by Shelt Garner
I have Traditionalist relatives — whom I love dearly — who were all-in with the MAGA Republican talking points about the initial stages of the fishing expedition known as the Durham Investigation. They really believed that Durham found some sort of wide spread Deep State conspiracy against the Trump Administration guided by Hillary Clinton. Or something equally annoying.
Anyway, now that it seems as though the Durham Investigation is wrapping up pretty much having found nothing and having wasted a lot of money, I think the whole shitshow is a window into how much trouble the United States is in. People who should otherwise know better — educated, angry white men — have succumb to the siren call of the MAGA New Right. If you lose your Traditionalists to fascism, your democracy is on its last legs.
But here we are, that’s exactly what’s happened.
So, as I keep saying, as part of the 2024 presidential election cycle the United States faces the existential choice of autocracy or civil war. There is no middle ground other, than, say, a military junta maybe. I say this because, by definition, a Republican president means autocracy. It doesn’t matter if it’s Trump, DeSantis or Youngkin.
The spectrum whereby Republicans operate on a policy basis has shifted so far to the Right and is so natively undemocratic that it’s just not possible for American democracy to survive if we have a Republican president. This is just a more extreme version of how George W. Bush ran as a “compassionate conservative,” but, in general, on a practical basis far more conservative than that.
Of course, if someone as bland and vacuous as Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin becomes POTUS, the transition to autocracy will probably be a lot more gradual — but it will happen. The Republican Party, on an institutional basis has grown so radical and hates democracy so much that, lulz, even someone as ostensibly moderate and mediocre as Youngkin would ultimately become America’s first autocrat given any power.
But let me be clear — in the end, America’s fate rests in Trump’s tiny, tiny little hands. He could, unto himself, on a personal basis cause a civil war in a number of different ways. Yet I still wonder if I’m over estimating him — again. He’s just so stupid and so lazy that anything is possible.