Author Topic: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th  (Read 551 times)

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Offline Buster's Uncle

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Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #15 on: January 16, 2020, 02:53:06 PM »
Uniforms, or at least sheets.  I truly believe that.

Offline Elok

Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #16 on: January 16, 2020, 09:39:47 PM »
Whatever for?  Trump's overtly racist supporters are a quite minuscule percentage of the whole; something like 500 people showed up for C-ville in 2017, and that was their best effort, and they got outnumbered two-to-one.  The threat gets magnified by people freaking out about them.  The hatred of illegals is at heart a labor issue--for the overwhelming majority of those angry about it--and right or wrong doesn't strictly require paramilitary support; the enemy group in this case are not US citizens, so it's not that hard as a political matter to attack them.  Trump faced early objections about them, but now we've largely moved on.

Moreover, the US just isn't that dysfunctional as a country.  I've freaked out about this before, but as numerous people have pointed out, the Sixties and Seventies were a vastly worse time in terms of polarization and violence.  We had mass rioting, bombings, terrorists robbing banks. Modern urban unrest consists of the Occupy movement, which died after maybe a year and a half of doing nothing, BLM which got a little rough but is now also dead, and finally small clusters of right-wing and left-wing wackos beating each other up in the streets of a couple of cities like Portland.  Most of the scary stuff is lone wackos shooting schools.  Previous totalitarian movements rose out of countries that were barely functional on the most basic level.  As in, slightly better than Venezuela today.

Offline Buster's Uncle

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Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #17 on: January 17, 2020, 01:01:37 AM »
Nationalism - Check.
Racism - Check.
Constant outrageous scapegoating - Check.
Undermining democracy - Check.
Lies and propaganda and nothing but -has its own "news" channel now entering its 30th year- Check.

I've been watching it get worse and worse for a bit longer than you've been alive, and they're shy uniforms and better central organization of running the table for my definition of fascism.



Not aimed at you, Elok, you're always cool about it when you let the Nazis off the hook, but I note that tend to get attacked pretty viscously every time I post frankly about my belief that the right in this country has been sliding further into fascism for my entire adult life.

Boys, I'm in the middle of my winter mood, and I ain't posting 'cause I'm looking for, or even feel up to, arguing.  My considered typed posts don't convey my shouting purple-faced outrage, growing for the last 40 years as they go further and further and FUTHER.  -If you make the mistake of accusing me of throwing out terms like Nazi and fascist casually as mere insults, rather than calling the sheeted thugs burning a cross on MY constitution the klansmen that they are --- I've let the personal attacks slide w/o vacations resulting for the last time.

If you're wrong-headed enough to come into my house and defend the Nazis who've taken over my country and get more brazenly what I call them every year, every stolen presidency - you better mind your damn manners while you're being part of the problem on my dime.

Offline Elok

Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #18 on: January 17, 2020, 01:50:35 AM »
Did you read my FB post after reading a bio of Hitler, a couple of years back?  Shortly after WWI, Hitler joined the party that became the NSDAP on orders from the German military, who were basically acting completely unsupervised and wanted to recruit paramilitaries as a bastion against the communists.  A couple of years later, there was some sort of ineffectual attempt at a communist takeover of the country; it didn't work, but it put everyone on edge.  Hitler discovered his gift for public speaking, built up the party, partially lost control of events, yadda yadda long story short the beer hall putsch went on a rampage, robbed banks, looted political opponents' offices, and shot four cops dead before getting defeated.  Hitler went on trial for it, but the judge was so sympathetic as to let him rant from the witness stand for hours on end, and in the end he served barely over a year on house arrest for (let's repeat) an attempt at armed insurrection that killed four LEOs.  That's including time served.  He wrote Mein Kampf and received a stream of adoring visitors the whole time.  When he got out he promised that the Nazis had totally given up on violently overthrowing the government, honest, and less than ten years later was so popular that Hindenburg felt obligated to appoint Hitler chancellor in spite of his (for example) openly endorsing the murders of leftists and railing at the injustice of punishing his followers for snuffing them.  That's how frickin' messed up Weimar Germany was.

Pre-communist China?  Miserable war-blighted hellhole.  Pre-Soviet Russia?  A poor and unhappy country stretched to its limit by decades of failed reform, terrorism, and a war it couldn't afford.  IDK about Cambodia, but it was next door to the prolonged disaster we know as Vietnam.  Vietnam  was Vietnam.  No well-established democracy has yet failed in the modern era; Japan imported it uneasily and partially in the nineteenth century, around the same time Germany was essentially inventing itself as a unified country under Bismarck and Italy was sort of falling back together after a thousand years and more of partition.  The real monsters always take power in backwards basket cases--Eastern Europe, South America, postcolonial African states.

Offline Buster's Uncle

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Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2020, 02:08:31 AM »
-And yet still, they're running the checklist.

You keep this up and I'm gonna start sharing the ignorant excrement my very smart cousins constantly foul my Facebook with.  You'll be sorry.  -Or, y'know, you can cut out the middlemen and watch Fox "News" for ten minutes.  Any ten.

He did it, it's all there in the transcript, and it's illegal.  Moscow Mitch was there for the Clinton mess, and yet God doesn't strike him dead for hypocrisy every time he says political witch hunt - or just opens his mouth lately, lying being a sin.

I read Hitler: His Early Career in 1987, and recommend it highly.  You mangle the paramilitary stuff, and leave out the wacky inflation stories and the French occupation being so bad the joke was going around that if you stole a loaf of bread in the French sector, you'd better go do a murder and get caught in the English or American sector, to get a lesser sentence.

Offline Bearu

Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2020, 05:54:42 PM »
Many of the Fascists would denounce the American Conservatives as not conserving the fundamental values of White Nationalism and promote androgyny against the "weak men" unironically.
The capitalists exploit the workers without any desire or remorse beyond the reproduction of profits.
The picture portrays Jiang Qing in front of a crowd.

Offline Elok

Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #21 on: January 18, 2020, 08:43:30 PM »
BUncle, you're making my point: all previous authoritarian and totalitarian takeovers have occurred against a backdrop of terminal social collapse.  America is still the wealthiest and most powerful country on Earth.  Things would have to get much, much worse before we'd be in position for a fascist coup.

As for the checklist: this country in general has been far more racist and jingoistic than Republicans are today.  I'm pretty sure the average white American in 1970 was significantly more racist than the average Republican is today; do you dispute that?  Where racism does occur, it's different in character.  It used to be that nonwhites were biologically inferior, borderline subhuman.  Now you see assumptions of purely cultural inferiority, so that you see things like Newt Gingrich proposing to address the NAACP on the superiority of paychecks to foodstamps.  Even Trump's infamous "they're not sending their best people" is dependent on the assumption that there are, in fact, good Mexicans.  Prejudice against Jews is now fringe-right, and prejudice against Asians is barely a thing AFAICT (Kuciwalker from Poly is indisputably conservative; he's of partially Jewish heritage, married to a Chinese-American woman, and nobody seems to care about either).  This is why Trump had to defeat challengers named Rubio and Cruz to win the nomination--their Latin ancestry was irrelevant because they were culturally white.  The whole country has moved in the direction of being substantially more racially tolerant, and come to see racism as a much more serious matter, which throws conservatives' failure to shift as far as the mainstream into sharp relief.

Nationalism, and subservient media mouthpieces?  Used to be far more the case.  Prior to the Vietnam era the news outlets were far more deferential to authority, as was the culture in general.  We meekly accepted censorship during both world wars.  That changed in part because of the same phenomenon that spawned Fox News: the diversification of information streams by new technology.  When there were only three big TV networks and a bunch of major newspapers, all dependent on advertisers to subsidize hefty production costs, moderation was the rule, because moving too far to extremes could turn off viewers.  Then came cable, and then the internet.  Anyone can throw an opinion out there, and information is very hard to contain.  The flipside is that people can choose their own set of info sources and ignore all others.

In that respect, Fox News is the exact opposite of Pravda.  Nobody's forced to watch it, or get the truth via furtive photocopied samizdat.  The same cable packages that sell Fox News sell CNN and MSNBC.  The same browser that takes you to foxnews.com will take you anywhere else.  They all know what the traitors are saying; they just don't listen.  The internet as a whole is still more egalitarian; any idiot with basic equipment and a minimal budget can make YouTube videos, podcasts, blogs, whatever.  Which is why I don't need to be told what Fox News is saying--I have FB friends who share the same rubbish.  In fact, Fox News is rather tame.  I know a guy who's a neoreactionary, a thing that didn't exist twenty years ago.  The dude sincerely believes monarchy is superior to democracy, and gets in big online slapfights with opposing radicals.  But socialism is also now a thing people take seriously, again because of the internet.  "Fake news" is shorthand for "people are free to say things which are false, and other people are free to believe them, and we can't discredit or silence them in favor of an imposed consensus."

This isn't incipient fascism, it's a whole new world of competing voices.  It's getting messy because consensus can't be arranged top-down anymore.  That doesn't mean it'll end with jackboots uber alles.

Offline Lorizael

Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #22 on: January 18, 2020, 11:49:30 PM »
The same browser that takes you to foxnews.com will take you anywhere else.

In practice, since it's generally old people who are consumers of Fox News, they probably don't actually know that. Their wonderful grandson was nice enough to set things up so if they just click the blue e that says "fox news" it takes them to the internet, and if they click the blue e that says "facebook" it takes them to pictures of their great-grandchildren.

Offline Elok

Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #23 on: January 19, 2020, 12:40:43 AM »
This may be true of very elderly people.  It is not true of the average Fox News consumer in my experience (bear in mind that I live in Trump country).  Plenty of them are younger than that, and even a moderately old person (about seventy, say) has learned something about the internet over the past twenty-five years.

Offline ColdWizard

Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #24 on: January 19, 2020, 02:43:21 AM »
Fox News had higher 18-49 cable viewer numbers for 2019 (.25MM viewers, -16%) than CNN (.20MM viewers, -24%) or MSNBC (.20MM viewers, -25%). Source

Offline Lorizael

Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #25 on: January 19, 2020, 03:13:28 AM »
This may be true of very elderly people.  It is not true of the average Fox News consumer in my experience (bear in mind that I live in Trump country).  Plenty of them are younger than that, and even a moderately old person (about seventy, say) has learned something about the internet over the past twenty-five years.

Sure. My experience is colored by my time working in the call center selling books to old people.

Offline Buster's Uncle

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Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #26 on: January 21, 2020, 02:10:34 AM »
BUncle, you're making my point: all previous authoritarian and totalitarian takeovers have occurred against a backdrop of terminal social collapse.  America is still the wealthiest and most powerful country on Earth.  Things would have to get much, much worse before we'd be in position for a fascist coup.

As for the checklist: this country in general has been far more racist and jingoistic than Republicans are today.  I'm pretty sure the average white American in 1970 was significantly more racist than the average Republican is today; do you dispute that?  Where racism does occur, it's different in character.  It used to be that nonwhites were biologically inferior, borderline subhuman.  Now you see assumptions of purely cultural inferiority, so that you see things like Newt Gingrich proposing to address the NAACP on the superiority of paychecks to foodstamps.  Even Trump's infamous "they're not sending their best people" is dependent on the assumption that there are, in fact, good Mexicans.  Prejudice against Jews is now fringe-right, and prejudice against Asians is barely a thing AFAICT (Kuciwalker from Poly is indisputably conservative; he's of partially Jewish heritage, married to a Chinese-American woman, and nobody seems to care about either).  This is why Trump had to defeat challengers named Rubio and Cruz to win the nomination--their Latin ancestry was irrelevant because they were culturally white.  The whole country has moved in the direction of being substantially more racially tolerant, and come to see racism as a much more serious matter, which throws conservatives' failure to shift as far as the mainstream into sharp relief.

Nationalism, and subservient media mouthpieces?  Used to be far more the case.  Prior to the Vietnam era the news outlets were far more deferential to authority, as was the culture in general.  We meekly accepted censorship during both world wars.  That changed in part because of the same phenomenon that spawned Fox News: the diversification of information streams by new technology.  When there were only three big TV networks and a bunch of major newspapers, all dependent on advertisers to subsidize hefty production costs, moderation was the rule, because moving too far to extremes could turn off viewers.  Then came cable, and then the internet.  Anyone can throw an opinion out there, and information is very hard to contain.  The flipside is that people can choose their own set of info sources and ignore all others.

In that respect, Fox News is the exact opposite of Pravda.  Nobody's forced to watch it, or get the truth via furtive photocopied samizdat.  The same cable packages that sell Fox News sell CNN and MSNBC.  The same browser that takes you to foxnews.com will take you anywhere else.  They all know what the traitors are saying; they just don't listen.  The internet as a whole is still more egalitarian; any idiot with basic equipment and a minimal budget can make YouTube videos, podcasts, blogs, whatever.  Which is why I don't need to be told what Fox News is saying--I have FB friends who share the same rubbish.  In fact, Fox News is rather tame.  I know a guy who's a neoreactionary, a thing that didn't exist twenty years ago.  The dude sincerely believes monarchy is superior to democracy, and gets in big online slapfights with opposing radicals.  But socialism is also now a thing people take seriously, again because of the internet.  "Fake news" is shorthand for "people are free to say things which are false, and other people are free to believe them, and we can't discredit or silence them in favor of an imposed consensus."

This isn't incipient fascism, it's a whole new world of competing voices.  It's getting messy because consensus can't be arranged top-down anymore.  That doesn't mean it'll end with jackboots uber alles.
See, the problem with all this you say is, I know a lot of Republicans and I remember back to Nixon.  You're missing that I'm not talking as much about what's wrong now as about the scummy downward progression, lo, these last 40 years.

It's lovely of you that you're such a fundamentally decent fellow that you're willing to give the reactionaries the benefit of the doubt about, for example, the rampant bigotry on the right.  You just don't seem to think that way, and it's natural not to expect it in others.  Trouble is, again, I grew up around mostly right-wingers and know better.

This is, I'm in no mood to write up 200 pages worth of my life story where it touches on what I'm talking about, Reagan coming into my church to evil results, my time as migrant labor radicalizing me on labor issues, the area where I come off as a true liberal, the rest of my views being more of a libertarian take that other people's rap music and fornication ain't my problem.

He did it, it's hacking at the foundations of democracy upon which I hope to still stand in ten years, and he should go.  -For that if not 40 other corrupt things he's done in public.

I'm up against what I call the 'Arguing Reagan' problem - I never much bother to argue anyone so reality-challenged as to miss the self evident fact that he was an empty shirt and a lying, bad-mouthing scumbag who worked the lowest common denominator to lowest common results.  If you, speaking rhetorically, like Reagan, you're on a different planet and I don't know how to talk to you about it - it's too much work to try, and I lack the peace of mind to be masochistically pursuing those experiences.


You're telling me over and over that it can't happen here.  Do give that a good long think.

Offline Rusty Edge

Re: Forget about Impeachment, time to invoke the 25th
« Reply #27 on: January 22, 2020, 09:45:51 PM »
It'll be interesting to see what happens in the next decade.  I'm not really concerned about creeping authoritarianism anymore; the US isn't nearly as dysfunctional as previous societies that have gone that route.  But everything's topsy-turvy.  Where's everything going to land?

I've been contemplating this question.

Scenario #1- I fear that 2016 was our last free and fair national election. Why? Because when the investigations proved foreign interference Congress did nothing. The GOP/FOX/NRA coalition  went with "Russia is a hoax." Why bother when it benefits our team? The Russians will get better at it, and the GOP will be complicit. Trump himself said he'd be stupid to turn down outside help. Maybe other nations will join the rig the American election game. When the elections lose their credibility, so does the government and the law. Taxation and currency become questionable after that. That sounds like the pathway to meet the conditions for strong man to restore order fascism to me.

Scenario #2- Post- Constitutionalism. In some ways we're already there. Amending the Constitution is so hard and slow that we often simply ignore it and do what we want. Congress abdicated the responsibility of declaring war. Rather than budget, we govern by Continuing Resolution. In the Trump Era we have blatant violations of the Emoluments Clause, and Congress doesn't care, and the courts have dismissed cases, citing lack of standing.  There is a movement for a work around to the electoral college that throws a state's electoral votes to the winner of the popular vote nationally.

 I see this evolving/devolving into a pseudo parliamentary monarchy. WHAT?!! Hear me out... We don't have a give and take legislative process any more, we have iron fist tribalism in the national legislature. We have the despised  Moscow Mitch, Pelosi, and Schumer in perpetual power struggle. So the popular solution to a despised professional politician is to put an outsider in charge. Historically that's been a military man. More recently we've had movie actors Regan, Schwarzenegger, and Ventura become governors. Likewise, we've had billionaires, Perot, Trump, (well maybe he's actually only worth hundreds of millions, depending on how indebted he is to the Russians ) Steyer, and Bloomberg as presidential candidates. Men that can somehow bring their personal popularity to bear.

I forsee this new norm were we have unqualified figurehead presidents ( pseudo-monarchs) protected by their party in exchange for shedding their popularity upon them. When the public gets fed up with things, they throw the bums out in a wave change Congressional election and demand impeachment. Kinda like a vote of no confidence in the Prime Minister. But if the party loses it's figure head, so what? They can find another one. The Pelosis and McConnels will remain.

I wonder if Khloe Kardashian will be the first woman president. We haven't even tapped singers and athletes yet.

Or maybe our figure heads will instead be plutocratic descendants of Kennedys, Bushes, Clintons or some other Harvard/Yale presidential dynasty promising to somehow return us to "the good old days".

 

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