President Pence in 2018

“Seriously, Trump will be impeached within 2 years. His is the kind of presidency that can only happen as a “Change” candidate, which means he is useless to the right in 4 or even 2 years, as it becomes clear to his “movement” how full of shit his populist rhetoric was.

“Now that he has swept in the far right conservatives and handed them everything they’ve ever wanted, they will turn on him as soon after the inauguration and confirmation hearings as possible, digging up (or manufacturing) some kind of massive legal or ethics violation excuse (I’m guessing they already have all the evidence they’d really need stashed away somewhere, because come on: “I’m hearing” such evidence exists).

“And then they will be able to push him out and replace him with their own guy, all while grandstanding about how responsible they’re all being for holding “their” president accountable (it’s how they’ll be able to distance themselves from the fact that they were the ones who put him there in the first place). Make no mistake about it – this is a Pence presidency we’re talking about here. They all hate him, and they are not just holding their noses for power and profit. They are also counting the hours to sweet revenge. Once they have consolidated their power, the far right will gut Donald Trump like an oversized carp and flush the entrails directly into the public water supply (all sewage filtration and treatment plants having been shut down as emblematic of government overregulation).”

Source: “He has neither the temperament nor the judgment to be president” | MetaFilter

Where We Get the Fascist Right Wrong

“And that’s where we get the fascist right wrong. The fascist right actively gets its satisfaction from hurting other people. That’s why we keep losing – we’re all like “I am doing this political stuff, but really I would rather be home making dinner or on a date or playing with my kids or reading a book”; they’re all “I’m out here heckling LGBTQ people and it’s great”. Racism, violence in general, sexual violence in particular, making people cry or hurt – that’s stuff that they actually do because it’s fun.

“A lot of people who are not part of the fascist right don’t understand this and that’s why we’re just bowled over when we see people doing stuff that’s horrible. We can’t get our heads around how they could enjoy it and actively want to do it, so we keep thinking that it’s some kind of mistake or sign of some personal suffering on their part.

“The people who tortured prisoners at Abu Ghraib did it because torturing prisoners was fun and no one bothered to stop them. There were other reasons wrapped up in it – chains of command, group culture, etc – but the social ground for what happened was that people tortured because it was fun.

“We need to get our heads around this and be ready – policy discussion and economic problems are not really of concern to the fascist right and they will not stop just because something is a bad idea or produces obvious social harm. It’s easy to be confused or hypnotized by this kind of…well, let’s call it evil, because it fills the social function of evil. It’s easy to look into the void, right? That’s how they get you. We have to give up on the idea that there’s some kind of policy or humanitarian angle which will reach these guys (and they’re mostly guys), because they are actively motivated by the opportunity to do harm.” http://www.metafilter.com/163603/Our-first-Magic-8-Ball-president#6825261


“You Fucking Children”

“London Review of Books: Is this how democracy dies?

“But in reality their behaviour too reflected their basic trust in the political system with which they were ostensibly so disgusted, because they believed that it was still capable of protecting them from the consequences of their choice. It is sometimes said that Trump appeals to his supporters because he represents the authoritarian father figure who they want to shield them from all the bad people out there making their lives hell. That can’t be right: Trump is a child, the most childish politician I have encountered in my lifetime. The parent in this relationship is the American state itself, which allows the voters to throw a tantrum and join forces with the worst behaved kid in the class, safe in the knowledge that the grown-ups will always be there to pick up the pieces.

“This is the most incisive piece of criticism on voter psychology I’ve read since the election. It expresses so much of what I’ve felt but haven’t been able to put into words, and it targets a deep, deep resentment I have about all the activism I’m doing – I didn’t make this mess but I’ve got to turn over my life and my sanity to trying to clean it up because who the fuck else is going to do it?

“I bet there’s actually a pretty large chunk of Trump supporters who would actually prefer not to have a bunch of neo-Nazis cozying up to power, but are they freaked out about it? No, and why should they be? It’s not their responsibility to reign in their President-elect; the same sliver of over-sensitive, politically correct, over-educated group of engaged people, the same ones who are always protesting and sharing articles on Facebook and donating to political causes – those are the ones who are going to days of their lives to making phone calls and nights of sleep to worry and stress; they’re the ones who are going to donate money they don’t have to the ACLU; they’re the ones who are going to spend all their energy flinging themselves against the system, trying to keep it from running completely off the rails.

“And when they succeed, and things are a tiny bit less worse than we were afraid it would be, all those non-voters and smug Trump voters will look at us smugly and say, see? I told you it wasn’t going to be fascism. You’re always overreacting. Boo hoo!

Fuck you, you fucking children. I wish with all my heart I could stand back and watch you experience the consequence of your terrible decision, except-as is the case with so many terrible decisions made by white people–the problem is that you’ve set it up so that a whole lot of innocent people will get hurt worse than you.”

Source: I still wake up and remember who is the President-elect | MetaFilter

Over Fifty Times Donald Trump Has Denied Climate Change on Twitter

“That’s the people who manage his golf course. Trump himself has shown that he has a fundamental lack of understanding of what climate change is and science itself.

https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/265895292191248385 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/418542137899491328 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/349973299889057792 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/316252016190054400 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/475668993928212480 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/435574043354611712 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/270628609817976834 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/435393088383889408 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/412159674042294272 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/326875628966117376 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/349973845228269569 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/512246203967619072 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/338448296022511618 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/488825209189711873 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/427226424987385856 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/417818392826232832 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/488926006225285120 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/431018674695442432 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/428418323660165120 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/653385381526806528 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/404420095113715712 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/408977616926830592 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/319377285687939072 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/428416406280241153 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/408380302206443520 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/521862351218573312 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/489381851350319107 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/407505938774757376 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/568387798924963840 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/493935815207043072 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/420333882597466112 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/450964791985971200 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/326874524576526337 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/422819593120256000 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/568021533131718656 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/408018451362766849 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/416909004984844288 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/334254335116587008 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/535102735830773760 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/338978381636984832 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/428954382915223552 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/417816035107299328 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/264010129106665472 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/488813607958757376 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/264007296970018816 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/427556692109574146 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/412162068989874176 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/440811151283486720 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/326781792340299776 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/408983789830815744 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/416539702096052224 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/338429342646423553 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/402217536751951872 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/423179182198104064 https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/314744479821205505


“It’s fucked but not in the way they think it is.”

“They think he’s some renegade maverick being crucified because liberals can’t handle THE TRUTH. Except what he says the truth is changes every 5 minutes depending on whats most convenient. What’s really admirable about him is how he’s found a way to be utterly changeable in a way that keeps both sides committed to advancing his interests.

“The right will be convinced that whatever he’s saying at the moment is PC crushing, no nonsense hard truth because of the hysterical reaction he gets out of the left, and the left will be convinced that whatever he’s doing at the moment is pure evil (which keeps them from having any coherent strategy to fight him since they’re constantly reacting to Trump)

“It’s really a huge strength in politics that almost no other politician has. It may even allow him to do things no politician has before since the dawn of the information age. He’s managed to polarize the media narrative in such a way that he never really has to worry about being called out for inconsistency.

“His left wing opponents will never say “hang on, maybe he isn’t the devil if he’s said all this reasonable stuff”, and his right wing supporters will never crucify him for betrayal or flip flopping because he’s managed to detach his support almost entirely from specific policies and shifted it onto a general feeling he puts out with help of the liberal medias reaction to him.”



Venezuela TL;DR

From Metafilter:

“Background: Venezuela is a former Spanish colony, population of 30 million, GDP per capita of $15k PPP (comparison point, Malaysia is $10k PPP, Australia is $67k PPP). Primarily oil driven economy – they have the largest oil reserves on the planet and have pulled over a trillion dollars in oil profits in the past and they were the founders of OPEC. So far so good.

“The current, horrible situation: Oil represents 95% of exports and current low oil prices have plunged the country into crisis: they do not have the cash to keep running. It’s not a matter of defaulting on debt like in the case of Greece: they literally do not have the ability to continue functioning as a country.

“Projected net income from oil exports this year = $18 bil
Debt repayments = $10 bil
Remaining income = $8 bil
Imports per year = $37 bil (nearly all food is imported)
Current level of foreign reserves = $14 bil …

“This means they have only a few months left until their foreign currency runs out. They have broken their relations with the IMF, no private lenders will lend them money, and even China has lent them $50 bil and is unlikely to lend them any more.

“They no longer have any other income producing assets to seize. To generate money, the president has seized foreign oil producing companies – and any other profitable private companies – to generate cash directly for the state to reduce their budget deficit – 1,200 private companies have been seized so far and their incomes added to the state treasury. At various points they’ve seized all foreign owned oil wells and refineries and made them state property.

“Inflation is set to hit 720% this year and shortages of goods are rampant due to insufficient foreign exchange for imports. Empresas Polar SA, currently the largest private company in Venezuela, has been progressively shutting down their factories – the government has not provided them with enough USD to purchase raw materials from abroad to keep the factories running. There is talk about them being seized by the government as well. …

“Surely, you’d think, the country with the largest oil reserves in the world could do better than this. Their administration over the last few decades has seen stunning amounts of waste and corruption turn Venezuela from one of the richest emerging countries into what we see today.”

Discussion in context.

Image from CNN: Venezuelan opposition tells military that it’s time to choose