Jul 28, 2017

Has sanity prevailed?

Courtesy of The CW
Maybe not. But last night's events were a promising first step.

I had expected to wake up this morning to hear that the Senate had passed some form of their shitty health care bill that would have — let's not mince words — taken access to health care away from millions, which would in turn have killed a good-sized number of their constituents. Instead, this was the first morning in ten months in which the political news made me smile.

The big one was the Senate, of course. Yes, I'm thrilled that three out of fifty-two Republicans decided that the lives of actual human beings mattered more than blind loyalty to their political party, but it's still discouraging that there were only three.

I only recently learned that the conservative party in the U.K. is commonly referred to as the "nasty party." That resonated with me, because the word that continually comes to my mind when discussing the Republican party here in the United States is "cruel." I'm sure that Republicans truly believe that their way is the right way, that harming other human beings physically and financially is justified somehow, that the rich truly do deserve more riches, and the poor deserve yet more suffering. But I simply do not understand it. Where did their empathy go? What happened to the Golden Rule?

Republicans didn't used to be like this. Once upon a time, most Republicans in Congress were fiscally conservative, yes, but they also believed in science, thought education for everyone was important, and cared about improving the lot of the poor. Hard to believe now, but they really did. I hope some still do. I hope that this was a first step toward change. I want very much for John McCain's impassioned speech about returning the Senate to its former glory to mean something, to have an effect.

The second thing that made me really happy this morning was that the Pentagon responded to Trump's tweets about banning transgender soldiers from the U.S. military with "No, you can't do that," at least not with just a tweet. And that Democrats and Republicans responded with vocal and full throated support for trans soldiers.

The third thing that I loved was that in the past few days, a number of Republicans told Trump that he'd better not fire Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, which would be his first step toward firing special counsel Robert Mueller. About time. I am sick of Trump acting as if being president makes him above the law. This is the United States, and the last I heard, no one was above the law. Yes, Nixon got away with an illegal act, and covering up an illegal act, but only technically. He spent the rest of his life in disgrace, hiding on his estate in California. And Ford, in pardoning Nixon, lost any chance of getting elected.

The fourth thing that made me happy was the sanctions bill. It was like Congress slapping Trump in the face with an "Oh no you don't." I think the Republicans know deep down in their souls that this Russia scandal isn't fake, even if they won't say so in public. Not yet, anyway. But I can see that day coming, way down the road.

The next paragraph's metaphor might not make sense to you if you don't watch Supernatural, a show I've been reviewing for twelve freaking years. In season two, they introduced the "crossroads deal." Essentially, you could make a bargain with a crossroads demon for whatever you wanted — power, talent, money, love — but it would only last for as long a period as the demon would give you, and at the end of that time, you would be torn apart by hell hounds and your soul would go to Hell. The "crossroads deal" turned out to be an effective lynch pin of the drama on Supernatural for several seasons.

So about that. I think that Trump's crossroads deal with Russia, selling out his country so that he could be president, is eventually going to cost him bigly. Like Nixon, he probably won't go to prison, although he certainly deserves to spend his declining years in a tiny cell where he won't be getting a piece of the most delicious chocolate cake or the biggest scoops of ice cream. But I have to believe, and I do believe, that eventually, Trump will be remembered as a biggest and most embarrassing presidential failure in history. (I had thought George W. Bush was going to get that honor, but no.) Bringing Trump down might have to wait until the Dems are in power again in 2018, but I hope it won't take that long. This morning's news gives me hope that the Republican worm is starting to turn.

In closing, since this is a political post, I wanted to let you guys know that I've gotten a lot of vicious comments on my blog during the past few months, comments so nasty that I've had to turn on comment moderation. That means that every comment that goes up has to be approved by me first. If you have a comment, even if you disagree with what I'm saying, as long as it's respectful, I'll approve it as soon as possible. But I will not approve a comment that is hateful. Or any comment that refers to progressives as "libtards."

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