Fantastic and right on the money! Thank you, Richard.
I think we may overestimate the extent that Trump’s voters are actually seeing information that would cause them concern. Many are self-isolating, telling themselves what they want to believe, and informing themselves as much as they wish to be informed, selectively. Their own media universe intends to be biased, but they’ve been told the opposite. Plus, they’ve been told that all media intends to be biased. It’s a double lie. They can live on Facebook and Fox and never be confronted with the perspectives you’ve shared. They think Trump is weakening the deep state, and they don’t see him gaining power. All they hear is that he is relentlessly attacked; a victim, unable to get anything done because the enemy is so powerful. They believe they should extend him more power, so he can more effectively regain control of the country from the enemy.
This is such an old, well-worn populist path to dictatorship. How can people not see it?
I wrote back in August that we needed pro-democracy demonstrations as soon as the election ended. We have to give Fox an event they can’t refuse to cover, with messages so clear that they can’t mislead their viewers as to what the protests are about. No demonstrations have happened yet, though. I’m worried about that.
I also said that it’s critical to demonstrate on Trump turf, because that’s where there are uninformed voters that need to have their eyes opened. And, it’s equally critical not to let Barr and Trump bait is into demonstrating in Democratic cities.
I also said that we needed to win big or else expect disaster, a contested result or a Trump win through trickery. Oh well.
If the latter ultimately does happen, I don’t think the Democratic Party has the balls to attempt to govern in exile. People will demonstrate, but that’s not going to bother Trump or the Republican Party.
My hope is that some economically savvy Republicans will break ranks. Otherwise, it’s suicide for the country, for everyone. If we have two claims of government, no workplace will be safe. No neighborhood will be safe. The dictator will solidify power quickly, and there will be lots of dead people along the way.
Markets will react, either fast or slow. At some point, the reality that Trump’s Party has total power, and he himself has become unchallengeable, will set in with the outside world. The rest of the world will see that he is a dictator, and they will get nervous. He has the military and the nuclear codes, after all.
How do you escape a global market crash under that kind of uncertainty and chaos? I surely hope the Republican politicians understand the risk of actually succeeding at subverting the will of the people. Maybe they think they can still impeach if he doesn’t behave, but they are fools to believe that. Once you are in control, you’re in control.
I have to fear, however, that the Trump supporters will be the very last to acknowledge the concerns. As you said, it is a kind of active denial. Not only are they unaware of relevant information that suggests Trump is an existential threat to the rule of the people, they actively deny any such suggestions. It’s too painful to admit to yourself that you’ve made such a grievous mistake of judgement.
So we seem to be in quite some shit stew right now. There is always the nuclear option: Do not extend the government’s debt ceiling in December unless he resigns. We need all the wealthy individuals and companies in America to get motivated by the possibility of economic disaster. Make Republicans choose between a democratic country, or a dictatorship with a government default.