the day since the Reichstag Fire.  It was a planned provocative act of arson to set emotions ablaze.  This weekend event in Florida has a certain suspicious air about it.  Nothing would change the media’s attention faster than paid insurrectionists rioting at an event where Dolt 45 is whisked away by Secret Service.  Just sayin’.gop-support-for-trump

Currently among Republicans, SCROTUS (So Called Ruler of the U.S.) is at a more robust approval rating than either Bush or Reagan was at a comparable time.  The symbiosis is complete.  Congratulations Dr. Frankenstein, it’s a boy.

And this brings me to the Country over Party part of TRICOP.  Never before has the reverse concept been so clear to me.  I’m guilty of mindlessly accusing Republicans of prostituting themselves as Party over Country and Power over Country, but when a future drapery salesman from South Carolina is your party’s lone moral compass, the GOP ain’t exactly writing new chapters for Profiles in Courage.

Here’s the takeaway:  The Republican Party will allow this orange stooge to do immeasurable harm to the country in order to eviscerate FDR’s New Deal and Johnson’s Great Society.

There is an ugly, angry, maniacal lust at work to deprive twenty million poor people of health insurance in order to allow the One-Percenters an obscene tax break.  I lack the intellectual capacity to understand that.  It isn’t just the repeal of the A.C.A.  It is also a rollback of Medicaid that happens to be the primary financing mechanism for the country’s nursing home/end of life care.

The gobsmacking piece of all of this:  To finance the lipstick for the piglet they are going to pass off as a “replacement,” they are proposing taxing some portion of employer furnished health insurance.

Here are a few highlights from the first 25 days:what-coal-mining-does-to-streams

The first Republican counteroffensive against the War on Coal was signed into law this past week.  Coal mines will now be free to pollute some 6,000 miles of once protected waterways in the country.

For those poor, over-regulated, underappreciated oil companies, they will no longer have to report their payments to foreign governments.  Anti-corruption is so déclassé.

If you are keeping score, this weekend we will be spending $1,240,000 a day to protect Trump Tower with no one home, another $3.0 Million for another Mar-a-Lago golf outing, and about $200,000 for Uday and Qusay Trump to open their Dubai golf course.

Finally, if you are a policy wonk like me, we can be alarmed that Dolt 45 swatted away 50-years of U.S. policy supporting a two-state Middle East solution as easily as he would a Citrus Whitefly.  And if you were worried about that pesky dust-up over a “One China” policy, it seems to have ironed itself out quite coincidentally with the granting of Chinese Trump trademarks.

For those 70,000 under-educated white guys in the upper Midwest:  Is America great enough yet?

What’s on your mind today?  Spasibo.  Never too early to learn some Russian.

a-trump-hat

 

The rule in debating public policy is, “If you are explaining, you are losing.”  Be advised, this is a “losing post.”Understanding

Everyone is busy.  We only have so much time.  IMHO, we all use shorthand to communicate.  If the time available doesn’t afford a thorough explanation, it is understanding that is shortchanged.  There are plenty of examples.

These days when someone says “voting rights,” top of the mind automatically associates voter identification laws.  In reality, voting rights also refers to extended voting hours, absentee balloting issues, registration, weekend voting, and a host of other topics that have been subsumed into “voting rights”.

The same is true for Planned Parenthood.  Top of the mind associates the organization with abortion when that is barely three percent of the services it provides to women, most notably poor women without a secondary source of reproductive health care.

Acorn, community organizing, election finance, Obamacare, entitlements are all topics that are shorthand capstones for massively intricate webs of complexity.

Shut your face, know your placeWe “libruls” often unwittingly fall into this ruse.  It is not a sin of commission, but one of convenience.  Unwittingly, we are assisting those who are enemies of progressive issues.  This shorthand vocabulary is about to go into overdrive as we wend our way into 2016.

An issue that is sure to be saddled by this abbreviated understanding is the Black Lives Matter movement.  Originally, the BLM movement was and still is a concerted effort to draw attention to the killing of young men of color, but BLM is much more.  Its purpose is to draw attention to institutionalized prejudice, to de facto bigotry, to unprecedented incarceration rates, to overly aggressive policing and tactics in disadvantaged neighborhoods, to looking beyond the mere economic effects of discrimination, to rebuilding neighborhoods and voting empowerment.  While I don’t understand the BLM strategy of attacking those sympathetic with its policy positions, those decisions seem to be local ones and the overall motivations seem to be pure.

The simplistic rejoinder of, “All lives matter,” while true, is a backhanded effort to undermine the effort by subtly implying racist overtones.  BLM has not once implied that one set of lives is superior to another.  It is those who seek to impugn BLM who conflate the two slogans – and everyone readily overlooks those six words, with four of the words being the same, are merely slogans.Life is worth

These facts are dismissed and overlooked.  Why?  BLM is a tangible reminder of a truth that scares the bejesus out of a dwindling white majority power structure.  That truth is declaring war upon demographics is like declaring war on gravity.  In the end, gravity will win and any success in beating it back is only temporary.

This delegitimizing of BLM has risen to a fever pitch with the senseless killing of two police officers in the last few days.  The usual suspects who fan the fires of fear and resentment are behind these efforts – Fox, Breitbart, Limbaugh, Hannity.

There is something that bedevils me and it is this:  How neither side of this argument seems to understand there is no monopoly on grief?  There is plenty of grief for the getting.  The killing of young black men inspires grief just as does the killing of police officers visits horrible suffering on their families.  Victims are equally dead and there is no “who hurts worse” or “who grieves better” scorecards.

To fan the fires of resentment and fear, these murders have already taken on a shorthand vocabulary.  For instance, Breitbart only refers to “black on white” crimes as race murders, while “white on black” crime is given short shrift as random acts of derangement.

This thinly veiled bigotry is at the heart of the “Summer of Trump.”  The “stuttering triple P” poll found:

Our new poll finds that Trump is benefiting from a GOP electorate that thinks Barack Obama is a Muslim and was born in another country, and that immigrant children should be deported. 66% of Trump’s supporters believe that Obama is a Muslim… 61% think Obama was not born in the United States… and 63% want to amend the Constitution to eliminate birthright citizenship.

Trump’s beliefs represent the consensus among the GOP electorate. 51% overall want to eliminate birthright citizenship. 54% think President Obama is a Muslim. And only 29% grant that President Obama was born in the United States.

MLKInstitutionalized bigotry will always be buttressed by the very institutions hosting the prejudice.  What we know from decades of research is that unless change is affected at the granular level, through outreach like BLM in cooperation with police departments and cities, there will be no significant improvement.  Everyone should be encouraged to put their shoulder to the plow.  As we have seen this summer, broken people break things and hurt people will hurt people.

Aspiring to such an elementary understanding isn’t on par with Johnson’s Great Society, but it sure would go a long way in making the society we have a much better one.

Your thoughts on any subject are welcomed and encouraged.


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