An article caught my eye this morning in The Guardian and I realized it was actually analogous to the first two years of the Trump Administration. Brexit has been a lot like the Trump era thus far — a really horrible whim based on nothing and deflating daily. In it, Guardian Columnist Nick Cohen does a great job of telling the story of how the whole movement came to be and how incredibly awful it was from the beginning. Moral clarity — none. Economic viability — none. Racist, xenophobic and short-sighted — In spades. Who cares? Instead, take this route —
Friedman, of course, was not insane; he was an economic theorist, not fanatic. Rand may well have been insane and a fanatic, but possessed a strong sense of survival and not get so far out on the edge that gravity made falling off inevitable. Schumpeter had a vision of preventing the sort of nonsense that Brexit would produce. He believed in creative destruction, not wild-ass wanton lunacy.
For 2000 years or so now, various fools and charlatans have built empires on misquoting, misinterpreting, lying and fabricating about what Jesus actually said. That various fools and charlatans can do so with lesser gods for ideology, personal gain and sport should no more shock us than gambling in Casablanca.
Cohen sees this all as an example of why the Tories are morally and intellectually bankrupt. Cameron couldn’t believe this could happen — “Are they bloody insane…no. Never pass. Not to worry, old boy. Will help us keep austerity going a bit longer. Fuck the Plebs. ” — and then it did. People who voted for it couldn’t believe it could happen…and then it did. Does this sound at all similar to something in the recent past of the United States. Cohen sums it up quite well:
An honourable man, and an honourable political movement, would have found these excellent reasons to think again…Not the Brexit movement…. Brexit was an empty idea… Allowing millions to believe that the impossible was possible was perfect post-rational politics. As Roland Smith of the Adam Smith Institute… said last week, the “dirty secret” of the Leave campaign was that it “didn’t have a well-formed idea of how to leave the EU or indeed whether any alternative was really palatable”.
As our closest ally struggle with this particular mess, it serves to illuminate our own cold hell. People who should know better either are willfully ignoring what they know to be the truth, or are worried that there are pictures of them doing scandalous things with underage farm animals. This indicates a level of disdain for ordinary citizens, to believe that you can take your bucket of rainbow stew with unicorn steaks and pass them out along with free elephant piss Free BubbleUp, and the people will not figure it out that it’s nothing but grass and entrails and urine.
Some won’t; they’re not the sort of people who should be running things. People who run things are not supposed to be absolute idiots, yet the bankruptcy of conservative thinking is such that they just can’t avoid being put in positions of responsibility. You have true believers and you have grifters — the true believers create this nonsense (Flat tax! No social responsibility! No common good! Ayn Rand! Social Wars! Boot Straps! White Power!) and then grifters like the Wilbur Ross or uncounted others and the bumper crop of useful idiots like Lindsay Graham with the dancing seal trainers like Mitch McConnell who use the befuddlement of the voters to enrich and empower themselves through figureheads who shouldn’t be in charge of a lemonade stand.
Wrap it in the Flag, the Constitution, the old Rugged Cross and Horatio Alger, then pass it on. There will be no history, there are no consequences, there is no heritage or value that can not be sacrificed because the Idiot-Grifter combine say so in the name of some bizarre concept of personal entitlement.
More to come after the bloated SeaCow tells us his lies tomorrow. But, you know the idea that Trump is a Sociopath? There are people who think he lacks the discipline, skills, and focus to be an effective Sociopath. That’s an interesting concept in itself.
Personally, I thought that the people like me following Gordon and Jim and John into our own pot of Rainbow Stew would write some crazy stuff that would turn out to be very true. But, today we are faced with a question — is the President of the United States a traitor, a dupe, an agent in place of a fellow traveller to Russia? I knew I’d say bad things, mean and nasty things about Trump as President, but wondering if the Republican President and the Republican Majority Leader as well as the former Orange County Birch Society Stuffed Duck Dana Rohrbacher are compromised and working for the Kremlin or the nice folks over near Druzhinsky Square or directly for the President of Russia eluded me.