I hate to have to talk about Trump, and I’m not going to spend a lot of time on the topic, but I feel it’s time for some brief remarks.
The United States is a country founded on some grand ideals. It has not lived up to those ideals very well most of the time. As many have observed, it was birthed from contradiction – speaking of freedom while maintaining slaves, granting suffrage (except for women and slaves) – but however imperfectly maintained, the USA has retained some of that Enlightenment grandeur for the last 200 years. An infantile country in many ways, yes, but growing and learning, and – in theory – a beacon of opportunity for all.
One man, in less than a week, has destroyed that ideal forever.
In the community of political researchers, most of us know how poisonous our history really is. We know that the United States was only possible via the genocide of first peoples. We know that much of our idealism is founded in hollow lies, and we understand how the ruinous condition of the US today was sparked by the decision to embrace corporate fascism at the end of World War II. A few decisions changed in 1946 and 1947, and we would have a whole different country.
We know that the Deep State asserted itself in 1963, killing John Kennedy, applying techniques domestically that had already been perfected in other countries. Then murdering all further resistance – Malcolm, King, Bobby, and a slew of Panthers and left activists. Imprisoning Peltier and Huey. And on down to our sorry state where our lives are more or less dictated by incorporated “people” who only exist as legal fictions, paperwork without souls of bodies.
In Democracy in America, Alexis de Tocqueville wrote: “At certain periods a nation may be oppressed by such insupportable evils as to conceive the design of effecting a total change in its political constitution; at other times the mischief lies still deeper, and the existence of society itself is endangered. Such are the times of great revolutions and of great parties.”
We are at one of these periods.
All of us are flawed. What separates human beings, in my view, is the awareness of our own flaws, and our ability to empathize with others. We fight the worst instincts within ourselves and extend a hand to those in need of aid.
Donald Trump has no idea what his flaws are. If he did, his actions would reflect that. And I am comfortable saying, one week into his presidency, that he is insane. He is also, for all practical purposes, a Nazi. His decision to ban Muslims from certain countries (which appear to have been picked because they have no Trump businesses within their borders) is lunacy. In addition to be morally despicable, it also – and I make these remarks to those conservatives who still think of supporting him – it is bad for business. It is bad for commercial interests in the United States, including Google. Even Dick Cheney, who is as evil a figure as has ever been involved in governance, understands what a bad idea this is. The action also, as I have noted, destroys forever America’s sense of grandeur. The shine is off, and we are now a failed state, just like so many other “failed states” that have been interfered with by our foreign policy.
If you voted for Trump, this is on you. Want absolution? Get in on the marches. Vote with your feet and your money. Support those who would stand up to our new fuehrer. But let’s be clear. If you are still with Trump, you are a white supremacist. And if you’re a Christian and support Trump, I don’t want to know how morally grotesque your other beliefs are. If you purport to live by the teachings of Jesus and support Trump’s atrocities, you are simply a moral idiot.
One thing Trump has done is to simplify political analysis. Not a fan of Hilary? Me neither. But we can debate neoconservative ideology later. All people of good conscience must have one goal from now on: resist the new Nazism. Resist Trump.
This is Joe Green's blog.