Oh, right, it’s Inauguration time. My fellow armchair liberals have all been dreading this day and, in dark rooms, as they caress their mother’s underwear, they’ve worked hard to convince themselves that this isn’t happening.
I’ve listened to the narrative shift over the past few months. It’s been fascinating. Up till Election Day, the narrative was “It’s impossible for Trump to win.” Then we had two months of a hashtag protest, general outrage, and a strange sort of collective depression among the educated elite. As the New Year dawned, this depression lifted and a new narrative emerged. I hear it everywhere – my friends talk about it, we chat about it on the forums, my bartender talks about it, everyone at happy hour talks about it, it’s even overheard on the train during my commute to work. Everyone’s saying trump will be out of the White House in one year. In fact, the “One Year and Done” narrative is so universally talked about with such conviction that it almost feels like it’s already happened. Like it’s already happened.
Much of this is based on the idea that the immoral monster we’ve elected will fall afoul of ethics committees and get bounced. The One Year and Done narrative walks hand in hand with a naïve belief in “The System,” and an assurance that “The System” will correct itself because that’s how America works. If America does something horrible “The System” will enact arcane and, perhaps, magical protocols to right the ship.
Which means, I guess, that believers in “The System” are avid supporters of genocidal lunacy against Indians, social genocide against minorities, women, and lower classes, dropping atomic weapons on civilian targets, and spending hundreds of billions at the expense of our education and well-being on a massive military machine when the only possible enemies left in the world are children and goats.
I do not believe in this system. I think it’s unwise and irresponsible to believe in and embrace an oligarchy that, since 1945, has actively worked to stifle education, free thought, and equality.
I think it’s insane to believe in a system that demands a socialist level of taxation and involvement from its populace but then does nothing socially beneficial for that populace.
I think it’s galling to believe in a system that has built a menacing military machine that could pretty much conquer the solar system in terms of conventional military might and range.
I think it’s purest madness to believe in a system comprised of representatives who answer only to corporations and special interest groups.
The only thing that sort of system can produce is an out of control dynastic aristocracy that can only be answered by a populist fascist backlash. The only thing that system can produce is division, contention, fear, and prejudice.
I’ve always felt this. We are a great country, and we’ve been occupying a very unique cultural and geographical bubble for a very long time, but human history follows a predictable cycle. In historical parlance, we were the rather strong and well-located city-state that suddenly inherited an empire and spent the next few generations trying to manage that empire without admitting that it was an empire because we had worked hard to escape another empire in our past. But that path ends with men who rule solely by status and wealth or faux-populism and declare themselves gods among men.
So Trump may be a dark horse (or he may simply be the inevitable and logical conclusion of the last 70 years). Either way, “The System” isn’t there to stop him. “The System” is designed to protect him. Get that through your head.
“The System” is not meant for the likes of you and me or to defend our lofty armchair liberal goals. “The System” is meant to make money, to fuel greed, to further the Great American Financial Dream.
So maybe Trump will have an ethics crisis. But “The System” won’t feed on him unless stocks plummet and the dollar collapses. Nixon was guilty as sin and more insane than you can imagine and, with all of that public knowledge, it still took two and a half years to oust him. Trump will literally have to go door to door and murder our grandmothers before we even begin to grumble. He’s even said as much – “I can stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I won’t lose any voters.”
Do you doubt him? On a recent trip to Louisiana, I saw more Trump flags than US flags. Something’s happening here, folks. Wake up.
How is this possible? Well, here, you need to think more globally. All around us, the world is falling apart. Our only competing currency was the Pound and the Euro… And now both are being (and will continue to be) brutally ravaged by Brexit. This isn’t “Trump’s America”. This is the Far Right’s America. Brexit has created the perfect vacuum for something like this to happen. Because of it, Trump is going to do well. He’s going to shoot from the hip and bluster his way through to at least the mid-terms. He’ll lure businesses back (by hook or by crook – that is, make it uncomfortable for them to go south of the border), he’ll create energy jobs (again, probably all in the wrong way), and the stock market is already embracing him with cheers and kisses. But, frankly, all he has to do is maintain the current status quo on the economic front and we’ll all be happy because Brexit is going to spend the next 2 years digging a giant grave for all of our competitors.
Oh, but what about China! Come on, people! With China, all Trump has to do is repeat the world we grew up in — China is scary now (as Russia was in the 1950s-60s), but it suffers from exactly the same problems as the USSR and it can be defeated the same way — outspend, outlast, outdo. For all the talk, they’re a paper tiger. They’ve broken their backs putting ONE aircraft carrier into the water and it’s a repurposed second-hand carrier from the 1980s. They haven’t even started building new ones.
Meanwhile, we have 20 active aircraft carriers, three about to launch, and 16 more coming out by 2020. The effective range of each of the new aircraft carriers we’re building is, well, global. We are building 16 world-killer aircraft carriers. Just one of our traditional aircraft carriers can effectively police and control an entire hemisphere, and we have 20 of those!
So Trump and the presidency? It’s all a show. All he has to do is perform. And that’s because it’s “The System” you all so love and believe in that’s evil and broken.
Trump’s a problem. But he’s not the problem, and what we should be doing is focusing on and trying to influence and change the problem.
And we can! It’s fairly easy. “The System” thrives on money.
Consider divorcing the supermarkets and the name brands and shopping local. Shop small, local, and independent. Always.
Participate in your community and help rebuild our neighborhoods.
And there’s a thousand other things you can do along those lines and I’ll be glad to host a discussion in the comments.