“We will bury you!”
Soviet First Secretary Nikita Khrushchev 1956
For the past two weeks, I have experienced writer’s block like no other time in my writing career. My first attempt was about Trump’s abysmal response to the Covid-19 pandemic, and his increasingly bizarre reaction (or non-reaction) to the disease that has killed 170,000 plus American citizens. After that, I tried to write about his, again, abysmal reaction (or non-reaction) to the controversy over protests across the nation calling for deep changes in the way America views race, hate, and politics. He has dropped all pretense that he is not a racist son of a bitch and is not worthy to comment on a movement that he is ill equipped to handle or understand.
Next, up popped his dunderhead denials of the New York Times revelations of Russia paying bounties for Afghan fighters to kill American soldiers. Now, if today’s headlines are true, so has Iran. Always angry, always mean spirited, always divisive, the man is literally a walking advertisement for everything that is not America. Now, it’s an all out assault on the Post Office. Sadly, he can’t even lie that he is actually doing something to help America. No, he openly admits his actions are meant to help sway the election in November in his favor by crippling mail in voting by states.
When Trump first came up with the slogan, Make America Great Again, many Americans scoffed thinking America was great already. No need to make it great – again. Three and a half years later how things have changed. Under Mad King Donnie the once greatness of the nation has slipped and spun into near oblivion. Who knew he was speaking prophetically? He fans the flames of racial prejudice, ignorance, white power, hatred, and more. Trump has done only one thing perfectly. He expanded, nurtured, and embraced the swamp he promised to drain.
But back to Americans. When in our history have we ever been more divided. The Civil War, maybe, but has all that much changed. White Americans seem not to know the meaning of irony. Everyday a new revelation of white people acting badly spouting racial slurs, committing acts of white privilege, and holding ideas that make normal white people wish they had been born anywhere but here. Maybe in this age of über news coverage, both real and fake, white people haven’t caught on to the fact when they say something ill advised chances are someone has a phone pointed at them and is recording their indelicate moment for all the world to see.
There is a lot of speculation out there about just what is Trump trying to do in his insane rants, bizarre stances, and unorthodox approach to the campaign, especially with his own base. One theory is he is trying to sabotage his own election chances. The less than reliable Tucker Carlson said as much on the air recently. His theory, and that of others, states that Trump can see the writing on the wall, and rather than come up a loser, he can make things look so bad for himself, he will throw up his hands and call the election twisted and corrupt and walk away a “winner” (or whiner). Longtime New Yorker, Donnie Deutsch, has known Trump for decades. He agrees with Carlson that as schizoid as it sounds that Trump will walk away to keep from being seen as a loser. Or he continues to alienate voters from both parties while hanging onto his basket of deplorables, some of whom, are violent, white nationalist and racist who will rise up and declare Trump the true authoritarian he aspires to be.
Then there are the scary neo-Nazi anarchists who actively seek the destruction of our democratic society. Groups like the Base and Atomwaffen Division are not simply wanna’ be bad boys, but active groups that are recruiting mostly young white men to prepare for a race war they wholeheartedly embrace. There is no evidence these ultra whack jobs support Trump, but it is not beyond believable that they would welcome a break down in societal rules to step into the breach and exacerbate any conflict Trump’s whack jobs might promulgate at the behest of the Mad King Donald. Regardless, as Black Lives Matter demonstrators continue to show up at white supremacists rallies where the supremacists are armed to the teeth, one has to wonder when the day will come when some hot headed knuckle dragger simply draws down and starts blasting away at the other side. And, sorrowfully, it will happen.
Now, Joe Biden has made his choice for vice president, Kamala Harris, and the world is in a tizzy. Democrats are ecstatic, gushing with pride and an excessive abundance of hope and expectations of great things to come. For all of his craziness and vile personality traits, either Trump has some very smart people in his campaign headquarters or is, himself, a master politician. Overnight, he came up with plans to counter the online Democratic convention with barnstorming tours across the nation to coincide with the Democrats and their machinations of the nominating process. Those tour stops have done little to stymie the Democrats to date, but you have to give him credit for making the effort.
With seventy odds days to the election, Trump has pulled out all of the stops. His latest ploy is, as mentioned above, is attempting to dismantle the United States Postal Service in the name of cuts to neuter one of the most important tools of our democracy. The Trump administration knows if mail-in ballots were to be cast and counted on time that his days of wrecking our democracy are over. The acting Postmaster General just yesterday claimed that no cuts to the agency will be put into effect until January next year after the election is over and counted. Yet, in reality, no one believes that Republicans will sit still and let the post office do its job. There is too much at stake like the death of the administration, and hopefully, a slew of Trump supporting Republicans losing their jobs.
The 500 pound gorilla in the closet is Russia. This week the bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee released its findings on the depth of Russia interference and collusion of the Trump administration then campaign 2016. Their damning conclusions were that, yes, Russia and members of Trump’s team routinely shared information with Russian contacts (and vice versa) to help Trump win the 2016 election. And it hasn’t stopped. New information indicates that Russia is doing all they can to ensure Biden is defeated and Trump remains in office.
I vividly remember back in 1956 watching the evening news and seeing Nikita Khrushchev bellowing from a podium in Moscow as he addressed Western diplomats saying “We will bury you.” Actually, his quote was much more telling. What he said was, “whether you like it or not, history is on our side, we dig you in.” With Trump in office acting like the quintessential Manchurian Candidate, who knows, maybe Old Nikita’s words were not just a bombastic threat, but a long term play that is now coming to fruition.