Braying At The UN

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DD
A blind mule with a heroin habit couldn’t have been more tone deaf or self-absorbed than Donald Trump in his first UN speech. Coursing in his veins was that magic portion of feel good that puts its resplendent horror on full display. He scratched every raw place. He nodded and drifted across a global landscape of his personal beefs—North Korea, Cuba, Iran, Venezuela. Then he got philosophical.

In the flush of the global stage, he promised he would totally destroy a country. Making him one of two leaders in the world to make such a preposterous threat. The other, Trump calls “Rocket Man.” Rocket Man has nuclear arms. Trump’s negotiation is annihilation. Trump edges closer to waging nuclear war; he will not believe the effects on the population or how the radioactive fall-out will drift across the atmosphere to poison the food chain. It will call the idea of such science, “fake.”

The language of the alt-right, of neo-Nazis and white supremacist groups found its way into Trump’s UN speech. It framed his philosophy of national identity. When Trump spoke of nation’s having their own cultures and forms of governments, he could have been reading from a teleprompter posting white nationalist doctrine. Fundamental to the belief is the idea that nations should reflect ethnic, racial, and cultural purity. They believe multi-culturalism is dangerous and bankrupt, and will lead to the elimination of whites as a viable demographic group, certainly one with power and prowess to preserve their current standing and privilege. The references to national cultures is a textbook meme for the alt-right. Trump has taken their cause from Charlottesville to the global stage as a global doctrine of the US. Equal parts white nationalist and white supremacist, his language continues to lay out a vision derived from these two ideologies. Where’s the reporting on this?

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A Storm Of Disrepect

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DD
(Some of you know I live near Charleston, SC and the area felt the effects of Irma’s outer bands of winds and rain. Power was out for several hours. No major damage on the coast or inland. Small boughs dropped and rain persisted from after midnight to dark the next day, with moderate wind gusts. /wr)

Trump is a true believer–racism is one of the few things he has been consistently loyal to throughout his life. But let’s not forget Jefferson Sessions, the racist operator.

Resist the Attorney General’s lies. The DACA program is not illegal; if it were, court actions would have killed it, making Session’s lies unnecessary–a related Supreme Court 2016 case split 4-4. Every prosecutor has the authority to determine priorities for bringing cases to court; Presidents besides Barack established deferred programs without questions of constitutionality. Resist Sessions’ paternalism, his “Big House” mentality. Named for the Confederate President who headed a government in rebellion against the country Session now serves, he has lessons to unlearn before he can teach others the meaning of citizenship and American values. He has been quoted as saying his only problem with the Klan was its drug use, civil rights groups were anti-American, and am Alabama judge was a “traitor to his race.” He denies being a racist, but his actions fit the mold. If Trump vision is the looking glass, Session’s mission is teach the natives and “illegal aliens” the importance—and power–of being white.

Sessions is a spineless errand boy. A wide swath of America believes DACA take “hundreds of thousands” of jobs from Americans. How did that happen? Were these residents (not aliens!) with work permits better qualified head-to-head? For their success, they are condemned! Racists love scapegoats; but at 5% unemployment, low wage jobs are available except in areas with chronic structural unemployment (rural areas, inner cities). Barack correctly observed removing 800,000 adults who grew up American won’t increase anybody’s paycheck!

 

Beware Of Any Trump Deal

Trump listened far and wide for cabinet appointments, picking notorious bandits and thugs tainted by corruption (often within the rules!) to dismantle government and plunder the people’s interests, but he is inept at, indifferent and confused by legislation—he cannot claim credit for its passage; his cold calls, cajoling, and threats failed to repeal Obamacare! He doesn’t understand the process (calling the Senate rules archaic); he has no influence on its factions and mavericks; he curses its leaders in fits of pique, and he deeply resents sharing the spotlight with Congress.

Then why do a deal with Democrats? The “deal” is rooted in his personality, not in politics! He is humiliated by his limitation: the nation’s leader, he is stymied; Congress did not pass a single major bill. (Minor ones that can do great damage got through, but without the media spotlight Trump in which Trump showers and breathes.) His deal feeds his twin impulses: to flee defeat (he pledged to abandon healthcare) and lost causes (budgets/taxes); and to strike vengeance on those who embarrassed him. As he does in the White House, he acted impulsively, assigning blame and issuing punishments, ignoring the voices and consquences and counsel of experience.

The deal rebukes McConnell, Ryan–his own cabinet. It is a public thrashing. He did it to former wives. His perfidy marks the White House. Now Congress has come in turn to know its wrath.


With Trump, it is always symbols over substance! (The wall over immigration reform; Confederate statues and Nazi slogans as a defense of American history; crowd size, electoral maps, travel bans, et al.) He merely pushes the debt ceiling 90 days ahead because he cannot think long-term or strategically, no matter how many pastors come to pray for him or cabinet members sing his praise. He is still the blind mule who follows the smell of the hay, no matter the barn and kicks out from his darkest inner fears because the world around him is shrouded in his own permanent darkness.

Of course, the news cannot discuss the personality-driven politics of Trump, his followers, and so frame his thrashing and flogging as political “deals.” Maybe in appearance–but not in essence or substance. Not now, not ever! Always Trump first, the lowest levels of locker room personality over policy. Not prowess but ineptitude and cowardice, a bully’s bravery.

 

Hurricane Irma, Havana, Cuba.

Hurricane Irma, Havana, Cuba. Remember to support relief for all the Atlantic islands; their needs are desperate.

 

 

If Not The Undocumented, Who?

Political economy attracts strange tales. Braced by narratives that have little to do with economics, its tales direct power by providing villains and heroes. The money follows both–in victory and defeat! Money is the payoff to a good narrative. Blame the housing bubble on the poor—pretend innocent bankers got fleeced (ignore they got bailed out!); create a conspiracy of 3 million illegal votes; argue Russia expelling US personnel saves payroll (not, they still have jobs!); the misdirection of Republican storytelling is rooting in bunce, the payoff, the power to stream cash to a hotel only blocks away from the White House or to clone another Flint by poisoning the air and water; mine federal lands–forsake new green jobs for the old club of political thieves. Turn healthcare into a tax cut. Call it “beautiful.” Act white. Defend history by denial. Then (slavery) and now (corporations/politicians) stripped labor to its lowest form.

But stories will only go so far. Trump’s are about to hit a wall. How will Houston, Florida, next year’s disasters be rebuilt without the mobile/skilled/dedicated workforce of undocumented residents (the AG’s “illegal aliens”)? 25-50% of Houston’s construction labor is undocumented. Will millennials/Gen X’ers, the Rust Belt displaced, former coal miners rush to Houston for 3-5 years of steady work with a guaranteed paycheck? If they don’t, the city will decline and one old story—job theft–always a lie, should be dumped with the rest of the debris.

Nobody ever says we should not forget events like this in our history; no one argues that these horrific images have lessons to teach. No one points out these images have already been erased. No one talks about the domino effect that led to this. No one answered when African-Americans asked how far will it go and when will it stop?

Nobody ever says we should not forget events like this in our history; no one argues that these horrific images have lessons to teach. No one points out these images have already been erased. No one talks about the domino effect that led to this. No one answered when African-Americans asked how far will it go and when will it stop?

 

A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words.

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And so is a cartoon. Here are several of the week’s best.

 

. . . → Read More: A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words.

The Politics Of Plastic Peannuts

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Tweeter Is The New Nuclear Code

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Discussions of racism/white identity politics/white supremacy confuse white identity with white supremacy! These discussions also completely ignore the space in-between: the shifting continuum that occurs during crises or perceived crises. These . . . → Read More: Tweeter Is The New Nuclear Code

Take Racism Of The Pedestals Of History

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Who knew Trump would turn the monumental ugliness of racism and fascism into things “beautiful”? That white men no one can identify, astride iron horses are three . . . → Read More: Take Racism Of The Pedestals Of History

The Narrative Of White Supremacy

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Violence Is An Artifact Of America's History Chest

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You need to get a life, conservatives, if you are excited by the vicarious thrill of tough talk with North Korea. Seriously, you are hyped by bully threats? . . . → Read More: Violence Is An Artifact Of America’s History Chest

Our Greatness Is Visible

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What we call the economy should be called our political economy, the term often used in Europe but rarely in the States to describe the impact of government structures and corporate lobbies on . . . → Read More: Our Greatness Is Visible

Trump's Fall From Love And Grace

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Is the joint proposed bill from Arkansas’ Tom Cotton, Georgia’s David Perdue and Trump to restrict legal immigration by cutting it in half and creating a language and financial means test . . . → Read More: Trump’s Fall From Love And Grace