It’s 2016 All over Again but It Doesn’t Have to Be

Photo description: Trump on a lot of television screens
Image source: Reuters/Jim Urquhart

“It’s 2016 all over again,” a friend tweeted this morning. He was talking about how CNN made a point of carrying Trump’s Big Racist Bullshit-stravaganza Campaign Rally on Saturday, but hasn’t bothered to mention more than a passing acknowledgement of the events Biden has been holding. Even the virtual event he did with former President Obama got very little play.

My friend is right, of course. The same thing happened four years ago—all the major networks and news outlets were falling all over themselves to cover every single word that sputtered out of ToxicOrange’s McNugget hole. Meanwhile, even the best attended events held by Hillary Clinton were mentioned mostly in passing. Maybe, if she was lucky and it was an otherwise slow news day, the anchors would tune into the rallies for a few minutes before going back to “but her emails-ing.” 

Honestly, I wasn’t that much better. I spent FAR more time covering Trump’s events than I did talking or blogging about Clinton’s. I own that. I was incredibly naive to think that simply pointing Trump’s nonsense—even as I was doing my best to explain why it was nonsense—was enough. In retrospect I should have spent just as much time talking about Clinton’s ideas and policies, how they would work and why they were better. 

What makes me angriest about that is that I knew better. It isn’t enough to talk about what you’re against, you need to talk about what you’re for. Punk Rock is Bullshit, and all that. 

This time, I want to do better. I’m not sure what that will really look like just yet, but I want to start by calling your attention to this Washington Post article about the event the Biden campaign held today. It’s a short read and it definitely gave me some stuff to think about. 

Like Peas in a Pod

He pays the best attention.

In pretty much any other timeline, a foreign dignitary visiting the White House and meeting with the President would feel like business as usual. This is, after all, part of the job of being President, right? 

If only we lived in one of those timelines. 

In this timeline, we get Trump. 

It shouldn’t have surprised me, then, given how familiar I am with the Trump administration’s bullshittery, that the very first foreign dignitary to be hosted by the White House post-lockdown would be the President of Poland.

Oh wait, yes it was surprising. But only because that honor wasn’t given to Putin or, if Vlad was too busy, Kim Jong Un. 

If you’re not familiar with President Andrzej Duda, here’s the TL;DR: he’s a bad guy. 

Among other constitutional crises and other disgusting stuff, Duda has attacked the LGBTQ+ community in Poland, saying that, if re-elected he will not allow LGBTQ couples to adopt, will ban teaching about LGBT issues in schools and has said that the LGBTQ movement is a “foreign ideology worse than communism.” 

Hatred of the LGBTQ community, constitutional crises, criminalizing speech against the state…and he’s up for re-election! Sound familiar?

It is not a coincidence that this guy is the guy awarded the first post-lockdown WH visit. Of course, as usual all Trump wanted to talk about was how high his ratings are, to brag about strong-arming other members of NATO…something that Duda was all too happy to echo, usually choosing to fluff Trump’s ego instead of actually answering questions he was asked. 

The only real surprise during today’s joint presser in the Rose Garden is that Trump didn’t verbally attack any reporters. 

Anyway, here’s a link to my tweet thread of the event, if you’d like to check that out! Enjoy?

Real Quick Fundraiser Update

I just posted this over on GoFundMe and thought it would be a good idea to post it here too:

HAPPY THANKSGIVING (a couple of days early)! I hope that all of you are having a grand time with people you love and doing things you like! It’s been a minute or a few since my last update. The last couple of weeks have been hectic with a half dozen Congressional Hearings, a few rallies, and a pretty severe depressive episode when I failed to time my meds properly. Don’t worry, I am okay. 🙂 I’ll be writing about all of it, of course. Right now I have about a dozen blog posts in varying stages of completion in the queue and hope to have them all published by the end of the holiday weekend. THIS update (way to bury the lede, self) is to let you know that I *finally* have a Google Form ready for you to fill out so you can get some fun rewards! I did make a slight change to one of the rewards. Originally, I had planned to do monthly snail mail letters in November, December and January. Since I’m just getting this up now and November is almost over (oops), I’ve pushed out the delivery of the monthly snail mail letters to be December, January, and February. This way there can be Valentines! Anyway, here’s a link to the form for you to fill out if that is a thing you’d like to do: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfn8jMR4BF__VCNBgm0DZnV8MOonFI187JBOu2Soqx6_3fqWg/viewform?usp=sf_link Thanks for reading and supporting! I love you all to pieces!

PROGRAMMING UPDATE

Wednesday: Congressional Hearing in the AM

Thursday: Trump rally in the PM

Friday: Congressional Hearing in the AM

It’s gonna be a busy rest of the week, folks. Which one of you hid my Wheaties?

Trump Rally: Monroe LA (11/6/19)

You might notice that it has taken me a touch longer than usual to get this particular post up. That’s because I was struggling with how to approach it. 

Obviously, last night there was a Trump Keep America Great rally. Trump invaded the Monroe Civic Center and, about 45 minutes after he was scheduled to start speaking, he actually took the stage. 45? Get it? 

The speech itself was more of the same. Lots of lies and bull-pucky talking points. Most of the first 2/3 of his speech seemed to be improvised, though he did bring a visual aid. Nothing forces home your message like holding up a computer printout, amirite? 

It was at around the 2/3-finished mark that it started to become very clear that Trump was not feeling well. His words started to become increasingly slurred. He started sweating off his makeup. Near the end of his speech he had even begun to complain about the temperature in the arena, flapping his suit jacket open and saying that it felt like “it’s 120 degrees in here!” His face was also an alarming shade of red. By the time he was done? He looked like this:

Photo credit: Haaretz.com
Photo credit: WAFB.com
Photo credit: Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

Now look, I am clearly not a fan of this man. I think he is the worst thing to happen to our world in ages. Still, it felt (and feels!) gross to make fun of a man who was so clearly in distress. I stopped live-tweeting toward the end, instead watching fearfully as he speed-read through the speech that was on the prompter, worried that he might not make it all the way through.

Thankfully he made it through his speech without passing out from heatstroke or whatever was happening and will live to be mocked another day.

If you want to read the twitter thread, it still exists and you can find it here, but re-posting it feels more like punching down than anything else. 

Thanks for reading! If you’d like to help support my work, I’m running a fundraiser over at GoFundMe. If GoFundMe isn’t your thing, you can find other ways to send support here

And now? SHONDALAND. And after that? The other blog posts I’ve been promising!