I wish this was just a bad dream…

But it is not. Sigh. Just the headlines, they are bad enough. All from this evening.

  • Mother, daughter charged in murder of pregnant teen who was strangled before baby was cut out of her womb
  • Trump administration defends $62M bailout to crooked Brazilian meatpacker
  • Former government sniper admits he shot former girlfriend to death on Manhattan street
  • ’You Jews, I’m gonna get you’: Florida man charged after allegedly spitting on, threatening to sexually assault Jewish people
  • Five more states sue OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma over opioid marketing
  • L.I. high school teacher faces 20 years in prison after pleading guilty to possession of child porn
  • Pennsylvania man has his scrotum torn open by angry girlfriend, leaving him with a bleeding testicle

I could post more, but you get it.

Getting in on the ground floor of the slow-moving coup

On May 1, 2019, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff appeared on the MSNBC program The Last Word discussing Attorney General William Barr and mused, “Why someone at this point in their career would be willing to sacrifice his integrity, his reputation, everything in the service of this unethical president will forever be a mystery to me.  But he’s not alone. Obviously, there are many others around Trump who are doing the same thing.”

Hmmm.  With all due respect to Congressman Schiff, I don’t find it a mystery.  But the subject he brings up is important.  Don’t wander off, let me mention something else.

Over the last couple years Bill Maher has entertained and frightened us with his Dictator Checklist and all the boxes Trump checks.  Since 2016 Maher has also been talking about what he sees as a slow-moving coup d’état being perpetrated by Trump and his gang of cronies and sycophants.  There is a lot to be said for Maher’s theory.  Especially in light of the afore-mentioned checklist and the actions and appointments of his administration.

So what if Maher and others are right, that Trump and his enablers are in fact deliberately undermining the U.S. system of government?  Let’s be honest here, there is no shortage of people who would welcome, embrace, and help enforce the kind of intolerant, racist, misogynistic, trample-on-the-99% world Trump inhabits in his head. So, if you’re a Giuliani, or a Barr, or a Kushner, or anybody else who seeks to have power over the masses; and if you also are comfortable in the idea of a Trumpist homeland; why wouldn’t you want to be part of the power-grab.  Of course you would want to be in on the ground floor.  You don’t need to be part of a name-brand alt-right organization to want to be running the show in the kind of future they espouse.

If you are a Trumpist and you believe an authoritarian regime is going to take over, you will want to run the equivalent of the Stasi or the Gestapo or the FSB or the State Security Department rather than be a target of such an organization.  You will want to run the War Department or the State Department so you can be an extension of the great leader’s will.  It’s either join the regime or be crushed by it.  And so, the Trump True Believers™ gather around their shining leader; excusing, defending, enabling, and empowering him; so that they can share in the exercise of that power over those they disdain and despise.

And that, to me, is the essential answer to Schiff’s mystery.  Not a mystery at all.  Just Trumpist assholes looking out for themselves and their ticket to giving the rest of us our marching orders.

About the U.S. government shutdown…

Personally, I think that every federal worker not being paid should immediately stop reporting to work.  Every one of them.  They should stay away until their jobs are funded through the remainder of the fiscal year and they are assured of being paid for all their unpaid work.  This will cause chaos and hardship.  So be it.  The Trump administration has already foisted chaos upon us all for a useless vanity project.  They created this mess and can make it go away any time they choose to do so.  Force them to choose.

Here is one example of a consequence of a total walkout:  Imagine the pressure that will be brought to bear on the White House when all commercial airline traffic stops due to the lack of air traffic controllers.  The federal workers have the power to force an end, if they choose to exert it.