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CSotD: Dr. Trump’s 3D House of Horror

Chris Britt (Counterpoint) starts us off with a look into the Republicans’ Halloween House of Terror, decorated in keeping with the historic framework of the past six years, tying in the GOP’s alliances with Q-Anon, their reluctance to denounce tiki-torch bearing Anti-Semitic neo-nazis, their ammosexual fetishes, their opposition to safe medical abortions and their ever-present red hats.

The scary part being not that they offer such treats, but that, as Britt depicts it, they have an eager and ready market for their horrors.

Sparked by the way “fair and balanced” mainstream media coverage echoes Trump’s analysis of Charlottesville, that there are good people on both sides.

Breaking news as I write this: After dithering over it for two weeks, Adidas is apparently about to break ties with outright, defiant Anti-Semite Kanye West, which is good.

But Texas is still planning to avoid antagonizing gun owners by, instead of banning weapons designed only to commit mass murder, handing out DNA kits so that the parents of slaughtered children can identify their tattered remains.

If you’re not frightened, you’re not paying attention.

Juxtaposition of the Day

(Joe Heller)

(Matt Wuerker – Politico)

Here’s an interesting variation tying in the provision of affordable hearing aids with the flood of political ads currently on the air.

Heller takes a Will Rogers gosh-golly approach, assuming that people are decent and only want to live peaceful lives. It is, on the one hand, naive, because, obviously, there’s enough bigotry and hate out there to have put some truly unpleasant people into office.

On the other hand, there’s something to be said for modeling the world you’d like to see. I’ve argued many times that the ordered life of the Cleaver family was often interrupted by lessons about poverty, alcoholism and other societal negatives, that June and Ward were honest with their boys about such things, but tried to give them a sane world in which to grow up.

However, not only do people mock the Cleavers for not leading lives out of William Faulkner or Tennessee Williams, but the other day I got sucked into an on-line conversation the gist of which was that “I Voted” stickers are virtue-signaling and do nothing to persuade others to also vote.

So I guess modeling positive values is no longer hip, which frightens me nearly as much as the GOP House of Terror, because, in my world, passivity and defeatism are the roots of collaboration.

Still, Wuerker may be even more naive in his assertion that, if people were paying attention, they’d rise up and oppose those who threaten harm.

I tilt more towards Heller’s contention that people have the ability to know what’s going on but consciously and deliberately avoid it.

Which in turn takes me back to a epiphany I had the first time I read Maus, that, while Vlacek Spiegelman came across as an unpleasant, selfish person, perhaps that was why he survived the camps while sweet, gentle Anne Frank did not.

Okay, Art Spiegelman’s stepmother might disagree.


What does seem clear, in retrospect, is that forcing German civilians — the ones who claimed they didn’t know what was going on in those camps — to tour them and see for themselves, was only effective with that generation.

Denial emerged nonetheless, if not from them, from their children and grandchildren.

People are people, and they believe what they need to believe, not what logic says they ought to believe.


So it should not be surprising that, as seen in this John Cole piece, the concept of Freedom of Religion enshrined in the First Amendment has been perverted to “Freedom to Impose My Religion.”

For all that we’re taught that the Pilgrims came here for religious freedom, even junior high history books go on to tell of how the Pilgrims and Puritans imposed their religion on colonists until people like Roger Williams and Anne Hutchinson left to found more tolerant communities.

That second part doesn’t seem to sink in with a significant portion of the American people, nor do they realize that an established church could make laws for, and impose taxes on, the entire population, not simply its own believers.

Nor is it surprising, given that courts have upheld the practice of prayer before public meetings, that they want prayers in school, and for their religious beliefs about the beginning of life enshrined in law, not just promoted in pulpits.

That’s the result of teaching triumphalist history in which facts are expected to lead to a moral.

What’s frightening is the twists that moral can take.


Juxtaposition of the Day

(Mike Luckovich)

(Adam Zyglis)

As someone who saw anti-war protesters splashed with red paint a generation ago, and whose elementary school hosted assemblies in which John Birch Society members lectured us on the evils of the Soviet Union, I continue to be gobsmacked at the growing alliance between the GOP and Vladimir Putin.

Not only do they continue to deny and obfuscate Russian interference in the 2016 elections, but it has come to the point where rightwing cheerleading for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine includes Tucker Carlson’s show producing material that can be rebroadcast on Russian state television to help quell domestic resistance to the war.

Perhaps I’m asking too much, that positions once held sacred 50 or 70 years ago be maintained.

But it seems hypocritical for the GOP to call itself “The Party of Lincoln” and to cite Democratic racial stances of 150 years ago, and then abandon their far more recent opposition to the Iron Curtain and to pervert the meaning of “communism” to “anything with which I disagree.”

Swift wrote, “You cannot reason a person out of a position he did not reason himself into in the first place,” and neither can we expect logical consistency from those who have never shown the slightest inclination towards logic or consistency.

After all, it is the inventors of the insult “snowflake” who burst into tears of rage over green M&Ms, and who can take it seriously when Donald Trump Jr defends Buckley Carlson’s benefiting from nepotism but attacks Hunter Biden.

Who provided little Buckley’s daddy with a letter of rec to get the dear boy into Georgetown.

Let’s face it: Dr. Tongue had better writers and more believable plotlines.


Community Comments

#1 Douglas Hawley
@ 8:27 am

I visited a friend in Germany and was informed how much good Hitler did for Germany.

#2 Mike Corrado
@ 3:06 pm

The thing about DNA kits is apparently not true, at least according to CNN yesterday:

#3 Mike Peterson
@ 3:20 pm

Interesting, Mike, because, in discussing tampered candy, I was tempted to point out the utter uselessness of fingerprinting drives during the Satanic Panic of the 1980s but ran out of space. I try to stay close to 1,000 words.

Those fingerprinting drives never ever identified a missing kid but they were important in flaming fear and building reliance on a police state as the key to safety. We see the results today.

So I’ll take the correction on Why but not on So What? (thanks!)

#4 Bob Harris
@ 4:20 pm

Having read the article Mike C linked to, the DNA “kits” are kept by the parent or guardian. They contain the child’s fingerprints and a DNA sample. The parent collects this “kit”, which is just a piece of paper, stores it some place, and voluntary provides it to law enforcement if the child goes missing. In that scenario, the only possible use these could have is to confirm that the child you’ve found is in fact the child you were looking for.

Just like the earlier fingerprinting drives, it won’t help in finding the child in the first place. Unless, I suppose, the missing child’s DNA ends up in some law enforcement database. E.g. if a teenager runs off and robs a bank, you could confirm this person was one and the same.

I wonder how long the DNA sample stays viable. The sample is collected by having the child suck on the corner of that piece of paper. Possibly that corner has some kind of preparation that will retard the degradation of the DNA. Contamination from handling the sample could be an issue. You’d have better results saving a lock of the child’s hair.

#5 Mary C McNeil
@ 5:41 pm

And of course the concern for missing kids is exacty why the Tegsis gummint sent out those DNA kit, innit ?

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