Wednesday, November 23, 2016

l'etat c'est Donald

Memory is a funny thing when it applies to the world of politics. I wonder how many remember Dick Cheney's statement that the actions of a president are ipso facto legal.  That would sound very strange coming from the Republican machine that has been trumpeting the opposite for 8 years: that everything Obama does is illegal, scandalous and unconstitutional.

Truth, legality and morality apparently are time dependent, are time specific and situational. but don't look for anyone to confirm the obvious, because the core value is, that it's not illegal (fascist, racist, unconstitutional or deplorable) when we do it.

Donald Trump told us, his soon to be subjects, in an interview in the New York Times yesterday that profiting in business using your presidency is legal because there is no such thing as a conflict of interest when one is president, or should we say El Presidente.

“The law's totally on my side, meaning, the president can't have a conflict of interest.”
Is that true?  I'm not a lawyer, but Title 18 Section 208 of the U.S. code seems to exempt presidents from the requirement to, for instance, not steer the country for his own profit.  Maybe it's a new era coming. Maybe all that shall be changed, or maybe not. Congress has yet to challenge Trump's declaration that l'etat c'est moi as Louis IV the Sun King once told the world.  We shall see. We shall see how congruent the rule of law and the will of Trump shall be in our boisterous, sheet wearing, cross burning, minority deporting, religiously conformist, all white and all great America.  We shall see what we have done.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

I'm the Captain Now.

Remember the scene where the scrawny Somalian kid says to Captain Phillips: "I'm the Captain now?" I think you will. I think you will remember it well. We're all hostages now and as for all those snarky, snotty, superior Hillary haters, I blame you for selling out my country. You're dead to me and when I see you bagging groceries at the Winn-Dixie in a year or two, don't expect a tip and besides, I'll probably be jealous of anyone with such a good job when America is Great again.

No, she's "crooked" she lies and then there are the thrice examined emails of no discernible importance. There's the thrice examined Benghazi debacle which didn't rise to the level of the 12 previous embassy attacks we little note or care to remember. You're hypocrites, you're snark addicts, trying to give import to your insignificant opinions with your zingers and snarky epithets. You're willingly gullible, having too much fun piling on to stop and think. You're my enemy and the enemy of my country and I shall never forgive you.

Go ahead and wait for the crook and liar to make it great. The demise of American prestige and respect leaves a hole that will soon be filled by those who have no intention of making America anything but a third world economic colony.  You wrote the death warrant.  You and no other and when it comes time to regret it, and all your piety and wit won't  wash out a line of it, nor all your tears a line, don't look for me.

Been here and gone.


Sunday, November 06, 2016

Another Republican collapse?

Huffington Post has never seemed an extremist publication, except perhaps to extremists, but today's article about the historic drop in the markets coincident with the recent rise of Trump's prospects is full of flashing lights, klaxon horns and a voice from Das Boot shouting "Dive, Dive!"

We have, if you've been watching markets as closely as I do, the most prolonged sell-off since the financial crisis even though the odds are he will lose. Is that ironic with so many of his lower education level supporters extolling his talents as a business man who will end our "debt problem?" You betcha! as another lowbrow Republican pundit said. It seems like yesterday.

Financial experts and leaders around the world are expecting little short of total world collapse under a Trump administration. "Inconceivable" is the nearly universal reaction to the prospect of President Trump.   Moody’s says Trump’s policies would throw the U.S. economy into the longest recession since the Great Depression. Citigroup thinks a Trump win could cause a global depression.British research firm Oxford Economics thinks Trump in the White House would cause the American economy to shrink by $1 trillion over five years. Is the Nixon Gambit going to work to dismiss the fears of  the most informed conservatives in the Capitalist world by reciting the "Liberal Media" formula?  It will for some; for many in the Denialist/Conspiracy community. But it won't matter. For them it will still be all about emails and Benghazi and Crooked Hillary and if  (please) she manages to win she'll be straightjacketed by investigations and inquiries and impeachment hearings and filibusters and budget crises and shutdowns and the inability to appoint anyone to anything.

Are we damned either way?  Who knows, The best I can hope for is survival. Greatness may have to wait. An out of office Trump is not a dead trump and like Dead Cthulhu in his home beneath the sea, he'll be dreaming of revenge.

Friday, November 04, 2016

Nothing worth saving here

Fuck it all.  I'm done. And no it's not just because the Republicans have instigated an idiot revolution, a Biblical flood of lies, libels and treason, it's because there is no other side with any interest other than promoting something by insulting, slandering and lying about someone else. A million eager buffoons on a million soapboxes, shouting.  Fuck it all.

Some self righteous turd from Black Lives Matter just told me in a TV ad that I'm an "educated racist," without knowing who or what I am or what I think or can argue for or demonstrate or defend. "My dogma, my words, or you're the Devil.

This gives me license to say all kinds of invented things about him, and so here goes. He's an uneducated, smug, self righteous, lying son of bitch slandering good people with a farrago of fallacies a smart fifth grader could eviscerate.  It's an insult to my intelligence and if you doubt it, I doubt your honesty and cognitive powers.

All Buddhists, all Humanists are educated racists,by his estimation  but this cesspool of decomposing egotism and hate and lust for justifying retribution isn't?  How many millions of self appointed authorities are going to demand that I think their way or I'm a racist, communist, fascist, blasphemer or whatever.  Fuck it all, fuck America, Fuck Trump, I'm done.

Let it all fall down. I'll be here to piss on the ashes.

Wednesday, November 02, 2016

No Exit

Hell is other people, said Jean-Paul Sartre. in No Exit, (Huis closand so is Democracy as I was reminded today in the New Yorker.  A third of Americans can't name one branch of government and examples of  the massive failure of education to integrate the population into the process are more than abundant.

Perhaps it's my prejudice speaking but I would guess, in the absence of further data, that this proportion is even higher among supporters of Donald Trump, many of whom seem to think that a president can do almost anything he wants, from "fixing the schools" to changing the ties in the affairs of men and rebuilding the world of the 1950's within our walled borders. All of course without help or hindrance from  the legislature or the Judicial Branch.

The requirements of Democracy include an informed, intelligent, rational electorate and I know I didn't have to tell you that, and I didn't have to tell the Founding Fathers that; seeing that they attempted to follow a sort of hierarchy of decision making that we call a Republic to protect us from the passions, the rages and the foolishness of the people.

I don't think it's working and not only because fewer and fewer potential voters are informed enough to rise above the level required to get on the carnival ride we call our electoral process, and more and more are intentionally and effectively misinformed, propagandized and enraged beyond the point of caring.  The days of hand set and hand printed newspapers ended over a century ago along with the disappearance of a population with the time and inclination to read them. Ten thousand, ten million flowers have bloomed as the tyrant Mao would have said and there is much confusion about who is or isn't likely to be telling the truth.  Every truth, every lie, every observation is buried in an accretion of commentary and although so much information is available, few bother to do more than seek out confirmation of what feels good to believe and scream it loudly in the street. 

Perhaps there truly is no exit and perhaps there are no limits. A candidate we associate with "those" people is soon divorced from his own history and ours and becomes indistinguishable from the Satan who was long ago invented to enable the demonizing process -- while the devil himself can become a hero. There is no damping factor as an engineer might term it and the system flies apart as we see today - right now. 

Is the secret to stall the rush to authoritarianism and a government of men to introduce some authority of information: some referee of last resort?  We can't know because even though it's so easy to check facts, checkers who we don't trust because they tell us we're wrong, become the demons themselves and we trust no one but the anonymous voices of agreeable rage on the web, in our emails, in our minds and on the 24 hour news. We sink into paranoia and into faith at the same time: into separate hermetic universes. Nothing in one can be proved to be true or false in any other frame of reference. Whether or not Hassan really said it, in our world and in his, nothing is true and anything can happen.

Is there really no exit?  How do you say "No Chance" in French?

Behind the screen

I was a Cub Scout.  I was a Boy Scout, I've considered myself to be an outdoorsman and I have a lot of pocket knives, many sheath knives and a few machetes/ I have knives I use for gardening, cooking and once upon a time whittling. I got my first pocket knife - an official BSA model at age 8 and my dad taught me how to take care of it and use it. I may have nicked myself a couple of times over the years, but never thought of it as anything but a tool to allow the Boy Scout to "Be Prepared."

I never go out without one, usually small - the sort of thing they used to call a "gentleman's knife" or pen knife because it so often comes in handy. I once used a Swiss Army knife to repair a carburetor linkage well enough to get the car home.  I'm as likely to turn around and go home for having forgotten a pocket knife as I am for forgetting my phone or even my wallet. You never know.

A 13 year old kid here faces a felony charge for having a pocket knife. His life may well be ruined. This is no longer my country, my civilization, my culture.

We look around at tools and see weapons. We look at cars and we see death. We look at falling crime and tremble in fear. Nothing is safe enough. We're afraid of our food, our water, our government. Teach your kid to build a fire, make a shelter?  DANGER! Let him walk to school? You're going to jail.

Drive a car on the interstate, the safest roads we have -- hell no. It's too dangerous. Remember kitchen "Strike anywhere" matches?  Some states ban them.  I mean you could burn your finger.

Paranoia strikes deep. Starts when you're always afraid, as the song goes. We're terrified of our phones, our electric meters. We're afraid of freedom and so we let them sell us subjugation wrapped up in a flag and complete with air bags and radar brakes and we build walls to hide behind and the fat men in wigs smile, the lawyers get richer while we watch people have adventures in the only world we aren't afraid to participate in: teh one behind the screen.