When I started this little blog yea these many years ago it was in no small part because there didn’t seem to be (1) all that many liberal blogs in northern Nevada, and (2) a way to force myself to wander around the Internet LEARNING things to fill gaps in my understanding of important issues. Oh, and by the way, in a former life I was a history and political science major so I liked the opportunity to dig back into these subjects and treat myself to historical references and such. Until 2017 this was fun. There have been a paucity of posts lately, because of the Trump Administration’s propensity for taking the fun out of just about every topic imaginable.
For example, it’s no fun anymore to peruse the economic data, seek trends, and find interesting analyses — because in Trumpland data, analysis, and rationality don’t matter. In Trumpland our allies are peppered with trade threats which make absolutely no sense whatsoever, while our adversaries and competitors are left guessing what “policy” the administration might be advocating from one day to the next. There is no plan. There are only petulant, provocative, reactions — predicated, it appears, on an understanding of world trade premised upon the situation of at the very least 38 years ago.
For example, it’s no fun anymore to watch the development of social policy, and social progress. Yes, there’s been Hate Radio since the 1980’s, but terms like “Femi-Nazis” and “Half-Ricans” were the language of the exterior, marginalized away from polite conversation and civic discourse. We did not refer to “sh*thole nations,” nor did we speak of people “infesting” us, or “invading” us. We did not refer to human beings as “vermin.” We did not classify entire populations of adherents to a particular religion as “terrorists.” We did not deem people unfit for service because of the color of their skin or their sexual orientation. Now, we have a President who says there were “good people” on both sides in Charlottesville — where one side chanted ‘Blood and Soil,” and “You Will Not Replace Us,” outside a synagogue. We have a President conflating asylum seekers with drug traffickers, with human traffickers, with ordinary families seeking a better life for their children. And we ripped their children away from those asylum seekers and ordinary families. We reclassified (?) the children as “unaccompanied minors” when we deported their parents. We lost track of where we hid those children in the dark of night. There was no plan. There never seems to be a plan. It’s always more like the petulant provocative reactions to momentary political expediency.
For example, it’s no fun anymore to follow governmental approaches to common issues in American life. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau? Repurposed to serve the interests of the bankers who caused the problems in the first instance? The EPA, corrupt leadership included, catering to the industries which find polluting and exploiting more profitable in the short term than caring for the viability of the planet they leave for their children.
So, the blog posts were few and far between of late. The other notion which informed the initiation of this blog was that it would be “family friendly.” The comments section would be monitored. I would avoid invective and profanity in the posts. Last week the only terms I could find to apply to the Trumpian policy of deliberate, incompetent, incomprehensible, family separation were invective and profoundly profane.
I’ve vented, alone and among friends, and I’ve calmed a bit. So, the blog posts will continue and I will do so with the comments monitored and a curb on my tongue. However, I will not be silenced. I should have taken the words of one of my heroes in youth, the late great Ronnie Gilbert, to heart when someone ask her how the current situation compared to the bleak days of the McCarthy Era Black Lists — she said it was now worse.
So, I’ll pull myself together — pound out some more pixels, more often, and with as much enthusiasm as I can muster without breaking my two main rules — no unfiltered comments, no profanity. But, I will applaud flight attendants with the courage to tell us that immigration officials lied to get migrant children on board the flight; cheer the owner of the Red Hen restaurant who would not serve a member of the Trump Administration as a measure of her conscience, and smile at the those ordinary Americans who, when they see migrant children being moved in the wee hours will call a local reporter — who will share the information with a national reporter — who will stick another pin the the map — who will try to answer the question: Where are the children and girls?
And, I’ll keep doing this until the Trump Administration hears Ronnie Gilbert’s bold contralto singing out the lyrics of “So Long, It’s Been Good To Know You.” (Not)