Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Stupor Tuesday

Hopefully by now you have seen John Oliver's epic takedown of one Donald Drumpf; if not, I urge you to click on the video above and watch it now. I'll selfishly admit to some gratification at seeing many of the same themes I have been beating on since well before Scrooge McDick descended the golden escalator to speak to a rented crowd last June -- not just the boorish behavior, but the easily refuted lies, the thin-skinned overreactions, the stubborn fiction that Drumpf is some sort of genius businessman, and of course the much less cool ancestral last name.

But neither Oliver nor I nor anyone else engaging in these cheap shots have any particular insight. The one thing Donald Drumpf loves to do more than anything else is talk about himself. It's not like this information hasn't been publicly available and abundant for many years now. But the press chose not to do their jobs with any real vigor.

So now here we are, nine months into this bullshit, and this goofy motherfucker is the odds-on favorite to be the presidential nominee of the Republican Party. Two institutions -- the party and the media -- have failed utterly in their traditional roles. Part of this is because they are bloated and corrupt, but also it is because they were completely unprepared for the consequences of their bloat and corruption.

It's too bad that it took a consummate asshole like Von Clownstick to motivate people who were previously unmotivated, but were finally inspired by Clownstick's constant barrage of "fuck you" schtick. Except the funny thing is that another, more idealistic group of habitual non-voters were inspired by Bernie Sanders. The rallies were huge, the speaker and the crowds passionate, the cause directed at working-class dogs.

But because Sanders is not an obnoxious, self-absorbed buffoon who burbles provocative nonsense and thinks other humans exist only to validate his own ego, he didn't get anywhere near the coverage Clownstick did. When Sanders did get coverage, it tended to revolve around his age, his hair, his socialism, even though Drumpf is only five years younger, has his own considerable tonsorial issues, and has become wealthy by using other people's money, occasionally defaulting on them and leaving them to foot the bill.

Genuine Republicans and conservatives are going through their five stages of grief right now, because their party has been completely hijacked by someone who is neither Republican nor conservative. Their party is well and truly fucked, and it is richly deserved. But right now they're just trying to figure out how this happened, and so they have their pet theories.

But again, the reason is simple -- a large bloc of people that they previously did not have to talk to or convince, because they rarely if ever bothered to vote, are suddenly deciding to come out. The party and their media dogsbodies don't know how to talk to these folks, and Trump does. He has appealed to their nativism, their almost deliberate ignorance on any number of issues, and stoked it with fear and cheap rhetoric.

It is the mark of the bien pensant observer to note that we should not insult or condescend to these salt-of-the-earth types, but rather make an effort to speak to their concerns, which after all are legitimate. The thing is, many Democratic candidates over the years have tried to communicate and commiserate with them, and get slapped down because they're not jebusy enough, or not beer-worthy enough, or whatever dog-whistle bullshit these people would rather listen to.

Whatever her faults -- and they are many -- Hillary Clinton is at least making an attempt to speak to working-class people the best she can, treating them like adults. And I can promise you, not a single Drumpf voter will listen to her. They tune her out, often for the most ludicrous reasons. So fuck them already. This is just another in a long line of poor decisions on their part. There are only so many ways to try to convince morons not to stick their fingers in light sockets, when they insist on doing so again and again.

There is a schism in the GOP coming, and it is not going to be pretty. The focus has been on the carny barker and his easily gulled flock of ofay rubes. But there are a lot of serious, lifelong conservative Republicans who are genuinely repulsed by this bigoted blowhard and his self-serving horseshit. Any responsible adult who pays attention to shit should have figured out that this asshole is, at the very least, temperamentally unsuitable for the presidency. The only people still buying what the con-man is selling are idiots who should have stuck with their pattern of staying home and not voting.

But the carnival is still rolling, gathering momentum, racking up a delegate count that will probably be insurmountable so long as there are four candidates of varying levels of weakness opposing Drumpf, rather than one of relatively equal strength. This is going to result in a brokered convention, with the money wing of the party having to find either a way to live with him as the nominee, or a way to screw him out of it and give it to Rubio.

The David Duke thing over the weekend, dumb as it was, is important because it signals that the media might finally start doing their jobs. They've given Von Clownstick a free ride and free publicity all this time, but as we all know, the arc of a celebrity is predictable:  they build you up, they tear you down. This is the beginning of the tear-down phase. Hopefully.

But it is entirely dependent on the media doing their jobs, asking tougher questions. No one's even touched on the birther stuff:  Hey asshole, remember when you sent a couple guys to Hawaii a few years ago, promising a bombshell? What happened with that? Do you or do you not believe that Barack Obama was born in Hawaii? Fucking yes, or fucking no, which is it?

That's just a single example, again obviously there are plenty of others. Ultimately, it will come down to the man himself. Most people are not nearly as smart as they think they are, but most of them are fortunate enough to know that about themselves, and plan and act accordingly. They err on the side of caution, they hedge their bets. They are nice to people on their way up, because they might meet them on their way back down.

Not so with Drumpf. The braggadocio, the empty bluster, the need to be so un-PC, the endless lies and posturing -- he can't help himself. He's solidifying his own support, but also solidifying the much larger number of people who cannot and will not convert to him. People are getting tired of the schtick, tired of seeing his oompa-loompa cheeto-wigged ass on teevee. It's only a matter of time before he steps on his own dick, good and hard, and it finally sticks. Teflon doesn't last forever, and his moron contingent of first-timers are, by definition, not a reliable core of voters. We'll see if the media decide to finally get their shit together, risk losing their useless clickbait.

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