In the real world HRC is President and the GOP is beginning a painful reform process that will lead to a far better conservative party and a healthy American democracy.
In our consensus hallucination a walking tire fire is President, the GOP is further from reform than ever, and smart Dems are reading Josh Marshall’s advice. Oh, and the wake-up button isn’t working.
While we’re waiting for wakefulness we might as well come up with a plan or two. Plan one is to address the root cause of non-college misery. That will be useful if we survive (hint: avoid war with China) to get a sane government again.
Plan two is about getting a sane government. Towards that end we need to save the GOP from its addiction to the unreal. Unreality is a dangerous drug, after decades of abuse the GOP is in desperate need of rehab …
From Tabloids to Facebook: the Reality Wars (revised from my original)
I’ve been thinking about Russia’s successful hacking of the 2016 US election. It shouldn’t be seen in isolation.
It should be understood as part of the ancient human struggle with delusion and illusion — the reality wars.
In the US the reality wars were once bipartisan; each party struggled to separate fact from fantasy. Over the past few decades the GOP stopped fighting, they embraced the unreal. From Reagan to Gingrich to the Tea Party to Trump. By the 21st century we began seeing books like “The Republican War on Science”.
Unreality spread like a virus. AM talk radio was infested. Then came Drudge and Fox. Later Breitbart and finally the Facebook fake news stream. From the Clinton “murders” to birtherism to child pizza porn slaves.
This wasn’t bipartisan. The anti-reality meme, a core historic component of fascism, became concentrated in the GOP. Russia jumped on board, but Russia is more of a plague carrier than an intelligent agent. They lost their reality-war in the 90s. All their news is unreal now. Putin, like Trump, takes the fakes.
Trump’s victory is a triumph of the unreal. Of Will, I suppose. Now it threatens us all.
The rebellion against reason, against the perception of the real, is old. It’s a core component of fascism, but it’s much older than fascism. The Enlightenment was a setback for the unreal, but it wasn’t a final defeat. Now, in our troubled 3rd millennium, anti-reason is strong. It has taken over Russia. It has taken over the GOP, and Trump’s GOP has taken over America.
Somehow we have to rescue the GOP from it’s addiction to the unreal. That would be hard if it had been defeated. Now it seems impossible.
But there is a way. We need to vote GOP.
Vote GOP … in the primaries that is. In my home of Minnesota the Dem contenders are all pretty reasonable. I can send some money and volunteer to support the party, but my primary/caucus vote isn’t needed. On the other hand, the Minnesota GOP has lots of reality denialists running for office. I can use my primary vote to favor relatively sane GOP contenders.
If even half of Dems vote GOP in primaries we can ally with sane conservatives to pull the GOP back from the brink. Yes, there are a few sane conservatives. They are a dying breed, but there is room to ally with them here.
Then, in the election, we vote Dem. If America is lucky the Dems win. If America is unwise the GOP wins — but it’s a saner GOP. A setback, but not a catastrophe.
Work for a sane GOP. As a good Dem, vote GOP.