Wednesday, September 29, 2021

The Lessons of "On Tyranny" #2

Chapter 2 – Defend Institutions

It is institutions that help us to preserve decency. They need our help as well. Do not speak of “our institutions” unless you make them yours by acting on their behalf. They fall one after the other unless each is defended in the beginning. So choose an institution you care about – a court, a newspaper, a law, a labor union – and take its side.

This is a huge problem for the United States and a huge change in "legislating". Trump changed the courts up and down the line. 

The 2016 - 2020  changes in the Supreme Court turned it from a trusted institution into a rubber stamp for many of his social policies. The Supreme Court has ruled, either publicly or more frequently on the Shadow Docket: to force Biden to return to Trump policies on Immigration, to end the eviction moratorium, to let a unConstitutional Abortion decision to go into effect, to prioritize Churches over Covid response (a reversal done after Amy Coney Barrett was appointed).

  • His sycophants in Congress changed the rules for Supreme Court appointments.
  • His emoluments case was drug out, then ruled obsolete.
  • His justice department fought legal subpoenas.
  • Anger at state Governors was punished by withholding funds, even disaster funding.
  • His illegal campaign contributes were ignored by the courts.
  • His illegal pressure on a foreign power for political gain was ruled not a big deal.

Yeah, our institutions are fucked and still genuflecting to Trump and his allies. Jan 6th insurgents are called “tourists” or “patriots” by Congress people. And political prisoners by others.

Trumpists were unable to control the news, but they were able to get almost half the population to disregard “fake news”, which was any news Trump didn’t like.

How badly are we doing? I’m thinking 5 out of 5 stars (5 stars being the worst).

Since Jan 1, 2021: ↔️ Unchanged. Democrats either don't have balls to effect a return to norms or, they are too stupid to do it. Neither one fills me with hope.

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