Integrity Is An All Or Nothing Proposition

What Zero Integrity looks like — en masse

Nothing is funnier than a Republican drawing himself up, having just been asked a serious question about his integrity. He knits his brows, purses his lips and goes all “earnest” with his voice.

Mitch McConnell talking “patriotism” — having just lifted the sanctions punishing Oleg Deripaska for changing the outcome of election 2016, say. That’d be Mitch insisting he’d done something great for the people of Kentucky (while betraying them and everyone else in the country).

Your average Republican thinks THAT’S “Integrity”. Acting like you have it.

When you have no integrity, acting like you have it is as close to having integrity as you’re ever going to get.

What Republicans especially don’t seem to grasp — integrity while iron-clad at its core, is built of gossamer. It’s a soap bubble, easily punctured. And just like a soap bubble, once popped? It’s popped for good.

There’s a reason we don’t say things like “Ya know, that Kevin McCarthy — the GOP Leader — he may not have all his integrity, but 70%’s okay with me!” The moment Kevin slipped below 100%, that should have been the end of it. How can you trust someone almost completely but not completely? That means you DON’T trust them because even when you do, you really don’t.

That’s how integrity works. It is or it isn’t.

Can we all please, please, PLEASE agree? When it comes to integrity, if you still have an “R” next to your name? While Donald Trump’s a Republican? If you stand in any way, shape or form with him?

You can’t even spell “integrity”.

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The Problem With Coming Late To The Party

Think back to election night 2016.  I bet you can still recall that sick feeling in the pit of your stomach when it hit you that the impossible – Trump “winning” the presidency – had just happened.  Some of us saw that sick feeling as more than just disgust at a bad election result.  It was our noses catching the scent of corruption. 

Trump “winning” wasn’t just a bad election result, it was bullshit.  Literal bullshit.  Even Trump knew it that night – it was well reported how surprised everyone was in the Trump campaign.  It wasn’t the “unlikeliness” of the result that shocked them, it was the fact that the crime they were all part of had just succeeded beyond any of their wildest imaginations. And in spite of their efforts.

Even during the campaign, Trump’s relationship with Russia was under the microscope.  Remember Trump telling Hillary that she was Putin’s puppet, not him?  Pretty funny, that moment, if you think about.  Not so much funny “ha-ha” as funny “boy, does that stink!”.  Turns out we were witnessing something profound.  Trump was projecting as Trump does.

He was confessing: he was Putin’s puppet.

Let’s be quite clear – between then and now, Trump being Putin’s puppet has not become “less true”, it’s become “more true” and by “more true”, I mean “more painfully obvious”.  What used to sound – and be called “hyperbolic” – Donald Trump is a traitor – is now openly stated on relatively reliable news channels like CNN & MSNBC.  If we get to play this all out – I believe we will – and proof of Trump’s treason finds the light (more than it already has – ample proof having already found plenty of light), it won’t mean Trump started being a traitor at the moment we collectively decided he was guilty of it.

It will only mean we’re finally calling Trump the thing he is: a traitor.  He’s been a traitor all along.  He’s been betraying us all along – even when we refused to think he was a “traitor”.  He was being one. 

We all know what happens when you arrive late to a party.  The food’s pretty much gone.  So’s the best wine and the best beer.  Being late gets you the dregs of everything. The news works exactly the same way.

The American News Media has been behind from day one with this story. Between normalcy bias and failure of imagination, they’ve consistently failed to see the enormity of Trumps crime in real time — even as he was committing those crimes in plain view, right in the Main Stream Media’s face. They’re just beginning to see it, get it and report it now.

That’s great that they’re catching up. Great that they see a real and viable threat here. But it doesn’t change the fact that it took the Main Stream Media this long to figure out how much they didn’t know.