This is Project LinX: The world is neither random nor cruel. It’s simply complex. We interrogate anything that looks simple and anyone promising easy answers. That causes problems. Bring it.
The contradictions and absurdities within the Trump administration mirror the contradictions within Trumpism itself. Remember all that talk about the “forgotten Americans?” and the studies finding that white people voted for Trump because they feared losing status? Remember how Trump addressed this with a cabinet of ultra pro-business 1% apparatchiks and bread and circus rallies? That’s the frame through which we should understand Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’ comments on government workers missing paychecks:
““People might have to pay a little bit of interest, but the idea that it’s paycheck or zero is not a really valid idea,” Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on CNBC, suggesting that the furloughed workers take out loans and saying he did not understand why federal workers were going to food banks. He went on: “If they never got their pay—which is not the case, they will eventually get it, but if they never got it—you’re talking about a third of a percent” of GDP. “It’s not like it’s a gigantic number overall.”
The effects will not be permanent, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow argued in a separate interview. “We’ll see a snapback right away.””
“Let Them Eat Low-Interest Loans” | The Atlantic | Annie Lowrey | 01/25/2019
Remember Brett Kavanaugh commercials? For and against tv spots hit the airwaves once his confirmation became a circus. There’s no doubt that the Shutdown will be remembered as a circus as well. While GOP commercials defending both the Government Shutdown and the manufactured crisis at the Southern border would’ve been absurd given recent polls, how is it that the Democratic Party didn’t go for the jugular with commercials juxtaposing Wilbur Ross’, Larry Kudlow’s, and Laura Trump’s comments with unpaid government workers at food pantries? Such commercials could run even after the Shutdown ended as a reminder that plutocrats serve narrow interests that are aligned against those of average Americans.
Perhaps the Democratic National Committee didn’t have the vision for such a tactic. Perhaps it didn’t consider the Shutdown worthy of a commercial. Perhaps the DNC played it safe with Nancy Pelosi waging a one-woman war against the White House instead of upsetting its own plutocrats by framing the Shutdown as another example of the 40-year war on workers. Yes, Pelosi thumped Trump. But how long until his wounds heal? Why hit a double off a weak pitcher when you could’ve parked his pitch in the stands?
Democrats won the Shutdown battle in the short-term, but lost a long-term opportunity to deliver a deeper blow to a party that wages war on its own constituents.
IMAGE SOURCE: the-white-house-1623005_1920 (CC0 Creative Commons)