I hope people understand by now that the significance & impact of Trump saying he's going to be reinstated have nothing to do with whether he actually has a mechanism to accomplish it.
It's all about refusing to accept the legitimacy of Democratic power, even after elections have been called. It won't be long until they're defying laws passed by Dems. washingtonpost.com/politics/trump…
This is how these things start on the right. One wingnut says it, gets called out, denies saying it, denies he meant what he meant ... & then another wingnut says it, & another, & before you know it, it's bog standard opinion in the RW bubble. cnn.com/2021/05/31/pol…
One thing I think about a lot: the substitution of "Democrat" for the adjective "Democratic." This is something that started tentatively, among the wingnutiest Rs, with the air of, "ooh, we're being naughty." It spread inexorably & is now ubiquitous on that side.
It might seem petty, like not a big deal, but it's all part of the concerted, relentless effort by RW media & the base to frame political opponents as fundamentally Other -- not fellow citizens, not worthy of engagement or dialogue, worthy only of contempt & violence.

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More from @drvolts

30 May
I know it's practically cliche at this point to say that Rs are going to jump straight from climate denialism to climate fascism, but ... it's true.
Climate fascism=pull up all draw bridges. Vigorously exploit & hoard remaining fossil fuels. Make deals with fossil-fuel autocracies. Cut off immigration. Ramp up defense & military spending.

All purportedly in response to climate change. This will be the GOP response. Watch.
By the way, this is the fundamental reason conservatives will NEVER join in a good-faith fight against climate change. By its very structure, solving climate requires non-zero-sum cooperation, shared sacrifice, & long-term thinking. Cons oppose those things at a brainstem level.
Read 4 tweets
30 May
The rubicon we crossed in 2020 is that US Republicans will no longer accept Democratic victories as legitimate -- in fact, viewing them as illegitimate is necessary to stay in power inside the party. theguardian.com/us-news/2021/m…
They conjured up a Dem plot to steal the presidential election out of nothing, out of whole cloth. If they can do that at will now, why wouldn't they do it for every close election from now on? Such conjuring is a pathway to status inside the party. They'll be competing to do it.
It will be step-wise: they'll refuse to accept D victories, refuse to accept or enforce laws passed by Ds, refuse to allow D legislatures to assemble ... one little step at a time. Over & over Ds will face the choice: use gov't power to enforce, or back down again.
Read 4 tweets
29 May
Republicans are engineering minority rule, right out in the open, in plain view. Red flags waving everywhere.
When they steal the 2024 election, Rs will *say* that they are simply defending against D cheating. And they will convince themselves of it. And they will bully the media into covering the whole thing as partisan squabbling. It won't matter that there was no D cheating.
Crucial to understand: the whole cycle, the whole dynamic, works *whether or not there's any actual D cheating*. Actual D cheating is not necessary for Rs to convince themselves there is, or for them to bully institutions into behaving as though there was.
Read 7 tweets
28 May
As a Gen-Xer, it is wild to contemplate how much the notion of "selling out" dominated our minds & youth culture ... and then how quickly that all went away. The very notion sounds like a charming anachronism now. aarongilbreath.substack.com/p/selling-out
The idea of being authentic, of resisting the distorting influence of commerce ... do Kids These Days even think about things that way any more? I feel like media & youth culture have become so utterly ubiquitous that it's senseless to imagine anything outside them.
Seems like the best you can do these days to resist all that stuff is just to bury yourself in layer upon layer of irony -- to be ironically distanced from *everything*, as self-defense.
Read 13 tweets
27 May
One striking thing about the "debate" over Biden's jobs bill is that Republicans no longer even bother to offer an argument -- and no one bothers to ask -- WHY we should invest less, or WHY we would invest only in roads & bridges and not in, say, electricity transmission.
It is both intuitively obvious & in line with every economics textbook that these long-term investments in physical & human capital are what keep a country strong. Money's still pretty cheap; there's no particular reason to worry about the deficit right now. So ...
... WHY do Republicans want to invest less in America's future? Seriously: why? They've just been kneejerk braindead opposed to Government Doing Anything for so long that we have, collectively, given up on asking them to justify it. We just take the nihilism for granted.
Read 4 tweets
22 May
It's cool that CNN finally fired Rick "frothy mixture" Santorum, but: why him & not all the other racist fuckheads? Why this particular racist thing he said & not all the others? What exactly are the criteria here? It would be great if CNN would lay out some clear standards.
The problem, of course, is that if CNN (or any mainstream institution) clearly articulated standards, it would become clear, not only that cons regularly violate them, but that they are incommensurate with today's conservatism at a fundamental level.
The standard, banal values of any mainstream institution operating in a muticultural democracy -- accuracy, equal access, equal rights -- are incommensurate with today's conservatism, which is ultimately devoted to continued domination of a particular ethnic culture.
Read 4 tweets

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