Over the weekend, a group of our very own, home-brewed Murrican fascists took yet another step towards establishing the Kallikak Caliphate of their dreams by taking up arms against the federal government. From Brother Charlie Pierce:
You have to give Captain Daniel Shays this: When he launched his armed sedition against lawful authority, he at least was invited in. Overnight on Saturday, in an obscure corner of the Oregon wilderness, and contrary to the law, and in defiance of democratic authority, both federal and local, another act of armed sedition was committed. It seems to me that this ought to be a bigger story than, say, the belated prosecution of Bill Cosby, or whatever most recently came out of the mouth of the vulgar talking yam. In a small place in Oregon, the essential compact of the United States of America has come apart.
A pretty big deal, you might think.
A major story in the middle of an otherwise dull news cycle, you might surmise.
And over in the Better Universe, you would be right and your teevee machines would be a'buzzin' and a'clickin' with learned people talking about the bloody and terrible roots of Revanchist Conservatism which the Right has been using as a sharp stick to incite our most paranoid and belligerently ignorant citizens for 30 years now.
But we don't live in the Better Universe. We live in this Universe. And over in this Universe, Donald Trump is running for Maximum Awesome President For Life of America. And like every successful demagogue, Donald Trump knows that the trick to winning the loyalty of the mob is to give them permission to publicly wallow in their ugliest private perversions.
Which is why Donald Trump has given permission to the American bigot to embrace his Inner Klansman. And given permission to the America brownshirt to beat up outsiders at his rallies. And given permission to all of Murrica's secret Archie Bunkers to openly sneer at the handicapped, mouthy women, uppity Negros, back-sassing Mexicans and all the rest.
And he has finally located the Dick Signal "On" switch --
-- and given the Beltway Media permission to once again slobber over the only story they ever really cared about
From "Meet the Press":
Shuck Todd: ...While Donald Trump takes aim at Hillary Clinton by attacking Bill Clinton's sexual peccadilloes.
Shuck Todd: ... In a moment, we're going to look at the developing fight between the two leading candidates, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, over Bill Clinton's sexual past.Shuck Todd: ... Up next, Donald Trump versus Hillary Clinton. He did it again this morning, folks. Clinton accuses Trump of sexism. And Trump hits back by going after Bill. Attacking Bill to get to Hillary has never worked before. Can Trump change it?Shuck Todd: But Trump is trying to do to Hillary what no Republican has successfully done. Make Bill Clinton's personal problem a political liability for her. Trump wasn't always so critical of the former president's personal life. The Clintons were guests what Trump's third wedding. And in the late '90s, Trump criticized quote, "moralists in Congress who expressed public outrage at the president's immoral behavior."
Except these so-called "late '90s" never happened because history did not begin until January 2009. At least that's the story that every Conservative and Beltway wag has been sticking to for the last seven years. A little late to change calendars now, Shuck.
Shuck Todd: ...He does find a way to get at the one thing that somebody doesn't want to talk about. And while it's always benefited Hillary Clinton whenever there's conversation about Bill Clinton's past, she hates talking about it.
Over on "This Week With Whoever Is Sitting In For George Stephanopoulis..." Martha Raddaz shamed herself by promising Live!Nude!Girls! to get the chumps into the tent
RADDATZ: OK. And you're all going to be back in a few minutes. But next, we are just getting started. Donald Trump versus Bill Clinton, the battle gets raw with the brash billionaire attacking President Clinton's past.
And then tried to cover her shame with the last tatters of her journalistic integrity by pretending that somehow America demanded to know where Bernie Sanders stood on the important issue of "Whither The Clenis?":
RADDATZ (to Bernie Sanders): Hillary Clinton has Bill Clinton joining her on the campaign trail there in New Hampshire this week. Donald Trump and Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus think Bill Clinton’s sexual history is fair game. Do you?
Senator Sanders, who is both a gentleman and a grownup who understands message discipline, wasn't having any of it:
SANDERS: No, I don’t. I think, you know, we have enormous problems facing this country and I think we got more things to worry about than Bill Clinton’s sexual life. I think -- interestingly enough, maybe Donald Trump might want to focus attention on climate change, understand that climate change is not a hoax, as he believes that it is, that maybe Donald Trump should understand that we should raise the minimum wage in this country, which he opposes, and maybe we should not be giving huge tax breaks to fellow billionaires like Donald Trump.So I think maybe he should focus on those things.
Yes for a moment there, actual issues threatened to scuttle the Beltway circle jerk. But Ms. Raddatz, a real trouper, managed to get her team of finger-puppets to stay focused on what was really important:
RADDATZ: And we’re back with the powerhouse roundtable. Let’s get right into Donald Trump’s escalating attacks on Bill Clinton.
Ms. Raddatz then asked Alice Stewart, who's resume reads as follows --
...communications director for Mike Huckabee's 2016 presidential campaign. She left the Huckabee campaign on December 14, 2015. Previously, Stewart worked as the national press secretary for Rick Santorum's 2012 presidential campaign and Michele Bachmann's campaign that same cycle.
-- if she thought it was "fair to go after [Bill Clinton] that way?"
And no one laughed so hard that the milk they drank in 5th grade shot out of their nose.
Why yes, Martha, yes! The stooge-for-hire behind three, different Christopath hucksters each of whom got enough of a snoot-full of Sweet Baby Jebus popskull to fail spectacularly at running for president does, in fact, think dragging The Clenis back out of the trick bag is perfectly fucking fair. Surprise! And you don't have to just take her word for it, because she can cite as confirming authorities of her opinion one of the most Conservative rags on the Eastern seaboard and Rupert Murdoch's Wall Street Journal.
So there you go.
This prompted reliable Conservative scumbag, Alex Castellanos, to put down his jug and his copy of "Juggs" and jump in with both feet...
CASTELLANOS: That's not what the issue is. The issue is here that Hillary Clinton has said about women like Bill Cosby's accusers that, quote, "they have a right to be believed," which is not what she said about the women who basically thought Bill Clinton, her husband, was a sexual predator.It is in her court. She was part of that cabal in the White House that went out and orchestrated this assault on these women who challenged Bill Clinton on this very same issue --
Over in the 3rd ring of our Sunday Morning Mouse Circus, John Dickerson gave Donald Trump a microphone which, by now, everyone on this planet of Earth knows (to quote Vince Gilligan) is like a chimp with a machine gun:
But what the Hell, right? Ratings, right? I mean, Dickerson's gotta eat, right?
So take it away, Il Douche:
DICKERSON: Hillary Clinton, what does it mean when you say she's playing the women card?TRUMP: Oh, she's constantly playing the woman card.It's the only way she may get elected, I mean, frankly. I don't think anybody -- personally, I'm not sure that anybody else other than me is going to beat her. And I think she's a flawed candidate.
And you see what has happened recently, and it hasn't been a very pretty picture for her or for Bill, because I'm the only one that is willing to talk about his problems. I mean, what he did and what he has gone through, I think, is, frankly, terrible, especially if she wants to play the woman card.
DICKERSON: What does it mean, though, to play the woman card, in your view?TRUMP: Well, she's playing it. She is just -- she is pandering. She's pandering to the public and she's pandering to women.And when she did it with me -- she talked about sexist -- and I said, me, I have more respect for women by far than Hillary Clinton has. And I will do more for women than Hillary Clinton will. I will do far more, including the protection of our country. She caused a lot of the problems that we have right now. You could say she caused the migration. Look at the problems in Syria.DICKERSON: You mean as secretary of state.TRUMP: As secretary of state. I mean, the entire world has been upset. The entire world is -- it's a different place. During Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton's term, she's done horrible job. She's caused so many of the problems...
And speaking of chimps with machine guns, Mr. Dickerson lets Ruth "David Brooks in a dress" Marcus get her Clenis freak all the way on:
...DICKERSON: Ruth, let me ask you about this fracas between Hillary Clinton/Bill Clinton and Donald Trump. They got into a back and forth. Hillary Clinton said Donald Trump was sexist. He said, if you want to have a full and frank conversation about how do you think that works out, you were quoted favorably by some people as having said this was fair game.MARCUS: I do think it's fair game. And let me make --DICKERSON: To talk about Bill Clinton?MARCUS: To talk about Bill Clinton, for two reasons. One is, Hillary Clinton attacked Donald Trump, appropriately and correctly, for sexist remarks, of which there are many. Bill Clinton's record with women then becomes fair game. She also has designated him as her surrogate in chief. He will be out on the campaign trail this week. When she does both of those things, attacks Trump for sexism, picks Bill Clinton as her surrogate, his record becomes fair game. And when I say record, I'm not talking about extramarital affairs. I'm talking about his conduct, predatory, offensive, inappropriate with women, including in the Oval Office. That becomes fair for Trump to raise...
Sure there were the usual, meaningless poll numbers read at you with forced excitement and, sure, Jennifer Rubin was as horrifying as she always is.
But while the chumps might stay for this listless coffee and stale muffin buffet, the reason they shamble into the club in the first place is the promise of Live!Nude!Girls!
Meanwhile, out in the real world and far, far away from the anesthetizing grotesquery of wealthy pundits sitting in circles and smirking about penises, those who ache to tear this country to bits and establish their Kallikak Caliphate are not going away:
It does us no good to ignore what is going on in this obscure little corner of the Pacific Northwest. It does us no good to refuse to hold to account the politics that led to this, and the politicians who sought to profit from it. It does us no good to deny that there is a substantial constituency for armed sedition in this country, and to deny the necessity of delegitimizing that constituency in our politics, and the first step in that process is to face it and to call it what it is.And, in related news, of course, Tamir Rice is still dead.