This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things
We can't deal with man-made climate change because "sad, pathetic" Trump has manufactured a crisis for democracy.
Welcome to Unprecedented, a newsletter that exposes the lies and corruption of today’s rotten-to-the-core GOP. It’s absolutely FREE to read and subscribe. It only requires an email. But if you’d like to support my work with a paid subscription, I certainly welcome the support!
We’re six months into the Biden Presidency and, thanks to the tremendous focus and competence of our new President, 68.7% of US adults have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine shot and the economy is roaring.
If we all pulled together and seized this moment, we’d have a real opportunity to actually “Make America Great Again”—investing in 21st-Century infrastructure, creating millions more jobs, reducing student debt, expanding healthcare and education, lifting millions of families out of poverty, and even, perhaps, finally getting serious about tackling the existential threat of climate change.
Can’t We Just Ignore Him?
For the most part, it’s easier than ever for most of us to tune out Trump’s odious carnival-barking. The overwhelming majority of Americans are sick and tired of the sleazy, racist, corrupt, money-laundering, tax-dodging sex predator who lost the popular vote not once, but twice. In just five years, Trump made a mockery of every so-called principle the “pro-life,” “family values,” “law and order,” “Party of Lincoln” ever pretended to stand for.
Trump is a sad, pathetic failure. He’s shrunk the GOP while exposing tens and millions of our fellow Americans as racists, thugs, hypocrites or, at best, unlikeable idiots.
But Trump is only as sad and pathetic as Hitler was after the failed 1923 “Beer Hall Putsch.” And the Republican Party is as eager as ever to use Trump—or whoever succeeds him—to push The Big Lie, embrace white racist paranoia, seize power, and not let go.
We can’t ignore Trump because he’s turned an entire party of pretend “patriots” into enemies of democracy, so opposed to truth and accountability they don’t even want to participate in a commission to investigate the January 6th Trump-inspired terrorist invasion of the US Capitol.
Meanwhile, The GOP Is Trying to Sabotage The Biden Boom
On Friday July 23, all of the US stock market averages closed at new all-time highs. By Trump standards, that once again confirms that Joe Biden must be the greatest President ever, right?
But instead of celebrating Biden’s success, the GOP is doubling down on the myth of Trump, promoting the fantasy that Trump created a booming economy that was only derailed by a virus from China that completely overwhelmed America despite the fact that Trump also magically “shut it down.”
In reality, Trump was a disaster for US workers, creating fake GDP growth paid for only with debt, mortgaging our future and leaving office with the worst jobs record since the Great Depression.
As bond guru Jeffrey Gundlach told New York Magazine in August 2019:
(In 2018) the national debt increased by over 6 percent of GDP. And nominal GDP growth was 5 or 5.1 percent. So all of the growth of the economy basically can be ascribed to debt. Another way to put it is if we hadn’t increased the national debt at all and just kept it the same, there would’ve been no economic growth. There would’ve been a negative sign. Which means there’s no organic growth in the economy.
Of course, during Trump’s disastrous single term, “fiscal conservatives” conveniently replaced their teabags with MAGA hats (a tacit admission that their opposition to Obama was fueled primarily by racism). As trillions after trillions were put on the national credit card to fund tax breaks for the already-rich and desperate Covid-19 rescue packages, the GOP and Fox News pretended not to notice.
One of Trump’s “lesser known but profoundly damaging legacies will be the explosive rise in the national debt... The financial burden that he’s inflicted on our government will wreak havoc for decades, saddling our kids and grandkids with debt.”
But of course, now that the Trump debt is coming due, the GOP is refusing to pay for it, threatening to cause a US default if Biden doesn’t slow the economy down fast enough to pave the way for loser Trump’s attempted return.
And That’s Not Even The Worst Of It
The biggest casualty of Trump’s Big Lie may not even be the end of American democracy—it could mean the accelerating destruction of the entire planet.
Because Trump didn’t only destroy the economy and explode the debt. He also moved us backward in addressing the existential threat we face from climate change.
At a moment when America should be leading the world in combating the climate catastrophe—a catastrophe that this summer is causing unprecedented wildfires from the American West to the Arctic Circle, killing billions of sea creatures in Canada, along with virtually all of California’s enfangered chinook salmon, baby flamingoes in Turkey and more Florida manatees than ever before—virtually all of the Democrats’ current focus is on preventing the Republicans’ avalanche of new voter suppression laws.
Even with a Herculean effort, at this point the best we can hope for is maybe a restoration of the Voting Rights Act… taking us back to where we were in 1965.
So while Trump has manufactured a crisis for democracy using nothing more than lies, he’s once again sucking up a lot of oxygen, accelerating the GOP’s march toward fascism, and preventing us from attacking an even more deadly man-made crisis.
If we don’t end the filibuster, protect voting rights and save democracy fast, we’ll have exactly no time left to even attempt to save the planet.