There are times when America really does seem doomed. That is, our democratic republic seems doomed to finish its run atop history’s ash heap. A great idea kneecapped by racism, greed and just plain stupidity. The GOP‘s relentless attempts – any which way they can – to stop all oversight, investigation and prosecution of their criminality – crossed another line yesterday. The Republican-controlled Republican legislature is about to put a bill on Governor Brian Kemp’s desk that will give them the power to fire prosecutors they “don’t like”. That includes prosecutors who are prosecuting them for insurrection, voter fraud and treason.
Donald Trump began his presidency a criminal and ended it an even bigger criminal. He couldn’t have become POTUS – or remained in the job without Russia or the explicit co-conspiracy of virtually every single Republican. The GOP’s leadership knew that a “President Trump” would pose a grave national security threat even before they nominated him.
June 25, 2016. Current Speaker Of The House Kevin McCarthy exits a meeting about Russia’s attempts to destroy Ukraine’s struggling, new democracy and enters a meeting of GOP leaders. The first thing McCarthy says to the group is: “There’s two people I think Putin pays – [Rep. Dana] Rohrbacher and Trump – swear to God!” No one there questions McCarthy’s assertion! Instead, he gets nervous laughter – the reason for McCarthy’s “Swear to God!” He wants them all to know: he’s serious.
Knowing that he’s serious – and knowing how dangerous this conversation could get for the GOP – then Speaker Of The House Paul Ryan stepped forward. They weren’t going to discuss it any further, Ryan insisted. Not because it wasn’t true but because it was true! And this terrible secret needed to remain a secret. Speaker Ryan put a bow on it: “That’s how we know we’re family”.
A growing number of Americans understand that what Trump and the Republicans are doing? It ain’t normal. Not even remotely. Alas our news media – who also understand it isn’t normal – have painted themselves into a “both sides do it” corner. Because (they insist) they have to remain “neutral”, they present Democratic receipts as equal to Republican feelings. These two things, of course, are not equal.
This has damned us – still damns us every damned day! But it will not – it can’t – doom us. The very thing that triggered conservative panic – America diversifying far more quickly than anticipated – will be our saving grace, too.
White fright can damn us to a long, painful struggle. It can’t doom us however to the outcome they want. At the end of the day, there are too many of us and too few of them. Fascism works best where everyone’s mostly alike. Take Nazi Germany. The country we call Germany was the result of fifteen hundred years of hybridization. Small, local tribes bonding with other local tribes. Becoming bigger, more powerful tribes. Eventually a “German” sense of nationality evolved into being.
In America, by contrast, no such thing happened. After European pathogens wiped out most of America’s native population, Europeans and Africans and Asians – the rest of the nations of the world – filled the vacant land with bodies and hope. America broke the mold – how countries become countries. The idea at the core of our system is brilliant – self government and as level a playing field as possible. It’s not easy to do. In fact, it’s damned hard.
But it’s not impossible. The last few elections here prove it. The trick with democracy is that it demands action. People living democratically must regularly engage with their democracy or it won’t continue to work properly. Somehow, Americans got it into their heads that America – our democracy – would always be there “just because”. Thinking that way – it damned us.
But it did not doom us.
We The People will have the last word in this conversation. Getting there will be messy. But we will get there – and our last word will doom the Republican Party and its criminality. The moment indictments begin dropping onto the heads of elected members of Congress, the game will change.
For one thing, guys like Jim Jordan, Marjorie Taylor Greene and Matt Gaetz – traitors all – will have to deal with massive legal bills. Billable hours for these kinds of crimes will be staggeringly expensive. Way more than any of those mooks have on hand. The Republican Party itself can only cover so many of those hours. And when they turn to GoFundMe for help? They’ll find those coffers drained, too.
Faced with criminal charges and legal bills that will bankrupt their families, Jim and Marge and Matty will try to cut the best deals they can with prosecutors. Alas, all the good deals will be long gone. Jim and Marge and Matty will have nada to negotiate. That’s when they’ll begin ratting each other out.
Hey, when Donald Trump gets indicted – and thinks he can throw people under the bus to save himself? He’ll even throw his own kids there because that’s who and what he is.
Doomed and damned.