The GOP with Trump as standard-bearer has been playing all of us. Those who have lost faith and had the veil lifted from their eyes are the most bitter critics of their former party.
Steve Schmidt, a longtime Republican strategist and now a founder of the anti-Trump Lincoln Project disagreed [with Trump’s assertion that COVID-19 will ‘fade away’]. He said in an interview this weekend on MSNBC that Trump has “brought death, suffering, and economic collapse on truly an epic scale. And let’s be clear. This isn’t happening in every country around the world. This place. Our place. Our home. Our country. The United States. We are the epicenter. We are the place where you’re the most likely to die from this disease. We’re the ones with the most shattered economy. And we are because of the fool that sits in the Oval Office behind the Resolute Desk.”
The above quote is from Heather Cox Richardson’s blog. It is not all Trump’s doing. The GOP, Fox News, Sinclair Broadcasting, Facebook, and various allied PACs are consciously enabling and amplifying the disinformation that is causing foolish behavior by the ill-informed. And there are many in the business press and business community who are prepared to put Wall Street ahead of Main Street for short-term economic benefit. The US has 4% of the world’s population and a quarter of the COVID-19 deaths worldwide.
The political philosophy that says what’s good for Wall Street is good for the nation has morphed into a sociopathic political orthodoxy that condones gaming the system for private profit.
Consider these openly practiced anti-democracy strategies of today’s GOP:
- Operation Red Map (Gerrymandered state legislative districts to thwart majority rule.)
- Opposition to reform of political districting practices.
- Urban Voter Disenfranchisement
- Voter ID (Disenfranchisement of poor people who don’t have credentials of more privileged people.)
- Opposition to Mail-in Ballots (Disenfranchise the working poor)
- Opposition to Statehood for Puerto Rico and DC (populations likely not to vote Republican.)
- Partisan stacking of the Courts by obstruction of the legislative process.
- Obstruction of Anti-corruption Investigations.
- Obstruction of Criminal Investigations for Political Reasons.
- Public Health Disinformation (To get people going out shopping)
- Opposition to reform of the Electoral College System that thwarts the popular vote in national elections.
- Aggressive suppression of whistle-blowers.
Consider these openly practiced pro-inequality strategies of today’s GOP:
- Opposition to progressive taxation (The poor pay a bigger percentage of non-discretionary income.)
- Opposition to consumer protection legislation.
- Opposition to Clean Air, Clean Water, and other environmental regulation on the basis that it hurts economic development.
- Opposition to SNAP (food stamps) that help poor people eat properly.
- Opposition to the Affordable Healthcare Act (Obamacare).
- Opposition to price control of pharmaceuticals.
- Subsidies to favored industries (fossil energy).
- Environmental concessions to polluters (fracking, agrochemicals, etc.)
We know the values and character of people by their actions, not by their words.
And, sadly, the above lists are very incomplete, though they make the point clearly. You can easily think of additions. You will see more in daily news from Washington and Harrisburg if you look for them cloaked and disguised in the political spin.