POWER DAILY – The racist core of Trump’s presidency
When Trump glided down the gaudy escalator of Trump Tower and declared his candidacy for president, he did so with a vicious attack against Mexican immigrants.
“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”
When I heard that speech, I thought, this guy is even crazier than he seemed when he ran around New York going bankrupt and cheating on his wives. He’s going to crash and burn as soon as Jeb! trains his sights on him.
I confess, it was a colossal failure of my imagination. After almost 8 years of Barack Obama in the White House, it had become fashionable on both coasts to think that the country had truly broken a barrier. That sure, racism exists, but it’s on the wane. A shrunken shadow of the sanctioned lynching mobs of the 20th century.
We did not understand – and I think the startling violence at the Capitol last week proved beyond a doubt – that Trump had violently woken up White anxiety and resentment of a Black Man in the White House.
For a demagogue seeking to ride White resentment to power, Barack Obama was the most tangible demonstration that “they were robbing our country.
Even people obsessed with history (me) are nevertheless surprised when the Big Lessons of Holy History are proven right again. Namely, hate is more powerful than love when driving political passions.
While Obama often spoke of “our better angels”, Trump’s inaugural speech focused on “American carnage”.
We therefore have no right to be surprised by Trump’s racialist rule, the abject cruelty of his polices, and his devotion to fascistic myth making – placing Trump at the head of the White Power movement to save Americans (white Christian Americans) from other races.
It was inevitable; it is his nature.
Conventional wisdom a few days before Trump leaves the White House has it that Trump will be primarily remembered for his attempted coup. That sounds about right.
But he must also be understood as the last (?) gasp of White Supremacists fighting like hell to take the country back to the American Apartheid of Jim Crow.
POWER PLAYER – Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman
As more vivid video of the Trump attempted coup emerges, we’re seeing both the acute violence of the mob, and also the powerful bravery of police officers and other people at the Capitol who through self-sacrifice averted the kidnapping of legislators, staffers, and the media.
Perhaps most famous at this point, is the story of Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman. He is likely to be remembered as the man who single handedly distracted the mob away from the Senate chamber – possibly saving Vice President Pence and many senators from a lynching. (See Power Read below.)
We’d all like to think that in a moment of chaos and panic we would be brave enough to act with a cool head and dispatch – ready to do what’s necessary to save the day.
When Trump unleashed his private army, Officer Goodman, his life at stake, showed who he was - a real hero at a moment when the nation needed heroism.
Here’s a striking look at Goodman leading the mob away from the Senate chamber:
POWER LOSER – Project Warp Speed
As with all things Trump, we re-discover that he is not just a pathological liar and a cheat, he is also profoundly incompetent.
Operation Warp Speed was his administration’s bombastic name for the effort to finance quick vaccine development. Composed of government scientists and billions of our dollars, the program was meant to quickly get vaccines into the arms of Americans, defeating the virus like a Starfleet armada killing off Romulans. Or something.
Well, it did not work out that way. Because despite the obvious need to get a vaccine into the arms of people – Trump’s administration made no plans to actually distribute the vaccine. Yep.
This is incompetence that rises to criminal negligence.
“When Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar announced this week that the federal government would begin releasing coronavirus vaccine doses held in reserve for second shots, no such reserve existed, according to state and federal officials briefed on distribution plans. The Trump administration had already begun shipping out what was available beginning at the end of December, taking second doses directly off the manufacturing line.
“Now, health officials across the country who had anticipated their extremely limited vaccine supply as much as doubling beginning next week are confronting the reality that their allocations will not immediately increase, dashing hopes of dramatically expanding eligibility for millions of elderly people and those with high-risk medical conditions. Health officials in some cities and states were informed in recent days about the reality of the situation, while others are still in the dark.”
POWER READ – From The Washington Post:
“Secret Service officers eventually spirited Pence to a room off the Senate floor with his wife and daughter after rioters began to pour into the Capitol, many loudly denouncing the vice president as a traitor as they marched through the first floor below the Senate chamber.
“About one minute after Pence was hustled out of the chamber, a group charged up the stairs to a second-floor landing in the Senate, chasing a Capitol Police officer who drew them away from the Senate.
“Pence and his family had just ducked into a hideaway less than 100 feet from that landing, according to three people familiar with his whereabouts, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation. If the pro-Trump mob had arrived seconds earlier, the attackers would have been in eyesight of the vice president as he was rushed across a reception hall into the office.”
POWER QUOTE – Resonates with our present circumstances:
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” - Nelson Mandela