Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Teague wrote:

General question:

Out of curiosity, what did you know about Donald Trump prior to 2015? What was your impression of him?



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(For what it's worth, I actually wrote a really long reply to avatar's post within 12 hours, but then I couldn't decide whether or not to post it, temporarily rejected it, and then forgot for a while. Later today, I'll pull it out of storage, dust it off, and see if I feel any better about posting it now. Sorry, av.)

I'd never seen anything other than promotional material for The Apprentice, and I feel like he popped up in a lot of Cracked.com articles looking like a melodramatic sleazy con man.  I was aware of his previous explorations of presidential ambitions.  I wrote him off 'cause he never declared for president.  I wrote off the tweets as old grandpa and the Internet.  It never occurred to me that he would come to dominate the platform - the most successful massmedia publishing system invented.

But, the second he declared (like he did), and went for the R nomination, I knew he would sweep the floor with the rest of them.  He kept saying all the quiet parts loud that all the others had spent their whole lives pretending wasn't a thing at all.  They never stood a chance.  Then in a general election, because of our binary choice, winner takes all system, he's gets to be a coin flip away from the white house.

After years of hacking the system to get their way, Rs got hacked by Trump using their own playbook.  That he ended up president is otherwise an accident.  He pretty clearly from the record never thought he would win. 

But he did, and he is who he is, and now we are where we are (and McConnell continues his own agenda unabated, as do the State Leges) and the thing that continues to baffle me day and night is that Twitter continues to publish his unhinged, unfiltered, often violent musings because... reasons?  If he was mailing this stuff to the NYT or WP they wouldn't just continue publishing them.  Why does Twitter not flex on this?  I really feel like they could get away with it.  Is Dorsey that much in his head about the freedom land utopia that he thinks he's brought everyone?

In any case, this is fascinating.  Very much calls to mind the conflagration that the popularization of newspapers caused at the founding of the republic.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

bgii2000 wrote:

Twitter continues to publish his unhinged, unfiltered, often violent musings because... reasons?

I'm pretty sure Trump's the best thing Twitter has going for it, at this point. He's Twitter's MCU. He's the show.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Right, Ive been trying to figure out what they look like post state media mouthpiece era when he's not president anymore, be that next year or in 2024.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

drewjmore wrote:

I agree with Fireproof's middle paragraph.

More than I expected.

God loves you!

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

It's somehow not the biggest story in the country right now, but a group of Oregon Republican senators are so terrified to vote on a climate change bill that they've fled, teamed up with white supremacist militia groups, and are threatening to kill anyone who tries to return them to the capitol.

Walkouts are not unique to Republicans. Democrat lawmakers fled their states in 2003 and 2011 to prevent votes on redistricting and curbing union rights, The Daily Beast previously reported. Oregon has a long history of senate walkouts, including a four-day walkout in May, when Republicans refused to vote on a tax package that would fund schools. They returned to session with the agreement that they would not walk out again.

But this walkout also came with violent threats. Multiple senators are believed to have fled to Idaho, with right-wing militias flocking to their aid. While leaving the statehouse before the walkout, Republican Sen. Brian Boquist implied that police officers who pursued them should be ready to die. “Send bachelors and come heavily armed,” Boquist warned police in a televised interview shortly before his walkout. “I’m not going to be a political prisoner in the state of Oregon. It’s just that simple.”

State police said they were aware of Boquist's remarks, but were not commenting on them. Boquist and his colleagues are supported by several right-wing militias that made more explicit threats.

After Oregon Gov. Kate Brown called on state troopers to return the lawmakers to the capital, the paramilitary group the Oath Keepers suggested violence against her.

“Gov. Brown, you want a civil war, because this is how you get a civil war,” the Oath Keepers wrote on their public Facebook page. Beneath the post, Oath Keeper fans suggesting hanging, arresting, or taking up arms against Brown.

The militia threats are basically holding the legislature hostage; sessions have been canceled due to other groups like the Three Percenters (who were involved in the Bundy fiasco) threatening to show up. Oh, and the official Oregon GOP Twitter account is a fan of this. (To be clear, the photo they tweeted is actually of an entirely separate event because of course.)

On an immediate level, my reaction is "If this happened on a television show we would all say the writers had lost it." My follow-up reaction is that if this continues to work and no one faces any consequences, Republicans will start doing this in any state that has a Dem majority.

This is the way the world ends, etc. Wheeeeeeeee

Last edited by Abbie (2019-06-24 17:18:43)

Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

What? Surely if one party doesn't turn up the other win it by a landslide?

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Not necessarily, unfortunately. If enough congresspeople aren't present then a vote can't be held.

Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

This really reminded me of a book I'd read recently The Field of Blood: Violence in Congress and the Road to Civil War which is about pretty much exactly what it says on the cover.

You know how in period pieces everyone in Congress seems way more... Fight club (?) than their counterparts today?

Well, turns out it's not just a trope.  The book was fascinating.  I had no idea that the legislature gagged itself on slavery, or how 'the privelege of debate' worked.  Amazing read.

Anyhoo, when I read about the Senators hiding in Idaho/Montana I flashed back to this book.

On February 18, free-state congressmen in the House had used the previous question to try to force through a resolution admitting California as a free state. In response, Southerners did what Clingman said they would do: they used parliamentary weapons to halt the debate until midnight, at which point the resolution would have to wait until March 4. Three days later, Foote rose to his feet in the Senate and proposed his solution to the California standstill: a select committee to hammer out a bundled "scheme of compromise." To get his way, he issued an ultimatum: if a committee didn't devise a compromise by Saturday, March 2-the last workday before the postponed California resolution would return to the House-then "so help me Heaven ... during the next week occurrences are likely to take place of a nature to which I dare not do more than allude." He knew what he was talking about, he insisted. "I have looked into the matter. I have conversed with members of both Houses of Congress; and I state, upon my honor, that unless we do something during the present week, I entertain not the least doubt that this subject will leave our jurisdiction, and leave it forever." What did Foote mean? Newspapers were quick to tell the tale. According to unnamed congressional insiders, if no plan was forged by March 2, a pack of armed Southern congressmen would "break up the House." Rumor had it that they would pick a fight and spark a melee as their opening gambit. Once open warfare broke out in the House, there would be no turning back. The Compromise debate would move to broader fields of battle than the floor of Congress.

Extra wierd sauce for all the "The South Shall Rise Again" flavor that these militias all seem to have.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

The Field of Blood: Violence in Congress and the Road to Civil War

Fun fact: Jo Freeman is my spirit animal.

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

As a resident of Atlantic City NJ who grew up hating Trump - after hearing the innumerable criminal and amoral acts he did in the city, I feel the nation's pain. Trump is a symptom, though, of a much larger moral crisis that affects both parties.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

Hey, it's DJ!

How's kicks? (Crisis-of-Democracy aside, natch.)

Teague Chrystie

I have a tendency to fix your typos.

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Re: The Crisis-of-Democracy Thread: On Trump, Brexit, and Other Concerns

The Liar, Trump

The president broke with norms today by making a speech during the fireworks. Secret Service rightfully covered him in ballistic glass.  It rained, but he gave his speech anyway.  Here he is saying his words through a rain-streaked windshield he can't possibly see through, while everyone around him can clearly see the "invisible" barricade erected to protect him from his own Public.  All impeccably documented in dramatic sillouette by CNN.

Words cannot.

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