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The Moment of the Fool


#1

The Moment of the Fool

Robert C. Koehler

Obama . . . Trump.

Could there be a bigger contrast — in attitude, style, comportment, philosophy? What irony that the two names are now linked in history: Donald Trump forever the successor to Barack Obama, forever the orange-haired blot on his legacy, forever the surrealistic next chapter of the American narrative.

At the superficial level of news and understanding, this is never going to compute. And the way the Trump presidency has begun — white nationalism cozying up with the generals and Wall Street — seems to raise the worst fears possible.


#2

I have been hoping for quite some time now that Trump is playing the jester for a reason. Remember, the jester had latitude far in excess of the commoner when it came to revealing truth. The truth is indeed painful and Trump's show is bizarre indeed.

"When you are born in this world you are given a ticket to the freak show. When you are born in America you are given a front row seat." --George Carlin


#3

Another simile is the envelope with insufficient postage (the margin of change in the rhetorical lexicon/manipulation of illusions being used) and without a post office (dissociated from reality - a theatre without a stage or production, only a subscription box office).

Trump is the envelop checker and seal-licker in chief. Those around him: clerks that stuff the envelopes. Together they 'stretch the envelop' for those to whom delivery is intended. The contents desired by the cabal being the extent to which the envelope is stretched so that the next package licked is larger. Each 'margin' of stretch is scraped off the backs of all who are marginalized by speech/terminology/rhetoric drafters.
Keeping in mind the strategies of shifting the dehumanization from 15th century colonization to post-industrial is to USE the alliances of resistance of those from whom value (profit margin) is extracted, to stuff as many stretchable envelopes as possible with ... TADA!!!! ... new and improved sliceable, diceable breakdowns of society.


#4

I was surprised that the audacity of rump's campaign speeches wasn't enough to worry americans enough to vote against him. I was surprised that he won the election. Perhaps, the people needed a bigger kick in the pants to get active? Perhaps, they needed to be horrified by the reality of rump as president? Just the same, perhaps the republicans need to see that their ideas are bad ideas by being given the opportunity to exercise them and watch it all fail? Perhaps then, the people will finally vote for a truly progressive president, perhaps then the republicans will be more willing to listen to progressive ideas? Let's hope and work towards that end.


#5

"Those who already pine for the age of Obama — a president who was smart, well read, and not a global embarrassment — need to acknowledge the ways in which, particularly in the military arena, Obama’s years helped set the stage for our current predicament.”

Since November of 2016 there has been much analysis, speculation and punditry expended on just why and how Democrats were able to once again snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, but it seems to me that the quote above pretty much sums it up.

If Democrats excel at anything, it seems to be in convincing a large part of the electorate that "setting the stage" for the next Republican predicament is immaterial to the predicament itself: enabling the worst is far better and more desirable than implementing it, so let's ignore the inevitable outcome and embrace the "lesser evil." In this case for instance, let's concentrate on the historical aspects of the first woman to be president, and forget her record of promoting war and income inequality, her role in the moving the Democratic Party steadily to the right, and her embrace of Wall Street bankers. Just concentrate on keeping the Republicans out of power, until we can't.

Each successive Republican has seemed to move the country to the right faster and more radically than the one before, and always we were told that only a Democrat could reverse that. Instead we have seen the Democrat reappoint the same cabinet members, double down on the same wars, continue the same policies, and continue promoting the interests of the investor class unabated. Throw in a couple of meaningless regulations, and a lot of rhetoric about how we really want to do more but it's just not pragmatic, and the result is...Donald Trump.

Obama governed to the right of center, and oh, how we long for that now, given the excesses of the Trump administration in its first few weeks. But just wait: In four years a Democrat will be elected to counter those excesses, and the wars in Yemen and Iran will continue, there will be several of Trumps cabinet members carried forward, vouchers for private schools will be replaced with ongoing funding, "Trumpcare" will be tweaked to allow insurance corps to charge seniors only 4 times the rate of younger people instead of 5, and we will hear over and over ad nauseum how much better it is now. In realty we will have moved even closer to the day when we see the last of democracy in the U.S., but death by a thousand cuts is so much better...

Is this the plan? Do Democrats deliberately allow Republicans to take leaps to the right so that people will become afraid and elect Democrats to take one step back? If it is not a plan, what difference does it make if this is the reality?


#6

"Greed, paranoia, hatred, dominance...."

These are the guiding forces behind the current 'Fool' in the White House.

What were the Democrats, Hillary Clinton, and the MSM thinking, when they 'all' elevated this fool as they did?

And the 120 Million Americans who voted for one or the other of the two most hated Liars seeking the Presidency.

The moment of the Fool, is not reserved for only one.

The lesson here is simple. Don't get fooled again.


#7

"We have met the enemy, and he is us." Walt Kelly.


#8

Time to update the GOP Playing cards:
http://www.internetweekly.org/iwr/cartoons/cartoon_gop_playing_card_list.html
Donald Trump could definitely be added as a Joker.


#9

Robert's article is interesting but not that original as many writers have expressed the 'galvanizing resistance' that has sprung as a result of Trump's ascendancy. Though I believe a truly progressive agenda adopted by the Democratic Party could easily defeat any Republican in 2020, I also feel that it is still a long shot that such an agenda becomes incorporated into the Democrat ideology. Money is still so crucial to running a campaign that too many Democrats feel that we have no choice except to accept donations from the evil pockets of corporate America. Sander's success at "$27" didn't apparently resonate that well with many Party members and the recent selection of Perez instead of Ellison signals that mindset. But unless the Democrats go all out in adopting a radical left wing agenda, I'm afraid that the disaster we know as 'Donald Trump' may linger around for another four years in 2020.
What would a radical left wing agenda look like? Universal healthcare, reducing the size of the military, reversing Citizens United, basic income, a $15 an hour minimum wage, free college tuition and taxing the rich are all ideas that neither party has ever embraced despite their wide appeal to Americans across the country.
What needs to be done is for all Democrats and Progressives to have a national convention in which everyone puts forth their ideas of how to improve our national condition. Debate and discuss the ideas after which everyone would take a vote on whether to incorporate these political objectives into the party platform. Serving the public interest would be the defining principle of the convention. Once this democratic process is able to deliver us an agreed upon agenda, the people would actually have a reason to come out and vote the next time around while the corporate sycophants would be scrambling for cover. This is the very definition of a grass roots movement that would be extremely difficult for the media to ignore (but not impossible!) while at least giving people a sense that their opinions matter. The time is ripe for such a movement, but it is still unclear if the organization capabilities or will of the people is sufficient enough to bring about such a force of unity. I, for one, hope it is.


#10

Resistance to Trump must continue, but at some point it needs to switch from a defensive and reactionary movement and begin to go on the offense. Hard questions need to be asked. Replace Trump with what? Replace Trump with whom?

Resistance is self-defeating if it simply replaces Trump with the very politics and cast of parties and characters that created him. The system, itself, must be changed and it won't be changed by either of the two major parties that thrive on it. It is naive in the extreme to expect Democrats to turn their back on corporate money and billionaire donors and magically become a party of the people, not when the entire political system uses money as its fuel, not when we've seen how the Democrats have chosen leaders to continue Obama's and Clinton's failed legacies. Ugly though it will certainly be, the entire system may need to do a crash and burn before any genuine rebuilding can be done.


#11

OK...I liked this SOOOO much that I reposted it. I wish I had the gifts to say this, for it is how I feel. Thank you "freeopinions!"

"Since November of 2016 there has been much analysis, speculation and punditry expended on just why and how Democrats were able to once again snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, but it seems to me that the quote above pretty much sums it up.

If Democrats excel at anything, it seems to be in convincing a large part of the electorate that "setting the stage" for the next Republican predicament is immaterial to the predicament itself: enabling the worst is far better and more desirable than implementing it, so let's ignore the inevitable outcome and embrace the "lesser evil." In this case for instance, let's concentrate on the historical aspects of the first woman to be president, and forget her record of promoting war and income inequality, her role in the moving the Democratic Party steadily to the right, and her embrace of Wall Street bankers. Just concentrate on keeping the Republicans out of power, until we can't.

Each successive Republican has seemed to move the country to the right faster and more radically than the one before, and always we were told that only a Democrat could reverse that. Instead we have seen the Democrat reappoint the same cabinet members, double down on the same wars, continue the same policies, and continue promoting the interests of the investor class unabated. Throw in a couple of meaningless regulations, and a lot of rhetoric about how we really want to do more but it's just not pragmatic, and the result is...Donald Trump.

Obama governed to the right of center, and oh, how we long for that now, given the excesses of the Trump administration in its first few weeks. But just wait: In four years a Democrat will be elected to counter those excesses, and the wars in Yemen and Iran will continue, there will be several of Trumps cabinet members carried forward, vouchers for private schools will be replaced with ongoing funding, "Trumpcare" will be tweaked to allow insurance corps to charge seniors only 4 times the rate of younger people instead of 5, and we will hear over and over ad nauseum how much better it is now. In realty we will have moved even closer to the day when we see the last of democracy in the U.S., but death by a thousand cuts is so much better...

Is this the plan? Do Democrats deliberately allow Republicans to take leaps to the right so that people will become afraid and elect Democrats to take one step back? If it is not a plan, what difference does it make if this is the reality?"


#12

If the Democrats excel at anything...it is being the war parties fake opposition.


#13

You know if Americans would get the depth and breadth of voter suppression by watching Greg Palast's information, they would realize that in all likelihood this was a stolen election. Of course with voter suppression there is no way to say who might of won if that significant number of suppressed votes had been countable. And then we have the people who just don't bother even voting. But it seems really egregious that people would want to vote, go to vote and their vote would be suppressed.


#14

when i began reading koehler's article beginning with the above two paragraphs, i wondered, 'oh my gosh! has robert joined the [everything was going fine before trump] crowd?' glad i kept reading to see that bob isn't fooled by the deep state, the media and dnc political posturing. "Maybe," writes Koehler, "Trump is just what we need." that statement may shock many frightened and appalled citizens, but whether or not #45 is what we need, it's what we've got! people worry that trump, the twittering fool on the hill, makes this nation a laughing stock on the world stage. as a nation we need to hop off our high horse looking down on creation and imagining ourselves to be the most enviable nation on earth. perhaps, because of trump our society can learn the much needed lesson of humility.

" '----it’s easy to forget just how much of what the new president and his administration have done so far is simply an intensification of trends long underway,' William Hartung wrote recently." although, i remain skeptical of wapo and nyt, hartung nails it with this. more than most of us hartung must be aware of the d.c. intelligence community, invisible to the public, but keeps on working behind the scenes in spite of election cycles.

"--- perpetual war, isn’t simply one individual’s reasoned decision, but a state of existence flowing from the consensus of governing institutions."

this bit from koehler's post reminds me of a video link once offered by 'theoldgoat' called "Life as War".

"What if the public could permanently tear open the secret state and demand accountability and openness in the conduct of its business?" poses bob koehler. well, maybe we can! check out vault 7


#15

Democrats, democrats, democrats. Everyone is a buzz about "how the democrats...". Tie a knot and hold on they say. How can people be so stupid? Hope Springs Eternal huh.... nah... Stupidity Springs Eternal. Democrats are smart enough to identify republicans as morons, but not smart enough to pull their head out of the Ass of the Democratic Party. Democrats are like the domesticated housewives who stick around to clean the messes of their men who beat their face in. And the Democratic leadership is the abusive patriarch who, each time after landing a blow, insecurely cries out, "Why don't you love me!'

Break the cycle of abuse you stupid bitches, leave his chump ass!

Or is the day after "International Women's Day", the "Day of the International Human Punching Bags"


#16

Until there is a 12 step program that the Democratic Party can sign up for to kick corporate money addiction, and until there is effective treatment for the epidemic of Stockholm Syndrome afflicting those who waste their votes on corporate Democrats and corporate Republicans, how will anything change ?


#17

You know the problem is not so much Trump, it is that there are no democrats or republicans willing to put the brakes on his madness. Bottom line they get to almost without any restraint get to implement a pro-business, pro-uber rich person agenda. They are delirious and giddy.

That's the problem.


#18

This is brilliant, nipples.


#19

"Greed, paranoia, hatred, dominance...."

These are the pillars upon which Republican political success now rests. It's what they think. It's who they are.


#20

Speaking of fools, I fear that Mr. Koehler is being foolishly optimistic here. What historical evidence is there that a childish autocrat ever ushered in positive change? Sure, figures like Kaiser Wilhelm and Tsar Nicholas brought change in that they provoked the war which ultimately led to the Gulag and the Holocaust. And I can see Trump stumbling into a war with China which could lead to an overwhelming defeat for the bloated US military but what kind of change would that produce other than unimaginable suffering and death?