Violence For Christmas?
The USA has a lot more than mindless video games to worry about
Across the USA, Christmas is a time of gift-giving. In recent years many of those gifts have been violent video games in which the player slaughters nameless opponents in order to score points and secure tiny dopamine jolts. Much debate has occurred over the issue of whether or not such mindless violence encourages real-world violence. Game proponents argue it’s all harmless good fun; more thoughtful people argue that everything we do has some residual effect and spending hours per day on brain-dead slaughter is hardly conducive to developing humane norms of behavior.
The violent video game debate, however, is a sideshow compared to our present experiment in destroying humane social norms.
Today we have an infantile moron in the White House proclaiming to his forty-three million equally mindless followers that the forthcoming election will be, unless he wins, fraudulent and illegitimate. Amusingly, the orange cretin is pretending that “foreign powers” (e.g. predominantly Russia) are going to undermine the 2020 election, while being careful to avoid any reference to the fact that all the evidence points to Russia continuing to promote Trump in order to keep the total destruction of the USA on track.
Not surprisingly, Trump supporters are too ignorant, too stupid, and too filled with Q-anon babble to be capable of any remote intersection with fragments of reality. So they believe everything that vomits forth from the mouth of the blabbering imbecile in the White House and because so many are racists and ultra-right-wing, they have already armed themselves in preparation for civil war.
Which will, if it occurs, not be a video game conducted on a harmless LED screen but will be played with real bullets.
Let’s examine our game scenario.
First of all, the right-wing-dominated Supreme Court has over the last two years consistently supported Republican measures to restrict voting and to make voting extremely difficult for those who can’t be relied upon to vote the (far) right way. Under instructions from Trump’s lackey DeJoy, the USPS has removed hundreds of automated mail sorting machines, guaranteeing a huge slowdown in delivery of mail — which means many mail-in ballots will be deemed invalid. As Democrats have been terrified into believing that SARS-CoV2 is an existential threat (thanks, sensationalist mass media, for blindly continuing to do everything possible to ensure a Trump victory, once again…) they are far more likely to avoid physical polling stations than the obese brainless Republican voters who will waddle forth to cast their ballot in favor of the USA’s Prime Moron.
Even if some reluctant fearful Democrats manage to persuade themselves that perhaps they won’t die instantly from covid-19 if they attempt to vote, they’ll find themselves waiting for a very long time indeed in very long queues. That is, if they can find anywhere to vote. Over the last few years more than 1,700 polling locations have been closed. By way of example, Milwaukee had 180 polling stations in 2016; now it has precisely five. Not surprisingly, the closed stations have overwhelmingly been in places where, if permitted to vote, the population would cast votes for Democratic candidates.
Secure Republican districts have miraculously avoided such closures.
Republican-controlled States have continued to winnow down the franchise to ensure Republican victories regardless of popular sentiment. Florida, responding to law that enables former felons to vote provided they’ve served their sentence, decided that “sentence” would include fines (many levied while the person was in prison) that exceed the person’s ability to pay. As a result, more than 800,000 Florida citizens are barred from voting. Similar ploys have been implemented in those States where Republicans have held power across the nation over the last four years.
There are countless other examples of Republican malfeasance, all of which arise from the simple fact that the Republican Party ceased some time ago to be a political entity and is now simply a right-wing organization determined to seize and retain power at any cost. Naturally, few US voters have woken up to this self-evident fact because most US voters remain locked in a Disney mentality in which they live in “the greatest” country on Earth with “freedom and democracy” as its cornerstone. Reality has always tended to elude those living in the 50 Disunited States, and rarely more so than today.
The fact is that the USA has been since 2016 a de facto tyranny, with the Republican Party ensuring that a Republican president is literally above the law. This year’s faux impeachment trial, in which the Republican-dominated Senate refused to hear evidence and voted automatically to reject the Articles of Impeachment, gave Trump absolute power. Perhaps some Republican senators were too stupid to realize what they were doing; the vast majority understood perfectly well the import of their actions.
So if on election night the results seem to be moving against him and Trump orders the vote-counting to stop, the Republican Party and Republican Supreme Court will back him to the hilt. After all, nobody wants voter fraud, right? And by definition, Trump losing means voter fraud.
As for the fantasy of the Secret Service escorting Trump the from White House in January, let’s remember (i) that government employees are not noted for their independence of thought, and (ii) technically Trump will remain president if the election is disputed. The Secret Service has diligently protected Trump through four years of blatant criminality; it is beyond belief that simply rigging an election would be enough to persuade even a single Secret Service agent that perhaps “just doin’ my job” is a wholly inadequate excuse for standing by and watching the USA burn.
So let’s take stock: we have a completely corrupt major political Party absolutely and irrevocably dedicated to maintaining itself in power at any cost whatsoever. We have the most inept, mindless, and destructive president in US history publicly telling his supporters to commit voting fraud (“vote twice!”) while pretending that legitimate votes will be illegitimate. And we have, as always, a completely clueless and totally ineffectual Democratic Party that still thinks the election is about policies and reasonableness.
It’s not difficult to see where this ends up.
Personally, I suspect Trump will win re-election thanks to factors I’ve already enumerated in previous articles. Given the totally dysfunctional Electoral College, he can win even if he loses the popular vote by 5%, as happened last time. Given the fact that the far-right Supreme Court will rubber-stamp any cases in which Republicans pretend that postal votes for Democratic candidates are illegitimate (the wrong color of paper? Not the right font?) it’s easy to see that Trump will almost certainly remain in the White House until 2025.
But what if, by pure magic, Biden actually secures a sufficiently large number of votes that even the Electoral College can’t swing things Trump’s way?
Unlike in European countries where power changes hands immediately after an election, the USA has a transition period of several weeks. This means that regardless of the outcome of the November election, Trump remains president until his successor is inaugurated.
Let’s imagine the following scenario: Biden magically wins enough votes that even the Electoral College has to admit he’s supposed to become president in January. But Trump, backed solidly by Republicans everywhere, claims the election was fraudulent and “really” he won trillions more votes than Biden so he’s not going to abandon his beloved ‘Mukra to destruction. He’s going to stay in the White House as president and not let anyone steal the election. Single-handedly he’s going to save the USA by refusing to surrender to law-breaking terrorist Democrat vote-riggers.
Naturally nearly every one of his forty-three million brain-dead supporters cheers him to the rooftops. They think they’re “saving democracy.”
Biden & co. file a lawsuit, which the Republican-dominated Supreme Court refuses to hear. The attorney-general proclaims Trump’s actions are totally legitimate and instructs obedient paramilitaries to suppress by any means necessary “the forces of insurrection, chaos, and terrorism” who protest the clear illegality of the Trump regime. Obedient as always (“we’re just doin’ our jobs”) the police and federal paramilitaries club, spray, shoot, and kidnap thousands of ordinary people and the message sinks in: protesting, even if you’re an unarmed grandmother of eighty years, will get you badly hurt or disappeared or killed.
Depending on how long the protests last, the Republicans may or may not decide a “Reichstag Moment” is called for, which will further legitimize Trump’s power-grab. After all, if terrorists are trying to pull down statues or set fire to public buildings, this is no time for a strong leader to abdicate responsibility for his beloved nation!
So the protests eventually stop. People learn, as they always do in such circumstances, to keep quiet.
Trump orders a triumphal display of military force in order to celebrate his “win” and the armed forces gladly jump to it. Remember: a significant majority of non-officer personnel adore Trump. For all our babble about “thank you for your service” we need to remember that the US military recruits from the bottom of the intellectual barrel and this is precisely where Trump’s strongest support lies.
Maybe a few hundred people die in the various clashes around the country. But quite soon no one really knows what the facts are, because media organizations find themselves facing a very simple choice: get with the program and keep enjoying those juicy revenue streams and salaries, or get shut down for telling lies about the Great Orange Leader. Smashing up the offices of a few choice news organizations and beating & imprisoning a few hundred journalists will be more than sufficient to ensure everyone else falls into line and begins to report “correctly.”
Oh, but this is the USA! This could never happen in the land of mom & apple pie, 400 million guns, and freedom ’n’ democracy!
That would be like imagining a failed brain-dead trash TV host could win the presidency and then proceed to undermine every single US value and cripple every single US relationship around the world. That would be like imagining an infantile blustering moron could break the law with total impunity because an obedient Senate would automatically acquit him of any and all crimes. That would be like imagining a right-wing Supreme Court would reject all significant challenges to voter restriction measures imposed by Republicans around the country.
Couldn’t ever happen, right?
So what do you think Santa will bring us for Christmas this year, children?