Senator Ron Johnson (R, Wisconsin) recently said, in reference to the novel coronavirus, “maybe no more than 3.4 percent of our population” will be affected by the disease and that “We don’t shut down our economies because tens of thousands of people die from the common flu.” First of all, let’s do the math. There are approximately 329 million Americans, so 3.4% of them is 9 million. So, says the venerated senator, 9 million lives should not prevent us from making money. This blows open what hasn’t been much of a secret anyway: they don’t care about you, at all. To them you are just a number, your life is a meaningless statistic on the way to making money and amassing power. It showed when Republicans fought gun control reform after dozens of small children were murdered in cold blood. It showed with their pathetic attempts to address opioid addiction, a circumstance made possible by lax government oversight of corporations and doctors. This is the same people and party that broke the Constitution by not allowing a sitting president to name a Supreme Court vacancy. And yet, these same people have the audacity to claim to be pro-life when it comes to fetuses. It’s all a sham, and Ron Johnson is just another example of the undeniable proof of it all.
Since the first case appeared in November, and especially since the subsequent flare of cases leading to an unprecedented lockdown in China, the world has known about the coronavirus pandemic for months now. Legitimate fact-based journalism has been reporting on it for months, but the right-wing media, emanating from Trump, have declared it a democratic hoax, impeachment part 2, the flu etc., and refused to acknowledge the gravity of the situation, calling it overhyped and fake news, likely because it would be bad economically, and therefore politically, for Dear Leader. The administration has been intentionally conducting fewer tests so as to “keep the numbers down,” saying that it’s ok for people to socialize and work freely, and generally dismissing concerns about the virus.
But after enduring weeks of brutal losses on the stock market, watching governments around the world conduct emergency shutdowns of the vast majority of activity, and seeing the number of cases double every three days, and reported deaths nearing 100, the right-wing media is slowly starting to change its tune. And these rising numbers are despite the practically criminal lack of tests and a concerted effort to limit the reports of positive tests. And I’m furious. As long as there are no consequences for lies, Trump and his sycophants continued to tell them over and over. Deep State. Impeachment Hoax. Russian Witch Hunt. These were all lies to cover up illegal or immoral behavior by himself and his cronies. But there were no consequences. The Mueller Report, aided and abetted by the Deep State, had its slam-dunk findings misrepresented by Trump’s handpicked attorney general, a report that credibly accused the president of obstruction of justice and found evidence of but was unable to conclusively prove that the President knowingly conspired with Russia to win the 2016 election. Trump also was proven, and was admitted to by Republican senators, to have extorted Ukraine for almost $400 million for damning information on his sure-to-be political opponent.
And now, after lying for years to cover up this behavior and to ensure their political power, and after months of lying to their at-risk supporters about the severity of this disease, now they want to change their tune and say that all of a sudden, it’s real. Well, now is not the time to be ok with that. Now is the time we should call their reversal “fake news.” We should be re-posting their former memes comparing it to swine flu and disparaging Obama. Maybe don’t share misinformation, but don’t help them either. Once they see each other dropping like flies, maybe they’ll begin to again appreciate facts. And you know that as soon as you help them, and they get better, they will turn around tomorrow and stab you in the back. We’ve got to stop encouraging this kind of reckless behavior by acting like everything is ok. It’s not ok, and I’m furious.
It’s actually pretty funny to watch now that the USA is in a full-blown coronavirus epidemic. The administration is asking for trust from the public after it has spent the last three years telling 15000 lies and dismantling or reversing the purpose of every government organization they could get their hands on. The entire Republican party says that government is the problem, until they need the government.
What I mean is that the two parties work under different rules. Whereas Democrats are punished if they adhere to “norms”, Republicans seem to be rewarded. For example, Republicans constantly launch political investigations into Democrats with the sole purpose of damaging a Democrat’s ability to get elected, the Democrats seem unwilling or unable politically able to do the same against Republicans. Only when the evidence is overwhelming as in the impeachment do they proceed. And this fact is unchallenged as the Republicans who were in charge of investigating Hillary Clinton made it clear after the fact that the investigations were purely political and meant to harm her chances to win election. The same now with Joe Biden, or his son. No illegal activity has been alleged against either, other than profiting off his father’s name, yet the current president has his FAMILY running parts of the government, WHICH IS ILLEGAL, and gets no pushback. It feels like a Batman and Joker situation, where Batman, as the good guy, is constrained from all the dirty tricks that the Joker does because of his moral code. Yet that moral code puts him at a distinct advantage to the Joker, who manipulates Batman’s unwillingness to kill to continue his immoral behavior. Because Democrats still feel the need to be moral, the Republicans, who by and large have no morals these days, do not have a problem opening baseless investigations into their political opponents. And thus, the Democrats appear “weak” in comparison to Republicans because they are adhering to a moral code. And with American evangelicals embracing Christian Nationalism as opposed to what’s written in the Bible, the Republicans are free to be as immoral as they please, since their base of voters no longer cares about morality.
It seems pretty clear, anyway. One must have an ideological basis for coming together, whether it’s social or economic policy or whatever. The Republicans have, as I see it, two principles left: tax cuts and Donald Trump. I can’t think of any other threads that run through all Repulicans. They showed they are not the party of:
- fiscal responsibility
- law & order
- the constitution
I didn’t mention abortion or guns because I don’t think Republicans agree on those issues.
But even though Republicans are dead, they live on through moderate Democrats. They display the same wishy-washy nature about democratic policies, hoping to reel in some hypothetical moderate Republican single-issue voter. Politics has moved into the modern age and I don’t think moderation is the answer.