Writing about what I have been reading and encountering in the media.
|I heard this morning that Franklin Graham says the evangelical Christians have backed off from their support of President Trump. I hope that is true. As I understand it, forgiveness requires confession and behavior change.
The firing of Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, by tweet, directly after he joined 6 other countries in condemning Russian poisoning of British citizens can be viewed in several ways. Mr. Trump had been threatening to fire Mr. Tillerson for a long time. Perhaps you may be inclined to overlook the timing. Perhaps you take at face value that Tillerson had been informed as Mr. Trump says. However, put yourself in the place of Mr. Tillerson and think through how he has been treated after pouring his life hours into representing American interests internationally without any statement of wrongdoing from Mr. Trump beyond once losing patience and calling the President a “moron.”
Then comes the firing of Mr. McCabe 26 hours short of his retirement causing him to lose his pension, and then the next day calling for the end of the Mueller investigation. This petty, vindictive behavior appears self-serving. Of course, it could be appropriate based on the report of the investigation into the FBI handling of the Clinton Foundation and the behavior of the FBI in releasing information about it in a way that influenced the election. Have you ever heard Mr. Trump express genuine concern for Hillary Clinton outside of the context of the Mueller investigation?
This week’s dramatic developments are typical of the Trump administration and you might say “so what. You are a liberal. This is just business as usual. The silence of the Republican Party is clear indication that all is well with the clearing of the swamp.”
While all this drama progresses, decorated by the titillating pictures of Stormy Daniels all over the TV, the Republican Congress is busily repealing the laws passed to protect average Americans’ finances and prevent another 2008 economic disaster. There are hundreds of thousands of voices objecting to this behavior and the Republican response is to say, “this is what you want.”
I am very troubled. I have been reading the book Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Plan for America by Nancy MacLean. I find her work very credible as she is a scholar, a teacher at Duke University, and she refers repeatedly to primary documents. In addition, her writing validates what I have been seeing and thinking about the functioning of the Republican Congress. Briefly, the goal of the “Alt-Right” is to destroy democracy. Does this sound radical to you? It is. The “Alt-Right” has co-opted many Libertarians who prefer oligarchy (rule by the wealthy) to democracy. The initial impetus of this movement was Brown vs. The Board of Education, the Supreme Court decision requiring the end to segregated schools. Seeing the Ku Klux Klan join in is totally consistent with Alt Right thinking.
Some of you may think this is all hunky dory, just what needs to be done. Pay attention to this. Russia is an Oligarchy with huge problems of racism and history of war based on ethnicity. You are living in a country that has tried to be better than that. Of course, we aren’t much better if you look at the mess we’ve made of the Middle East, and what we have done and continue to do to Native Americans, African Americans, and Hispanic Americans. Nevertheless, it is easy to say the grass is greener over there. You haven’t tasted it. Do you really want to live in an oligarchy? We are very, very close to that today. Your vote counts! Informed voting is our tool to save Democracy.