Musings from George


Postcards from the Ledge
January 21, 2017, 10:04 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

While I choose not to go protest Trump’s ascension in public (did any good come from blocking Uber’s HQ or preventing commuters from going to work?), I am a flawed human who cannot find anything to be hopeful about in Trump’s words. His press conference was a train wreck, where he demonstrated that he cannot speak in complete sentences. His statements after meeting with knowledgable, respectable sources (including Obama and the generals soon to be in his cabinet) reveal how little #DopeyDonald has actually thought about real issues facing the US today. Ignorant about what Obamacare actually is, unaware of our nuclear assets, blind to the complexities of the relationship between Taiwan and China (yes, it takes more than 140 characters to capture that complexity).

So, we are each tasked with the difficult decision as to whether we want to actively oppose our new president or if we trust in democracy and sit silently. As an old white guy, it is easy to take the approach of “not my problem”. Yet how can we not hear these words from Martin Niemöller echoing from 1937, when he was arrested for protesting the ascension of the Nazis (they too enjoyed 32% support in the polls of their citizens):

When the Nazis came for the communists,
I remained silent;
I was not a communist.

When they locked up the social democrats,
I remained silent;
I was not a social democrat.

When they came for the trade unionists,
I did not speak out;
I was not a trade unionist.

When they came for the Jews,
I remained silent;
I wasn’t a Jew.

When they came for me,
there was no one left to speak out.

So, #DonaldPorkPie, you have divided and insulted the vast majority of our nation. Rather than the broad brush used by your opponent (“deplorables” doesn’t deserve its own hashtag), you have singled out Muslims, Hispanics, war heroes, Hollywood stars. You doubled down by insulting the parents of a slain soldier, several sitting Senators and a handful of sitting Congressmen, a disabled reporter, and citizens brazen enough to challenge you for the highest public office.

#DodgerDonald has broken with tradition in so many ways, and many enjoyed the lack of common courtesy and the rejection of political correctness so much that they are willing to overlook the many troubling things he has said. #GropyDonald on tape, celebrating sexual assault AT WORK … Bush got fired, and Trump should have been fired too (he was at work that day).

#LyingDonald hides behind an audit to say he can’t release his tax returns, while everyone knows that is patently false — the IRS is not restricting him from doing so. #CheatingDonald deducted a billion dollars from his tax bill that … wait for it … were not his dollars. He borrowed and spent a billion dollars of other people’s money, then cheated to declare that a loss on his taxes. #FraudulentTrump should be locked up, just as Al Capone was, for tax evasion.

Ignorance is not a virtue. Tweeting hateful and divisive things is not a skill. Breaking glass when you have never glazed a window in your life is just destructive — Trump’s new campaign promises are all about what he is NOT going to do (he will not enforce Obama’s policies, he will revoke rules to protect the environment, he will pull out of trade deals). These are the actions of an obstructionist and Luddite. What does he actually want to build? A wall. And he can’t even make that happen.

The powerful forces that prevented Obama from closing Guantanamo are now arrayed to thwart #PowerlessDonald. Congress won’t pay for a wall, and Mexicans laugh every time it comes up (build a thirty foot wall, and they will build a thirty-one foot ladder). What does #OrangeToughy plan to do about Guantanamo, Syria, ISIS, and the loss of jobs to automation? He has given no indication.

#DandyDonald now owns the broken glass of health care, and chooses instead to celebrate 2,700 manufacturing jobs that are staying or being created (Macy’s will lay off 10,000 workers before those manufacturing jobs are staffed — Obama created more than 2700 jobs every day of his administration). Ford, Carrier, and GM did not reverse course because of an election, they gave in to coercion and $700M in tax incentives and payments. We can’t afford to buy jobs for $200K each that pay $40K … but #DummyDonald is not an economist or mathematician, and he doesn’t even play one on TV.

People say that #DandyDonald is deeply tied in with #PowermadPutin. People say that his empire is riddled with Mob ties. People say that Melania is the real Manchurian candidate, deployed years ago with a plot straight out of Orwell’s 1984 (her secret was safe, since Trump doesn’t read books … only right-wing and alt-white blogs).

My virtual poster, which I am not holding aloft in Washington DC or San Jose today: “Trump is what happens in a democracy when people stay home.” And for now, he is our President. I last felt this sense of alienation when #43 was re-elected in 2004, understanding that so many in America don’t have the same dreams and hopes that I do.

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