I’ve read through the powerpoint deck that was circulating among the Jan 6 coup plotters. It’s on archive.org [arch] and it’s pretty interesting reading. It occurred to me that it’d be an interesting series of postings, to go through it a couple slides at a time, except it’s 36 slides of unadulterated bullshit and that would be a pretty hefty load for us all.
See what I mean? Let me ask you a question, Senator: If there aren’t “failsafe” paper ballots, then what are your people counting over and over again? Could it be paper ballots? And, aren’t you promoting hand counts which you just said can be easily subverted?
The bit about Chinese involvement is just embarrassingly stupid and – unfortunately – it mirrors the democrats’ embarrassingly stupid line of enquiry about Russian involvement in 2016. I actually do believe that there was some Russian activity in 2016 but the democrats lost because they ran the candidate who was most likely to lose, who was relentlessly attacked with bullshit aimed at her baggage – bullshit that the republicans had been building up for years. So, if Russian involvement is OK, why isn’t Chinese? But, seriously, that’s a whopping huge assertion to make with no supporting evidence, but that’s the point.
What’s going to happen?
- The republicans are going to steal the next presidential election by nullifying it if they lose, or trumpeting it as a great victory if they win.
- Trump already tried that, and the current situation is a result of the first round.
- The democrats are too busy being stupid, unable to control their caucus, and backdoored by “stealth” republican agents, that they are not going to be able to do anything about it.
- Even if they did do anything about it, the democrats lack the political will and unity to be effective. What are they going to do, ask Merrick Garland to look into it and write a great big memo in a few years? Remember the way democrats sat there crowing about “Mueller Time” when it was obvious to any tyro that Mueller’s specialty was burying evidence of crimes not uncovering it, and nothing was going to come of the report.
- When the election is stolen and the democrats stand around wringing their hands, the republicans will leap into action and start passing laws to cement their control of the government. And that’ll be the end of the USA’s experiment with “democracy.” It was pseudo-democracy all along, and the people never were sufficiently invested in it to fight for it – it was democracy for the corporations and there is a high likelihood that the coporations’ll realize that an imperial republican party will be better for business, and that’s how it’ll roll.
- What will the people do? I hope that there are people planning for general strikes and civil disobedience when the next election is stolen. In an ideal world, when the election is stolen, every government-owned computer will stop working correctly over a period of a week or so. All the payroll, logistics, military logistics and orders – all that stuff will grind to a halt and hard drives will “fail”, data will be corrupted, the wrong answers will be given, the FBI’s “fusion centers” with department of homeland security and ICE will begin spitting out garbage, etc. And the people will take to the streets and the economy will screech to a stop. The establishment will respond with violence, mostly establishment goons beating people up while police stand by and watch. The goons need to be gunned down. And, if the police start getting into it, then it’s time for a full-up insurgency including IEDs, attacks on the power grid, disabling rail and truck supply transportation, and (why not?) direct personal attacks against high net worth individuals, who are part of the problem. I.e.: I see no reason why the Koch brothers, who helped finance this mess, should survive it intact.
I’d give about a 30% chance that the scenario will play out the way I see it. I’d give about a 70% chance that the republican take-over will work, the remains of the democrat party will see the writing on the wall (seriously, can you see Nancy Pelosi as a revolutionary? She’s already a republican, basically) and form up with the new imperial republican party, and the US will enter its final stage: imperial America, which will stand alone against the world and, as usual, it’ll lose the insurgency because insurgencies work. The Brits have been doing a good job incompetencing themselves into political irrelevance, which is why the US started aligning with Australia, which it is going to turn into a nuclear power to counter-act China. [Which is stupid because China doesn’t need counter-action] France is a weird mess and will remain so. The EU will react to the rise of the imperial republican party with strength and resolve; i.e.: it won’t do anything either. But, I will predict that a lot of countries will leave NATO. If Putin is smart and survives, he’d do well to establish a Warsaw Pact 2.0 and start getting the framework for that in place right now. Unfortunately, it’ll look like a muscled-up version of OPEC. And, while all this fiddling takes place, Rome burns in the form of climate change – by 2100 we’ll be at +4C and all of the stuff I’m talking about above will be irrelevant because we’ll be staring into mass extinction events. Hopefully nobody decides that nuclear winter might offset global warming.
As you can tell, I’m not sanguine that any of the stuff that is being uncovered by the January 6 committee is going to amount to much. The facts are already known and the situation is already obvious and what is equally obvious is that the committee is going to search for a safe dividing-line above which they will not reach. The useful idiots have already been swept off the table, but the senior idiots and organizers are going to get away with it. A few of them, maybe Bannon, will have court cases that they need to slow-walk until the republicans are able to run the table in the next presidential election, and they will all be pardoned and given high positions under the new imperial republican administration. We can already see that safe dividing-line forming: Mark Meadows decided he’d play with the committee, then un-decided and, what’s going to happen to him? Nothing. Also: democrats who are holding their breath waiting for Trump to be charged for tax fraud or evasion – stop, and draw another breath. What’s going to happen there? Trump will get hit with a tax fine, and won’t pay it and that’ll be that. He’s never going to get perp-walked or wear an orange jumpsuit. That’s not how oligarchies work, and in case nobody noticed the US has always been an oligarchy.
My framing for the scenario above is heavily influenced by what happened when Smedley Butler, who was as credible as anyone at the time could get, disclosed the Wall St coup plot and … the oligarchy shrugged. The oligarchy is good at shrugging this sort of thing off: they shrugged off the militarized insurgency of coal miners and the battle of Blair Mountain [stderr] the Tulsa white supremacist war, the Haymarket police rampage, The brutal suppression of the Bonus Army in Anacostia, The FBI’s involvement in suppressing the human rights movement, the Battle of Homestead, the arrest and imprisonment of Eugene V. Debs, etc, etc, etc. The point is that these shameful incidents show the remarkable resilience of the establishment and its willingness to openly commit the most heinous crimes against the US’ fake democracy. When you can read, in black and white, US history of the US Air Force dropping bombs and military gas on miners in Virginia, you’ve got to be remarkably naive to think that Merrick Garland is going to send the Proud Boys to prison. When the right-wingers in their chat rooms are talking about killing the libs, they’re planning, and they expect to get away with it, because the Baldwin-Feltts did, the Pinkertons did, and every corrupt, redneck cop who shot someone and got away with it, did. The score is about 210,000 to 5 (although the 210,000 are dead and the 5 are just in prison for a few years) and the long-term trajectory of US imperialism is unchanged.
When we liberals (am I a liberal?) sit around yapping about voting rights, which is a serious issue, we’re doing it in the context of a country that has been entirely comfortable with voter suppression from the beginning. The whole structure of the country’s electoral system is to perpetuate the oligarchy established by the “founding fathers” [stderr] who, I’m going to say it, were as bad or worse than Hitler, but were certainly smoother. It seems naive and stupid that we’re watching wooden suit model Joe Biden pretend to be pushing a voting rights bill, which has no chance of passing, in a country that established Jim Crow vote suppression historically just the other day.
I’m not even sanguine about our chances for a revolution. The French revolution was a worthy effort but most people don’t realize that they only managed to guillotine the slowest-moving and most stupid of their oligarchs [about 2,300] The dangerous ones had already left, with their wealth and their necks intact. Most of the guillotining was left/liberal versus right/revolutionary and all they did was set the situation up for a take-over by an aggressive young general named Bonaparte. Since then, France has been a mess. I love the place, but it still is a mess. And that’s good because, like the British, they have incompetenced themselves off the world stage as a power. Our best hope is not a revolutionary liberal take-over of the US or a liberal reconstruction, because those won’t happen – out best hope is that the US incompetences itself off its pedestal. Which, with global warming and our ridiculous military spending, we may do. Revolutionaries in todays’ US best strategy is to keep magnifying the status quo and/or embed themselves into places where they can really fuck things up when the time comes. The executives at Enron did more damage to the US in 5 years than a small army of revolutionaries ever could. Encourage the CIA to put all its data in Amazon’s cloud, then get a job as a system administrator and drop the cloud. That probably won’t happen but when I see the US government’s increasing reliance on external IT, I see a ray of hope: they’re relying on the unreliable. Unfortunately, the doctrines of cyberinsurgency haven’t caught hold of people’s imaginations – yet – but monkey-wrenching the US government into being less efficient may be our only hope, eventually.
The other alternative, which I’ve mused about, would be if the people took a massive tax holiday. I don’t think this is going to happen, it’s just daydreaming, but imagine if when the republican steal the election, the citizen’s response is a massive “NO taxation without representation” 2.0 “if you’re going to nullify my vote, I don’t owe you taxes.” It makes sense but we need a Thomas Paine or Jean Jacques Rousseau to promote it. It won’t happen because, if it could, it already would have. It is already a documented fact that congress’ legislative agenda is entirely beholden to big money, and basically none of the things The People want happen, unless Jeff Bezos and the Koch and Mercers want it to happen, also. Again, the fact that America went to war in Iraq, in spite of millions of people marching in protest worldwide, ought to tell anyone that the voice of The People has been deliberately muffled all along. The vote is just a rigamarole.
If the vote is just a rigamarole, when the republicans take over, things may not change much. The defense budget will continue to soar, and they will continue to fuck the economy up by handing out gifts to the rich. Womens’ and transpeople and people of color’s rights will return to about where they were in the 1950s, which is what they were from 1776 until the 1950s. There will be wars and the justification for them will be bullshit and they’ll be hidden from oversight by The People or Congress, like they already are. I guess that what I’m saying is we’re already pretty comfortable with a ridiculous level of fascist imperialism, why imagine that there will be an uprising if the fascism dial moves a few more ticks to the right? If The People were going to rise up, they would have risen up over the attack on Iraq.
Who gives a shit? The republicans and democrats have been gerrymandering and manipulating the US vote since the parties were formed. They fought a civil war over nullifying the election of Abraham Lincoln, because southerners didn’t like his domestic agenda. The republicans have leveraged financial, non-governmental, and foreign allies including Ukraine and Russia to acquire INFLUENCE and CONTROL US voting nation-wide. They’re just whining about their fantasies of Chinese control which Donald Trump tried to invite from Xi, so who cares? They don’t care – they’re just looking for an excuse to stop playing by the sham rules that are in place.