Sunday, June 24, 2018


June 24, 2018



MY CORNER by Boyd Cathey



You’re A Nazi—or Worse—if You Voted for Donald Trump or Believe in Borders


Friends,

Saturday is usually my day to go to the local Food Lion and shop for groceries for the week—I normally can pick up everything I need if I prepare a list and menu for meals in advance.

Yesterday, while deep in the produce section, I saw a friend who is on the MY CORNER email list, and after a little chit-chat and questions about family and school, the conversation turned to national politics. And my friend asked me, referring to the column I wrote this past Friday, “Those Leftist Crazies Are Wanting to Kill You” (June 22, 2018: http://boydcatheyreviewofbooks.blogspot.com/2018/06/june-22-2018-my-corner-by-boydcathey.html), “Boyd, do you really think it’s gotten that bad? Are we headed to violence and maybe real civil war?”

I shook my head and responded: “Yes, I do think that’s where things are tending. Just look at those news bits that manage to reach the national media—they are only the tip of an unhinged ice berg of violence, both real and verbal, being unleashed against folks like you and me. And it is reaching a crescendo, and, sadly, I think it’s only going to get worse, far worse, as we approach elections this fall.”

My friend, who owns his own small business, and who is a new grandfather, just shook his head.

“I don’t know many folks here in Wendell who resemble the folks you wrote about,” he added.

“But we live in a small town, still rural in many ways,” I responded. “I am sure that there are a few such types hereabouts, but they probably don’t go to your Baptist Church or belong to the American Legion, so you probably don’t come into contact with them. And your children go to East Wake Christian Academy, so they probably won’t come into contact with them, either.”

At that point my friend nodded his head, and simply added, “Well, it’s very sad. Seems like anyone who wants to live a Christian life and not go along with those crazy leftists and their ideas that you write about is just being attacked. I hate it.”

I agreed, and added: “The problem is that we have been attempting to live our lives like we always have—we inherited traditions and a heritage—we go to church and raise our families—we aren’t looking for controversy. It is not us who initiated this conflict. The fact is that when Donald Trump was elected to drain the swamp, no matter his personality or weaknesses, he tore the mask off these people. They thought they had clear sailing to transform this country. And they weren’t that worried about you or your family opposing them. Because they figured that by radically changing our institutions, our schools, our entertainment, our culture, you and yours would be forced eventually to go along, whether you wanted to or not.”

Then, I added: “Just like a young Leftist friend of my nephew once told me: ‘You older right wingers will eventually just die out in a few years; then we will take complete control.’”

Those words echoed in my thoughts yesterday, as they continue to echo from time to time in my mind.

We are in a full-blown culture war, and it is beyond the time that we recognized that, that we understood what we are in, what we are up against. I have listened to pastors and priests, all well-intentioned, talking about dialogue, about getting along, about peace—all certainly desirable. But, I think we have, in large part, passed that point. It’s like April 1861, and the clouds of open conflict are ready to burst. I pray that I am wrong, but I believe sincerely I am right.

And early this morning, bringing the dogs in from a long walk when the humidity was lower, I turned on the news and made a quick scan of my emails (169 since 11 o’clock last night!). The news of the dripping hate, of the vicious imprecations and foul words spewing forth, the harassment, the virtual calls to violence, all directed at people like my friend, but with a far higher national profile than he, stood out—and stood out like a sad but truthful confirmation of what I wrote this past Friday and what I said to my friend yesterday.

Consider:

“ICE is a terrorist organization, and its egomaniacal leader is Donald Trump,” says Democratic governor candidate Cynthia Nixon. [https://nypost.com/2018/06/22/cynthia-nixon-labels-ice-as-a-terrorist-organization/]

General Michael Hayden, former Director of the National Security Agency [sic!], tweets a picture of the Auschwitz concentration camp with the caption “other governments have [also] separated mothers and children”  [https://www.nationalreview.com/news/ex-cia-chief-defends-tweet-comparing-trump-border-policy-to-nazi-concentration-camps/]

"If you vote for Trump, then you, the voter, you, not Donald Trump, are standing at the border, like Nazis," says MSNBC commentator Donny Deutsch [https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2018/06/22/msnbcs_donny_deutsch_if_you_vote_for_trump_you_are_ripping_children_from_parents_arms.html]

White House Press Secretary is peremptorily told to leave a Red Hen Restaurant in Lexington, Virginia, by the manager, because she is associated with the president [https://www.newsmax.com/newsfront/us-trump-press-secretary/2018/06/23/id/867905/?ns_mail_uid=61377180&ns_mail_job=1799233_06232018&s=al&dkt_nbr=010502om066c]

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen is surrounded by demonstrators screaming profanities in a restaurant and then her home is surrounded by violence-inducing protesters [https://www.cnn.com/2018/06/20/politics/kirstjen-nielsen-mexican-restaurant-protest/index.html]

The list goes on and on, is potentially inexhaustible—and truly chilling.

We are in a civil war, a real one—and it is total war, without limits or conditions. The sooner we understand that and prepare for every eventuality, the better for us and our families.

Reading through the multiple messages I received this morning I found the following column by C. J. Hopkins, an award-winning playwright and novelist. And I pass it on as a kind of journalistic summary, laced with a bit of sarcasm but also very sobering, of what I am talking about.

Perhaps a third, maybe more, of our fellow citizens partake in this frenzied lunacy, this infectious sickness. Dialogue with them? Peace? Sometimes the only alternative in a situation, regretfully, is to turn our ploughshares into swords.

Happy Sunday. Read on.

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Awaiting the Putin-Nazi Apocalypse


C.J. HOPKINS • JUNE 15, 2018

I don’t know about you, but I’m getting a little tired of waiting for the Hitlerian nightmare that the corporate media promised us was coming back in 2016. Frankly, I’m beginning to suspect that all their apocalyptic pronouncements were just parts of some elaborate tease. I mean, here we are, a year and half into the reign of the Trumpian Reich, and, well, where are all the concentration camps, the SS units with their death’s head insignia, the Riefenstahlian parades and rallies? Trump hasn’t even banned the Democratic Party, or annexed Canada, or invaded Mexico, or made anybody wear color-coded armbands. If he doesn’t start Hitlering relatively soon, the oracles of the corporate media are going to have some serious explaining to do.

I don’t think I’m overreacting. After all, back in 2016, The Guardian promised us an “Age of Darkness,” and the end of “civilized order” as we know it. “Globalization is dead, and white supremacy has triumphed,” one of its more hysterical pundits proclaimed. “Donald Trump is actually a fascist,” Michael Kinsley assured us in The Washington Post. Charles Blow of The New York Times warned that Trump’s election was “the beginning of the end,” the descent of the republic into “racial Orwellianism,” whatever that’s supposed to mean. Thomas Friedman called it “a moral 911.” Paul Krugman predicted nothing short of “a global recession with no end in sight.” Jonathan Chait, after heroically vowing not to flee the country with his terrified family, but to stay and fight to the bitter end, guaranteed us that the “monster,” Trump, would “shake the republic to its foundations.”

Perhaps my seismometer is on the fritz, but I haven’t detected much foundation shaking. Yes, Trump repulses me, personally. I do not like the man. I never have. I was based in New York for fifteen years, in the 1990s and early 2000s, before he became a game show host, when he was still just a shady real estate mogul with alleged ties to organized crime who occasionally appeared on Wrestlemania and just generally went about the city making a narcissistic ass of himself and plastering his gold-plated name onto everything. So I have no illusions about his character … the man is an inveterate snake oil salesman with the moral compass of a Tijuana pimp. All I’m saying is, we were promised Hitler, or Mussolini at the very least, and it seems like all we’re getting so far is just regular old  Donald Trump.

Of course, he could just be laying low and holding back on the Hitler stuff as part of the evil master plan personally developed by Vladimir Putin to systematically brainwash Americans (with state-of-the-art mind-control Facebook ads) into embracing all-out National Socialism and marching through the streets in full Nazi regalia singing Amerika Über Alles… at which point Trump will rip off his mask, reveal his true Hitlerian face, Steve Bannon will suddenly reappear in the turret of an M1 Abrams tank at the head of a division of rebel infantry flying giant Confederate flags as they hideously rumble down Pennsylvania Avenue, and the Putin-Nazi Holocaust will begin.

Or maybe the extremely serious, Pulitzer Prize-winning political pundit David Leonhardt is onto something. In a prominent op-ed in The New York Times, he wonders if Putin’s “secret plan” is for Trump to destroy “the Atlantic alliance” by arriving late for the G7 meeting and “picking fights over artificial issues,” not to mention insulting the Canadian prime minister, which, it doesn’t get much more hair-raising than that. OK, I know you’re probably thinking that sounds like the hopelessly paranoid jabber of some conspiracy theorist nut on YouTube, but we’re talking The New York Times here, folks, and a bona fide “respectable pundit” who wrote a whole 15,000-word ebook and has been interviewed by Stephen Colbert, among his many other distinguished accomplishments.

Examined in the context of other blatantly loony theories the corporate media are currently attempting to ram down our throats, Leonhardt’s theory kind of makes sense. The Guardian, another very serious newspaper, in addition to covering the repercussions of its coverage of Corbyn’s Nazi Death Cult, is hot on the trail of the soon-to-be-infamous Putin-Banks-Brexit Connection. According to “documents seen by The Observer,” a Guardian sister publication, Arron Banks, a “Brexit bankroller,” allegedly had brunch with the Russian ambassador three times, instead of just once, as he had claimed. He was also allegedly offered a piece of some shady gold deal in exchange for the number of someone on Trump transition team, which for some reason it was otherwise impossible to obtain. Or whatever. It doesn’t really matter what happened. The point is, Putin orchestrated the Brexit, presumably as part of his secret plan to destabilize the Atlantic alliance, and then blackmailed Trump into running for president with that “pee-tape” the Democrats paid a former British spook to allege exists.

Paul Krugman of The New York Times concurs. In his latest extremely serious piece of totally respectable grown-up opinionating, he once again calls Trump “a quisling” (he’s developed a fondness for this term, which goes over well with New York Times readers) and reiterates that Trump is “a de facto foreign agent” and that “America as we know it is finished.” Tragically, according to Krugman, the FBI, CIA, and other Guardians of Western Democracy are utterly powerless to deal with this quisling, and his evil puppet master, Putin, because it turns out the entire Republican Party is “hopelessly, irredeemably corrupt.” Yes, it appears the only chance we have to save the world from Trumpzilla, and imminent Putin-Nazi Holocaust, is to elect a buttload of Democrats to office, and eventually an Obama-like Democratic President, so they can launch an all-out thermonuclear war against Russia and North Korea … that’ll teach these Putin-Nazis to screw around with our trade agreements!

Oh, and also, we need to cancel the Brexit, and do away with all these “populist” movements that Putin has fomented all over Europe. For example, according to billionaire George Soros, the refugee-hating League in Italy is likely another Putin-backed front, part of his scheme to “dominate the West.” One can only assume that the AfD, the FPÖ, Rassemblement National, and every other extreme-Right party exploiting people’s rage and fear in Europe are parts of Putin’s grand conspiracy (except, of course, for the Ukrainian Nazis the Western alliance put into power). Soros, like billionaire Bruce Wayne before him, tired of waiting for the West to strike back, is taking matters into his own hands. Not only has he been tirelessly laboring to prevent Donald Trump from “destroying the world,” now he’s financing “Best for Britain,” a campaign to de-brainwash the British people, who, obviously, only voted for Brexit because they’d been brainwashed by the Putin-Nazis.

I could go on and on with this. Have you heard the the one about the Putin-Nazis conspiring with the NRA? How about the one where Emmanuel Macron, in order to protect the French from “fake news,” and division-sowing Putin-Nazi memes, wants the authority to censor the Internet? Or have you read the column in which David Brooks, without a detectable trace of irony, laments the passing of international relationships “based on friendship, shared values, loyalty, and affection” … seriously, he used the word “affection” in reference to the Western alliance, one of the most ruthless, mass-murdering empires in the history of ruthless, mass-murdering empires? Oh,yeah, and I almost forgot … MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow is reporting that the North Korea summit was also orchestrated by Putin!

I’m not sure how much more bizarre things can get. This level of bull goose loony paranoia, media-generated mass hysteria, and mindless conformity would be hysterically funny … if it weren’t so fucking horrifying in terms of what it says about millions of Westerners, who are apparently prepared to believe almost anything the authorities tell them, no matter how nuts. That famous Voltaire quote comes to mind … “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities,” he wrote. Another, more disturbing way of looking at it is, people willing to believe absurdities, to switch off their critical thinking faculties in order to conform to an official narrative as blatantly ridiculous as the Putin-Nazi narrative, are people who have already surrendered their autonomy, who have traded it for the comfort of the herd. Such people cannot be reasoned with, because there isn’t really anyone in there. There is only whatever mindless jabber got injected into their brain that day, the dutiful repetition of which guarantees they remain a “normal” person (who believes what other normal persons believe), and not some sort of “radical” or “extremist.”

These people are the people who worry me … these “normal” people who, completely calmly, as if what they are saying wasn’t batcrap crazy, explain how Trump is just like Hitler, and how Putin is trying to take over the world. I sit there and listen and smile at these people, some of whom are friends and colleagues, people who I genuinely like, and who genuinely like me in return, but who, under the right set of circumstances, would stand by and watch me marched into prison, or worse, and not utter a word in protest.



C. J. Hopkins is an award-winning American playwright, novelist and satirist based in Berlin. His plays are published by Bloomsbury Publishing (UK) and Broadway Play Publishing (USA). His debut novel, ZONE 23, is published by Snoggsworthy, Swaine & Cormorant. He can reached at cjhopkins.com orconsentfactory.org.




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