So, Where Do We Stand?

Published at 23:56 on 22 January 2017

Some points:

  1. The marches had only a very limited effect, which will soon dissipate. We must understand this. Yes, it is worthy to celebrate their large size. Yes, they helped delegitimatize Trump. But they’re just a blip in time. They must be merely the opening battle of a prolonged struggle.
  2. Trump is still Trump. He still believes — fervently — that he is the greatest man on Earth and the greatest president ever, and has surrounded himself with sycophants who indulge him in this belief. Therefore the marches can be expected to have very little effect on Trump himself, beyond provoking him into a display of pettyness about them.
  3. Conservatives are still conservatives. They are still following, by and large, their historical role of being fascism’s enablers. The honorable dissidents amongst them, such as Evan McMullin, are still in the minority.
  4. The Democratic Party is still the Democratic Party. It is still infested with the craven political triangulators who coronated Hillary and thereby paved the way for Trump. On the other hand, it also remains, like it or not, the only opposition there is in the halls of government.
  5. The US political system remains. Its checks and balances, a mix of genuine attempts to prevent tyranny and cynical attempts to preserve white male supremacy, have still failed to prevent a tyrant from being elected.

Given the above:

  1. It’s a total waste of time to work on convincing Trump of anything. Don’t convince, oppose and taunt. He’s thin-skinned. He’ll continue acting childish and demonstrating his unfitness for office.
  2. It can be good to particularly carp on basic Constitutional stuff like the Emoluments Clause. If this is done enough, and Trump’s already-low popularity tanks, it might start making enough conservatives realize that they need to abandon this sinking ship.
  3. Push the Democrats hard to stand firm, like the Tea Partiers did for the Republicans against Obama.
  4. But don’t be limited to electoral politics. The system has demonstrated its failure. This can itself be a liberating thing for those who oppose Trump: the legality of his victory becomes irrelevant once one considers the system’s legitimacy irrelevant. Groups like the Seattle Neighborhood Action Coalition are trying to come up with ways to build a new society in the shell of the old. Support them.

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