Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Sorry Trumpkins, you have to OWN your failure

In advance of a presidential speech that I won't watch, Charlie Pierce has written another tremendous column. Charlie's sick and tired of all of the travels that national reporters have made to the Midwest to try to understand the blue-collar white voters that gave Trump the presidency, and he's also sick of the excuses and "reasoning" that these voters keep giving for their vote, and their generally crappy lives.
Holy mother of god, I'm tired of reading quotes from people who live in places where the local economy went to hell or Mexico in 1979, and who have spent the intervening years swallowing whatever Jesus Juice was offered up by theocratic bunco artists of the Christocentric Right, and gulping down great flagons of barely disguised hatemongering against the targets of the day, all the while voting against their own best interests, now claiming that empowering Donald Trump as the man who will "shake things up" on their behalf was the only choice they had left. You had plenty of choices left.

In Kansas, you could have declined to re-elect Sam Brownback, who'd already turned your state into a dismal Randian basket case. In Wisconsin, you had three chances to turn out Scott Walker, and several chances to get the state legislature out of his clammy hands. And, now that the teeth of this new administration are becoming plain to see, it's a good time to remind all of you that you didn't have to hand the entire federal government over to Republican vandalism, and the presidency over to an abject loon on whom Russia may well hold the paper.

You all had the same choices we all had. You saddled the rest of us with misrule and disaster. Own it. I empathize, but I will not sympathize.
Me neither. People can choose to deal with reality and do something to change it, or you can be weak, blame others, not try, and keep on losing. Far too many people in the Heartland CHOOSE TO LOSE, and it's dragging down the rest of us in the process.

I agree that many of these people are getting a raw deal, and I think they deserve more pay for the hard work that they do, and they are owed better opportunities and a financially secure future. But if they're not going to vote for candidates that will make that happen, and instead vote out of resentment and cling to guns and religion, then I really don't feel that bad for the fact that their life sucks. And I don't see a lot of need to help them if they're going to try knock down someone like me- someone that didn't peak at age 18, adjusted to new realities when they came along, and continued to care and learn about the outside world.

Which is why I actively encourage people not to spend their money in these places, so these dimwits can feel the consequences of their actions. I am convinced that it is only through pain that these
people will clean up their act, and get on board with making this state and this country a better place to live in. I'll be right there to help when they're ready to join the resistance, but it's a two-way street guys. I shouldn't be expected to kiss the ass of people who made bad choices and screwed over a whole lot of other decent people in the process.

Charlie finishes his column with a flourish.
Tonight, the president will unveil his facsimile of a federal budget and I guarantee you it will make the lives of practically every person in all these stories worse, not better. And, in a few months, when it's really begun to bite, the editors and news directors will send out more expeditions to find out what "real Americans" feel about the disaster they've wrought on themselves, and us. They all had the same choices we did. They all had the same opportunity to inform themselves; I mean, it wasn't like the campaign was under-covered, and it wasn't like the eventual winner hasn't governed precisely the way he campaigned.

Feeling lost and desperate is a terrible thing. But if, out of loss and desperation, you drink 20 cold beers out of the old preparation room and smash your car into a daycare center, the judge is not going to care how lost and desperate you felt. You build your own prisons in this life. You design your own sentences.
Oh, and as for the president's speech tonight, the Simpsons gave a good bit of advice 20 years ago. It fits today, because Trump would hate nothing more than to have his huge speech be ignored and laughed at.


  1. Looking back, it's pretty clear Putin wanted Trump to win. Did we really need more reason than that to vote against him?

    I think Charlie Pierce is echoing some sentiments I've heard in other places that Democrats really can't go out and try to reason people into voting for them.

    We need a good strong vision, a plan for getting there and a vigorous, energetic candidate to make the argument.

    Do that, and the voters will swing. It won't have to be a big swing either. Hillary Clinton lost the electoral edge by the population of La Crosse spread amongst WI, MI and PA.

    We'll be fighting incumbency, but I'm not sure that will be a big asset for Trump. In the meantime, it sure would be nice to pull a couple Senate seats back under the Blue flag. Sadly, the 2018 electoral math seems stacked against us. We might could pull upsets in NV and AZ, but the other Republican seats up for election look pretty safe, and we're going to have to run the table in some pretty tough country to keep all our current Dem senators.


    1. Honestly, the House might be as likely to turn as the Senate, especially if they keep blocking investigations into Russian interference and other Trump corruption.

      "We will stand up to the president and give no one a free ride" seems like a good central message to me when it comes to Congressional elections. On the state level, we need to be out in the sticks asking rurals "Are you any better off since Walker took office? Is your town any better off?" If they refuse to acknowledge that reality, fuck em. But I bet many of them will nod and agree that WisGOP has let them down - and if they want to clean things up, remind them that voting Dem is the only way gerrymandering will end in Wisconsin.

  2. Thanks for pointing out the best article yet on Trumpian voters misplaced faith. Pierce out did himself on this. A classic, and I almost didn't see it.