The Confederate Flag and Zika: They Know It’s Hitting the South First, Right?

 

Yeah, but you know in this case those are the same things, right? 

 

You know when you hear politicians say things like “Washington is broken- and I’m the man to fix it!” It’s pretty common in both parties, of course, but there is a certain strand of Republicanism that is more likely than others. It’s the whole “I was successful at business, so I clearly can be great at foreign policy. Just knock some heads together!” One might even say that such a theory is the driving impetus of the Trump campaign, if one wanted to ignore the racism. The Onion, of course, captured this perfectly many years ago. “Millionaire Vows To Do For Government What He Did For Turkey Ranches.”

Anyway, it works really well, because there is a lot broken in Washington. To wit:

Republican lawmakers are warning that the American public will now blame Democrats if Zika becomes a full-blown health crisis.

I don’t know. It seems like they maybe wanted this to fail? By maybe putting in pretty un-Zika-y provisions, such as the flag of racism, slavery, and treason and also cutting women’s health? And then were pretty open about their reasons? Just maybe?

The GOP, of course, knows how to play this game perfectly. Block anything good and reasonable from happening in the most cynical way possible, sit back and let terrible things happen, and have both sides take the blame. But because they run on “government can’t work!” and Democrats on “let’s make government work!” it is a winning strategy, except at the national level, where the radicals and dimwits they parade can’t stand the light of day.

Oddly, the reason why they can’t deal with the national scrutiny is the reason why this is so scary. The new generation of Republicans have completely internalized this behavior. They grew up with it. There is nothing strange or cynical to them about it. This is simply how it is done. This is how you destroy the enemy, which is the government, and by extension, the Democrats. The whole point is to destroy the government so you can get more of your people elected so you can continue to destroy the government, and make it just a vessel for wars and for punishing internal enemies (Mexicans, ovaries, rappers, etc).

It’s fitting that the Confederate flag got involved. It’s not just because that is poison to decent-thinking humans. The entire GOP strategy is an extension of the Civil War by other means.

People could be very ill because of this. Babies could have their entire lives irrevocably changed. That shit like this isn’t front page news is a tragedy.

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Hillary and Donald Tied! Almost. In One Poll. Sort Of.

 

A dialogue. 

 

Times:  Hillary Clinton and Donald J. Trump are deadlocked less than a month before the Democratic and Republican presidential conventions, according to a new national poll that shows the American electorate feeling disappointed in each candidate.

Me: Holy crap! His…strong? stance on Brexit must have really resonated! Go on.

Times: A Quinnipiac University survey released on Wednesday found that 42 percent of voters supported Mrs. Clinton while 40 percent backed Mr. Trump. The poll represents a slight improvement for Mr. Trump, who trailed by four points at the beginning of the month, and has a margin of error of plus or minus two percentage points

Me: OK, so, just like one poll? From a poll that had Trump doing slightly better than average, anyway?

Times: …

Me: What do some of the polling averages say?

Times: …

Me: Oh, RCP still has her up by six? HuffPolitics, used by Sam Wang, has her up by 7?  And Wang himself still has Hillary with a 70-85% chance of winning, depending on if you use random drift or Bayesian projections?

Times: Do you know what that means?

Me: …

Times: …

Me: Look, the point is, there’s really no need to inject drama. We have a dangerously ignorant white nationalist only a few weeks away from accepting the nomination, grubbing it with his greedy hands and shoving an entire political party into his malformed mouth. No matter what happens, he’s awakened a plague of blowflies that can blot out the sun. It’s goddamn dramatic enough. Don’t breathlessly report every poll. In this instance, your duty to the Republic and her people is to militate against Trump. I know the overlap between your readership and his likely voters is slim, but you don’t have to contribute to the narrative.

Times: Fine. You want to get a drink?

Me: It’s 7:30 in the morning!

Times: …

Me: Yeah.