BY VERN TURNER
Another day, another scandal, another portrayal of incompetence and outright madness … That is the state of affairs in the government of the United States.
What is it today? Is it the Secretary of Labor who is being exposed for the corrupt, “good ol’ boy” he once was in Florida and is now in Washington? The irony here is blushingly obvious – at least for those in the Trump circle of fools.
This guy Alexander Acosta enabled a pedophile/sexual predator and allowed him to virtually walk while breaking the law in not telling the victims what the terms of the “deal” were. It doesn’t get much seedier than that … unless you also look at the circle of “friends” that Jeffery Epstein lived inside of.
Now, our totally corrupted and compromised attorney general is directing the orchestra of obstruction of justice and contempt of Congress in a symphony of Constitutional de-construction with a coda sounding the death knell of the rule of law. But the president says he finally has the AG he wants, someone who will hold the law, Congress and the Constitution at bay while he tries to figure out how to keep his fraudulent life from exposure to the public.
Did I mention the humanity crisis at the southern border where all those brown people are running for their lives? If the irony wasn’t so pathetically sad and horrid, it would be something delicious shown in a Netflix® mini-series.
These huddled masses are running away from nations overflowing with crime, murder and failed governments. So, why are they coming here, one might ask? After all, we’re the land of opportunity, right?
Well, while the Trumpian dictatorship thumbs its nose at human suffering, nobody is asking about our runaway, $6 billion illicit drug demand. Why are so many Americans using their walking around money to put illegal and dangerous chemicals up their noses, into their veins and down their throats? What is it about the glory of our nation that drives people to such depths?
Of course, one can have sympathy for the drug-addicted veterans who the Trump Administration and Republicans have cast aside as used goods. When the VA stopped handing out the opioids, these poor folks went to street drugs including heroine to relieve their pain.
Gee, I wonder why we don’t have these immigration issues at our northern border. Oh. Right. Canadians don’t want to come here, and they are white anyway.
This brings me to the topic of “white panic.” It’s not a new thing in the good old USA. We now have about 13% of our population as non-citizen immigrants, about the same as just before the Civil War. Today, as then, there were drum-beaters and fear-mongers wailing about “the other” who were destroying our country, etc., etc.
Today, as then, it was the white panic of brown people stealing jobs from white people because they would work for less than what a white person would accept. Today, as then, it was the capitalists who dictated this rumor as truth while they were cutting jobs, reducing pay and/or sending labor-heavy jobs to other, cheaper countries … without asking anyone, white or brown, if they would mind.
Today, the lies and memes about job-loss are more insidious and dishonest than ever before. In the process of bribing the Republican Congress and the G.W. Bush administration to de-regulate everything in sight, the corporations simply closed factories and sent the jobs to China, Asia and Latin America.
The abandoned factories were either left to rust in the sun, or were dismantled with the scrap being sold to … wait for it … China so they could build their own factories from our old ones.
So, who do the displaced white workers blame for this industrial meltdown? Why Barack Obama and Mexicans, of course. Never mind that black and brown people are suffering worse hardships than white people during these economic struggles [ones that Marx predicted would happen in 1850], the white people have to blame somebody besides themselves.
So, what did white labor do that was so awful? They stopped voting. They voted for Obama, but the exodus of corporate America was already well underway from the previous eight years of Bush, Cheney and the white money boys on Wall Street. Obama couldn’t stop it, because more white money boys got elected to Congress in 2010 due to the white backlash to the reality that a black man could actually become President.
“Holy crap!”, they thought. How could an uppity black man actually get through Harvard and become president? Then, in 2012, Obama was re-elected for a second term with another 50%-plus of the vote, the first time since Eisenhower’s era. Well, that was just too much for Republican strategists and the white money boys in corporate/banking America. It was time for them to get to work and re-stoke the white panic that keeps them rolling in dough, while the rest of the country is “eating cake”… as it were.
So, here we stand under the slash line of a table of sums. Donald Trump has been selected to enable white panic to the point where the weakest of the weak can now feel comfortable avoiding any personal responsibility for their own failures and lack of civic participation.
Never mind that the brown people in our country pick the groceries for, tend the lawns and clean the houses of these white people. It’s their fault that our country is coming apart. It’s their fault that the 1% are hogging all the money to the point that just a few hundred of them own more of it than the bottom 75%, or so. It’s their fault that wages remain stagnant and that the fight over a livable wage goes on and on despite the overall benefits to society from higher pay.
“Make American Great Again!”, they scream while voting for and coddling a president who is corrupt to his core and has no moral compass whatsoever. They coddle and vote for a Republican Party that is silent on human abuses similar to those of Nazi Germany.
This behavior is the sum of all our ills, and those ills are being abetted by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, senior presidential advisor Stephen Miller and the Trump crime show in the White House. Only a massive voter turnout of rational people in 2020 will cure this disease of slothful democracy.
It’s up to us – or maybe white panic has removed the incentive to live up to our original national ideals.
– Denver resident Vern Turner is a regular contributor to The Oklahoma Observer. His latest book, Why Angels Weep: America and Donald Trump, is available through Amazon.