Don’t Bet Against the U.S. House

The United States is not finished deciding if it wants to continue striving to become a more perfect union or to descend into Trump’s self-fulfilling prophecy of ‘American carnage’ he spoke about unironically at his own inauguration.

We heard from US politicians and the media that this was the most important election of our lifetime – to determine whether we repair and advance our civil society or march towards a new menace – increasing authoritarianism with the support of fundamentalist Christians whose prosperity Gospel doesn’t afford the same opportunity to people who don’t look like them.

Then came the Georgia U.S. Senate runoff which was once again the most important decision we could make. And yet Democrats persisted.

In both instances even Moderate and Conservative voters in predominantly Republican states chose their nation’s ideals over partisanship and instead elected Democrats, if only once, to set us back on our aspirational path.

Progressives also got on board and joined a well-organized get out the vote effort that rivals any in US history including a massive surge of overseas votes which made the difference in some races, combined with an especially strong African-American turn out which made the difference in all of them.

As in physics, so it is in politics that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. In this case a tragic one.

The first Black president, a constitutional law scholar, a skilled but modest orator, filled with decency and a living embodiment of America’s diversity and promise for all people was followed in office by a man who, similar to his own cult-like followers whom he detests, broadcasted proudly his anti-intellectualism, violent speech, and sympathy with White supremacists. 

What followed the fair election of Joe Biden by a popular vote landslide and decisive Electoral College victory, along with a new Democratic Congress controlling the agenda in both chambers, was an insurrection for which Donald Trump has been impeached – an unprecedented second time.

We now know that panic buttons were removed from offices of people of color, that members of Congress gave tours to the traitors who stormed the capitol searching for public servants to kill or capture, and that even after all of this his loyalists remain steadfast in their support.

Although, some have gone silent. They won’t admit their mistake, but they don’t seem quite as eager to speak out. Some do of course, but the more reasonable ones who loved Trump’s brash unscripted communication style and perceived toughness are not even in for the ante.

It’s also apparent that these acts of sedition were planned much more than previously thought. There was a suspicious amount of chatter that didn’t result in elevated security, and through it all Trump was amused by the violent displays of fealty.

He gave lip service to promoting peaceful protests, but I don’t think they got the message. Or, maybe they know by now he has to pretend and rationalize it that way. The Q-anon crowd always finds a way to justify Trump’s actions as part of a larger story arc which they can use to prop up their would-be dictator.

We will be sorting out the facts of this event and discussing the implications for years to come. It will mark a generation in the same way as events like September 11th, the Challenger explosion or fall of the Berlin Wall, the shooting of JFK, or Pearl Harbor.

On January 20th at noon Eastern Time the United States will swear-in Joseph R. Biden as president with the protection of more than 20,000 troops during a global pandemic with no signs of slowing despite the introduction of viable vaccines, which are not nearly enough to provide for the needs of the people.

State capitols are likewise defended by soldiers. This is not the America I know. This isn’t how we do things. But, it’s necessary to ensure the peaceful transition of power which had always been our greatest achievement. Until now.

Biden’s first challenge won’t be the pandemic, economic hardship, the environment, children separated at the border, or the call for racial justice in the face of police brutality. It will be the Senate trial of Donald Trump.

Somehow, Biden will have to solve crisis after crisis once sworn in, but his success at handling all of these oversized issues will be affected by his ability to strike the right balance of righteous indignation at the horror of the Trump administration with all its crimes and corruption, while attempting to bring about unity for an American public (and world) that is exhausted.

If he looks the other way as Obama did when he took office after the illegal wars predicated on lies by the Bush administration, he will seem weak in everyone’s eyes – not just to Progressives, but also Conservatives who are accustomed to seeing Democrats fold at the slightest challenge. That’s one reason they can’t bring themselves to vote Blue despite an economic agenda that would benefit them more.

If he goes all-in on convicting Trump and making it impossible for him to hold office again, he may not find many Republican allies across the aisle, who he sorely needs to pass his agenda in a 50-50 Senate.

The good news for Biden is that Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, who will go down in history for breaking the ultimate glass ceiling by becoming the first woman, Indian-American, and African-American to serve as VP, is that control of the Senate no longer belongs to Mitch McConnell whose obstruction and cynicism are well-documented.

At minimum, Democrats will be able to set the agenda and decide what the game is, even if their odds are just slightly better than even for getting it passed.

There is a wildcard though. What if the Senate, figuratively, treats Trump as the Roman Senate once did Julius Caesar, stabbing him, each getting in a jab or stab? What if his 2024 campaign ends this week at the hands of his would-be GOP primary contenders and Mitch McConnell who by now must recognize that they’ve already got all they could from Trump?

Afterall, he delivered them the Supreme Court and countless other judgeships, massive tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans, rolled back environmental protections, to name a few on their wish list. They may decide to keep the spoils and lose the man.

I wouldn’t count on that though. None of them have the guts to play the role of Brutus.

By all accounts none of them have yet to grow a spine, to show the necessary courage to put aside self-interest and do their duty. Lindsay Graham and Ted Cruz, Trump’s most high-profile Senate henchmen, are still out there spewing lies and rallying support for him.

So, Biden will need to try to have it both ways. He has to support the process without betting too much on it. He can’t even kibbitz in the game like a Bond girl. He has to play the role of the fair dealer who quietly hopes the house will win this time.

Re-Published in English with Permission from Zing News Vietnam

4 thoughts on “Don’t Bet Against the U.S. House

    1. Can you identify the propaganda specifically? Use direct quotes and address it precisely. In terms of where I live, well my citizenship does not end at the water’s edge. I remain an active participant in our democracy – voting in every election, gathering news, holding leaders to account, and organizing Americans overseas to participate as well.

      This is an opinion piece, but it is based on facts. You may not like my opinion, but you can’t dispute the premises they are based on. The text is there. Read ‘American Carnage’ then compare it to the events last week. Storming the capitol isn’t an insurrection? What is it then? Who is responsible if not MAGA?

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      1. Greg, you can disagree with me, I have no problem with that, but there is and has been a shadow government in our country for some time. The more investigative reporting that is published reveals individuals in the Department of Justice who are controlling as much as corrupt government officials both Democrat and Republican.
        Trump was elected in 2016 because of the failures of our government over several decades to address the forgotten people living in the heartland of America who are oppressed by the elites and the politicians who have been bought and paid for by special interest groups. Our media is controlled as much as communist governments are, by by billionaires like George Soros whose main objective is to propagate a Marxist agenda. Hillary Clinton was enamored of Marixist ideology in college and remains in that mindset.
        It is unfolding now how the Obama administration spied on American citizens. The classified documents were unclassified the last few days since Trump left office.The revelation that the Russia conspiracy was deliberately instigated by Clinton to cover her illegal email server and destruction of her cell phones and deleting tens of thousands of emails which were subpoenaed by congress. This conduct was covered up by people like Brennan, Comey, Strzok and others.
        Conservatives were targeted by the IRS and churches and other groups discriminated against during Obama’s two terms.
        All the energy by the Marxist agenda has intensified to the point conservatives are being completely silenced including me. I quit using Facebook and Twitter because they censored me for posting the New York Post story on Hunter Biden’s corrupt business dealings in Ukraine and China. That is not what America stands for. Our Constitution’s Bill of Rights grants us free speech through the first amendment. Yet, more and more conservatives are being silenced. An entire conservative platform, Parler, was intentionally shut down to squash conservatives from speaking because they were competition for Marxist platforms Facebook and Twitter.
        Over the Summer, Kamala Harris who is now our Vice President incited the violence which destroyed businesses, burned police stations, looted and killed 25 people in Democratic cities like Minneapolis, Portland, Seattle and others. You can find her words on video stating, “They should continue what they are doing up until the election and even after.” And she set up funding to bail BMI and Antifa out of jail who participated. Today those same people have begun rioting again in Portland and it continues as I’m writing this. It is also noted that those who violently protested at the Capitol were a planned group who arrived before Trump’s speech was even over. Have you listened to Trump’s speech calling for a peaceful protest? It is a 45 minute walk from there to the Capitol which was already being desecrated. The rallies that have been held the last four years have been of tens and even hundreds of thousands of people who have never shown one bit of violence. Their last rally before the election, the entire crowd in DC cleaned up the areas they had gathered in before they moved up to the Supreme Court. Speaking of the Supreme Court, the minority leader in the Senate, Chuck Schumer stood outside the hallowed halls of the Supreme Court and threatened one of the Justices, Bret Kavanaugh, saying, “You have reaped the whirlwind!” and “You won’t know what hit you!” How is that for inciting violence among a crowd outside our highest court?
        An Antifa member was arrested among the ones who first smashed windows to get into the Capitol. He shouted rhetoric filled with violent language and personal attacks against congress members to get them to join him. Ask yourself why was there so little security. It is because the mayor of DC refused to have the National Guard there. Yet the National Guard has been sleeping in parking garages outside in the cold to protect Biden, Harris and others from the horrible MAGA people they despise. Yet, not one MAGA person showed up at the inauguration. My governor and two others called home our troops last night. Five thousand still remain in DC. And Portland is still under attack by Antifa.

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  1. By the way, racism is a trick of the Marxist to pit one party against another. It was here long before Trump and still being used. The racist is Joe Biden who introduced a bill as a Senator which caused thousands of Blacks to be incarcerated and sentences to be harsh. Trump reversed that with “The Second Chance Act” which freed hundreds of those Biden put in jail. Thirty percent of Blacks voted for Trump. They did that because he reduced their unemployment, made programs to help them start small business with the help of Tim Scott, Senator. Tim Scott is black and proud to support Trump.

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