The United States’ Three Fates: Fascism, Civil War or Revolution

by Shelt Garner

A lot of options face the United States right now but one — a peaceful transfer of power. That’s just not going to happen. Either Trump wins outright and we slip into tyranny or there is a civil war or revolution.

In this scenario, Trump “wins” a second term and he continues to consolidate power gradually to the point that he gets those “12 more years” he keeps ranting about. This will happen either because he purges the media so, lulz, or he gets a Constitutional Convention. I will note, however, that Trump is not expansionist. The country is more likely to pull all its troops from everywhere across the globe and turn into something of a Hermit Kingdom. This, of course, will likely cause something akin to WW3. I could definitely see the United States form some sort of alliance with Russia after it leaves NATO. But it’s very likely that Qanon will be given free reign to round up and murder people a la the Khmer Rouge. Or, at least, Qanon would act in conjunction with a concerted effort to fill ICE Camps with the same types of people that Qanon wants dead.

Civil War
This would happen if there were dueling presidents, with a “Blue State” president and a “Red State” president. A lot depends which side gets the U.S. Military as to how, exactly this particular situation plays out. This is kind of a worst case scenario. A lot of things would have to go wrong for Trump for things to grow that dire. But he is a massive self-own artist, so anything is possible.

This is much like the civil war scenario. The difference would be that even the U.S Military implodes and no institution is spared a radical transformation as the Red and the Blue go at each other’s throats.

And, remember, none of this would happen in a vacuum. The DPRK and the Russians might get involved. And maybe even the EU. But we have to begin to think seriously about how for the first time in living memory, the United States may be an active battlefield. Good luck.

The Mueller Investigation Ends & I Smell A Rat

by Shelton Bumgarner

I smell a rat.

Unless some datapoint pops up between now and when we see some cleaned up version of The Mueller Report, I’m going to have some suspicions as to why it was wrapped up when it was.

Existing Datapoints:

— Bill Barr and Bob Mueller are close friends (apparently).
— Trump is now in a position to handily win re-election
— Don Jr. is now in a position to handily become president.
— The report comes out just as the 2020 election cycle heats up

So, all I’m saying is someone — AOC maybe? — needs to ask Bob Mueller and Bill Barr some very, very pointed questions.

Maybe the report itself will clear this all up and put to bed my concern.

Or not.

Why Haven’t We At Least Impeached The Fucker Yet?

by Shelton Bumgarner

The question of why we haven’t begun impeachment proceedings against Donald J. Trump, 45 president of the United States, is something I struggle with on a daily basis.

The short answer is, of course, that even though his high crimes against the Constitution are legion at this point, there simply isn’t the political willpower to do anything about it.

This comes in no little part from the basic paradox of Democrats impeaching a Republican President — they won’t do it unless they feel they have some bi-partisan support. Republicans, meanwhile, are always locked and loaded to impeach a Democratic president, damn the consequences because they’re shithead dipshits. As such, Democrats simply won’t do anything until either a Mueller Report comes out that would give them some sort of cover, the economy collapses or some sort of enormous bombshell drops independent of Mueller’s investigation. The only place I can think of that this might happen is from the SDNY.

Remember, it was SDNY, not Mueller, who gave Cohen an investigative root around about as deep as you can get without seeing sunshine on the other end. To date, of course, they, too, haven’t really come up with anything that would be the tipping point.

What really, really bothers me is we have Trump dead-to-rights about several things and because the economy is doing well and MAGA people are cult members, nothing is happening. Any other president would be at least impeached for the Stormy Daniels crimes, but as it stands…nothing.

I don’t really expect this to change anytime soon, either. Trump has a bloodlock on about 37% of the electorate, enough to defeat any attempt to convict him in the Senate. So, in a sense, Trump is a king right now. An elected dictator who is, for all intents and purposes, above the law.

And this isn’t going to change.

What I fear is it won’t change in time for it to really matter, even if Mueller drops a bombshell. If Mueller doesn’t drop a bombshell within the next six months, then the people who would otherwise think about impeaching Trump will kick that particular problem down the road into 2020 and say, “Let the people decide.”

The problem with that, of course, is the “people” won’t really decide, but rather a bunch of craven plutocrats who are rather content with the traitorous, felonious nature of the Trump Administration.

This whole thing of waiting for Mueller to “save” us is such a huge cop-out. It’s a national tragedy. For me, there’s no excuse at this point not to immediately at least impeach Trump. We have him dead-to-rights on massive violation of campaign finance law…and yet the Democrats are being fucking wussies on this one.

Our only recourse may be to start to be Radical Resisters and to primary anyone in the Democratic Party who doesn’t make it part of their basic policy to do everything in their power to impeach and convict Trump ASAP.

Because Trump is going to be re-elected, no doubt about it. What damage Russian fuckery doesn’t inflict, asshole American plutocrats will happily take up the slack.

Like I said, if we don’t get Trump by August 2019, we’re going to have to wait until August of 2021. And, really, it’s very possible that because Trump is an avatar for the rotting of the American civil society, it’s very possible that all of my personal gnashing of teeth over the lack of impeachment of Trump will simply bleed into my personal gnashing of teeth over Trump hurding someone like Sen. Tom Cotton to the presidency in an effort to protect his “legacy.”

Fuck MAGA.

Shelton Bumgarner is a writer and photographer in Richmond, Va. He may be reached at migukin (at) gmail (dot) com. He’s working on his first novel.

V-Log: A Sunday Afternoon Closing Argument For The Resistance #2018Midterms

by Shelton Bumgarner

Another pretty good one.

A Speculative Hot Take: What if Cynthia Nixon Wins? #NYPrimary

by Shelton Bumgarner

I honestly don’t think Cynthia Nixon is going to win, but the conditions are there for at least something interesting to happen. I’m seeing chatter on Twitter of reports of high voter turn out and the country’s mood is such that I could see The Resistance at least getting within shouting distance of a massive upset.

I don’t think we would fully comprehend the significance of a Nixon win. The moment is was confirmed, we would realize we were in a new era. Nixon would be catapulted into the ring of a prospective 2020 Democratic nominee for president and the anger and energy of the Resistance would be hard to deny.

But, like I said, I am not prepared to say she’s going to win. I just think things are going to be…interesting. This is going to be an example of the Democratic Establishment getting the shit scared out of it by the passionate Left of the Resistance. But who knows. It will be interesting.

A Nixon win would be a thunderclap going into the 2018 mid-terms. It would be the first concrete evidence that this year is not going to be run-of-the-mill. Washington would be in total shock and the Republicans would probably be quivering in abject fear as to what might happen to them come November.

Or maybe not. Maybe I’m sensing something that’s not there.

I sure do, on a personal level, need a unexpected upset tonight.

A Call To Arms, Redux: We Need A Twitter Killer App To Mobilize & Organize The Resistance

by Shelton Bumgarner

First, let me stress that I am only idly mentioning this. I have no money, can’t code and don’t want to learn. But eventually, I believe, someone is going to realize that not only does The Resistance need an app, but that same app could help kill Twitter. All you need to do is use the app initially to mobilize and organize The Resistance and then leverage it into an actual Twitter killer.

Among the things I could see this app doing are: 1) helping people register to vote 2) being a one-stop-shop for various GOTV efforts and general mobilization 3) general helping with organization of The Resistance 4) having several urgently needed features that Twitter currently doesn’t have.

If you made the on-boarding of the app really intuitive and made it so people felt connected to The Resistance on a personal, individual level, I think that would be very helpful. It’s just matter of someone doing it. I doubt it would cost all that much to develop to begin with. If you can get $50,000 together to help there being daily protests in front of the White House, you can at least get that much to develop a basic app to help The Resistance.

But, whatever, this is just fun to think about.

In Defense Of The ‘Radical Resistance’

by Shelton Bumgarner

When I say the “Radical Resistance” I’m not by any means advocating that The Resistance become violent. What I am suggesting is politically we need to take the gloves off. The only reason why I suggest this is it’s pretty obvious that a small but growing portion of The Resistance is growing more radicalized already, and I propose we embrace the energy and organization of those radicals instead of shunning them.

This won’t come without risks. You risk alienating so many people by becoming radicalized that you hurt, not help the cause. But, like I said, my sense of things is The Resistance is careening towards increased radicalization regardless of how many NeverTrump people clutch their pearls and say that just shouldn’t happen.

I think this because the usually bumpy Trump Administration is growing ever more alarming in its behavior. The Resistance can focus on dry policy issues for only so long before the base is going to grow disenchanted and take matters into its own hands. It is obvious that the 2018 mid-terms are going to be about enthusiasm. it’s going to be about which side can mobilize the base the best. So rather that fight the lurch towards political radicalization on the part of The Resistance, maybe it’s time to embrace it and try to focus it in a constructive manner.

So I would suggest we try to use the energy of increased radicalization to get people pumped to vote in the fall, to protest more, things like that. Stop worry about how we’re going to address policy issues and just get people excited to do things in a practical manner that will help The Resistance take Congress back.

The fate of our country depends on it.

Shelton Bumgarner is a writer and photographer living in Richmond, Va. He may be reached at migukin (at) gmail (dot) com.

Let’s Talk About The Left’s ‘Abolish Profit’ Versus The Right’s Well, Virtually Everything

by Shelton Bumgarner

So, there’s a picture going around of the NYDSA and their protest sign that says, in part, “Abolish Profit.”

This is a profoundly dumb slogan from an American political point of view and they will live to regret it in various ways. Having said that, if my choice is between having loonies on the Left propose “Abolish Profit” and the surreal hate found on the extreme of the Right, throw my lot in with the NYDSA.

The Right is completely devoid of positive ideas as this point and their primary avatar is, for lack of any other word, a demagogue. Trump wallows in ignorance, hate and malice. He’s just a hateful person who’s only goal is to own the moment and sate his rapacious need to accumulate as much power as possible.

I’m all for profit and the more money I make — and everyone else — the better. But now is not the time to quibble about dumb slogans on a sign. Now is the time to rally the base, energize The Resistance and bring down the Trump regime as quickly as possible.

In Trump’s Fourth Reich, Silence Now Equals Collaboration #KeepFamiliesTogether

by Shelton Bumgarner

Now that the pot is boiling, now that we’re confronted with the decision of if we are willing to tolerate immigrant children being torn from their families, we have to face the cold hard fact that silence on MAGA no longer equals complicit approval, it equal active collaboration.

I say this only because as few notable people who have otherwise been complacent about MAGA abuses have begun to speak up about this latest outrage, that core 44% of the electorate continues to adore Trump often times is just silent when confronted. They simply refuse to answer any question, express any opinion.

To me, that goes beyond being simply complicit, that’s collaboration. You are actively doing something — you are actively saying that you refuse to go on the record with any opinion. Your desire to follow Trump with a cult-like fervor is equal to your unwillingness to agree that on this specific issue, at least, Trump is wrong. You are actively — through your silence — giving aid and comfort to a monster.

If that doesn’t make YOU a monster, I don’t what does. To say you “don’t really follow politics anymore” and then turn around and blindly vote for MAGA politicians is an answer if ever there was one. If you had a soul, if you had a conscience you wouldn’t see children torn away from their families as some sort of weird political pawn to get your damn wall. You’d see them for what they are: scared children.

Given how fickle Trump is, he could very well read the tea leaves and tweet out a change in policy today or this week. Or he could see that as a no win for him relative to his base. He might see this as a perfect opportunity to stand his ground and hope for this all to blow over. In real terms, he has until November to make a decision. As long as he changes the decision by, say, mid-October the political costs of changing a policy so popular with the base are simply too high.

Therefore, it’s very possible we’re in for a pitched battle. One one side, there will be Trump and MAGA using the Big Lie while throwing out any number of other distractions and on the other side, you have everyone else who either get mad and stay mad or finally capitulate.

All I can suggest is if someone you know and love who is a known Trump/MAGA person, when they give you silence, keep at it. Don’t accept their silence this time. Press them on what their opinion is. Get them on the record one way or another. This could very well be pretty painful for all involved.

But the greater good is involved here. If enough people make Trump/MAGA people have to not only defend their position but think carefully about why they believe what believe. I’m not saying it will make that much of a different to you personally, but on a macro level there’s a chance we might whittle down that 44% of the electorate a little bit.

This is serious. This is really serious. We need to start acting like it.

Shelton Bumgarner is a writer and photographer living in Richmond, Va. You may reach him at migukin (at) gmail (dot) com.

Release The Kraken Of Popular Outrage. We’ll Need It #KeepFamiliesTogether

by Shelton Bumgarner

Very rarely is the Kraken of American civil outrage unleased. In general, it just doesn’t happen. Americans temperament is pretty even-keel and we generally are too busy raising our kids, drinking beer and watching sports to care about politics. In fact, in real terms even Vietnam wasn’t the Kraken as I imagine it. The anti-war movement was extremely divisive and was pretty much done by young men who objected to what they felt was an unnecessary and unjust war in Southeast Asia.

In fact, I would go so far as to say in modern American political history the actual Kraken has been more felt in the abstract that seen. So, what I’m saying, I guess, is we need the Kraken to pop up. We need something like what happened in South Korea where there was something akin to a “People’s Impeachment” of the president.

So, when it comes to the forced, obscene separation of immigrate children at the border seeking asylum, it’s not hyperbole to say if the United States wants to continue as it has for the last few hundred years, something extraordinary in the face of this dire situation has to happen immediately.

I say this because if you combine 44% of the population having a first reaction to all of this of evoking Romans 13 or blaming the victim with the complete Vichy nature of Congressional Republicans, you have a serious fucking problem on your hands. In effect, Trump is now a dictator by default.

If we can’t get people on the streets now, if we can’t get people calling their Senator and Representative today and every day until this cruel policy is revoked, then we lurch towards a dark and unknown future. I don’t feel I’m over reacting. There’s a real chance that Trump will batten down the hatches and go in for a pitched battle on this one. And he might very well win.

I don’t know what to tell you folks. If we can’t awaken the Kraken on this one, what’s the point of having it available at all?