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Pantagruel

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Member since: Thu Dec 1, 2016, 04:57 PM
Number of posts: 1,739

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Bizarre hypothetical: Has Covid saved the Republic?

Simply put, absent Trump's mis-handling of CV-19, would Trump have gotten a 2nd term and completed his attempted coup?
Not such a crazy idea given the closeness of the EC battlegrounds.

Statehood is the problem

The idea that 50 states under the U.S.A. banner, each with their own legal structure, can ever function efficiently to fight common national problems has become obsolete. We need NATIONAL Electoral systems, ID's, gun laws, drug laws , medical standards, etc., etc.
Dr. Fauci bemoans the symptoms, not the underlying structural weakness.

https://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/531787-fauci-states-differing-responses-a-major-weakness-in-fighting-coronavirus

'It's A Good Night To Be A Corrupt Republican Congressman'

Not so much for the rule of law. The GOP likes to bill themselves as the party of law and order, now a laughable claim. In 2016, 63 GOP million voters ignored Trump boasting of being a sexual predator. The GOP political machine ignored a long list of signs that criminal behavior would not be out of character for this candidate and happily nominated him. And criminal behavior was delivered in spades.
Every future GOP candidate needs to be painted with this righteous slime, Forever!!

What leverage can Biden employ

to get Trump to behave for 30 days?

Can he threaten a Special Prosecutor on Day One?

Can he release an unredacted Mueller report Day One?

Can he rehire the Mueller team to finish the job Barr pulled them off of, no longer POTUS , prosecutors can pursue Trump after Day One.

Can he release Trump's tax returns on Day One.

Can he order surveillance on Trump as a national security risk on Day One?

What else?

Is Trump looking to cut a deal?

Pardons and threats to scuttle Covid relief just demonstrations of the damage he can cause without a deal. He's scared and wants a deal not to be criminally prosecuted post presidency?
Can a deal be constructed, should a deal be offered? What could it look like, who would sign on?

20 pardons

and he's just getting started.

Pardons as reward for political loyalty
Pardons to encourage obstruction of justice
Pardons to fire up his base

Never has the Presidency been debased to this degree, Lady Liberty weeps.

Our "revered" constitution

seems to have holes in it big enough to drive a truck through.Jut a few issues:

Emoluments clause apparently undefined and unenforceable.

Electoral college has resulted in 2 of the last 3 presidencies going to the candidate with fewer popular votes. "Will of the people", nah.

Abuse of presidential pardon power, not a major problem until we get a POTUS who refuses to follow traditional norms of decency and uses pardons to obstruct justice.

The two Senators per state concept has resulted in obscene disproportionate representation. In fact , six senators from California, Texas, and New York represented the same number of people as the 62 senators from the smallest 31 states.

What will it take to fix this?

Post Trump Presidency

Powers that have been granted to or seized by a POTUS have rarely been voluntarily relinquished by his successors. The authors below outline some areas of Presidential powers that need to be critically reviewed and redefined.


"In After Trump: Reconstructing the Presidency, Bob Bauer and Jack Goldsmith provide a comprehensive roadmap for reform of the presidency in the post-Trump era.In fourteen chapters they offer more than fifty concrete proposals concerning presidential conflicts of interest, foreign influence on elections, pardon power abuse, assaults on the press, law enforcement independence, Special Counsel procedures, FBI investigations of presidents and presidential campaigns, the role of the White House Counsel, war powers, control of nuclear weapons, executive branch vacancies, domestic emergency powers, how one administration should examine possible crimes by the president of a prior administration, and more.Each set of reform proposals is preceded by rich descriptions of relevant presidential history, and relevant background law and norms, that place the proposed reforms in context. All of the proposals are prefaced by a chapter that explains how Trump--and, in some cases, his predecessors--conducted the presidency in ways that justify these reforms.After Trump will thus be essential reading for the coming debate on how to reconstruct the laws and norms that constitute and govern the world’s most powerful office..."

Applied to the Trump years

the conclusion seems undeniable :

"Typical” features of Fascism writes the novelist and semiotician, Umberto Eco, “cannot be organized into a system; many of them contradict each other, and are also typical of other kinds of despotism or fanaticism. But it is enough that one of them be present to allow fascism to coagulate around it.”

1.The cult of tradition. “One has only to look at the syllabus of every fascist movement to find the major traditionalist thinkers. The Nazi gnosis was nourished by traditionalist, syncretistic, occult elements.”
2.The rejection of modernism. “The Enlightenment, the Age of Reason, is seen as the beginning of modern depravity. In this sense Ur-Fascism can be defined as irrationalism.”
3.The cult of action for action’s sake. “Action being beautiful in itself, it must be taken before, or without, any previous reflection. Thinking is a form of emasculation.”
4.Disagreement is treason. “The critical spirit makes distinctions, and to distinguish is a sign of modernism. In modern culture the scientific community praises disagreement as a way to improve knowledge.”
5.Fear of difference. “The first appeal of a fascist or prematurely fascist movement is an appeal against the intruders. Thus Ur-Fascism is racist by definition.”
6.Appeal to social frustration. “One of the most typical features of the historical fascism was the appeal to a frustrated middle class, a class suffering from an economic crisis or feelings of political humiliation, and frightened by the pressure of lower social groups.”
7.The obsession with a plot. “Thus at the root of the Ur-Fascist psychology there is the obsession with a plot, possibly an international one. The followers must feel besieged.”
8.The enemy is both strong and weak. “By a continuous shifting of rhetorical focus, the enemies are at the same time too strong and too weak.”
9.Pacifism is trafficking with the enemy. “For Ur-Fascism there is no struggle for life but, rather, life is lived for struggle.”
10.Contempt for the weak. “Elitism is a typical aspect of any reactionary ideology.”
Everybody is educated to become a hero. “In Ur-Fascist ideology, heroism is the norm. This cult of heroism is strictly linked with the cult of death.”
11.Machismo and weaponry. “Machismo implies both disdain for women and intolerance and condemnation of nonstandard sexual habits, from chastity to homosexuality.”
12.Selective populism. “There is in our future a TV or Internet populism, in which the emotional response of a selected group of citizens can be presented and accepted as the Voice of the People.”
13.Ur-Fascism speaks Newspeak. “All the Nazi or Fascist schoolbooks made use of an impoverished vocabulary, and an elementary syntax, in order to limit the instruments for complex and critical reasoning.”

The rationale for stifling the 126

I see the theory here but have no idea about the mechanics of making it happen, votes needed ,courts to file in, etc.??


"The reasoning here is very simple. All members of Congress swear an oath to protect and defend the Constitution, which establishes a republican form of government. The whole point of a republic is that contests for power are conducted through a framework of rules and democratic elections, where all parties agree to respect the result whether they lose or win. Moreover, the premise of this lawsuit was completely preposterous — arguing in effect that states should not be allowed to set their own election rules if that means more Democrats can vote — and provides no evidence whatsoever for false allegations of tens of thousands of instances of voter fraud. Indeed, several of the representatives who support the lawsuit were themselves just elected by the very votes they now say are fraudulent. The proposed remedy — having Republican-dominated legislatures in only the four states that gave Biden his margin of victory select Trump electors — would be straight-up election theft.

In other words, this lawsuit, even though it didn't succeed, is a flagrant attempt to overturn the constitutional system and impose through authoritarian means the rule of a corrupt criminal whose doltish incompetence has gotten hundreds of thousands of Americans killed. It is a "seditious abuse of the judicial process," as the states of Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin jointly wrote in their response to Texas trying to steal their elections.

The Constitution, as goofy and jerry-rigged as it is, stipulates that insurrectionists who violate their oath are not allowed to serve in Congress. Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment, written to exclude Confederate Civil War traitors, says that "No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress … who … having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress … to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same[.]" How the Supreme Court ruled, or whether Republicans actually believe their lunatic claims, is irrelevant. It's still insurrection even if it doesn't work out.

Democrats would have every right, both under the Constitution and under the principle of popular sovereignty outlined in the Declaration of Independence, to convene a traitor-free Congress (also including similar acts committed by Republican senators like Lindsey Graham, David Perdue, Kelly Loeffler, and others), and pass such laws as would be necessary to preserve the American republic. That might include a national popular vote to decide the presidency, ironclad voting rights protections, a ban on gerrymandering either national or state district boundaries, full representation for the citizens of D.C. and Puerto Rico, regulations on internet platforms that are inflaming violent political extremism, a clear legal framework for the transfer of power that ends the lame duck period, and so on. States would be forced to agree to these measures before they can replace their traitorous representatives and senators. If the Supreme Court objects, more pro-democracy justices can be added.

This wouldn't be the first time such a thing has happened, either. Immediately after the Civil War, the Radical Republican Congress refused to seat delegations from the former rebellious states until they were satisfied with the progress of Reconstruction. Southern states were forced to ratify the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments — which guaranteed due process and universal male suffrage — before their congressional delegations would be seated. (As a consequence, those delegations included numerous Black representatives, until Reconstruction was overthrown.)

It is virtually impossible to imagine the ancient, timid fossils that run the Democratic Party even considering this kind of thing (though remarkably, Rep. Bill Pascrell of New Jersey has) because it would require courage, vision, and honestly reckoning with the parlous state of the nation. It would not be illegal, but it would be a step beyond narrow legal proceduralism and into the uncharted waters of aggressive political innovation and raw will-to-power. It could conceivably touch off armed unrest in several states.

But it's not hard to see where the current conservative trajectory is headed. While elected Republicans have tried to overturn the election using increasingly blatant methods, top conservative pundits are mulling the idea of secession, as their treasonous fire-eater forebears did 160 years ago. The lie that Biden stole the election is now official GOP dogma. By the same token, it is not a coincidence that the Republican Party is ignoring the deadly pandemic (if not actively spreading the virus) while they try to overturn the Constitution. They feel they can safely ignore the welfare of the American people, because they are not accountable to them.

Unless this escalating conservative extremism halts from the inside somehow — which is not remotely in sight anywhere — this can only end eventually in a violent confrontation, or (much more likely) Democrats will simply give up and let themselves be defeated. Still, this country was founded by people who thought it was worth putting their lives at hazard to throw off tyrannical rule. Perhaps some of that spirit can once again be found."

The above from an earlier DU post

https://www.democraticunderground.com/1016279658

theweek.com
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