Thursday, January 27, 2022

Expecting a Fascist Win

A lot of people these days feel like the fascists are going to win. There aren't very many of them and it is not clear what they stand for, but they are committed, they are loud, they cheat behind the scenes as well as out in the open, and they have the support of the media. Their political positions are so dumb that it seems like a waste of time to even argue with them, and so they keep claiming new ground. They're banning books, censoring history lessons, they fight -- often violently -- in favor of perpetuating the covid pandemic, they support police brutality and vigilante violence. Apparently white nationalist fascism "makes sense" to some people. But their points are so ... not-rigorous ... that it is impossible to debate or negotiate with them.

The startling thing is that it's so asymmetrical. You've got Republicans being investigated for human trafficking and large-scale sexual abuse, multimillion-dollar financial crimes, working secretly for foreign governments, and yet the media will focus on how wasteful and hypocritical it is for Joe Biden to fly home to Delaware for the weekends. They have literally criticized him for going to church. Biden's biggest scandal is the unproven assertion that his son's laptop had bad stuff on it, personal sex videos and files from his druggie days. Not even Joe Biden's own laptop, his adult son's. And the allegation is almost certainly false. On one hand, we have flagrant criminals hoping the next election will save them from going to prison for real crimes. On the other hand, we have a religious family man with a hint of a stutter and some policies that our country has long needed, as we slip farther behind the rest of the developed world in almost everything except incarceration, infant mortality, gun violence, and covid deaths.

The Republican Party has stopped having a platform. They can't say what it is they want to do for our country. They dropped the idea of proposing policies for the last election and won't have anything next time, either. Also, for the next Presidential election they have already said they're not going to debate. Because, honestly, it doesn't matter what they'd say. They are against something, and that's all it takes, fear and anger. The Democrat will propose a problem solution and the Republican will say, "I'm against it," and that's their position. That's the debate, so why bother? They do not have solutions to any problems, only complaints, and you don't need to commit yourself to a platform or debate anybody for that.

It won't matter that the GOP does not stand for anything. White people are mad after years of progress by minorities and they are blaming everything on inclusive liberal politicians. People don't know what Biden has done for them, because the media are not saying anything; the public is vaguely aware that there was a "spending bill," because, everybody knows, spending is what Democrats do. But nobody knows what was in the last bill, or the next one.

This week Newt Gingrich said the January 6 commission should go to jail. You remember the "Lock Her Up" chants that Trump's followers so enjoyed. You might remember when the federal government killed Michael Reinoehl, Trump said, "This guy was a violent criminal, and the US marshals killed him. And I’ll tell you something — that’s the way it has to be. There has to be retribution when you have crime like this." Rand Paul says that Anthony Fauci deserves five years in prison. In the coming America, this is how it will be. They won't bother with arresting people and fluffy stuff like trials; troublesome political rivals will get what they deserve, administered by government goons and rightwing hit-men, like in a bad movie.

These are people with no understanding and no respect for the Constitution and the justice system we have in place. Violence replaces lawfulness, as one group ascends to unearned dominance over all others in the country. And it is hard to oppose them when their message is this dumb. Joe Biden is not a communist, or even a progressive, he is a mainstream Democrat who holds popular views on most things. Fauci is not a sadistic monster and big fat liar. Vaccination does not kill you or make you turn socialist or shrivel your testicles and masks do not infringe on your personal expression. Russia should not be attacking Ukraine, and refugees and homeless people need help, not more punishment. Yes, there is racism; various groups in the US are treated unfairly. The earth really is getting warmer, there is a reason for the fires and the huge storms. The 2020 election was fair and Joe Biden won it. It is tedious to argue about these things. They are not real controversies, they are made-up issues that don't make sense, have no evidence to support them, and reasonable people really don't want to have to spend their time talking about this.

These aren't things worth arguing about, and it's hard to get regular intelligent people engaged with these topics when there are real problems that need solving now. So while Democrats are trying to make things better, conservatives are threatening violence over nutty non-issues. They are changing the rules for voting, moving district boundaries, putting their own people in charge of monitoring elections, putting judges in place, school board members. You can't vote them out of office if they have twisted the voting laws so they can win with a minority. Unless you have a better idea.