Saturday, October 10, 2020

In A World Of Gutturals

 I Want What I Paid For

The first Presidential debate was a concentrated, painful display of one man's perversity and evil. Over 90 minutes on the stage at Case Western, Trump showed everyone exactly how he will behave over the election's outcome, and what he will do in a second term. 

Then, he 'suffered' through the most public, and hidden, case of Covid-19 in the history of the pandemic. He emerged (for the cameras) as the Strong Daddy, The Leader. I watched his choreographed return to the Whitey Haus from Walter Reed and felt a chill: the sequence appeared copied, nearly shot-for-shot, from Adolf's arrival at Nuremberg captured in Riefenstahl's Triumph Of The Will.

Since then, The Leader has gone on a social media rage, an almost nonstop public vomiting of bile, the usual lies and self-aggrandizement to Jack's Twitter and the Murdoch media, his enablers. His (presumed) case of Covid was a "gift from God" that regular Americans should not be afraid of. 

He wants Hillary, Obama and Biden arrested by 'his' Justice Department. He is all but silent about a militia plot to kidnap a sitting U.S. Governor. He demands that a Federal judge, with strong and deep ties to a bordering-on-evangelical-Protestant cult, be confirmed to the Supreme Court. He says all American troops will be Home For Christmas from Afghanistan, and the Taliban smile. 

He turns this way; he turns that way. He capers and spins. He is the focus and center of all disgusting things, the degenerate clown who drops his pants and exposes himself to show the crowd the anus mundi -- Well, at least they're all lookin' at me! And that means they're not lookin' at Sleepy Joe!
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Results of the debate were not what I expected. People reacted against Trump's behavior, seeing it as an embarrassment -- like watching a relative pick a fight in a restaurant for no reason, and voiding his bowels at the same time. Possibly, they saw the same thing I had -- that being steeped in a concentrated bath of Trump was like watching the capering clown; so disgusting, but you couldn't look away. The longer you watched, the more painful it became.  

Biden, by comparison, appeared sane -- and, also a little like the Geek kid whom a bully goes after. They may not like the Geek much (secretly, they think he's weak and should stand up for himself), but they liked the bully less for his behavior.  

In the world most people live in, which never got much more sophisticated after High School -- if the majority of Americans were the school vice-principal, they signaled in their rejection of Trump's display that he would get the three-day suspension. 

The second debate was cancelled. Because The Leader does not wish a virtual debate (due to Trump's own infection with Covid-19); he considers it a "waste of time." Perhaps the third debate will be held -- and by then, The Leader may be so untethered, his little piggy eyes squinched with hate and a desire to hurt, to dominate, that he will give America a show it will never forget.

I paid good money -- SARS-CoV2 money -- for the past eight months; the past four years; and I want to see this murderous, narcisstic jerk-off pull a China Syndrome, and melt down right to the bottom on national television. Gibbering, screeching, making monkey noises; voiding his bowels in public.

That's my right as an American, and a consumer: I want what I paid for.
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Vote Of No  =  Not The Same As A Vote Of Yes

At the same time, I'm clear that voting for Biden is a vote of No against all that. As my vote in 2016 was. As my vote for Obama was in 2008 and 2012. And so forth.

So I'm voting against a deluded grifter, a child-man caricature of a politician who is an empty suit for religious crazies and opportunistic proto-fascists -- who are just front persons for the monsters: corporations, and Our Fabled Wealthy.

I'm voting for Democratic empty suits, promising Americans a little more prosperity, a little social justice, but have ever only delivered a small fraction of that. Because to get it, they make deals with the front persons for the same monsters, same corporations and Fabled Wealthy. 

This time, the front men for the monsters have had a taste of all the money to be made, the 'christian' messages that can be delivered; a delicious taste of Power. They can see how easy it is to paint whole sections of the country as looters, Antifa; communists and Those In Rebellion Against God. They may not be in the mood to make deals with Democrats. They may decide to back Trump all the way to a coup -- when will they ever have as good a chance again?
"If you fuck around with us; if you do something bad to us; we are gonna do things to you that have never been done before.”  
      -- Trump, Interviewed On Limbaugh's Radio Program; October 8, 2020
The fix always seems to be in. The truth always seems to be just out of reach, obscured by alternative facts, by the Murdoch machine "flooding the Zone with shit", as Lil' Stevie Bannon says; because people have been treated like Rubes and Marks so long that many of them are, now. And because I know what I'm voting against, and voting for, I despair for my country. 
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Looking Over The Edge Of The Vent Block Roof

Most healthy persons can't take more than a few minutes of Trump at a time. To preserve our sanity, we've been forced to absorb him by spoonfulls over the past four years -- mostly, video clips of his speeches and press events. We know he's a liar, an infantile, insecure bully using taunts and threats to feel powerful. He responds to external stimulus through a narcissistic filter: he is the center of the universe.

Four years of clips, sound bites, and reported self-referential bully's chatter is the context for our understanding of Trump.  But we keep all those moments separate in our minds -- like the core of a nuclear device -- because experiencing all of Trump, suddenly bringing all those facts together, might be more discomfort than most people can stand. 

Doing that could mean the realization that Trump is the embodiment of every lie, every contradiction and half-truth about America that's woven into our national fabric. He's the personification of everything about America we have been trying as a society to avoid facing. He's Brutal Whiteman Daddy Who Doesn't Care, coming home drunk at 3 A.M., and fuck knows what will happen. 

And we know he will at least try to bully his way into rigging and stealing the election, to avoid prosecution, to rule America as a dictatorship. The past four years may be prologue.

The debate forced America to experience all four years of Trump, concentrated into 90 minutes of bombast, jeering, heckling, lying. It was painful to see just how good he is at it. It was frightening. What I found just as painful was watching Biden's response.
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The Minatour And The Other Guy

Biden appeared to have prepared for a debate on the facts, to show his qualifications to be President (this strategy had been broadcast by his campaign, several times). Trump would appear weak and out of his depth.  

What Biden wasn't prepared for was Trump, acting in the tradition of a Joseph Goebbels / Steve Bannon Brownshirt. He went after Biden from the moment he opened his mouth -- interrupting, insulting; forcing the eyes of the cameras on him, making his behavior the focus of the debate.

Biden's initial response was to laugh, but after a few minutes he reacted like any normal person would:  he was pissed; This is a Presidential debate! You can't act like this! But Trump isn't normal. He's pathological. And his political career is based on acting that way, a dogwhistling display of behavior that sends his Base into an orgasmic delight.

Two minutes in, it wasn't about facts. Trump was a bully in a bar fight, daring Biden to punch back -- and when one starts, it's not about principle; Woodrow Wilson's famous "there is such a thing as a man too proud to fight" only means you will take a beating.  Biden responded with a normal person's outrage -- exactly the way the media and institutions have reacted to this punk for the past four years -- and Trump didn't just keep stepping over the line, he pissed on it, on national television..

Biden's campaign has focused on his experience as Vice-President, and his empathy for ordinary Americans in the midst of a consuming national emergency. He wanted to show by contrast that he was a better, more qualified person than Trump. It didn't work. He didn't have the physical presence, voice, or quick responses to Trump's crude taunts. 

Chronologically, I'm only a few years behind Trump, and a few more behind Biden, but Joe seemed Old -- flustered, stumbling on occasion under Trump's relentless needling. In those moments he looked exactly the way the Rethugs want to portray him. Isolated clips of Biden on the nightly news didn't show this, aber naturlich. You had to be there.

From coast to coast, Trump's Base was drinking in bars and each others' homes, not wearing masks, bellowing their approval: Yeah! Yeah! We're ownin'; them libs! YAAAH-hoo!!  Itching for the opportunity to take their AR-15s and surplus gear and head for a polling place to Get in some lib's face, dare 'em to push back. 'Cause we're ready.
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Strong Daddy; Good Daddy

Then came the via Dolorosa of Trump, the Brave, Our Savior; whisked off to Walter Reed, walking -- no, striding resolutely to Marine One, apparently with a cannula hidden under his hairdo and cloth face mask, and a portable 02 unit in his right pocket. And there were reports that the celebration of Lil' Amy's announcement (of soon being able to speak in tongues from the highest court) turned out to be a Superspreader event.

In quick succession, his doctors prevaricated and threw magic pony dust in the eyes of the mainstream media. Trump spoke -- not through his Press Secretary, brave Lil' Kayleigh (who later tested positive, too) -- but through the Murdochs, telling their 'broadcast personalities' he was The Strong Daddy, the 'good genes' Daddy who was "in control".

Meanwhile, no one gave a damn about the White House staff or the "domestics" (i.e., the butlers, housekeepers, cooks and custodians). No guidelines were issued, no suggestions to be tested; no rules about wearing face masks -- which few people in the White House did; after all, they worked for The Leader, and all reality bends to His will. There would be contact tracing, but not by the CDC; a private contractor would handle it (wonder which cabinet secretary owns the company -- or, a friend of Javonka's?).

There were video clips and still photos released. Evil know-it-all Antifa sympathizers indicated they were staged, taken before Trump left the White House, minutes apart, using the same props in two different rooms. But they showed Daddy hard at work -- for you; all for you, in The Leader's America.

Then, a long, surreal weekend, culminating in a bizarre joyride -- and then, science and all persons bowing to The Leader's will, his triumphant return to Washington, jumping up the South Portico stairs, up, up to the balcony, framed by backlighting and American flags. Daddy was home; and for some all was well. Everyone else felt their stomachs clench, checking their cellphones: What crazed shit has he done now?  Just as he wants us to do. 

Always doing something new, our Daddy.  What will be next?
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