I awoke with the thought that here we were, We the People, with the quarter of our countrymen, and probably the ones that got that fucking "D" in Health class, handing us a go cup half full of warm Bud Lite for breakfast chortling "Now watch this shit!"
This was not a heartening thought.
You know I have no expectations for the 45th President of the United States. As a man he is a spiteful bully, a pig-ignorant, querulous, greedy little man whose career to date has been that of a flim-flam artist, con man, and grifter fueled with his daddy's money and others' credulity and forbearance.
As a "public servant", well...there might have been some hope before today.
Still, even with my expectations as low as the swamp that His Fraudulency seems to have dragged to find his executive officers (a mix of plutocratic thieves and ideological dopes or, in the case of his Secretary of Education, both, and in spades...) the Trump inaugural address today managed to fail to rise to that sub-zero level of adequacy.
This was not the speech of a chief executive. It was the polemic of a tribal chief whose tribe thrives on darkness, fear, and hate.
Fallows has a good summary of the oration here. He notes that:
"What the speech did not have is any of the elements that marked its predecessors. An awareness of institutional continuity and resulting burdens. An ambition to make a fresh presentation those in his own country and around the world who were not part of his original base. A demonstration that he himself has been changed by the consequences of his new role. A vision of hope and progress that extends beyond fealty to his own self."What the speech DID have was what we've already heard from this joker; the dystopian vision that, first, portrays the United States as a blasted hellscape and, second, portrays He, Trump as Our Only Hope:
"Mothers and children trapped in poverty in our inner cities; rusted-out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation; an education system flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of knowledge; and the crime and gangs and drugs that have stolen too many lives and robbed our country of so much unrealized potential.There was the usual nonsense about how Our Once-Mighty Armies have sunk away:
This American carnage stops right here and stops right now."
"For many decades, we've enriched foreign industry at the expense of American industry; subsidized the armies of other countries while allowing for the very sad depletion of our military; we've defended other nation's borders while refusing to defend our own; and spent trillions of dollars overseas while America's infrastructure has fallen into disrepair and decay."I could go on, but why? You've heard all this ridiculous "make America great again!" nonsense since this time last year. It doesn't make any more sense now that it did then.
And there was this:
"From this moment on, it's going to be America First."
Ok, look. I know that the fucking Tangerine Toddler is too ignorant of history to know this. Hell, I'd be surprised if he's even watched anything outside his own publicity stuff and Vivid Videos.
But somebody in his entourage either needs to tell him to knock this the fuck off or own the goddamn fascism it implies. Somebody in his posse has got to have at least some dim notion that Charlie Lindbergh luuurved him some Nazis and that's what "America First" has come to mean. You don't walk around saying "Hail, victory!" because of what it meant seventy-some years ago. You don't walk around saying "America First" unless you own up to the baggage.
And...here's what he didn't talk about: automation. Trump has nothing to say about that, largely because it neither fits his bill of particulars against the Obamian Dark Ages he is rescuing us from nor does it fit the agenda of his bankers whose profits stand to burgeon from replacing people with machines.
What happens to those people? Trump doesn't say. Maybe they can get jobs sheetrocking once all those Mexican rapists are deported.
And this shit?
"The wealth of our middle class has been ripped from their homes and then redistributed across the entire world."
...the fuck? You mean that kwashiorkor kid in Somalia? THAT little bastard's where my 401K went?
C'mon. That wealth hasn't gone any further than the Walton and Koch and DeVos family bank accounts, you nimrod, and you know that perfectly well...because a fair bit has (and, probably, will soon) find its way into yours. Your GOP pals have made sure of that. I wish Bernie Sanders had been there to slap you up the back ofthe head like Moe does to the other Stooges for that lie.
This went on and on, lie after lie, half-truth after half-truth. Pretty much all of what we've seen from His Fraudulency before. We've seen it, gang. This is it. This is what he's got. There's no hidden depth here. There's no surprisingly thoughtful awakening as he realizes that he's now Chief Executive of the New Rome, of the de-facto global imperium.
It's all Jackass all the way down; all ranting, butt-hurt third grader who's managed to memorize half "facts" off the internet conspiracy-theory page he read last night.
This is it.
The filthy rich have finally reversed 1932 and are poised to return the bulk of us, to the degree that they can, to a coarser, meaner, poorer time, the Gilded Age of their waking dream.
And this, this sad, bloated little grifter with his mail-order bride and his ridiculous combover and his doughy orange meatface, this is all that stands between us the the Kongressional Wingnut Kook Kaukus' mad demands to hammer us into as close to a ginormous Carnegie mill town as they can make us.