a mystical möbius — curating facts, ideas, text, and media to create a contemplative space.
Why? Well, it’s complicated
DJT‘s reality-show presidency was a bit like the scene in Ghostbusters when all the demons were released from their captivity into ordinary life. January 6th removed any doubt that a significant piece of the MAGA coalition are extremists, seditionists, and even terrorists. For me, something about DJT, Proud Bois, “stand back and stand by,” and January 6th, has been hauntingly reminiscent of Altamont.
“Significant piece” in that, by virtue of their nature, ‘extremists’ are a chaotic disruptive, destructive force in MAGA even if their numbers are only hundreds of thousands versus tens of millions of ordinary MAGA voters. Friends, it’s still not going to be easy to get extremism back in the box now that DJT and QOP Republicans have mainstreamed them—note: QOP is my shorthand for QAnon and all the extremist factions of the MAGA coalition in the Republican Party.
Some off-ramp options
“It’s déjà vu all over again” —YB. From a year ago:
This time another tool in the off-ramp, fig-leaf inventory was added. Something like: “Well, perhaps he incited, but it doesn’t rise to the level of insurrection.”
Chiefly, the senators used a very thin-gruel off-ramp, e.g., jurisdiction.
Why are off-ramps so in-demand?
This is where the problem becomes multi-dimensional in a sense. The problem for Republicans involves needing to recognize and reconcile their different roles in the discernment of guilt in the impeachment of DJT.
Senators are variously aligned along multiple mash-ups of these identities:
- Jurors/judges — the senate has the sole power to try all impeachments. Senators are obliged to carefully hear the evidence in the case and decide based on the evidence and facts presented in the case.
- Witnesses — an unusual case in that the senators were first-hand witnesses to the events of the riotous Capitol insurrection.
- Victims — Individuals experience trauma differently, but to call these militantly seditious insurrectionists ”terrorists’ is very fitting. This is tragically validated through the first-hand experience of many legislators, staffers, and, especially, law enforcement.
- Accomplices — Republicans have been complicit in DJT‘s malfeasance for the past four years. Ironically for Republicans, not assertively confronting DJT‘s “BIG LIE” forms a complicity in the incitement of the Capitol insurrection.
All the senators will agree on 1 thru 3 and they will easily recognize themselves in, and own, those identities. Number 4 resides in most Republican’s “shadow,” e.g., it’s a not-conscious dimension of their identity.
The last category (4), “accomplices,” is really exclusively a Republican one in this case. We can readily see the difficulty for Republican leaders to recognize their own complicity. The forth category forms serious psychological leverage on elected Republicans, especially those who have not assertively confronted DJT on his stolen election lie.
Leadership trickle-down means that regular MAGA Republicans are also psychologically leveraged to protect Republican leaders. They remain blind to their leaders’ moral bankruptcy because it reflects their own complicity in political technologies like a stolen-election/Stop the Steal MAGA-terrorism.
It’s a tell tale heart situation.
The rub is two-fold
First, the GOP Republican Party has a big, big problem. The (Q) extremist-wing of MAGA is too large to exclude from the party and yet still retain anything like a national majority coalition. The GOP Republican demographic is shrinking as a portion of the whole national population.
Second, most DJT-supporter Republicans are not Q, but they are MAGA. Because DJT has a naïve understanding and commitment to “inclusion,” MAGA won’t exclude Q (e.g., “fine people on both sides”) —Q is my shorthand for a Republican Party that intentionally includes DJT, DJT‘s militant bigots, extremists, and terrorists in the rank and file.
My niece posted this meme to her The-facebook page Thursday and I saw it Friday evening. It really hit the spot for me.
I knew well that DJT was already guilty. The impeachment process was really the Republican Party on trial.
Along with many others I’ve been saying it’s time to choose for the Republican Party. Will it be GOP or QOP?
I also said that I agreed with Senator Lindsay Graham at the point he said that if the Republican Party selected DJT, he would destroy the GOP (and that they’d deserve it). In the House Managers closing I saw a video that I hadn’t seen before. It was from the Capitol area on January 6, 2021. In the video a MAGA crowd was chanting; “Destroy the GOP.”
Paraphrases of thumbnail image:
Next week: Perhaps we’ll pick up some pieces? Come and see.
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I never know what I’ve said till I hear the response. What did you hear me say?