I have put this argument together for people on the left and right. If you call yourself a conservative please wade through this and think for yourself. Let’s all set the many differences in our life views aside for a moment. Americans need to reason together now or we will all soon surely suffer great losses.
Donald Trump has openly set a course to dismantle many long-standing governmental institutions. The stated* philosophy behind this tactic is that the private sector can do the work better than the government can. I wonder about this. In either case, the work has to ultimately be done by people. The main difference is that if work is done by the private corporation, the soul of that corporation is mainly driven by profits for ownership and investors. The people doing the actual work become expenses in their balance sheets. If projects are done with the US government at the helm, ideally we all could have a share in the profits of that work. It’s our government to share. But unless we are investors or owners, it is not our corporation to share. Not at all. Think on that next time someone tries to sell you trickle down anything.
The GOP advertises this philosophy but there has been zero proof that it works for over 40 years. It appears to most Americans to be a cover-up for fattening the wallets of the super-rich, and for that there is 40 years of evidence.
While many functions historically belong to the private sector, some clearly do not. For example, the military could be a private sector enterprise. They call people who go into the militia for pay mercenaries. But this is not the way we do military here in the US, and it’s probably a good thing. If making war creates corporate profits, it opens the avenue for more wars. To many, it still feels like the Vietnam war was about corporate profits.
In the USA we have public education because those who have come before us have deemed it to be in our national interest to have well educated citizens. So I have begun to wonder whether this course of dismantling government agencies so that their functions are left for corporations to do is even legal or constitutional. Still Trump is plodding ahead with corporatism. And of course, he gets to choose who gets the fat contracts. By now its also clear he has the undeclared foreign bank accounts to accept any bribes for those assignments. That can’t be good for our nation, but it is good for the Trump family if all they care about is money . And most Americans believe that today.
So how is this corporate direction working so far for our nation?
Trump’s secretaries of State have not made enough foreign assignments needed to adequately represent the United States across the globe. Weakening our world presence makes us less safe. Our presidents all take an oath to do their best to keep us safe. If this is Trump’s best, it’s incompetence – and if it’s not his best, it’s a willing attempt to sell this country out, which is also exactly what Russia, our sworn enemy, wants for America.
Trump’s secretary of Education, Betsy de Vos, does not fully believe in public education. Trump’s head of the Environmental Protection Agency is not protecting the environment. Scott Pruitt is selling out the environment the EPA was designed to protect to the highest bidders and swiftly undoing the environmental safeguards we have put in place over the last 40 years. And Trump says he is doing a great job for the economy. Yes, its a great job if you don’t really care about the citizens of this country and think of them as deficits on the balance sheet of corporate profits.
Trump is also trying to undo Medicare, Affordable Care and now even the Veterans Administration is not sacred to his party. He seems to aim to stop the VA from functioning by putting incompetent or sold-out yes men in charge, setting the VA on a path to privatization. If this becomes successful, his donors can sell the VA’s pieces to the highest bidders in big medicine, stuff their pockets – and run. This will not serve veterans and they know it. He fired the head of the VA because he was actually trying to improve things for our veterans.
Trump’s party members are in effect using the corporate raider system to bankrupt the USA, piece-by-piece – and they have the undeclared foreign bank accounts to hide what they steal. They are even trying to dismantle the Post Office. And if a corporation does not stand with Trump, and buy into his plans, like Amazon and Jeff Bezos, he tries to undo them.
All the above mentioned agencies existed before this presidency and have been in place for many presidencies, generations and in some cases centuries. These agencies exist and were formed because these agencies were deemed necessary to protect and provide for the citizens of this country that this government was designed to serve.
The people who voted for Trump did not weigh in and say we don’t want a public VA, clean air or good public education, nor did Trump run on those things. In fact, Trump’s supporters rejected Romney because he was honest and told them that he wanted more corporatism. In a democracy, a change at the top does not undo the importance of the work these established agencies were created to do for us. In an autocracy however, everything a country stands for can pivot on the whim of an authoritarian. We have seen this many times before in other countries, but never yet in the United States. Yet we are witnessing the piece-by-piece dismantling of the US government and and we are letting it happen. There are brains far smarter than Donald Trump behind this. They hide. Trump is just the spokesman for a wealthy, greedy, unpatriotic group of industrialists who want to profit by privatizing all the functions of the US government. And if that is not in the interest of the majority of Americans, and a president swears to do his best to protect our national interests, how can it be legal or constitutional?
Which brings me to this. What was the United States originally designed to do for its citizens? For that we need to look back to 1776.
What Can the Declaration of Independence Teach Us?
The enabling clauses of the the Declaration of Independence ( in italics for highlighting) is what forms the basis for the formation of this country. The colonists list their grievances with King Henry III of England, who had been ruling the colonies from an out-of-touch distance. This is where I please ask the fundamentalists, constitutionalists and Trump supporters – pay close attention and try to form your own independent opinion.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, …
Have the US citizens given consent to their president to stop protecting our environment? Negative! And when it comes to our liberty and our freedom, – how can “working with Russians to try to fix a free and fair election” be constitutional? It does not foster our liberty or freedom. It sells us all out.
There is very little Trump has done that has actually the consent of the public he serves. The public was 3:1 against his tax plan, and he/they did it anyway. He simply says things like “You elected me president, I can do what I want”, “I’m the president and you’re not”. This is not how democracy was designed to function. This is however exactly how an authoritarian oligarchy works.
The Words of a Fully-committed Authoritarian
Listen to what Putin said at a USSR hockey game to a CBS reporter. He said with an undeniable smirk “Trump is acting in accordance with his own government constitution and laws”. There is a sense that Putin knows Trump is struggling with the machinations and pesky laws of a democracy. You can listen to the interview by clicking on the photo.
Putin is a dictator who often silences his opposition the old-fashioned way. He does not have to abide by a constitution. His will is the constitution. There is no democracy in Russia. We are in the process of losing that here now.
Trump clearly wishes he had Putin’s supreme power. He has said so. He also said it might be a good thing if one could be president for life. Trump is actually working on that, step-by-step – and I get the distinct impression that the Russian help he is getting is more than just election meddling. Putin seems to be feeding him the steps he needs to take to become fascist authoritarian in the USA, like he is in Russia. I also say that because I know Trump is not that smart, nor is he a historian in any sense of that word. I went to Penn and saw him paying for his homework in 1967. We all knew he was no scholar. Like I said, other brains are behind this assault on democracy. I digress. Back on track.
The Declaration of Independence goes on to enumerate distinct grievances which form the reasons the colonists needed to get free of King George III and English rule. The colonists complaints sound frighteningly similar to the complaints the left has against Trump today. These are quotes from the 1776 document:
The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having the object to establish an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good. – That means George III held himself above the rule of law.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, and … he has utterly neglected to attend to them. This reminds me of Trump dismantling the EPA and ignoring climate science. All our citizens need and have clearly demanded that our government work to provide clean air and water. A clean environment speaks to the right to life.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, … This is reminiscent of the GOP voter intimidation laws, Gerrymandering and census tampering. trump also attacks immigrants and people with brown skin.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures. Reminiscent of when the GOP questioned witnesses in the Mueller probe in NYC rather than DC. Fatiguing opponents into compliance is so Trump-style one would think he studied King George III. But no. Trump does not study.
He has endeavored to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, … This feels like what Trump is doing to the Mexicans and DACA kids.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries. Trump repeatedly fires staff that do not bend to his will. He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power. He has obstructed the Administration of Justice … How amazingly similar to today’s conversations this all seems to be.
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world. Trump’s trade war fits right in there.
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent: Trump’s billionaire tax relief bill fits here. And really, Americans were 75%-25% against his tax bill. He did not have our consent!
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever. This is what the nuclear option would do to America. King George did this and Trump is asking for it.
He is at this time transporting Armies of foreign Mercenaries to …. complete works of tyranny unworthy of a …civilized nation. And these remind me of the Russian accomplices Trump worked with to gain power. Yes, you have to adjust a bit for 250 years, but not that much.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us …. This is exactly what Trump does and has done since day one with his birther stance. He divides the nation into two artificial camps, weakens them both, and tries to conquer that way. His strategy is the house divided theory incarnate.
History does repeat itself. What King George III was a saw in the colonies was a way to make a buck without caring about the colonists. This is the same with Trump and the GOP. They view everything through the lens of their personal profits. They even try to enroll our citizens into thinking profit is all that matters in life.
I’m going to stop this now and not recommend the course out of this for us. We all know we have to vote out the president’s party in November. That is the only way out of the Trump Error. Yes, i said error – not era. Hopefully it will be over November, in less that 200 days. We are, in that case, 70% through the Trump Error.
It’s also worth mentioning that Fareed Zakaria just reminded us the Germany was the world’s most progressive democracy when Hitler destroyed the machinations of democracy – piece-by-piece. History repeats itself.
I will close with this. In the later part of his life, George III had recurrent, and eventually permanent, mental illness. Sic semper tyrannus. The voters are coming!