Sunday, January 01, 2017

Just How Bad Is 2017 Going To Get?

I gotta admit, this is the first day where I am waking up to the dread of a new year.

I'm no optimist, but every other January 1st I've lived through has been a "hey, okay, this is the year all the good things come my way." I had hopes, I had good intentions, we all had the promise that things were turning up.

And then 62 million morans went and voted for Trump last November.

We're entering into a new Presidential administration led by the most ill-informed, proudly ignorant, vulgar, corrupt, bankrupt, dishonest, untrained and unqualified human being this nation could ever produce.

I'm not the only one thinking this. Even the audience for the Far Right Noise Machine thinks so:

And this is a month after his Electoral College "win". The "One of the Worst" category at 31 percent beats out "Above Average". You'd think the Fox audience would have biased themselves to AT LEAST give Trump an "Average" support (after all, 25 percent forced themselves to support "Above Average").

How bad is this year going to get?

Trump's very existence could well become an impeachable offense the moment he swears the oath of office. Via the Washington Post:

Until now, we have never had one for whom it was legitimate to question at the onset of his presidency whether he could fulfill his oath to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
As things stand now, President-elect Donald Trump has suggested he will not divest himself of a myriad of businesses around the globe that pose serious conflicts of interest, nor will he liquidate even foreign holdings, the proceeds of which would put him in violation of the emoluments clause of the Constitution.

Jennifer Rubin cites a Brookings Review of the Emoluments Clause and what it found:

While much has changed since 1789, certain premises of politics and human nature have held steady.  One of those truths is that private financial interests can subtly sway even the most virtuous leaders.  As careful students of history, the Framers were painfully aware that entanglements between American officials and foreign powers could pose a creeping, insidious risk to the Republic.  The Emoluments Clause was forged of their hard-won wisdom.  It is no relic of a bygone era, but rather an expression of insight into the nature of the human condition and the preconditions of self-governance.
Now in 2016, when there is overwhelming evidence that a foreign power has indeed meddled in our political system, adherence to the strict prohibition on foreign government presents and emoluments “of any kind whatever” is even more important for our national security and independence.
Never in American history has a president-elect presented more conflict of interest questions and foreign entanglements than Donald Trump. Given the vast and global scope of Trump’s business interests, many of which remain shrouded in secrecy, we cannot predict the full gamut of legal and constitutional challenges that lie ahead.  But one violation, of constitutional magnitude, will run from the instant that Mr. Trump swears he will “faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” While holding office, Mr. Trump will receive—by virtue of his continued interest in the Trump Organization and his stake in hundreds of other entities—a steady stream of monetary and other benefits from foreign powers and their agents.
In the attached brief, we examine the Emoluments Clause in detail and conclude that Donald Trump’s diverse dealings violate both the spirit and the letter of this critical piece of the U.S. Constitution...

By some arguments, Trump can't even place his holdings into a Blind Trust because he'll still be in a position to know what profits him (and having his children run that "Trust" still violates ethics). Thing is, Trump will not even do that: he keeps "promising" he'll provide a solution but never does.

Trump is a walking Impeachment, but this Republican-controlled Congress will never go for it: not enough of their own wingnuts will turn against Trump, meaning a serious Impeachment effort requires support from Democrats... and the Democrats are not going to be charitable out of the kindness of their hearts, they are going to want concessions on key issues - Obamacare, Planned Parenthood, voting rights, Medicare and Social Security protections - that Paul Ryan and the Budget Slashers could never accept.

And in the time that Trump will be in office, disasters will abound. If Trump and the Congressional wingnuts have their say, we'll be in the middle of a tariff trade war by April, rising costs on commodities by June, and double-digit unemployment by November.

Think I'm exaggerating? We're facing nearly the same economic conditions as 1929.

It's not going to help that Paul Ryan is hell-bent to implement his Randian Utopian budget of social safety nets and massive tax cuts for the uber-rich. This is going to do nothing to solve the income inequality problem that truly threatens a majority of Americans.

And it's really not helping that Trump is playing into Putin's hands, leading the Republicans into a foreign policy crisis where they're placing Party Loyalty over the national security needs of the United States.

And it's really really not helping that Trump is convinced he can restart a nuclear arms race and that he can use nuclear arms at a whim.

It's kind of nice that 2016 is finally over and that our celebrities may be safe for now... but 2017 is already an Excedrin Headache in dire need of trepanning relief.

1 comment:

dinthebeast said...

While staring down the barrel of losing a big chunk of my health insurance, I'm trying to focus on things to be optimistic about, and there are a few, although they aren't very material in their nature:
We now have an enormous challenge we can try to rise to, a chance to show the world what we're made of. We will, of course, be castigated for it, like we always are, but part of the challenge is to respond to reality instead of spin.
We now have an opportunity to rebuild the Democratic Party from the ground up, and focus on the election of small-ticket candidates who are more important to us in the run up to the 2020 redistricting. This is something we've needed to do for years, and while I never supported the "let them elect a monster so we can raise a revolution to stop him" strategy, I don't think we should let the opportunity get squandered now that we have to live through it.
We also have a sort of chance to force our media to do it's damn job. While I don't consume much MSM news myself, I do understand that the number of (especially Trump) voters who take the time out of their days to sift through the internet for reliable, accurate information is vanishingly small, so fixing the both siderism (BS) problem actually is important. I told Driftglass in a comment that I would be stealing this, so here it is:

Once Fox News and Hate Radio had manufactured a critical mass of fact-proof idiots,...the Party of Lincoln irrecoverably reshaped itself to accommodate them.

They have passed beyond the reach of reason, so the only viable way to impede their stampede to ruin is to trash their getaway car.

The Big Lie of "Both Sides Do It" is their getaway car.

I really had hoped for new opportunities for progress instead of repair, so I'm undeniably sad about that, but I also realize that there's nobody coming to save us this time, so we'd best show up as ready as we can get for the battle.
Some of us who manage to live through it will end up far stronger and more capable for having had the experience. And as for the others? I can only do my dead, level best to not let myself or those I care about be counted among them.

-Doug in Oakland