Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Things Will Continue To Get Worse Before They Get Better

Every now and then I have to check myself and look around and think really critically about what the heck is going on in this country. My assessment since the first days of the Trump administration was that things were going to get worse before they get better, and I do not think we have reached the crossover point yet. In fact, we are not even close.

The Trump administration has proven itself to be craven, incompetent, corrupt, racist, and possessing authoritarian tendencies. It is destroying America's standing in the world while perpetuating its internal inequalities. It is seductive to look at the Mueller investigation and think that justice will be done, but no president yet has been removed from office after impeachment, and Trump will not be the first. Beyond that, the two sides in Korea are longing for peace, and if that is achieved the media will bow down to Trump and credit him as a great statesman, even if the result was primarily due to the moves by North and South Korea.

The biggest problem is that the opposition is not up to the task, and Trump's supporters remain steadfast. Let's look at this from some different factions in our political landscape.

Trump Voters
The people who voted for this man in the primaries have stayed with him. They sometimes express disappointment, but that's only to get him to keep giving them what they want. He is their leader, their messiah. They will never abandon him.

Non-Trump Republicans
The people who did not vote for Trump until the general election are sticking with their party, which has signed a blood-oath with the despot. They are not proud of their vote, necessarily, but they made it, and show every sign of making it again in 2020. As long as someone screams "taxes, fetuses, guns, and gays" in their ears they will stay loyal. Fox News still has an iron grip on them.

Never Trump Republicans
They are a tiny group, mostly consisting of op-ed writers and pundits for respectable newspapers. They are few in number, and are too invested in conservatism to hold the Republican party accountable for its Trump alliance.

Middle of the Road Independents
These are the most frustrating people on earth. For the most part they aren't paying attention and are prone to saying "I don't like Trump, but I don't like liberals either." They have already slotted Trump into their fatuous "both sides" narrative.

They have been marching and making calls, but they are still weak and lack a proper perspective. They are the people who saw James Comey swing the election to Trump, but are now waiting in line to read his book and shower him with praise. They still want to believe in the system, and still want to think that conservatives are not a radical movement bent on their very destruction. So far they have been far too weak to mount a strong response.

Rank and File Democrats
This is the most promising group. These are the teachers on strike, concerned about bread and butter issues and not the symbolic politics beloved of liberals and leftists. This is, relatedly, the least white of all the factions. The problem is that these folks are getting little direction from the party.

In the face of despotism many are spending all of their time bitching about liberals. During the anti-gun violence walk-outs and marches, many say on the sidelines naysaying and acting above it all. The same people spent more time attacking the supposed offensive nature of pussy hats than engaging in protests themselves. One of the biggest problems with this group is that because of their educations they have an inflated sense of their importance, which in fact is virtually nil to people who don't have graduate degrees in the humanities.


This has not been a message of comfort, but it's one I think people ought to be listening to. We have to stop believing that things will change because they must or that Mueller will somehow stop it all. We have to fight, and to be willing to fight together, regardless of some of our differences.

1 comment:

Terry said...

On the bright side, Mayer Hillman says we're all doomed anyway.