After all that has happened in past days, Donald Trump’s approval rating remains steady in the mid to high thirties. In fact, today saw a noticeable bump, probably as his base bathes in the liquid warmth of its own fecal bigotry while Trump tackles the scourge of patriots serving in the military.
Here is just a sampling of what we now face (listed in no particular order):
- The White House, now a cauldron of filth and vulgarity, is aflame as its Communications Director, Anthony Scaramucci, is at war with its other senior staff; Scaramucci recently had a charming back-and-forth with journalist Ryan Lizza:
“Reince [Priebus] is a fucking paranoid schizophrenic, a paranoiac,” Scaramucci said. He channelled Priebus as he spoke: “ ‘Oh, Bill Shine is coming in. Let me leak the fucking thing and see if I can cock-block these people the way I cock-blocked Scaramucci for six months.’ ” …
… “I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own cock,” he said, speaking of Trump’s chief strategist. “I’m not trying to build my own brand off the fucking strength of the President. I’m here to serve the country.”
- The US Senate is tying itself in knots with repeal bills and skinny bills and fat bills and poison pills. The Senate’s entire legislative process has been spun into an unrecognizable farce more worthy of the Russian Duma than the deliberative body envisioned by our founders. (Just now Republican Senators are announcing that they will refuse to vote for the latest iteration of TrumpCare unless they secure a guarantee that the House of Representatives will not allow it to become law.)
- The federal judiciary is being stacked with political hacks without the intellectual firepower to distinguish between Dred Scott v Sanford and Roe v Wade.
- Trump’s Attorney General, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions The Third, is claiming that the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission does not speak for the United States on employment matters (at least where anti-LGBTQ discrimination is concerned).
- Spokespeople for the Boy Scouts of America are feverishly backpedaling and apologizing after the buffoon-in-chief wrecked their annual Jamboree.
- Trump is being publicly scolded like a schoolchild by Senators (for undermining the independence of the Department of Justice); by Generals (for trying to set US Department of Defense policy by twitter edict); and by lawmakers and his own State-Department diplomats (for balking at veto-proof Russia-sanctions legislation).
In summary, Trump’s chaotic narcissism has infected the West Wing with a gangrenous rot, likely requiring amputation; nearly every institution in national politics is broken; non-political institutions as elemental to American life as the Boy Scouts and the US Armed Forces have been thrown into chaos, defending themselves and their missions after being shaken to their cores by Trump’s recklessness; and the President of the United States is being lectured like a middle-school imp who just ruined the DC field trip for his whole Republican class.
It’s destructive, it’s puerile, it’s dangerous, it’s unseemly, and it’s humiliating.
And yet 35% to 40% of Americans behold it and say, “That’s what I wanted.” What does that say about them?
What it says to me is that they are un-American. They didn’t send Donald Trump to Washington, DC to “shake things up” or “drain the swamp” or “make America great again.” They sent Trump to Washington, DC to break everything, and by everything, I don’t mean partisan gridlock and gratuitous obstructionism and the oligarchic decay of American politics; I mean the legislative branch created by Article I of the United States Constitution, the executive branch created by Article II of the United States Constitution, and the judicial branch created by Article III of the United States Constitution.
Trump’s “base” sent him to Washington, DC to destroy the foundations of our institutions, our democratic republic, our very decency.
And they’re cheering while he does it.