...So We Have to Save Ourselves (Part 2)

Last week, I wrote that the opposition to Donald Trump and his supporters, apostles, and enablers needs to get its head around the idea that no one person or thing is going to save us from Trumpism. Not the Mueller Report, not a secret cabal of intelligence agents (hell, I guess you could call it the "Deep State"), not the hidden child-fucking files of Jeffrey Epstein. And, as if on cue, the U.S. Attorney of the Southern District of New York released a statement that it was ending its investigation into the hush money payments made to Stormy Daniels by Michael Cohen under the direction of Donald Trump without indicting anyone else. As the conservative toxic waste dump RedState crowed, "The SDNY Just Crushed One Of The Left’s Biggest Dreams," which was that the honorable, dogged New York office would bring down Trump. Except everyone kind of forgot that the U.S. Attorney works for the Justice Department, which is under the Attorney General, who is William Barr, who is a lawless sow fucker. So now we've moved on to the next dream, that something something Mueller hearing something something will happen.

Except it won't. And the House still won't open an impeachment inquiry, not even after this past week's descent into racist nationalism.

So we have to figure out how to save ourselves from the fascistic threat of Trumpism, in ways that make real change and in ways that demonstrate to those in power that they are facing a greater wave of people than the human hemorrhoids in the chanting MAGA crowds. We have to face the fact that there is a political race war that needs to happen, and it's time to get the troops ready for battle.

I have two suggestions. Neither of them is particularly new (hell, I've talked about one of 'em before), but place them into the new, urgent context in which we find ourselves.

First, fuck the white working class. Fuck Trump voters.  Fuck their votes. Fuck their beliefs. Fuck everything about them. Democrats and the left attempting to appeal to Trump supporters, as if better angels exist in their cesspool, is like a wounded gazelle attempting to reason with hyenas. They're gonna eat you; you just look like an idiot for thinking you could convince them otherwise.

The emphasis for the 2020 election has to be on those who didn't vote in 2016 and 2018.  This ain't about voter enthusiasm. Jesus, if anti-Trump voters aren't fired up, then Democrats should just go beat off in a corner for the duration.  Voter registration has to be the top priority, especially in targeting non-white people of voting age. (Remember: We're in a political race war.) Republicans have a massive effort under way to get more voters. Right now,  there are lower-key efforts, like Jesse Jackson and his Rainbow PUSH organization trying to register 100,000 new voters in South Carolina.

Sure, there are great local movements, like Metropolitan Organizing Strategy Enabling Strength in Michigan.  But MOSES and other organizations aside, we need to have a national effort, perhaps led by groups with a national status, like Indivisible or Swing Left, which actually has a voter registration strategy but needs some big time boosting. We need to head to the swing states and find the voters who have sat out. And we need lots of volunteers who are willing to help people negotiate the bullshit, byzantine new voter laws in those states.

The other suggestion is way more radical and way more dangerous from a messaging position: a general strike, with the kinds of protests we're seeing in Hong Kong and (closer to home) Puerto Rico. As Will Bunch put it last year, "A general strike or even massive protests are well outside of the normal comfort zone for a majority of Americans. But the question we need to ask ourselves is this... how comfortable are we with Donald Trump spending even one more night in the White House?"

A general strike can bring together liberal causes across the board, from Black Lives Matter to the Women's March to gun laws to immigration reform to the climate crisis and more. And it strikes at the heart of the capitalist enterprise in a way that a well-ordered, well-permitted protest march never can. Right now, we have a government that is unresponsive to what the vast majority of Americans want. Our fucked up electoral system means that not only can a president win without a majority of the popular vote, the House and Senate can be controlled by a party that didn't receive the most votes.  So the voice of the people needs to made front and center again because our alleged representative democracy isn't representing us in a fair, realistic way.

The protests in Hong Kong were particularly stunning because it was essentially a movement without a central leader. Instead, a coalition of pro-democracy groups worked together, with several members, like Bonnie Leung and Jimmy Sham, taking on different roles in getting the message out there and getting the people in the streets. The progressive movement in the United States has that same kind of possibility of coalition with conveners providing guidance and direction. Of course, it's something that would need community support as people missed work for what might be a lengthy strike with a goal of forcing the resignation of Trump and his administration.

It's a pie in the sky idea, yeah, I know. There's a good chance that it would fall apart quickly, faced with a public that doesn't want to hang in there, with a media that might be dismissive and, in the case of Fox "news," derisive, with an apathetic lump of shit in the White House going golfing during the whole thing, with corporate and business leaders and Republicans declaring it a "socialist revolution" or some such shit.

Yeah, the good guys might not win, but even when they fail, at least they can say they gave it a shot. At least they found some way to find meaning and community in a time of cruelty and division. At least they laid a foundation for some future action.

Or we can all go back to where we came from.