Thursday, December 29, 2016

All of This Has Happened Before.

All of this will happen again.

Once again, we usher in another cycle in which the Right, drunk with majority power, will lay waste to everything they touch.

And once again the Both Siderist media clowns and con men are dutifully climbing into their assigned roles: clutching their pearls and feigning shock and outrage --
-- even as they go right on defending the Big Lie that makes this whole, awful fraud possible in the first place.

But as any honest citizen who has followed American politics for more that five minutes knows, there is absolutely nothing new in the Republican playbook: the only thing that has changed is that the con man leading the party is now brazen enough to play his lie-and-deny cards face up (From HuffPo) --
[Regarding the hacking of our election by his puppet-master Vlad the Elector] “I think we ought to get on with our lives,” Trump said Wednesday, according to the pool report. He was at his Mar-a-Lago resort, standing next to boxing promoter Don King. “I think that computers have complicated lives very greatly. The whole age of computer has made it where nobody knows exactly what is going on..."
-- and the meatheads and bigots at the base of the party are now aggressively ignorant enough to cheer him on for doing it.

From me, during the darkest days of the Age of Bush:
Secret Republican Training Film revealed

When in doubt, deny, deny, deny.

I don’t know about where you live, but around these parts the very-salacious-for-its-time, “A Guide for a Married Man” hasn’t been re-run on teevee for a long while. I only have vague, naughty memories of it myself. A half-dozen vignettes or so. Howitzer-shell-breasted 60’s hotties in their underthings. Rampant sexism. The plot itself was pretty simple: Walter Matthau wants to cheat on his wife (the incredibly sexy Inge Stevens, which immediately destroyed any “willing suspension of disbelief” on my part) and Robert Morse teaches him how. Tactics and “strategery” both.

An odd little time capsule of a movie, but one that accidentally let slip the Secret Republican Strategy for holding power.

In the flick Matthau asks Morse what to do if his wife nails him with another woman.

Morse says those three little words at the heart of all that is black in the Republican soul:

“Deny, deny, deny.”

“But what if…?”

“But suppose she walks right in and finds…?”

“Right there. In her bed. Right in front of her…?”


Deny everything. As your wife stands over your marriage bed, deny that the woman she is staring at even exists. When your wife demanded to know who this woman is as she (and you) get hurriedly dressed two feet away, just repeat “What? What are you talking about? What woman?”

What made me think of that:

Bob Herbert made me think of that.

Bob Herbert, one of the few reasons I might consider holding a bake sale to pay Charon to get me across the river Styx to the Times’ OpEd page once NYT closes the free pedway.

Herbert talks; You listen.

The Rumsfeld Stain

Published: May 23, 2005

How does Donald Rumsfeld survive as defense secretary?

Much of what has happened to the military on his watch has been catastrophic. In Iraq, more than 1,600 American troops have died and many thousands have been maimed in a war that Mr. Rumsfeld mishandled from the beginning and still has no idea how to win. The generals are telling us now that the U.S. is likely to be bogged down in Iraq for years, and there are whispers circulating about the possibility of "defeat."

Potential recruits are staying away from the armed forces in droves. Most Americans want no part of the administration's hapless venture in Iraq. A woman in Connecticut with two college-age sons said to me recently: "My boys should die in Baghdad? For what?"
The military spent decades rebuilding its reputation and regaining the respect of the vast majority of the American people after the debacle in Vietnam. Under Mr. Rumsfeld, that hard-won achievement is being reversed. He invaded Iraq with too few troops, and too many of them were poorly trained and inadequately equipped. The stories about American troops dying on the battlefield because of a lack of protective armor have now been widely told. 
The insurgency in Iraq appeared to take Mr. Rumsfeld completely by surprise. He expected to win the war in a walk. Or, perhaps, a strut.
A senior American officer, quoted last week in The Times, said that while he still believed the effort in Iraq would succeed, it could take "many years." As if all this were not enough, there is also the grotesque and deeply shameful issue that will always be a part of Mr. Rumsfeld's legacy - the manner in which American troops have treated prisoners under their control in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. …

The catalog of confirmed atrocities is huge. Consider just one paragraph from a long and horrifying story on Friday by Tim Golden of The Times about the torture and brutal deaths of two Afghan inmates at the hands of U.S. troops: 
"In sworn statements to Army investigators, soldiers describe one female interrogator with a taste for humiliation stepping on the neck of one prostrate detainee and kicking another in the genitals. They tell of a shackled prisoner being forced to roll back and forth on the floor of a cell, kissing the boots of his two interrogators as he went. Yet another prisoner is made to pick plastic bottle caps out of a drum mixed with excrement and water as part of a strategy to soften him up for questioning."
Neither the troops nor the American public signed on for a war in Iraq that would last many years. And I can't believe there are many Americans who wanted their military sullied by the wanton behavior of the torture crowd.

The troops who do their jobs honestly and diligently, and who fight bravely when they have to, have been betrayed by leaders who encouraged abusive behavior and allowed atrocities to flourish. 
Mr. Rumsfeld has driven the military into a ruinous quagmire, and there is no evidence at all that he's capable of finding a serviceable route out.

So why does our own Dr. Strangelove still have his job?

And why does Bush throw Presidential Medal’s of Freedom to demonstrably incompetent fucktards like Mardi Gras beads?

Why is Manwhore Jeff Gannon still so conspicuously and persistently NOT a headline news story?

Why does half the Fox News Lesion (no, not a misspelling) of Doom keep their jobs after lying on the air while Dan Rather had to go?

Why isn’t Dick Cheney doing time in an undisclosed Federal Prison?

With all of the irrelevancies boiled out, the reason comes down to three words: William Jefferson Clinton.

But not in the way you think.

Sure, every time the Preznit get’s caught saying or doing something remarkably stupid or ill-considered, Administration flak commandos reliably scurry behind the French or the Germans or Bill Clinton, and, sure, every time Bush is attacked by a salty snack Scotty McClellan manages to work Clinton into the conversation, but I don’t mean Big Dog gets dragged into the picture that way this time.

No, as part of its overall plan to create a permanent, One Party Evangelical Plutocracy, the Republican Party spent vast sums of its political, moral and green-folding capital bear-baiting Bill Clinton for the better part of seven years. Went after his wife. Went after his friends. Accused him of extortion, of fathering children out of wedlock, of murder.

Week after week, month after month, the Ahab’s of the Party of God went after him without mercy or conscience. And somewhat like the other seagoing-morality-tale -- Billy Budd -- in the end it didn’t even really matter if he was innocent: if he could be backed into any kind of violation, they could lynch him and call it justice.

So when they caught him, for example, parsing the word “is”, they mocked him and bloodied him for it. For months.

Parsing the word “is” over a blowjob in EXACTLY the same way that the liar Donald Rumsfeld has parsed the word “imminent”, over matters of war and peace and treason.

((Insert the conspicuous absence of these same douchebags bloodying and mocking the liar Donald Rumsfeld here ))

To finally catch Clinton, the GOP had to set the bar for presidential behavior almost surrealistically high and then climb a mountain of bibles and crucifixes higher still and hector the American public from their aerie perched on the apex of the very tippy-topmost peak of Sanctimonious Self-Righteousness mountain range.

So from this penthouse window of the Castle of High Dudgeon, if a President even looks at you funny, he should be wired up to a Special Prosecutor. And after using every thuggish tactic in the book up to and including blackmail, illegal video leaks and a 24/7 Rightwing Press Blitzkrieg, if the Special Prosecutor can’t find a fucking thing, well screw that: give him another ten million, another suitcase full of subpoenas and let him go on another fishing expedition.

It made the American public sick, by wide margins. They wanted it all to stop. They wanted the Ultras to for God’s sake, stop already.

But the core of the Brave, New GOP – the NeoConfederates, the brownshirts and curb stompers, the hucksters and Fundys – they don’t “do” moderation. The bitch of this litter was Newt Gingrich; they learned at his teat, in their political mother’s milk, that compromise and collegiality are either tantamount to cowardice and weakness…of that they are simply clever, Rovian tactics to get your opponent to turn his back while you sink the knife in.

So to run their grotesque farce out to its bitter end, Republicans had to pile the hubris higher still. It didn’t matter if the offense was small. It didn’t matter that the public was roundly sick of it and saw it as the all-out, rage-fueled GOP coup attempt it really was.

None of that mattered, we were told. Nothing but holding the President to the highest possible standards would suffice, we were told. And it was ugly, and ruinous and divisive…so what? The GOP answered only to the noble trumpet of holding the President to the very highest possible standards of Truth, Honor and the Dignity of that high office.

Nothing less would do.

Fuck the filibuster: Impeachment was the REAL nuclear option…and the GOP showed absolutely no hesitation using it for short-term, partisan political advantage. But oh my, what a very dangerous game they have created.

They’ve created a massive, unstable ammunition dump of their own toxic words, their own Procrustian standards of faultlessness, and now they don’t dare admit that any one of them has ever made a mistake. And to maintain the sham that they are not a Confederacy of Liars on a scale that makes Clinton on his worst day look like a candidate for sainthood, the dogma of their own perfection and infallibility has utterly supplanted fact and reason, which you must admit does fit very neatly with the preexisting Fundamentalist Delusionalism of their base.

The only thing that keeps the rice-paper thin wall between their own Clinton-era rhetoric and their own Bush-era actions is sheer, brazen, unremitting denial. To even whisper the possibility that Dear Leader might be wrong about something – about anything – is to risk that the whole filthy Ponsi scheme falling apart beneath them.

They can’t go back or even slow down without risking that moment of honest reflection with they fear worse than Death itself, so the are condemned to going on and on, running faster and faster, hoping somehow that they can stay ahead of the tsunami of blood and sorrow that their lies have set loose in the world.

Their once proud political Party -- the Party of Lincoln for fuck's sake -- is now just another torchlit mob led by the likes of James Dobson, Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell. And flanked by Tom Delay and Bill Frist and their pustulent ilk on one side and a craven and neutered propaganda machine masquerading as a “Free Press” on the other, they plunge madly on, dragging all of us along deeper and deeper into darkness, shouting out their battle cry. 

Deny! Deny! Deny!

The torchlit mob of racists and imbeciles has been passed to a new and more sneeringly bestial generation of monsters, but other than that nothing fundamental has changed.

All of this has happened before.

And until the Beltway Both Siderist club is knocked down and cast out forever, all of this will happen again.


Neo Tuxedo said...

And until the Beltway Both Siderist club is knocked down and cast out forever, all of this will happen again.

The problem is that all the necessary preconditions for the banishment of Both Siderism from our media (restoring the Fairness Doctrine, getting money out of politics, etc.) are things that cannot themselves happen until the Both Siderists are banished from our media.

"Until they become conscious they will never rebel, and until they have rebelled they cannot become conscious." -- Winston Smith in his diary

After failure to synchronize watches doomed the Bay of Pigs invasion, but before he became shot through the forehead from behind, JFK said, "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." I sometimes wonder whether those people have made violent revolution just as impossible as the peaceful sort, and what that means for the civilized world and the United States.

trgahan said...

Since Christmas I have watched the media shift back into Bush years ca. 2002 mode.

The only new thing is there are less liberals allowed near a camera than 10+ years ago and 140 character bumper sticker tweets are as valid as to multi-year study done with actual data.

Rusty White said...

Kudos to anyone who can watch CNN, Fox, MSNBC and the other worthless media outlets for more than 5 minutes. They are all normalizing the republican f*cktardery aka governance, back to Bush the lesser years where unethical, immoral and conflicting business issues that would normally sink the careers of any democrat are now deemed unimportant and not worthy of investigations.

The only difference now is that they are left debating the inconsistent brain fart tweets of a rumored coke-addled wanna-be autocrat. And yet somehow they always manage to find two or three white male 'patriotic goons' with military experience who shout over the designated liberal, usually a female strategist from one of Hillary Clinton's two losing presidential campaigns.

Pablo in the Gazebo said...

Perhaps Dowd's two tweets work if you consider him not referring to the Democrats at all, but rather the two faces of the Republican party.

Robt said...

Only two faces ?
You got the Alt right umbrella of racists, the religious zealots, the big spending fiscal conservatives, the Give me Tarians, The corporate Tsars, "Do as I say not as I do" crowd.

Just to name a few.

Thomas Everett said...

Already columnists are labeling opposition to Trump as Trump Derangement Disorder.Second verse, same as the first