…the Constitution. “High crimes and misdemeanors” deals not with ineptitude, lack of talent, intelligence, vision. Nor is there any word of cruelty, conceit, deceit. Nor of ignorance, purposely maintained. Nor of pomposity, threat, megalomania, disloyalty, or failure to protect and preserve the nation.
Blame us liberals (Democrats, moderate Republicans) who refused to believe that the norms of behavior could possibly include a chief executive like the one we have now, a man so self-enamored that he cannot see (let alone sense) the damage and real harms (in economics, diplomacy, honesty and trust) he is causing around the world.
Blame us for assuming that people in this country would, sooner rather than later, come to their senses and vote for a system of government (regardless of its leader) with which the nation had prospered for 240 years.
Blame us for DOING THIS TWICE: in 2004/5 when George Bush was re-elected, and all Europe muttered “How could they do this again?”
Blame us for lazily assuming common sense would save us all. For allowing a charlatan to busker his wares , marketing them to the neediest, the least sophisticated, the already dumbed-down citizens of 21st century America. For allowing him to present bread and circuses rather than ideas, policy, truth and concern.
Blame us for thinking that our fellow citizens were smarter, more savvy, more on to the incredible.
Blame these benighted survivors of the crash of 2008 for believing that the speeches and hoop-la (and free hats) of this new sort of candidate were toys sent by someone who not only remembered them but who sympathized with them.
Blame them for not realizing this man had no bottom lines, no moral compass – in effect had no love for anyone outside his immediate family and fortune-making machine. Blame them for not realizing that he had neither time nor inclination to help anyone improve his or her life.
Blame them for not understanding that this a was a Prime User. He may shout about needing and demanding loyalty, but his loyalty to those who did vote for him was cast instantly aside when he admitted he could have become king without their help. And he crowed that he certainly didn’t need them now that he already was.
But the primary responsibility for the mess in which we find ourselves today , the day after the repeal and replacement of health care plunged to oblivion, is Mr. Trump’s.
Not that he hasn’t had a lot of help. The pack of enablers in Congress – from McConnell to Ryan to members who weren’t sure which way to go – should they stick around to see what happened, should they sit on their hands and watch dismemberment? Should they keep their heads tucked between their shoulders, hoping not to be noticed by Zeus and his Augean machine?
What seems clearest is that Congress had been persuaded that their first responsibility was to serve the Donald, not the nation, not their constituents or veterans or teachers or the ill. It apparently has little to do with keeping world peace steady. Or the balance of trade more or less even-Steven. Or the health of women, seniors, children.
But WAIT! If you subscribe in the next 30 seconds….!
The skies above are lightening. Out of the West comes a battered bespurred Mountain Man accompanied by two very determined, full-skirted b-girls with brains and guts. Better, they surfaced after a goodly portion of the country (all but 17 percent) began to organize, began no longer to accept what seemed to becoming a norm. The stubborn but unyielding trio- with a few sidekicks from the South – watched and learned from the crowds in the streets shouting “Enough!”
It’s too early to estimate their effect on our nation’s forward progress. But there is it is, anyway: a halt to the King’s narcissism, to his misunderstanding of what the nation means to the world, of what it means to its inhabitants. No one likes to see his home trashed without the promise of repair. And while the Constitution is an indistinct insurance plan, it’s what can be used to pull us all up to normalcy.
We cannot afford to let these few White Hats save the township alone. Unlike the good folk in church in “High Noon,” we cannot let our years of support fade against our attempts to make civilization the norm, not the exception. Cooper’s crowd was afraid. We must not be. We must convince ourselves that the value of our nation- its status, its leadership, its gentle persuasion (sometimes not quite so gentle as all that) – can and should be able to beat the gang from Queens to pulp.
Perhaps in time we’ll be able – one base at a time – to admit we made a collective mistake.
And the nation that can do that has the ability and talent and brainpower to be able to alter an errant narrative, and with a great deal of effort (the next three years) undo all the misery and shenanigans that have been foisted upon it by know-nothings, care-nothings, plan for nothings.