This is so smart. Our political leaders are absolutely terrified by the prospect of backlash — the chance that someone, somewhere, will get mad about the "undeserving" — and reverse-engineer everything they do to avoid it.…
The result, of course, are byzantine, incomprehensible rules and policies that fail and an angry public that then, yes, doesn't trust that the government can do anything.
and at the end of the day, everyone is undeserving to someone, and a government that is preoccupied with rooting out aid to the undeserving eventually becomes a government that abandons aid altogether, and only has the capacity to deal out death and exposure to death

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More from @jbouie

9 Jan
Have been thinking about the reasons *why* right-wing protesters get so much leeway from law enforcement and other authorities and came back to this piece I wrote last January, about the big gun rights demonstration in Richmond.…
the crucial insight of “some of those who work forces are the same who burn crosses” is that “working forces” and “burning crosses” are understood by “some” as existing on the same continuum of action.
Read 4 tweets
9 Jan
rewatching THE DEAD ZONE and one thing to say about this movie is that everyone is wearing the most comfortable looking sweaters
that shit looks cozy as hell! Image
a movie where a corrupt, power-hungry politician gets his comeuppance before he can plunge the world into chaos? now that’s a fantasy
Read 4 tweets
7 Jan
i guess we’re now just waiting on the next time this happens
even if this is a play to avoid having to deal with a challenge should Pence and the Cabinet invoke the 25th, the Congress still has a responsibility to deal with the fact that the president incited a riot against it.
i’m not one for “this is unprecedented” hyperbole, but it is actually unprecedented for the president of the united states to openly encourage an insurrection against the nation’s elected representatives for the sake of overturning the results of an election.
Read 5 tweets
7 Jan
i’ll keep saying this but for example look no further than the ku klux klan, theatrical and silly and also deadly serious
we often talk about the overthrow of reconstruction as a singular organized effort, but it should be understood as something more disparate and fractured, with success tied less to martial superiority than the indifference of authorities to intimidation and violence.
a group of guys — maybe the owner of the general store, and the sheriff and some farmers who fought in the war — gets together to gripe and complain and plot a little mischief. they put on masks and grab guns and go beat up a black sharecropper or local clerk or whatever...
Read 17 tweets
7 Jan
shadi, i haven’t said anything about today being a coup. i just think it’s funny that you wrote a piece claiming that the most serious question was whether democrats would accept a trump victory, and within that piece, claimed that republicans would accept a trump loss.
and as i’ve been saying for four years, i think the proper analogies and antecedents here are found in the history of the american south, where, incidentally, coups have taken place
very funny to see someone accuse me of acting in bad faith and then writing an extended thread criticizing an argument i never made
Read 4 tweets
6 Jan
liberal voting laws helped republicans bring low propensity conservative voters to the polls and likely kept november from being a total wipeout, but rather than build on that, they just want to keep as many people from the polls as possible
“maybe we should try to win popular majorities” is apparently a bridge too far
anyway i’ll trade a single national voting day for automatic and same-day registration, a national voting holiday, free and universal voter ID, uniform eligibility rules for voting, and a formula specifying the exact number of polling places and machines per precinct.
Read 4 tweets

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