With the Democratic-controlled House finally going all-in on an impeachment inquiry, the hog is – at last – out of the tunnel. This phrase, favored by the often-imitated, never-duplicated Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, seems particularly apt at this point in American history.
I frequently wonder what the Good Doctor would have made of our current political situation, and particularly what he might have said about Donald Trump. Some of the epithets he heaped on Nixon seem appropriate descriptions of our current President – if anything, maybe a little too mild:
“For years I’ve regarded his existence as a monument to all the rancid genes and broken chromosomes that corrupt the possibilities of the American Dream; he was a foul caricature of himself, a man with no soul, no inner convictions, with the integrity of a hyena and the style of a poison toad. The Nixon I remembered was absolutely humorless; I couldn’t imagine him laughing at anything except maybe a paraplegic who wanted to vote Democratic but couldn’t quite reach the lever on the voting machine.”Dr. Hunter S. Thompson
Ah, where is the Good Doctor now, when we really need him? The closest thing we have is Matt Taibbi, and he’s a pale imitation at best – a fact that he readily recognizes.
I also mourn the loss of comedian Bill Hicks, who had the guts to speak the truth as he saw it, even to the detriment of his it, even though it meant that it would retard the commercial success of his career. We need people like him now – people who can with humor and vitriol express their well-justified moral outrage at how messed up we’ve become as a country that someone like Donald John Trump could get within 100 miles of winning the presidency.*
That we’ve sunk so low, so fact with the presidency of the odious Donald J. Trump should be obvious to anyone with half a brain, and it was only a matter of time before Trump’s hubris and narcissism brought us to the point of what will certainly be an ugly and divisive impeachment process.
Of course, Dumb Donald’s entire adult life has been ugly and divisive, so I suppose it was just a matter of time before he fucked up in such an egregious way that the timid, poll-focused Democratic leadership had no choice but to finally pull the ripcord on a full-blown impeachment inquiry.
And keep in mind, this is just an inquiry – an investigation. A lot of media organizations seem to be conflating an impeachment inquiry with actual impeachment and removal. To my mind, they are three distinct things: an inquiry, followed by a vote on impeachment on the House, followed by a vote on removal in the Senate. These polls asking the hoi polloi whether they think Trump should be removed seem a little premature. Regardless, it’s pretty clear that Trump’s behavior has been so egregiously bad as to merit a thorough and aggressive inquiry.
I will not go into all of the minutia of Trump’s rotten behavior, save this: by his own admission, he sought the help of a foreign government to interfere in the 2020 presidential election. If that doesn’t rise to the category of “high crimes and misdemeanors,” then nothing will.
Of course, the legion of Republican Trump apologists promptly went into back-breaking contortions in an attempt to spin Trump’s selling-out of American democracy as just bidness-as-usual statecraft in the Trump White house. (For a truly painful performance, see arch-lickspittle Rep. Jim Jordan’s flailing defense of Trump on CNN’s “State of the Union.”)
It’s frustrating to see how deep in denial the MAGA-hat mouthbreathers are in their defense of their Dear Leader. In a fantasy scenario that would probably result in me getting the crap beaten out of me in real life, I would like to confront a Trump supporter with something along the lines of:
YOU LIKE TRUMP BECAUSE HE TELLS IT LIKE IT IS? THEN YOU’RE GONNA LOVE THIS: DONALD TRUMP IS A SHITTY PRESIDENT, A SHITTY AMERICAN AND A SHITTY HUMAN BEING! IF HE HADN’T BEEN BORN TO A RICH DADDY, HE’D BE SELLING CAR STEREOS OUT OF THE TRUNK OF A TAXI IN YONKERS! ANYONE WHO CAN SUPPORT THIS TWISTED FREAK ISN’T REALLY AN AMERICAN, AND IS A CITIZEN ONLY BY DINT OF HAVING POPPED OUT OF THEIR MAMA’S NASTY COOTER WITHIN THIS COUNTRY’S BORDERS! YOU’RE ALL DUMBFUCKISTAN ANCHOR BABIES! GO BACK TO DUMBFUCKISTAN! WE DON’T WANT YOU IN OUR COUNTRY! SEND THEM BACK! SEND THEM BACK! HOW’S THAT FOR TELLING IT LIKE IT IS, BEE-YOTCH??!!-Me, in my twisted mind
Of course, I (probably) wouldn’t ever say anything like that because: A) I don’t really like getting my ass kicked, and B) it really wouldn’t add anything constructive to the national political discourse. As a representative of the Alliance Party, I am obligated to try and offer a political alternative to people, even if I don’t agree with most of their core political beliefs. Grown-up compromise, right?
Still, I suspect that I’m not the only one who is perplexed and angered by the ignorance and intransigence of the hard-right woofer Trump Chumps. Trump has been president for ~140 weeks. I aver that you could pick any of those 140 weeks at random, and make note of Trump’s behavior during that week. If Barack Obama or Bill Clinton had engaged in that same behavior from that random week, the woofers would have filled the streets in protest. And I would have been right there with them.
In my more Zen moments, I can’t necessarily fault the woofer mouth-breathers for their mindless support of Trump. they;’ve been brainwashed to think that party loyalty is the same as patriotism. I can’t imagine how twisted and unhappy someone must be to think that Trump’s an okay President, or even an okay person in general. I view it as a form of mental illness.
The same can’t be said about the professional Republican Trump apologists in office, particularly those in Congress. They have resolutely refused to show all but the most limp-wristed resistance to Trump’s near-daily outrages. Time and time again, they’ve had the opportunity to demonstrate they had a shred of principal, and time and again they have proven to be pusillanimous.
Well, Republican cowards, your time is at hand. You can either save your party or save your Country. You can’t do both. Choose, and be judged.
RES IPSA LOQUITUR
*And what the hell has happened to Jello Biafra? Of the Big Three political iconoclasts of the 80’s, he’s the only one still around. Trump’s behavior makes all of the things that Reagan did – and Biafra bitched about – seem like peanuts. I’d hoped that he would be a voice of outrage in these Trumpian times, but so far, nada.