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State of American History, Civics, and Politics

Government Trumpdown Enters Second Month: A Self-Dug Hole Dividing America

Dividing America (Berlin Wall by Thierry Noir, Wikipedia)

Before turning to the current topic, I would like to reprint my “So What” paragraph from “Rorschach Test: Exonerated or Did the Trump Hit the Fan?” posted on December 13, 2018

People anticipate more and more indictments and revelations of the tawdry life of this reprehensible person. So what? Assume every charge is true, a reasonable assumption given the past decades. So what? Decades ago Democratic Hannitys claimed “vast right wing conspiracy” launched a witch hunt against the legitimate duly-elected President to which there was no truth. When the truth became known, Democrats responded with “So what.” Republicans have already started this process. So what if the Republican President instead of knowing nothing about the payments masterminded everything?

Will Republicans will keep saying “so what” through every exposure of the violation of the law Mueller, the SDNY, and the D.C. prosecutors bring to light?

The answer should be obvious.

I now resume my regular scheduled post.

The government Trumpdown has now entered its second month. There is no end in sight. What the Day of Infamy was to Roosevelt, the Cuban Missile Crisis was to Kennedy, and 9/11 was to Bush, the government Trumpdown has become to this president. It will become the case study of “when you are in a hole stop digging.” It also will become the classic example of “be careful what you wish for.”

When comics go on the road, they test material. They see what works with an audience. If it does work, then they add it to their act as a regular feature. They may even expand on it, elaborate, and give it more and more prominence in their routine. The comedian may even be surprised at how well it is received but as long as it works, GO FOR IT.

Something similar happened in this case. “Build a wall” was a minor or negligent part of the campaign routine when the campaign began. Everything was “crooked Hillary” and “foreign-born president.” I do not recall exactly how “build a wall” was first introduced into the professional wrestling arena routine. There is no doubt that it was phenomenally successful. Why would it ever occur to anyone that if the United States built a wall on American soil then the people of Mexico would pay for it? It would be interesting to see a video of the first time that self-evident nonsense was uttered. Yet there was no doubt it was even more successful. The world’s greatest negotiator would convince Mexico to pay for the American-built wall on American soil. Eventually, he worked the crowd so successfully it eagerly shouted out the refrain to the question “Who’s going to pay for it?” I dare say for the immature child narcissist those moments in the professional wrestling arena where thousands of people chanted “Mexico” had to have been some of the most pleasurable moments of his life.

It is also important to remember that at that point he had no expectation of winning. He entered the race not to win but to build his brand so he could make money and be the center of attention. He was as amazed as anyone when the Republican Party caved and did not demand to see his tax returns. That may have been his first glimpse into how easy it would be to roll the Republican Party. It had no backbone.

Since he had no expectation of winning, he had no expectation of having to build the wall or get Mexico to pay. Then he won. Now what.

For nearly two years nothing happened. Then the Democrats won the House back. Time was running out on getting the House yet alone the Senate to authorize American taxpayers to foot the bill. One interesting sidenote to this government Trumpdown is that apparently the infamous Republican base never expected Mexico to pay in the first place. Once in a while someone on a talk show or in an op-ed piece will raise the issue of why all this fuss about Americans paying for the wall when the campaign promise was for Mexico to pay. Such protestations garner zero traction. This suggests that for all the hootin’ and hollering by the Republican base, it knew that Americans and not Mexicans were going to pay for the wall. It still wanted the wall. In the meantime, it was just fun to chant “Mexico.”

What has happened since the government Trumpdown began?

1. The world’s worst negotiator remains absolutely clueless about what to do. He is in a bind due to the government Trumpdown and keeps digging the hole deeper because he does not what else to do.

2. There are no Howard Bakers in the Republican Party. A few senators up for re-election in Democrat-leaning states are calling for action but so far almost all the Republican Senators are content to do nothing since they do not feel threatened in 2020. As more and people have problems flying, visiting a National Park, or just plain making ends meet, that situation may change. But as of the time of this post, there is insufficient grassroots action in Republican states to cause Republicans to act. On the Democratic side, it seems as if almost every Senator wants to be President; by contrast on the Republican side there is no one with vision, ambition, or leadership.

3. Perhaps there is an expectation that bleeding heart liberals will cave because it is their fellow Democratic workers are suffering. Here is where being a person with no sympathy and no empathy who only cares about his winning and your losing especially if you are woman helps him endure the crisis.

4. The negotiation over the government Trumpdown has come down to a showdown between Ann Coulter and Nancy Pelosi. Each one is dug in for the duration. Coulter has unleashed the supreme insult in the Republican Party now that John McCain has died: we did not elect Jeb so stop acting like him! Coulter and Pelosi each have grabbed onto the Presidential “wishbones” and are pulling for all they are worth. Who will yank harder and win the day?

5. The apocalyptic rhetoric during the 2018 election worked. It did not work in the election itself. Despite all the talk about a red wave, no such tsunami appeared. Instead Republicans were wiped out across the board from New England to California leaving the hard-core RHINO Freedom Caucus and a weak remnant of the party of Lincoln. Instead the wall has become Armageddon with each side dug in for the duration.

Where does this leave the country? There is no end in sight for the government Trumpdown. There is no “come let us reason together.” There are no Howard Bakers. There is no nothing. The proposed wall dividing the United States and Mexico is a proxy fight or symbol for the existing division in America. The wall has become a battle for America. If Lincoln is still right that a house divided cannot stand, then the wall is our firing on Fort Sumter and the tensions are more likely to ratchet up than calm down. Forget about America’s pulling out of NATO, the government Trumpdown may become Russia’s greatest triumph.