Readers: this blog is set in the future (sometime after the year 2020). Each entry assumes there has been a 5th revolution in the US — the Revenge Revolution. More about the Revenge Revolution, a list of earlier revolutions and the author, Entry #1.
Periodically I write a “sense check” to assess whether in the next few years, a revolution in the US is still possible or whether the entire exercise is based on a statistical aberration — i.e., a roughly 50-year cycle between major upheavals in the US. With all that’s happened lately in Washington, I wrote a special sense check, Entry #332.
Have we, societal we, fallen down the rabbit hole? Have we lost our sense of direction? Have we lost our moral compass?
Over the last couple of months, most entries in this blog have focused on what I’ve characterized (as have others) as the coming technology tsunami. The entries describe the possible significant negative effect on the US economy of the tech tsunami and proposed solutions, the centerpiece of those solutions being more education. Education, however, not just for those currently in school but education for all age groups, even those in their 60’s. Education efforts would also include those who are, or have been unable to learn when taught using more traditional methods.
Many ideas suggested in the blog entries are not new. What’s changed is the urgency created by the oncoming technology tsunami. Like climate change, waiting until the impact is obvious to most everyone is too late. At that point the game for the US economy will be over. The fat lady will have sung…and done an encore. For the doubters, the tech tsunami is not some abstract idea or a tsunami that’s far-off shore. The water at the shoreline has started to recede and the need to take action is now.
Others share this view. Others also share the view that different approaches to education need to be tried. I was heartened by an article in the 05/12/19 New York Times (19 05 12 NYT Teaching Math Like Football) suggesting math teachers should approach the classroom more like a football coach in the locker room. Hear, hear! Great idea. In grammar school and high-school, I was lucky enough to have a couple of “football-coach” math teachers. They challenged each student and tried to make learning math fun. The football-coach approach could be helpful to many students who do not “get math” taught using traditional approaches.
OK, what about a topic for this entry? When thinking about what to write, what kept running through my head was a simple question, “Why do educated people keep supporting a president whose actions, by US law, are clearly criminal (obstruction of justice and tax evasion are just two) and possibly treasonous?” “How can rational people overlook, let alone support such behavior?” (He even cheats at golf!)
And, the behavior is not sporadic. It’s a continuous stream. What is the latest from the Trumpland? Asking Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal lawyer, to go to the Ukraine and ask the Ukrainian president to try to dig up dirt on a family member of a candidate for Democratic nominee for president. Duh, Republican folks, that’s Trump asking yet another foreign country to meddle in a US election. When are Republicans going to wake up and realize where Trump’s allegiance lies? If you don’t know where to start looking, try his bank account.
Trump does not care about any Republicans, let alone members of the hardcore base. Let me repeat Trump does not care about any Republicans, let alone members of the hardcore base.
If you don’t believe me, then what about those tariffs on Chinese exports? Do you believe Trump’s tweets that the Chinese will pay the tab? Even Trump’s economic advisor won’t buy that outrageous claim. No, the tariffs per se might go to the Treasury but the prices of Chinese goods sold in the US will increase by the amount of the tariffs…and possibly more. And, yes, you get to pay for the tariff. Yet another economics class Trump skipped while in college.
“Hold on,” you say, “Chinese jobs making all those goods will come back to America. Trump is actually creating jobs. Trump is saving America! Wake up liberals.”
Okay, a few jobs might come back, but only a few. But how many more other jobs will be lost with China’s retaliatory tariffs on American exports (imports to the Chinese).
But then you say, “Didn’t Trump save thousands of jobs when he negotiated to have GM sell the Lordstown, OH plant to that other company? You know that Workhorse company?” Sorry to inform you, the answer again is “no.” Workhorse buying the Lordstown assembly plant (not a done deal as of this entry’s publication) created no net new jobs. Workhorse was merely looking for a facility to assemble a proposed electric-powered truck.
And the list of misconceptions, misunderstanding, sheer blindness by Republicans continues on and on and on. Even the Energizer Bunny is starting to get tired. The lack of a modicum of thinking by Republicans makes their behavior curiouser and curiouser. What’s the value to Republicans of supporting Trump? Trump’s in the White House for cash. What do Republicans get out of the deal?
When I hear a Republican gloat about supporting Trump, I ask a very simple question. ”Assume all the same policies, economic conditions, cabinet appointments, relationships with foreign countries, tweets, known lies, etc. Now assume Trump is not a Republican but a Democrat. Would you still be supporting Trump and/or be opposed to the investigation by the various committees in the House?” Count how many current Trump supporters say “Yes they would continue to support Trump if he were a Democrat.” If you can count more than a handful, let me know.
To be fair, you should ask some Democrats the same question. “Assume all the same policies, economic conditions, etc., would you still be so anti-Trump?” My guess is a much greater percentage of Democrats would continue to be anti-Trump and especially support the investigations in the House of Representatives.
So why do Republicans support Trump when so many of his policies are reversals of long-held Republican positions? Why have Republicans let Trump hijack their brain? As noted in several earlier blog entries, it seems that many Republicans have been brainwashed.
How can such a large group be brainwashed? If there’s one thing Trump is very good at doing, its manipulating people. Especially vulnerable are those with limited inner strength. Helping Trump with the brainwashing are the Republican talking heads – Limbaugh and Hannity in particular – who fill their air time not with questions and a discussion of possible solutions, but fill their air time with declarative statements of suggested attitudes and behavior. Kim Jung-un probably listens to “Fox News” for ideas how to brainwash North Korean citizens more effectively.
Other recent truly bizarre actions by Trump include declaring that executive privilege can apply retroactively to virtually any discussion of any action taken by anyone in the Trump Administration. Huh? Trump has also told Administration officials to ignore the law. And where are the voices of the righteous Constitutionalists Republican Senators? Save one or two, Republican Senators have contracted laryngitis while also sucking up to Trump.
The willingness to support a rogue and lawless president rather than the Constitution leaves me with only one conclusion. There needs to be a Revenge Revolution in the US in order to rid the country of the Trump cancer and bring the Republicans back to their senses. Let’s hope the 2020 election can accomplish the same thing but I’m not as hopeful.
One might not like the actions or style of certain Democratic leader, or proposed policies of certain Democrat candidates for president. Those disagreements are understandable and part of a democracy. What is not understandable is why Republicans are blaming Democrats for trying to uphold their obligations under the Constitution by investigating criminal behavior and possibly treason of the president, members of the president’s family, members/former cabinet members and people associated with the 2016 campaign.
Just in case you, and maybe Republicans in the Senate, need a reminder of the words contained in the oath for members of the House and Senate, “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God.” (I can’t find where the oath mandates allegiance to the president, can you?)