Sunday, March 06, 2016

Sunday Morning Comin' Down

"And here comes a chopper to chop off your head!" Edition.

As Liberals who were kicked from America's mainstream long ago for saying dangerously true things in public, over the years we have usually found ourselves over and over again in the position of Jimmy Stewart in Rear Window; witness to monsters doing monstrous things which we cannot stop and which no one wants to take seriously.

But now, in the Year of Our Lord 2016, Madness has finally found itself a pair of seven-league boots and Absurdity has strapped on codpiece made of flubber and they are tear-assing around the country in ways that no genteel gibberish about Grand Bargains and humility or soft voices in elite quiet rooms can make go away. If we choose, every night on our teevee machines can now watch Cardinal Ximénez and Il Douche duke it out for the title of leader of the Party of Lincoln, while mobs of superooperduper independent constitutional conservative star-spangled freedumb patriots whip themselves into ecstatic frenzies over the idea that maybe they can finally dispense with this "democracy" nonsense once and for all and get back to either Leviticus or the Lord of the Flies, just like Jesus and James Madison intended.

So I think we can all agree that it's a funny old world, and it just keeps getting funnier.

A world where, in the space of 24 hours, I can find myself agreeing with David Fucking Brooks (from Meet the Press) --
DAVID BROOKS: If we're going to get Trump, we might as well get the Nuremberg rallies to go with it. No, I mean, the number-one trait that associates or correlates with Trump support is authoritarianism, a belief in authoritarian leadership style.
-- and Donald J. Trump --

-- and (god help me), the New York Times' own Clinton-era-acid-gorgon-preserved-in-stasis -- Maureen Dowd --
The most enjoyable thing about the Trump phenomenon has been watching him make monkeys out of a lot of people who had it coming.

Marco Rubio, a frothy focus-grouped concoction whose main qualifications to be president consist of a nice smile and an easy wit, has been mocking Trump as a con man.

It’s delicious watching the neocon men who tricked the country and gulled the naïve W. into the Iraq invasion go ballistic trying to stop the Gotham con man.

Bill Kristol of The Weekly Standard wrote an outraged column about why there wasn’t more outrage at Trump, who correctly pointed out that Americans were deceived into a catastrophic war.

Kristol, the midwife to three debacles — Dan Quayle, Iraq and Sarah Palin — solicited suggestions for the name of the new party that Republicans will have to start if Trump secures the nomination. How about “Losers”?
-- while at the same time imagining how much improved our fair, green speck would be if all three of them and several thousand more of their parasitic ilk were welded into leaky tin crates and fired into space to, oh, lets say, "colonize Venus".  Hell, I'll settle for just "fired" period, and sentenced to spending the rest of their lives with no one rewarding them with mountains of money for saying and doing terrible things.

But of all the imponderables and unforgivables bobbing around in the media turd-tank this weekend -- including NBC potentially exposing innocent children to Mary Matalin without giving them ample warning and protective gear -- nothing can really compare to George Stephanopoulous belly-flopping right into the bubbliest part of Conservative toxic waste dump and turning his cameras over to Patient Zero of the modern wingnut insanity virus which has turned the Right into a horde of 28 Days Later rage zombies:


STEPHANOPOULOS: The rise of Donald Trump has set up a fierce debate on talk radio. Here's the man at the center of it all, Glenn Beck, founder of TheBlaze.  Glenn, thanks for joining us this morning.


STEPHANOPOULOUS: Now, you're part of this "never Trump" camp. But if you listen to those callers, it sounds like the GOP splits no matter what, that there's no bridging this divide.

BECK: The GOP has one last chance to listen to the people. And the people that -- and I understand it; they're very, very angry because the GOP did not listen the first time around. They didn't listen to the Ron Paul people who were way of the curve, then the Tea Party people, and they rubbed our nose in it. And they are tired. And they have created Donald Trump.

The people are speaking clearly. And there's two ways to go: anger and nationalism, which has been done before in history.


BECK: And you can go for nationalism, you can go for anger --

STEPHANOPOULOUS: Donald Trump is Adolf Hitler?

BECK: If you look at what's happening in -- with Donald Trump and his playing to the lowest common denominator and to the anger in us, you know, Adolf Hitler, we all look at Adolf Hitler in 1940. We should look at Adolf Hitler in 1929. He was a kind of a funny kind of character that said the things that people were thinking. Where Donald Trump takes it I have absolutely no idea, but Donald Trump is a dangerous man with the things that he has been saying.

Wrap your head around Glenn Beck -- noted culture-war criminal and profiteer who made his fortune whipping the Pig People into a state of constant, unholy frenzy -- being invited onto one of our nation's Very Serious Teevee Programs to call anyone else on the face of the Earth "a kind of a funny kind of character that said the things that people were thinking" but who is actually "a dangerous man with the things that he has been saying" without being laughed into oblivion.

And speaking of laughter, it is always amusing to watch the Comcast's most irregularly-sized socket wrench -- Shuck Todd-- frantically interceding to steer his puppet show away from any conversation that threatens to become honest and uncomfortable.

And at the very top of the list of things About Which That Shalt Not Speak Candidly at the Sunday Morning Gasbag Cavalcade?

Race and the Republican Party:
STEPHEN HENDERSON:  There's also a substantive credibility problem here. I mean, you have Republicans saying, "Trump is not one of us." And yet, a lot of the things that he's saying are said in coded language by other Republicans. I wrote a column last week about Paul Ryan, for instance, saying, "This is not a party that preys on people's prejudices."

And yet, you can think of lots of examples of Republicans doing exactly that, going back to Ronald Reagan, giving a states' rights speech in Neshoba County, Mississippi, in 1980. This goes on all the time in coded ways. Trump is saying some of these things more explicitly. And that makes them, you know, it makes you uncomfortable too--

MARY MATALIN:   No, it doesn't make me uncomfortable, it just makes me want to choke you (LAUGHTER) because it's ridiculous and it's the creation of Trump. Because conservatives do not consider themselves bigots or homophobes or misogynists, okay? What Cruz won at CPAC, and he won overwhelmingly, he is expanding the electorate by bringing like-minded libertarians, young people. Trump is expanding the electorate by getting people who are sick of being called bigots, because they want to secure the border. This is not a race race, okay? Let's not go there.

STEPHEN HENDERSON: I think it is. I mean, I think there's no question that what he is doing is appealing to race. And Republicans have done that for a long time.

CHUCK TODD:  By the way, there was something else though that Donald Trump did yesterday that grabbed my eye...
Run away, Chuck!  Run awaaaay!

Finally a bonus read:  Tengrain at "Mock Paper Scissors" has once again spotted Peggy Noonan floating down the discount liquor aisle suffering from as severe case of Republican Detachment Disorder as ol' Doc Driftglass has ever seen.  We now join Peggers, who has blearily mistaken a stock boy for the Risen Reagan, already in mid-seduction...
“Let’s go, Dutch,” she said in her most infectiously flirty and gamine way, as they squeaked down the aisle together. The young man inquired if she was having a party.
“Party leaders and thinkers should take note: It’s easier for a base to hire or develop a flashy new establishment than it is for an establishment to find itself a new base.”
The young man nodded his head in sympathy; he’d had other customers who saw things no one else saw.
“We are in uncharted territory. But the point is fissures and tensions simmering and growing for 15 years burst through, erupted.”
You should really swing on by and check out the whole thing.  There are many imitators (myself included), but Tengrain owns the Noonan franchise. 


RUKidding said...

Dame Peggitha Nooningtonhampshire awakens from her Saturday special of Purple Drank to realize with a shock that the ungrateful knuckle draggers and low life bottom dwelling scum don't realize the powerful glory that is the Dame, herself, and her ilk. Oh my! Whatever would my lover, Dutch, have to say about this dismal display of ingratitude from the slobs that we toss crumbs to?

And whyever did it come to this pass? After all, when I'm on my strolls down 5th Avenue to the local bottle shop, I do my best not to knock over & kick the homeless or other assorted disgusting specimens. We let the walk around Gotham, for heaven's sake!

Pass the Ketamine cocktail, Manuel, er Jose, or Pedro or whatever your d*mn name is.

PS Glenn Beck?? Lordy! words fail me.

squatlo said...

You had me at the Jimmy Stewart "Rear Window" reference. Dammit. Well written screed, sir.

What's amazing is watching some of the usual suspects from the lunatic fringe right suddenly seeming to come across as rational voices of reason, when compared to the rhetoric of their Party's front running candidate. Hearing Beck, of all people, pointing to Trump with nationalist warnings...? It's so ironic it almost breaks the thesaurus. Peggy Goddamn Noonan offering advice is about as succinct as hearing Bill Kristol making yet another of his never ending stream of vacuous comments that later are confirmed to have been as salient as farts from the southbound end of a northbound bull. Why anyone schedules these people to join the conversation is beyond me. They must have great agents, that's all I can figure.

We're in uncharted territory here. No one knows what's going to happen, because none of this has ever happened before. The most reliable voices suddenly shaky, and people are looking around for some sort of confirmation that YES! this is indeed fucked up beyond belief, and YES! everyone else is just as confused and confounded as they are.

We'll see more constraints put upon future nomination procedures after the dust settles, because billionaires don't like to see their donations pissed away without any return on the investment. The confusion will result in even more Draconian voter suppression tactics, and don't be surprised if Party Elders don't write themselves a script for future campaigns that includes more of their influence and far less of those pesky ol' voters.

Great post, thanks.

Neo Tuxedo said...

I wouldn't say Tengrain owns the Our Lady of the Magic Dolphins franchise -- that honor will always go to Barry Friedman (of the Plains), senior Oklahoma correspondent over at Brother Charles's shebeen -- but I can at least stand to read the Further Adventures. When he starts channeling the Nooner, or Benny the Blade, or any of the other vacuities the Noise Machine has put on stage to show us what Madame Sosostris* meant by "Inferior men in positions of power", I worry for the sanity of anyone who reads all the way to the end, and (like many of the shebeen's patrons) for his sanity as its author.

(* The wisest woman in Europe, with a wicked pack of cards.)

RUKidding said...

On the radio tonight was some southern "pastor" exhorting the mob about the perfidiousness of Trump. That combined w Beck's denunciations signifies to me a full court press from the billionaires. They're pissed that Trump is horning in on their con!

Someone in the Spooks also got to Trump & forced him to recant on torture. Plus there was the Factual assault from Fox against Trump in the last debate. When was the last time that Fox used FACTS & realty to inform the rubes of what to believe.

The more I witness the more it seems that there is true panic behind the curtain about Trump.

When I thought more about it, it's obvious that Beck was PAID handsomely to diss Donald. Of course Beck is only too happy to comply. It will be interesting to see if Limbaugh does an about face. That blowhard will turn on Trump in a NY minute for the right amount of cash.

Mmmm mmmm mmmm. Panic of the Oligarchs.

Kevin Holsinger said...

Good morning, Mr. Glass.

Republicans, who were so desperate to win that they courted the US' bigoted lowest common denominator (Southern Strategy), are threatened by Donald Trump, who is so desperate to win that he's courted the US' bigoted lowest common denominator.

"Maybe it was your time to lose. You didn't think so."
---Al Pacino, "The Devil's Advocate"

I'd quote the "God's special little creature" monologue, but that goes on a while.

Be seeing you.

Don P said...

Regarding the Stephen Henderson/Gorgon Matalin dustup: Ah the clarity of knowing you'll be invited on once every 4 years! Gotta love flyover country!

Ellis Weiner said...

In the "who can do Peggy Noonan" finals, can I put in a word for Gary Legum at Wonkette? YES, Barry Friedman. YES, Mock Paper Scissors. But let a hundred flowers bloom, is my view.

Although NB, Noonanites: The temptation is to parody her as a snooty Brit over-writer. The "Dame Peggington Noonington" trope really isn't accurate. She's not a DeBrett's Peerage snob. Her conceit isn't Fine Writing, but as an Empath. She would have us believe her Spidey-sense quivers at the emotional Truth of "America." She writes about "mood" and "feeling," and it's so gauzily general, one is tempted to think, "Well, yeah, I think I've felt that. Or I think other people have." It's all Madame Blavatsky bullshit, though. To say, "People are worried" is not to correctly touch on what caused their worry, you see.