19 August 2016

From bad to worse, with better to come

The much-ballyhooed reshuffle of Trump's campaign -- bringing Breitbart.com's Stephen Bannon aboard as chief engineer of the Trump Train Wreck in place of Paul Manafort -- does not foreshadow a kinder, gentler, less-rabid candidacy.  Quite the contrary.  Trump has been chafing at demands that he "pivot" toward some minimal standard of civility and sanity for the general election.  Even by wingnut standards, Breitbart.com caters to a pretty out-there crowd, and has long been in the tank for Trump.  It's a marriage made in Hell.  Mainstream Republicans are aghast at Bannon's elevation, fearing it means the campaign will become even more extremist and vitriolic, and even more willing to lash out at less-deranged elements within the party.  Trump drew praise for a relatively-sane-sounding speech yesterday, but it may well prove to be a deceptive moment of calm before the storm returns with redoubled fury.

If so, it will strengthen the hand of those on the right who are calling for the party to write Trump off and redirect its financial support to down-ballot campaigns that still may be salvageable.  At the very least, it will mean more anger among old-line Republicans against the Trumpanzees after the magnitude of the election-day disaster has sunk in.  The pieces are falling into place for a post-election wingnut Dolchsto├člegende and civil war.

Jeff Greenfield observed yesterday that the Bannon hire is the culmination of a years-long right-wing strategy of demonizing and delegitimizing opponents, and predicted that Hillary as President will face more of the same histrionic obstructionism that has dogged Obama.  It's impossible to disagree with his description of how the wingnuts have behaved, but the problem with this kind of strategy is that its direction is hard to control.  Different factions within the right are demonizing and delegitimizing each other.  The counterrevolution devours its monstrous children.  Just watch them turn on each other with all-out fury after Hillary's landslide win in November.

Greenfield's piece is frightening, but remember this:  there's more of us than there is of them, and their hateful antics always end up alienating people outside their core constituencies.  Popular support for gay marriage has grown to a solid majority during the very period that the Christian Right went all-in to fight against it.  Obama's approval rating has risen during the last year as Trump came to personify the Republican alternative.  Many Americans have long viewed Muslims with suspicion, but after Khizr Khan gave this unpopular minority a human face, Trump's attack provoked a backlash which is defanging yet another wingnut bogeyman.  Yes, these people are scary, but they keep losing, largely because they're scary.  Once they start fighting among themselves in earnest, it's all over.

= = = = = = = = =

Today marks ten years that I've been doing this blog.  It's hard to believe it's lasted this long, but it's now even harder to imagine not doing it -- so I guess it will be around as long as I am, or until future technological advances replace blogging with some new medium as unimaginable now as blogging was a couple of decades ago.

On that note, one of my favorite videos, reflecting my sense of exuberance at how far we've come and what lies ahead:

10 Comments:

Anonymous Connie said...

I watched the video - with my tech I'm amazed it played. Must be something wrong though because there was a sudden influx of dust and my eyes started to leak a bit.

19 August, 2016 08:19  
Blogger Comrade Misfit said...

Congratulations on the blogiversary!

Of the recent attack in Olympia, WA was any indication, we may be in for a nasty time.



19 August, 2016 12:52  
Blogger Mycue23 said...

Congrats on 10 years! Very impressive. Keep up the great work.

19 August, 2016 12:59  
Blogger Paul Wartenberg said...

ten years gone, just hit that milestone meself this year. Where did all the time go?

(looks back at the political craziness, lost jobs, and lack of social life)

Eh. Could have been worse.

19 August, 2016 16:35  
Blogger Pinku-Sensei said...

Congratulations on 10 years! I've only been at this on Blogspot for five, although I started blogging on LiveJournal in 2005.

19 August, 2016 17:42  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Thanks everyone!

Comrade, I think of it as the tail end of a nasty time which is passing away. Think of the reactions a mixed-race couple would have encountered a few decades ago (when it would actually have been illegal in much of the country).

Connie, I find it a very moving song. And spare a thought for all those who fought to help get us this far, but didn't live to see it.

20 August, 2016 05:29  
Anonymous NickM said...

10 years and all on your ownsome. Have a virtual cigar! That is really spot-on. To put things in context in terms of time I seem to recall the first mixed race in Alabama was 1973. I recall that because that was the year of my birth.

20 August, 2016 06:38  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Nick: Thanks! Any plans to start a blog of your own, now that you're not on Counting Cats any more?

21 August, 2016 14:31  
Blogger Batocchio said...

Happy 10th!

04 September, 2016 12:58  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Thanks!

04 September, 2016 15:56  

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