Where do you start? The Republican Mafia and the elevation of “family” over country might be a good place. Or Trump’s cozy relationship with Russian Intelligence. Maybe the obstruction of justice with the firing of Comey is where we should begin. Trumpgate.
And that’s just the news of the last seven days. Any one of these items would qualify as worthy of serious investigation, if not the institution of the articles of impeachment. Trouble is, news items of that magnitude are coming at us so fast and furiously that we’re actually becoming inured to them. Remember the Women’s March and the Pussy Hats (see my post below)? How about the overnight deregulation of most of the anti-pollution safeguards put into place by the last three administrations? France has people in the streets every single day protesting something, and thus keeping their government in check. Us? We’re too busy glued to our Facebook updates to care, and that’s perhaps the biggest news of all that’s not really getting reported (Bill Maher did make it one of his New Rules, that social media oligarchs and their companies are this century’s equivalent of the tobacco industry by virtue of their commitment to make an entire population addicted to the next “Like”): we’ve all but given up on caring about anything else because our worlds have been diminished to the screens in our palms.
Our democratic system is crumbling right under our noses and we don’t give a damn because we’ve been conditioned only to care about those things that raise our heart rate above 120 beats a minute. We don’t care about the news, about the things that actually make a difference in our lives, about the suffering of the lives of others. We just want our next fix.
Democratic Capitalism is fraying at the edges, and the saddest irony of this is that the people who can least afford it are the ones propping it up: us… the other 99%. The 1% are as happy as larks about this massive and wildly successful social conditioning that has gotten most of us to believe in Reagan’s “trickle-down economics.” Too many of us assume that if some rich white guys at the top can just get enough power and money, the rest of us in the middle and at the bottom will somehow, magically, get some, too. Trouble with trickle-down economics, though, is that the only thing that trickles down are the crumbs from the table of the oligarchs and plutocrats. Oops… guess we forgot to account for this thing called greed–called “survival of the fittest”–which has been hardwired into our brains from the days we were walking around barefoot and living in caves. A few hundred millennia of natural selection has left us with this. President Trump? Welcome to the nightmare. Yay for us.
Trumpgate indeed. He’s just the tip of the iceberg, the poster child of all that’s wrong with a capitalistic democracy in the 21st century. Maybe if we managed to cut off the head of the serpent we might actually learn something about ourselves. Chances are, though, we’d just default to the extreme on the left, which is no better. It’s why we swung to the right in the first place. Impeach Trump? Hell yes! Then lock him up! But unless we all do some deep self-examination of the sorry state of all of our souls in the meantime, we’ll end up with something else, maybe not as bad, maybe worse (hard to imagine that… President Pence?). But then, it was hard to imagine anyone worse than George Bush, remember? Now he seems like a sober-minded centrist compared to the current CEO of America, Inc.
We have seen the enemy, and the enemy is us.