Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Hump Day Harangue: Trumped Up

Ugh.  I don’t want to write about politics.  At this point I don’t want to think about politics.  I’m well past wanting to discuss politics on social media.

This morning I turned NPR off and listened to Tyler Childers.  I may not turn NPR back on for a long time.  I get an endless barrage of current events on my phone and computer (not to mention the office rattletrap).  So why do I want to listen to it while riding in my car?

I’m seriously concerned.  I firmly believe the new administration is testing the limits or power.  If they were focused and concerned on making America great again they wouldn’t care about power.  In his inaugural address Trump said January 20th, 2017 was the day the people took America back.  I’m afraid that was code for a certain group of people recently ascended to the White House not “We the People” people.

But no, it looks like Trump and his cronies (or rather Bannon and his cronies) are foregoing sleep and decent meals to stretch the boundaries of executive power.  This is disturbing.  They are exhibiting all the signs of developing a fascist dictatorship.  Can that happen in modern day America?  My knee jerk response is: YES, THEY’RE DOING IT!  But I wonder…

I think about all of the decent people I know.  I think about the community I live in.  At worst there is a majority that is ambivalent about most things, but we’re a homogenous community for the most part.  There aren’t enough minorities and “others” to truly divide us on lines of pigment and ideology.  We’re white, “Christian,” and rural poor.  That said, there are political differences, and I know my left-leaning independent views are in the minority.  Yes, I’m owning it now.  I lean left.  The right has driven me to it.

The great unknown is this: how many people are out there who pine for a Mad Maxian existence so they can be free from all semblance of order?  How many prefer chaos over order?  Again, most of the people I know prefer order.  My fear is there really is a silent majority in rural America who hates laws and hate uppity folk from town enough to ride roughshod through the apocalypse raping and killing just for the sport of it. 

I know we have a lawless drug community in the western end of the county who know that the police keep bankers hours.  How do you combat that?  The lack of law enforcement is not choice.  I’ve been in the city council meetings where they mourn the inability to provide better protection.  They just don’t have the money.

Here’s the rub, regardless of whether or not society collapses I just don’t see how Trump’s campaign promises and the policies he’s implementing hourly (and grinding the polish off the country) are going to help my rural non-coal Central Appalachian community.  If society collapses I am uncertain if we’ll band together or eat each other’s hearts.

What truly saddens me is that I know a lot of good, honest, and well-meaning people who take every word out of Donald Trump’s mouth as gospel.  Trump has redefined lying.  There are three (new) kinds of lies: lies, alternative facts, and Trump’s statistics.

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