I Guess We Couldn’t…

In 1787, a woman called Mrs Powell asked Benjamin Franklin if the founders had delivered a Republic or a Monarchy. Franklin’s famous reply was “A Republic, if you can keep it.” In truth, I wish I had been more surprised but the whole world knew the Republicans were going to nullify the impeachment LONG before they “swore an oath” to be impartial. They were rather vocal about it. I’m quite used to the notion that the Republican party has no honor and will ALWAYS do what’s worst for America. For THEIR part, I’m also quite used to the notion that the role of the Democrats is to lose – what I call the ‘Colmes Effect.’ (Alan Colmes was a Fox “News” personality who pretended to be a liberal. His job was to “lose” debates with Sean Hannity, thereby making the conservative position LOOK far stronger than it ever has been. Of course, he had to go out of his way to present the dumbest possible arguments but he was good at that and always came through.) Either side could have run the question of constitutionality by the SCOTUS and neither side did – giving the Republicans exactly the out they needed – a move that appears to have served both “teams.” (The Dems pretend to have “fought,” the GOP gets the “win.”)

Then, once sure Trump had been protected, Moscow Mitch gives this speech in which he insists the Dumbass is guilty of inciting insurrection, calling him “practically and morally responsible,” but then claiming Congress couldn’t act because Trump is out so there is no point in trying to remove him. Obviously, there’s no point in trying to remove someone who’s already out but the Republicans held on to that moot point for all they were worth and completely, dutifully ignored the reason for impeachment in that case: being barred from ever running again. I guess we’re all just supposed to forget that the only reason the impeachment occurred AFTER Trump left office is because his loyal sycophant, old Moscow Mitch himself, refused to reconvene the Senate while Trump still infested the Oval Office.

Trump could still face criminal charges, of course, but my guess is he won’t. I suspect he COULD face civil charges, too, if someone – perhaps Officer Sicknick’s family or maybe the “Q-anon Shaman” – was of a mind to try to go after him that way. Listening to naive Republicans in Congress pretend that Trump’s era is “over” now because of all of this is just saddening. So far, every time someone has said, ‘This far and no further,’ Trump just blows past the line and keeps pushing further and further.

I keep thinking back to ancient Rome, when Rome transitioned from Republic to Empire. THAT transition was done very much like THIS transition. All of the institutions of Rome the Republic remained. Caesar even left dissidents in the Roman Senate to speak out against him. Not enough of them to effect real change, of course, and certainly not enough to protect the Republic. But the move maintained the illusion that everything was “normal” in Rome. Ancient Rome used to keep it’s citizenry informed of the news using newsreaders who would literally stand out on a corner and read out the day’s events. Even THAT practice continued, for a time, after the fall of the Republic but the quality of the information the people received was…diminished. (Can you say Fox “News”?) The work-a-day Romans never knew what was hitting them. It all LOOKED the same. It just didn’t ACT the same.

Many people know that Hitler once tried, unsuccessfully, to take over Germany. He faced legal consequences but the state ended up showing leniency. A few years later, THAT bumbling idiot was Germany’s new “Fuehrer” and millions of people died. So now our own bumbling idiot, Trump, has tried to seize control over the United States and failed. But the state has shown leniency. History is not promising when it comes to the “let’s just close our eyes and hope he goes away” strategy. Mostly, I suspect this once-great nation will have it’s very own strongman/dictator in the next few years. The cons have been working for that end going on forty years, now, and their finish line is in sight, if not already behind us…

Yes, I’m quite well aware all of this sounds like hyperbolic, sky-is-falling stuff. I’m also quite clear that the process MAY not have played out, yet. As mentioned, it’s still possible someone could prefer criminal charges against the criminal. Recent history suggests that will NOT happen, though. A sign of the collapse of our society can be found in the transition from “a nation of laws” to “a nation of laws for the little guy.” It will be a sad day when Biden gives the inevitable, upcoming “It’s time to look forward, not backward” speech. But I’ll be no more surprised (nor disappointed) by THAT betrayal than I am with the Republicans who know – to a person and without question – that Trump is guilty as charged but still refuse to defend America…

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