Michael Flynn resigning because he was caught lying about his talking to Russia makes little sense. Trump clearly doesn’t give a fuck about lying. It doesn’t feel that it really has to do with lying. Something that has bugged me for awhile is that Flynn allegedly serves Russian interests, but he is extremely hawkish on cranking up a war with Iran. Putin wants chaos, but that kind of uncontrolled chaos virtually on his doorstep, with it possibly benefiting Israel and Saudi Arabia, doesn’t seem wise. I cannot imagine what’s really going on here, but the media patting itself on its back for taking down Flynn by proving his lying feels… dumb.
I’m only halfway through episode 81 of Chapo Trap House, but they said a few things that don’t jibe for me. They were mocking the idea of infiltration of Black Bloc as liberal paranoia. Nah, it’s long documented that it happens. How they dismiss that is baffling.
They also were rolling their eyes at some of the more militarized machinations coming out of the White House, deriding that as tv fantasy. They seem disconnected with what’s going on with the ICE raids. An unnerving amount of federal law enforcement seem ready to steamroll anyone they regard as a threat if given free rein. Trump is a senile buffoon, but they are underestimating Bannon somewhat. He’s not a supergenius, but that Sun Tzu shit isn’t what Bannon is about. It’s Julius Evola and Edmund Burke. Most of what they wrote might be over Bannon’s head1 and he’s cherrypicking, but he’s got the gist. Anti-Enlightenment. Anti-semitism. Islamophobia. Anti-feminism. Liberty through moral order through private property. Crisis and war are crucibles. It’s not deep stuff. The same shit is hawked on 4chan to brain-damaged gamers.
Their real underestimation is how rotten the edifice of American democracy is. It doesn’t take a genius or great man to drive the nation over an abyss. Those CPB agents at the airports weren’t micromanaged. They were free to interpret the executive order any way they wanted, the more extreme and harsh the better. They were detaining people that weren’t even included in order. The culture in all law enforcement has fomented authoritarianism and xenophobia for decades, arguably since inception. The machine is ready. All that held it back was etiquette.
America is a nation governed entirely by id.
It also struck me as weird when Shane Bauer was so impressed by the size of Berkeley protests, until I looked up to see that he probably was getting his life back together after being held prisoner by Iran for two years. November 2nd, Occupy Oakland shut down the Port of Oakland on a general strike. I watched livestreams on that. The crowds were phenomenal- far, far more than the 7,000 the police claimed, probably in the tens of thousands.
- and definitely mine [↩]