Republicans love Socialism almost as much as they hate Americans

All the current discussion about Coronavirus bailouts for hotels, hospitality,  skittish markets and the energy sector reminded me of this chart from a few weeks back.

Trump’s signature domestic policy is a big government socialist wall built on confiscated private property just like Khrushchev built. His signature economic policy is tax payer funded subsidies to guarantee equality of outcome for farmers hurt by his anti-market policies. Nothing about that should surprise you, the GOP has made it perfectly clear that this is an endless supply of dirty socialist money for the demographic that votes for, fights for and funds the campaigns of the Republican party. Everyone else can drop dead.

If you have trouble understanding the process that leads the GOP to defend 19 billion for farmers to not sell food while cutting 2.5 billion in food stamps for people who would like to buy food then just think back to these core narratives of the 2016 campaign:

  1. Poor white people in the rust belt are poor because of Mexicans and China and bad trade deals. They need a person to put them first and act on their behalf to correct this injustice that others have done to them. People who disagree with this are commies/hate America/are out of touch elites.
  2. Poor people of color in urban areas are poor because they are lazy and have a bad culture, they have a victim mentality. They need to learn to take care of themselves, stop claiming victim status and expecting other to fix their problems. People who disagree with this are suffering from white guilt/being politically correct/are SJWs.

So it doesn’t count as socialism if the people getting the redistribution are white Republican voters in red states. Or industries that fund Republican campaigns. And as sure as the sun sets in the west; every time a tornado, hurricane or flooding ravages a deep red state you can count on the same GOP that blocked money for injured 9/11 first responders to trip all over themselves to air drop money into rural white communities to make them all whole again.

Republicans love socialism. For themselves. Everyone else can drop dead.

Never Trump Jurassic Park

I find myself warning my liberal friends about Never Trumpers too often. I am imagining myself as a tour guide at a Jurassic Park themed Sunday talk show, calmly warning my liberal friends to keep a safe distance from those Never Trump Raptors knowing damn well my liberal friends are being fooled by the Raptors feigned timidity just enough that we are all in danger of being eaten by those same Raptors when we least expect it. That will be during the next mid term, we have all seen this movie before.

We all want to believe that there is some common ground that supersedes the GOP desire to run up the deficit and gut social security and medicare.We have all convinced ourselves that there was common ground not that long ago. But we should never fool ourselves into thinking that the Never Trump Republicans represent a way forward to a return to common ground. This just isn’t the situation we find ourselves in today.

Case in point:

Chomp chomp chomp. See what Raptor Evans is doing? He’s trying to divide someone from the pack before going for the throat.

False equivalency aside, I don’t particularly dislike Evan. My biggest issue with him is his complete shock and dismay that his party would jeopardize national security for political gain. Well, Evan, a quick look at your bio shows that you were in the CIA in 2003. That is the same year Valerie Plame’s career in intelligence was destroyed to settle a grudge with Ambassador Joseph Wilson after he exposed George W Bush’s lie about Yellowcake Uranium from Niger during the build up to W’s disastrous Iraq war. All of this happened when Even was serving his country in the CIA. Did he not notice that his party jeopardized national security for the sake of political gain while he worked on behalf of out national security? No one talked about this around the CIA water cooler?

Every single Never Trump Republican, minus a few here and there who were too young; were part of the Bush years. They saw the exact same culture of lies, of foreign policy disasters. They all saw an aircraft carrier turned into a backdrop for a campaign commercial. The torture memo. This simply can not be stressed enough: they were all totally ok with it.

This gets me to the bigger point here. As much as Evan might dislike Trump, there is no reason to think Evan or any other never Trump would be happy with any Democratic candidate. As soon as a Democrat is in the Whitehouse, those Raptors are going to be much less timid. They’re all going to discover the deficit went up. They’re going to decide that we need a grand bargain. Do you think they’re going to be in any way open to the idea or working with Bernie or Warren or anyone on improving services? Or bringing the troops home? Or doing anything that would help a Democrat win a second term?

When looking at a never Trumper, always ask yourself “What side of the containment gate are they?”

Understanding the Trump years by watching someone eating mayonnaise out of a jar with their fingers.

Conservatives do you really want to understand how liberals feel about Trump?

Imagine how you’d feel if you walked into your kitchen and saw someone eating mayonnaise from a jar with their fingers. Just standing there in front of an open fridge with a jar in one hand and the mayo being licked off the other hand. After they lick that greasy hand to their perverse satisfaction, they just dip it back into the jar and repeat the process. You stand there in shock as they repeat this over and over and over again.

Like any sane person would, you take a long calming breath and confront them by letting them know how just how gross it is to eat mayonnaise that way. This is simply not the way to eat mayo. In this home we have always consumed mayo by spreading it on out food, never to excess and always with proper utensils.

Rather than admit that it’s gross, or admitting it isn’t the customary way to consume mayo they loudly respond “but hey! you eat mayonnaise too!” with all the phony outrage they can muster. You respond that this is correct, you do in fact eat mayonnaise. In this home we all consume mayonnaise. But we all use silverware to spread some on a sandwich. We don’t eat it out of the jar with fingers. We don’t put those saliva dripping fingers back in the jar. In this home we eat mayo the way we have always eaten mayo, by spreading it on out food, never to excess and always with proper utensils.

They take another lick. Their greasy hand goes back into the jar. They turn to you and say “Well, you just admitted you eat mayonnaise too, you hypocrite. I’m not going to bow down to you and your condiment correctness. I am going to Make Mayo Great Again.”

The one difference from the W years

One thing has changed in the Trump years. Prior republican administrations could be shamed into not eating mayonnaise that way. This administration insists that mayo should always be eaten this way, because it drives liberals crazy. This is why they can not be shamed. When you caught Karl Rove eating mayo that way he would lie and say he was drinking a glass or water. After being caught in that lie he would lie again and say it was leftover potato salad. The Trump years are the years of proudly saying “fuck you, this how we eat mayonnaise now. Offended? Good!”

When you hear some MAGA uncle defend the Trump resorts kiddy concentration camps by saying “Obama built those facilities!” totally ignoring that those facilities were designed to hold kids traveling alone, not taken from their families, that those kids would be held for a few days, not several months. That uncle wants to eat mayonnaise out of a jar. With his fingers. And insist that he is right. That this is the correct way to consume mayo. And anyone saying we always used a knife to put mayo on a turkey club is fake news. All those pictures of people putting mayo on turkey clubs that way? Also fake news. George Soros took those pictures. He paid people to make those sandwiches.

Your MAGA Uncle is going to insist that it killing and Iranian Quds force commander without proper oversight, after tearing up the Iran treaty is basically the same as Obama having Bin Laden killed. Trump’s threat to commit war crimes is basically the same as Obama’s tough talk on deploying defensive missiles. What? You’re against killing bad guys? Mayo. Fingers. That’s how this works now.

This is how liberals feel about the Trump era. All the norms, conventions, basic decency and restraint we value are being shamelessly shattered. Those destroying them are dismissing any criticism with false equivalence, whataboutism and cries of fake news. You can not shame them anymore because they want this to be the disgusting new normal.

Liberals aren’t just angry, we are genuinely disgusted.

Take your fingers out of the jar already.

Jeff Flake doesn't understand the Republican Party

“The former senator, who was a frequent critic of Trump, called on his former colleagues to put themselves through a “simple test.” And that involves asking, “What if President Barack Obama had engaged in precisely the same behavior?” 

From: slate.com

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2019/12/jeff-flake-urges-senate-republicans-put-country-over-party-impeachment-trial.html

Jeff, they would reverse themselves. You should know, you were there. You watched your party reverse itself on executive oversight. The deficit. Golfing. Impeachment. On the issue of character in the executive. Free trade.

Quoting Paul Krugman from last year:

the real test came after 2016. A complete cynic might have expected economists who denounced budget deficits and easy money under a Democrat to suddenly reverse position under a Republican president.

And that total cynic would have been exactly right. After years of hysteria about the evils of debt, establishment Republican economists enthusiastically endorsed a budget-busting tax cut. After denouncing easy-money policies when unemployment was sky-high, some echoed Trump’s demands for low interest rates with unemployment under 4 percent — and the rest remained conspicuously silent.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/27/opinion/republican-economists-bad-faith.html

Jeff, if you don’t know that your party acts in bad faith, on almost everything, no one should listen to you.

Mitch McConnell is burning down the country so he can collect the insurance money.

At the time the Trump tax plan was passed, economist on both sides said pretty much the same things. It would inflate the deficit. It would lead to stock buy backs, not new investment. It would mostly go to a small group of people who are already wealthy. The GOP didn’t even bother to debate this point. They repeated talking points and shoved the bill through without debate. Without Democratic amendments. Without a second thought.

Bruce Bartlett was talking about this in 2012. It was called the “Two-Santa Theory” and it dates back to 1976 and was a core part of the Reagan years.

I want people to consider a second term for it. “Burning down the country to collect the insurance money

The idea is simple. You run up the debt. You privatize everything, transferring it to the same people who got bags of cash in the form of tax giveaways and subsidies. You then loot the nation’s insurance fund, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid to pay for it all. You burn the country down. You then fix the damage by collecting the insurance.

“New Treasury Department analysis on Monday revealed that corporate tax cuts had a significant impact on the deficit this year. Federal revenue rose by 0.04 percent in 2018, a nearly 100 percent decrease on last year’s 1.5 percent. In fiscal year 2018, tax receipts on corporate income fell to $205 billion from $297 billion in 2017.

Still, McConnell insisted that the change had nothing to do with a lack of revenue or increased spending and instead was due to entitlement and welfare programs. The debt, he said, was very “disturbing” and driven by “the three big entitlement programs that are very popular, Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid.… There’s been a bipartisan reluctance to tackle entitlement changes because of the popularity of those programs. Hopefully, at some point here, we’ll get serious about this.””

Call it what it is, burning down the country to collect the insurance money.

From: newsweek.com https://www.newsweek.com/deficit-budget-tax-plan-social-security-medicaid-medicare-entitlement-1172941

Using the military as a campaign prop. Nothing new.

Hey, remember the last republican president? The one before Obama.

He used the military as a campaign prop. He politicized national intelligence. He made it office US policy to torture people. He used pardons to keep his advisors out of jail. He blocked investigations. He used shill media. He complained that the media was unfair. All of it.

If you pretend this all started with Trump, you’ll never be able to actually address the problem, let alone fix it.

Ann Coulter isn’t attacking Trump, she’s defending her brand.

The golden rule of wingnut welfare is always defend the brand and that brand is the magical True Conservatism that exists in the minds of Fox News viewers from sea to shining sofa. In their mind, that brand is Reagan shouting Merry Christmas from a pick up truck loaded with medium rare rib-eyes firing off 55 grain FMJ AR-15 rounds while triggered liberals cower at the display of a Real American being Really American.

That’s who Coulter is talking to. That’s the brand.

She knows that the wall is more divisive to Republicans than Democrats. She knows that Trump is in trouble. She knows he’s defending himself incompetently. And now she is setting up her exit from the Trump train. In a year or two she will proudly and confidently declare that Trump was never a True Conservative. That he was a Democrat all along. Conservatism can no fail, it can only be failed and Trump has failed it.

So while it’s tempting to think that Never Trumpers and No-Longer Trumpers have somehow seen the light and somehow get it, keep in mind that in the same way the’ll toss Trump under the bus to defend the brand, they’ll shiv you in a heartbeat to defend the brand.

So ignore her. Don’t give her the attention she wants. Focus your energy on the hundreds of liberal pundits that have been right about Trump from the moment he came down the escalator.

And when they attempt to reboot the brand like they did when Tea Party came around, don’t fall for it and point out this is just the same con artists playing the same con for the same wingnut welfare.

To Fight Democrats’ First Bill, GOP Calls in Discredited Advocates of Voter Suppression

This is a long game tactic and worth the time and effort in pushing it.

Everything that the democrats do to make it easier to vote will work to prevent the GOP from stacking the deck. Automatic voter registration. Election day as a holiday. Early voting, upgraded voting stations, mandating the the number of polling places to minimize the wait times. All of these help people vote.

The goal should be to make it impossible for red state Republicans to nullify voting at the local level.

The counter narrative to the GOP push back should be to cast the GOP as being on the side of government bureaucrats rather than demanding that government make it easier for people to vote not make it easier for bureaucrats to justify their jobs.

“Von Spakovsky and Adams were key members of President Donald Trump’s controversial election integrity commission, which shut down after failing to find evidence of widespread voter fraud. For more than a decade, they have led an aggressive push to make it harder to vote and have spread false claims about fraud. Their credibility has also been called into question recently by federal courts.”

motherjones.com

GOP has handed Democrats a pair of wedge issues to use against them.

One of the reasons why I am so happy to see the GOP fighting over the wall is that the wall is a bigly divisive issue; but it’s only bigly divisive on the right. There is a chunk of the GOP base that loves the idea of a wall and there are National Review reading, free trade loving country club Republicans that hate the idea of burning a big pile of their tax dollars on a useless pile of concrete that creates real problems while solving only imaginary ones. Almost 1/4 of republicans oppose the wall, while only 13% of democrats support a wall. (From PEW)

The wall divides the GOP while it unites the Dems. It’s a wedge issue, but the sharp part of the wedge is pointed toward the GOP and away from the Dems.

The same goes for DACA. There are strong majorities in support for giving dreamers a path to citizenship in the general population, nearly 3/4 according to the same PEW poll are in favor. While 92% of Democrats support DACA, there is a 50/40 split among Republicans.

This is why narcissists rarely make good leaders. Trump is so fixated on what his base and his favored pundits think of him that he is unable to see how much he is alienating potential 2020 GOP voters.

The GOP has just handed the Democrats a pair of wedge issues to use against them. Pick them up and use them. Make the next two years about the Wall and DACA. Make this all about Trump’s fixation on a wall. Let large numbers of GOP voters get frustrated over the lack of action on anything because of the fixation on the wall.