Trumpland Day 20: Rambling About the Turdpol

Let’s take some time to insult the President of the United States, for two reasons. One, this is the United States, and despite our many troubles as a nation, we have among the most robust free speech rights in the world. Two, Donald Trump has very thin skin. I don’t believe for a second that this little website will ever be read by Trump, but that won’t stop me from adding to the miasma of ridicule that Trump and his administration have earned.

Some people have been coming up with anagrams for Trump’s name. One of the best has been Lord Dampnut. Not bad. This is a game anyone can play, because, like with all things in the new economy, computers can do it better than people. There’s no reason to sit down with pencil and paper and wrack one’s brain. Search Google for an anagram generator. There are almost 500,000 results.

My personal favorite anagram for Donald Trump is Damn Turdpol. That pretty well encapsulates my feelings for Trump. He’s a shit politician, i.e., a turd pol. Hey now, that’s clever.

The Trump administration is packed to the gills with people who are either unqualified for the positions they hold, are in government for their own personal advancement, or have a dark vision of the purpose of the American government that does not involve it being run well. They seem determined to lower the quality of public debate to the point where government is removed completely from the public sphere. On a daily basis they are rewriting the norms of American government, morphing it, changing it. They don’t seem to have an endgame beyond growing their own power, but unchecked, their methods look an awful lot like those employed by dictators.

We are stuck, for as long as Trump is president, under the rule of a kakistocracy. Rule by the worst. Every time Sean Spicer stands in front of the media and spouts instantly refutable bullshit, or Kellyanne Conway plays her Orwellian word games on the Sunday shows, or Steve Bannon drafts another executive order that isn’t vetted by administration lawyers, or Trump himself casually disregards centuries of American diplomacy, it becomes more and more clear that these people not only don’t know how to run the government well — they don’t care to. Good stewardship of the United States is not their aim.

The Trump Administration is the Turdpol Kakistocracy.

 

A couple of days ago President Turdpol visited MacDill Air Force Base in Florida. He gave a speech and accused the media of purposely not reporting instances of Islamic terrorism. That was a ridiculous claim to make, but of course the administration doubled down on Trump’s fiction.

The next day the kakistocracy released a list of 78 terror attacks carried out by Islamists and claimed that most of them did not receive enough media coverage. Included on the list were the Paris attacks and the Orlando nightclub shooting, events which dominated the news after they occurred. If they were trying to make a point, they whiffed.

But that list was just noise. The public face of the Turdpol Kakistocracy is one of obfuscation and misdirection. They dribble out random words and manufactured outrage, perhaps hoping that this soaks up enough coverage to distract from actual policy. After all, there’s a reason PBS and C-Span are not ratings giants. We are a people who crave entertainment. We want to stimulate our emotions more than our intellects, and it feels good to react in a visceral fashion to the news. It can be a drug, and politicians know this.

So, on the same day the list was released, over in the Senate, Betsy DeVos was confirmed as Secretary of Education, in a 51-50 vote, with the deciding ballot cast by Vice President Pence.

DeVos is among the most unqualified and malicious of Trump’s nominees, yet only two Republican senators found the leeway to vote against her. One of the senators that voted for her, Marco Rubio, has received almost $100,000 worth of donations from DeVos and her family, more than any other senator.

Rubio, who positioned himself as the anti-Trump candidate during the primaries, and did so again after he dropped out of the race and decided to run for reelection to his senate seat, has yet to cast a ‘no’ vote for any of Trump’s nominees. The closest he came was with Rex Tillerson, but after voicing reservations in the media, Rubio fell in line like he always does. He is, and has always been, a coward. He has never had the best interests of the country at heart, transparently pursuing his own self-interest. By all appearances he is a smart and motivated man, one who is capable of being a principled legislator, but the pull of power has corrupted whatever decency he has. He clearly wants to be president someday, but that won’t happen as long as he keeps leaving a trail of craven votes and statements in his wake.