Thursday, January 19, 2017

What happened?

What happened to #blogaday?

I will get back to them. But at the moment, I've gotten behind. I've been busy at work, not getting great sleep and frankly, this whole Trump fiasco has got me quite depressed. It's such a disappointing mess and I'm a little scared for our collective futures. One article I read says that Russia isn't done with us yet - that if need be, they'll perform some terrorist acts on our soil to keep us off balance and distracted.

I heard that the average Trump voter makes $70,000 a year. That's a decent amount of money. Although I have a theory about that - basically lots of people who make nothing per year were conned by the obscenely wealthy and together they make $70,000 but if you were to look at the median income, it would be a lot less.

I feel like I can generalize Trump voters into a few basic groups:
(1) People who stand to profit financially. Many of them are now getting cabinet positions. / They might also be racist or sexist.
(2) People who will always blindly vote Republican / or will never vote for a party because of those who celebrate values they disagree with (especially abortion) / They might also be racist or sexist.
(3) People who genuinely believe that things are going to get better for them. These people also think that Obamacare and the ACA are two different things. They are grasping for any place (besides themselves) to put the blame for their situation. In some cases, it's their state or the education offered to them or private enterprise that failed them and their situation is not of their own making, but they are going to be sorely surprised. / They might also be racist or sexist.

I also wonder about Trump himself... is he a clueless pawn in all this? Remember those movies where there's a party and the cool kids each bring an uncool kid and the uncool kids don't realize it's just one big joke at their expense?  I feel like that's what's happening here.  I don't really believe for a minute that Trump got where he was without a lot of help, but that he's not in on the joke. I just don't know who brought him and when they'll let him know. A convenient scapegoat for Republicans who will impeach him shortly? Or someone the Russians will assassinate as soon as he becomes a liability?

And speaking of, what about the mood of our nation as a whole?  Is he safe from the people who voted for him once they realize he actually doesn't care about them? Is he safe from some other country he insults on Twitter? If they prioritize strategy over saving face, they'll leave him be because far more damage will be done to our country if he continues to call the shots, but if they're about saving face, I think it's plausible that a foreign country might decide to take him out. I feel like we're in for dark times of uncertainty while the GOP and its supporters get richer and richer at the expense of all of us.

I really do not get it. People are saying that it's time to take the restrictions off of businesses. This will not help the average worker. It will help the business owners but remove the restrictions and you end up with environments that are less safe and pay less.

People are saying that foreigners are taking our jobs and that we should shut down the Visa program, but at the same time, this administration seems hell-bent on destroying our education system.

People are saying NAFTA steals jobs, but the facts are that immigration from Mexico (illegal or otherwise) has actually been going down but destroying NAFTA will eliminate jobs in Mexico and Central and South America, forcing more people to come to the states looking for work.

All the while we seek to privatize prisons (as a whole, for-profit prisons are more violent than government run facilities), education (as a whole, for-profit schools produce lower test scores), health care (as a whole, for-profit nursing homes are far more likely to keep their charges sedated because it's cheaper and easier than keeping them enriched and safe) and basically anything else you some private company wants to profit by doing. (Like the private nuclear waste company that contributed a lot to Perry's campaign while he was in Texas.)

We've got wholly unqualified people who haven't even bothered to learn about the jobs they've accepted. It's appalling. I loved the Esquire article: "As nearly as I can tell, the nominees for the president-elect's Cabinet fall into several different categories. There are the people you'd pretty much expect from any Republican administration. (James Mattis, Michael Flynn, Ryan Zinke). There are the people who understand the mission of their departments and have spent their lives undermining it. (Jeff Sessions as Attorney General, Rick Perry at Energy, Andrew Puzder at Labor). And there are the people who are fundamentally clueless about the general nature of public service. (Rex Tillerson at State.) On Tuesday night, DeVos demonstrated that she is that rarest of Trump administration fauna: Someone who fits capably into all three categories."

This is the last land-grab of a desperate political party that has given up any semblance of compassion - they've said "screw you" to the social contract we all (whether we like it or not) are a part of in this grand experiment of the United States of America.  I wondered aloud of any non-criminals still existed in the GOP and my wife mentioned Senator McCain and one other person whose name I can't recall.  It's slim and even the "good ones" seem unwilling or unable to go against the party. They've either lost their backbone or they were pretending.

Dark times are ahead and the only thing I know for sure is that whether it's for the PTA or President, I'm never voting for another Republican.  I'm not ready yet to call myself a Democrat, but I'm getting pretty close.

I've spent way too much time reading internet comments lately, but I'm just astounded by all the people who are so excited for this presidency. And who actually read Brietbart (a headline on there for earlier this month: "Dear Mr. President-Elect, Please ‘Pick a Fight’ with California on Behalf of the American People" - I'm not linking to the Fake News, you'll need to Google it) and think it's real news while accusing CNN, NBC News (and even Fox News) of being Fake News.

It's getting to where even the jokes aren't funny anymore and it's getting difficult to even watch pick-me-ups like Futurama. I just see the aliens blowing up buildings thinking how an alien invasion or the rapture would be nice right about now. This isn't a "you lost, get over it" moment -- I didn't vote for Hillary Clinton either - but my state was a lock for her electorally so my vote didn't count - I've been an independent when it comes to my Presidential voting record since 1996 though in hindsight if I was allowed to retroactively vote in the 2012 elections I would have voted for President Obama -- this is true dread.

I do not get it, not at all. How are so many people snowed? There's one thing I really, really want to know.  When will those who voted for Trump know if they made the right decision or not?  When can we poll them and ask "Is your life better off today than it was on January 19?"  When can we start making them uncomfortable by making them use their brains and really assessing if their vote was a wise one or not?

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