America Is Still Fucked
Joe Biden has to fight fascism and save America, but he can’t. He can’t even prosecute anyone for attacking the damn Capitol. He can’t even deliver a $2,000 check. America is still quite fucked. America’s deep problems aren’t going to be executive ordered away.
Faced with a similar fuckupalypse last century, FDR cut the military and passed much of the New Deal with 100 days. He pulled people out of poverty, consolidated power and laid the foundation of a half-assed welfare state.
Faced with worse today, Biden can only do cosmetic changes. He’s put a black arms dealer in charge of Defense (oooh, diversity), tripped over the filibuster, and reneged on the promise of a quick $2,000 in relief. Instead Americans are getting $1,400, much later. Biden has already stepped on his dick and Democrats could easily get their ass handed to them in 2022.
I know the news cycle feels better now, but the historical cycle spins unabated, and it has teeth. You can’t defeat fascism without defeating fascism. Ask Germany. You can’t stop structural collapse without big structural change. Ask the USSR. And sometimes you just can’t lead where people don’t want to follow. Ask yourselves.
The History Of ‘Oh Shit’
You wonder how Germans fell into fascism, but then you look at America today. Compared to America, the Germans really tried. Germany arrested Hitler in 1924, centrists tried ruling by Presidential decree for a while, and then the Nazis came roaring back in 1932. The process took eight years.
If you read about the collapse of the USSR, Gorbachev really tried restructuring from 1984, including regional democracy and market reforms. Even Chernobyl was positively well-managed compared to America’s response to COVID-19. To the end, Gorbachev really tried, and to his credit, Soviet collapse was democratic and peaceful. The process took seven years.
Americans are at the beginning of this process, the calm before the storm. They have to do more than Germany or the USSR, and right now they aren’t doing shit. Americans think the storming of their Capitol was a grotesque disaster, easily put down, but that’s what they said about the Beer Hall Putsch.
Ashli Babbit, a Trumpist killed in the attack, is already a martyr to the far-white. Fast forward 10 years and she may be resting in power.
Within two days of the putsch Hitler was arrested and the Nazi party and propaganda shut down. He was, however, let out nine months later and told to play nice within democracy and he was like “OK, fine, I’ll get in that way.”
Today we look at the German prosecution of the Nazi’s as hopelessly light, but look at America today. It has been weeks, not days, and not one leader has been arrested. Private companies have removed Trump from their networks, but the government has done nothing to defend itself. If Hitler’s light sentence sent a message, what message do you think no sentence sends?
America is not at the end of an era. It’s the calm before the storm. And you know what’s so scary? It’s how unconcerned most Americans are. The Texas GOP has literally changed its slogan to ‘We Are The Storm’ and Americans are like “’tis but the wind”
How This Leads To Worse
This is how collapse happens. The only exceptional thing about America is that Americans are exceptionally dumb. They are experiencing, in many ways, the pincer movement of fascism. Show that things are bad (because you’re making them bad) and show that no one else can do anything about it (because you won’t let them). Then offer yourselves as a clear, decisive alternative. Enough people will say “they’re assholes, but at least they’re doing something” and then nobody gets to say anything for a while.
Republicans have already gone fascist, and they definitely have a clarity that Democrats lack. They’re clearly wrong, but they’re sure about it. There’s a clear enemy — SOCIALISM! Are Democrats socialist? Who cares. There’s also a clear goal — break all the rules to defend the Constitution! Is this Constitutional? Who cares.
People really underestimate the power of stupid ideas communicated clearly and often. Republicans are really good at that and — most importantly — they know that they’re in a fight. Democrats are getting stabbed in the neck and think they’re negotiating.
Your Most Dangerous Hour
This is America’s most dangerous hour. Not the Trump era, when the enemy was clear, and frankly cartoonish. The real danger is now. Your enemy may be banned from much of social media, but now they organize where you can’t even see them. You may control power, but they’ve been stacking the courts and suppressing voters for decades, and they’re continuing it all at the state level.
Most dangerously, people have huge expectations of Joe Biden that he cannot deliver. He cannot even deliver $2,000. He cannot even defend the US Capitol. Meanwhile many people just want to watch the whole thing burn. Unless something dramatically changes, the whole country is just biding time.