Tweet Tower—It’s hard to grasp the full descent of American politics in 2019, a time when watching certain news sources makes you less informed and listening to a SOTU address will make you a little less aware of our actual State of our Union. As for Russiagate, I knew annulment was a longshot and the last best hope for a course correction has apparently fizzled. Now this country and this planet will bear the brunt of the rest of this populist shit show. Just as it’s hard to tell a Republican president with Dementia from the usual variety. It’s similarly difficult to distinguish legal business dealings from blatantly criminal ones. These lines are becoming forever blurred as we shift deeper into this late stage democracy. Our political scheissgeist reminds me of when Gozer the Gozerian demanded that the Ghostbusters, “Choose the form of the Destructor!” And then a moment later said, “The choice is made.” Venkman is like, “Whoa, wait a minute! Liberals, did you choose anything?” No. “Independents, did you choose anything?” No. “Republicans?” …It just popped into our head. That guy from The Apprentice, a selfmade businessman, a real Atlas Shrugged guy, a man who couldn’t possibly mean capitalism any harm.
“The Grifter has come.”
We have entered the perfect political storm and it doesn’t help that Captain Drumpf is tossing the paper towels around the room. Mutiny on the Bounty joke removed by me! See, I beat you to it, Mr. Winslow! #1stAmendment! #WhoEditsTheEditMen? During the Dubya days my predictions were pretty spot on, but, admittedly, I wasn’t convinced we would ever truly recover from his brand of reckless incompetence. Whereas I did accurately predict the collapse, to the year, I believed we only had about a 30% chance of rebounding from what later came to be called the Great Recession. I since learned, thanks to Keynesian economics, we could just print a shitload more funny money and extend our mass monetary delusion for a few more years. Who knew? This Keynesie fella, I guess. Didn’t he do that sex study back in the sixties? Either way he’s well positioned *cough*. Now we see deficits on a crazy jag upward while we cut anything relevant to the lower and middle classes, again, just as predicted. It won’t be long before the world economy stumbles, but will this round be even more catastrophic? I hope not. Wrong would be wonderful on this one. I also targeted the republican administration post George W. Bush as our final Destructor. Then when I saw who it was, years later *gulp*.
The tragedy is how long it took to pull out of this Bushian nosedive and how eager this country was to go not so gently back into that far right, aka, blow up deficits, other countries, and everything in between. It took a special list of imbecilic ingredients to bring us back to this brink so soon. Sometimes Karma is a bitch and other times she’s a Fury with extreme PMS.
[Wicked Witch of the Westwing joke removed by the Secret Service.]
Right-wing media paved the way for the emergence of a morally bankrupt, politically indifferent, scientifically incurious, con man to clean out Dodge. We watched our Republican friends enable Wall Street, weaponize stupid, and then hand these new found super powers to the personification of swindle himself, Donald J. Trump. This caveman emperor has taken caveat emptor to a whole new level as the U.S. is open for any and all forms of shady.
According to The Washington Post, the Consumer Protection Bureau, which now just hands out tubes of KY jelly with instructions to apply liberally on the assets, has shown a decrease in enforcement actions, while at the same time Obama-era regulations meant to protect those with student loans are being gutted.
“The bureau has dropped cases against predatory payday lenders, reportedly rolled back its investigation of the Equifax data breach, and reformulated its mission to scale back its reach. Federal regulators in September released AIG from special government oversight mandated after the financial crisis and set aside a legal fight with MetLife.”
—Emily Stewart, Vox
I’ve started to take notice of the vultures circling my own bank account, here. The Art of the Grift is in full swing. The lines of good business are now forever blurred between Ayn Rand and Ken Lay.
[Aynron CEO joke removed by the editor and charged with Insider Blogging.]
Capitalism has become, what you can get away with. Early as it may be, neither front-runner in the 2020 race is willing to release their tax returns. Bernie should drop out if he continues to muddy this important issue.
The Atlantic is channeling some Zano today:
“(The Scam) becomes its own false promise. It is too hopeful. It is overly naive. It assumes a world that does not exist. There’s so much that becomes fair game, after all, within a game that is rigged…[On Breaking Bad characters, she adds:] Is Chuck a high-ranking law-enforcement official or a con man? Is Bobby Axelrod, the hedge-funder whose money helps the world spin on its crooked axis, a scammer or a quintessential success story of swaggering American capitalism? The comedy of it all—the tragedy of it all—is that they are both at once.”
—Megan Garber, The Scams are Winning
One of my key warnings involved capitalism’s descent into vulture capitalism. This occurred without half of our country even noticing. Hell, they voted this shit in through a level of shortsightedness not seen since the Golgafrenchin’s decision to raze the world’s forests to fight inflation of their new, rather leafy currency. Republican politicians today are cockroaches staying alive through voter suppression, gerrymandering and a singular ability to scurry quickly when the investigatory lights flick on. Not a single person went to jail for the Wall Street collapse, torture, lying us into war, Iran Contra, and no one high enough has yet to be held accountable in Trumpsylvania. Will anyone go to jail for the next one? Today the moguls openly live by different rules. It’s not a crime, because it’s not illegal, Pokey. The one percent is in charge now and whatever they say goes.
Hint of the Day: I predict they will soon start saying a lot.
Trump is currently trying to place his own ringer to head the IRS, undoubtedly to protect the release of his tax returns, and he’s appointing Thing 2, Herman I’m-Not-An-Expert-On-Monetary-Policy Cain to the Fed, after Thing 1, the Stephen Moore nomination, is no moore. These are two astoundingly unqualified people, but as long as they keep interest rates low and allow Trump to finish off the economy, all quiet like, it will all workout for the greater bad. Add this to the appointment of William Presidents-Can’t-Obstruct-Justice Barr just in time to summarize Mueller’s findings, and a clear pattern emerges.
I bet my blogvesary that even now my view of the Russiagate chapter is closer to the truth than the nonsense on the right. Soon after the completion of the Special Counsel’s work I warned that Barr wouldn’t even release the full report to congress’s judicial committee. “No one is saying this yet, but when Barr refuses to do just that, we’re facing yet another constitutional crisis.” Here the Beast today: Bill Barr: I’m Not Giving Congress The Full Mueller Report. We will march from constitutional crisis to constitutional crisis and then sprinkle in either an unnecessary war and/or an economic collapse. Meanwhile, what has Pokey gotten right to date? “The man I voted for shouldn’t be shot for treason, quite yet.” Very inspirational.
Sure most of us weren’t surprised when the president appointed individuals openly hostile to the agencies that they head—as it was all an effort to disband whatever stood in the way of their profits and plans—but to appoint a guy dead-set on ending EPA regs amidst the sixth mass extinction takes a special brand of specialness. As I shift to post, the head of Homeland Insecurity, Kirstjen Nielsen, is stepping down (presumably for not being awful enough).
Trump is dispatching his latest round of flying monkeys with a level of brazenness that even I didn’t expect. Somewhere amidst that illiterate, incoherent, scandal-ridden, moral vacuum of a man beats the Mickey D’s-clogged heart of a chess player.
[Golden Arches-Showers joke redacted by the Attorney General.]
Trump is implementing what his Republican predecessor would call ‘strategery’. Let’s take a moment to praise, not the man, but the Cockroach King, the mega-MAGA survivalist that is Donald Trump. Naked & a Raid?
Mueller’s findings weren’t wrong, neither were my own predictions/conclusions. But whatever the final score ends up being, mark my words, the Republican summary of Russiagate will prove the least accurate, but only because they’ve taken wrongness to the realm of Plato’s forms. They are wrongness personified. They are the Form itself, the unqualified universal perfections (F-UUPs).
Today any and all news cycles bring with it a tsunami of Foxal matter crashing onto our shores. What the hell is a 27 indictment victory lap anyway? How is that a thing? It’s just today’s scheissgeist; if one sentence backs their worldview that’s the only sentence they process and regurgitate. Dang, I want to use the Reince.Priebus.Repeat joke. [Winslow: NO!]
“Shred the other 400 pages of the Mueller report, but take that partially redacted sentence that matches our rhetoric and put it on a plaque.”
—John Q. Republican
Even when it seems like they’re right about something, they won’t be. Truth and Republicanism can no longer occupy the same space. They repel each other like a super MAGAnet. Trust me on this one, if and when liberals are proven wrong about something, Republicans always find a way to somehow Plato this shit.
Another of today’s examples is immigration reform. Instead of even acknowledging what’s happening in Central America, or even understanding the reason for their increased need for these migrations northward—or even our role in the problem—Trump is cutting funding across the board in that region. And firing the head of Homeland Security, someone in charge who only deserves a mere fourth level of Dante’s hell, is not comforting. Make the problem worse and then go, see! Look at that whopper of a problem! Conservatives did the same thing in Europe. Our president is refusing to even hold a summit with these countries to seek solutions. Just die quietly in your own country or on the other side of our imaginary wall.
“It’s easy, folks, you just have to put the word Don’t in front of that ‘huddled masses’ part.”
—John Q. Republican
Wait until we start sprinkling in a pinch of economic downturn and unnecessary wars into the mix. Forgot what you ordered, eh? …yeah, well I haven’t. Check out the latest on Iran here. If you trust Republicans to do the right thing in 2019 you’re nuttier than your president. With Iran it’s ‘trust but verify’, but with our own right-wing friends it’s ‘don’t trust and prosecute’ lest we forget their reputation isn’t quite as strong as the Ayatollah’s, at least historically speaking. I wonder if you really pressed Merkel who she trusts less at this point. Enquiring minds want to …wait, I’m being told the president purchased the Enquirer. Damn.
There’s an eloquence to always being wrong and Republicans do this year after year with a certain pizzazz. Sadly Trump will do what I always predicted he would …ruin us. A post-Trump world is a place in which only the cockroaches will thrive, and in 2019 they’ve managed to take the word chutzpah and occupied new Heights.
Don’t annex that joke, Winslow!
*I initially thought of the Trump as Destruct analogy before he was even president. Who you gonna call?