Resistance Real Talk

by Shelton Bumgarner

Here are some things to think about if you consider yourself a member of The Resistance and you think any type of saving event may be around the corner.

1. We’re in the wilderness
We need to accept that there’s no Blue Wave that’s going to save us anytime soon. Even though Donald Trump is at 36% approval right now, that is the base and it has absolute power over the Vichy Republican party. So, we have at least, at the very minimum, two years before anything will happen to Trump in real terms. Trump could literally, and I’m not joking, strangle someone live on 5th Avenue on FOX News and the Republicans in Congress would say the victim had it coming.

So, save your outrage.

2. Don’t Rage, Engage
This is probably the most important thing. I keep saying this because I believe it. If we don’t engage with people who we disagree with, then tribal politics will win the day and Trump will only grow more powerful. It’s tough to this, of course. It’s too easy to just get mad, stay mad and not really do anything to do the very basics of democracy and civil society: talk to people you disagree with.

I have to admit that I’ve not really gotten to this point myself. I’m still too angry. But it’s something to strive for. That’s my goal down the road. Hopefully in a few months I won’t be as angry anymore and I’ll be able to do as I keep telling everyone else to do.

3. A dystopia may be around the corner
Another reason to engage, not rage, is that there is dark, dystopian future ahead of us should there be one major terrorist attack on American soil while Trump is president. This is a very real possibility. We may find ourselves in a truly fascist state a lot sooner than we realize. People are already commenting that Trump seems to almost baiting terrorists to attack the States. Probably because he is. He wants it. He really does.

4. Stop re-ligating the past
Lastly, we need to stop talking about the past and how things were different under Obama. That era is over. Those days are over. We’re now out of power and what’s worse, things are so extreme that we have to call ourselves The Resistance.

All of this boils down to a tough, narrow road ahead for The Resistance. History does not go in a straight line and we’re going to suffer a lot of setbacks before anything tangible happens that we can hang our hope on actually happens.

America Is 1 Major Terrorist Attack On US Soil From A Dystopian Nightmare

by Shelton Bumgarner

Given the surreal nature of Donald Trump’s tweet’s this morning about the terrorist attacks in London, it is pretty obvious that we’re all one major terrorist attack on US soil from a dystopian nightmare. I’m being serious.

It’s almost as if Trump is itching for the worst to happen so he can tap into the fear and anger such an event would evoke to really fuck things up. It’s almost beyond our worst nightmares that such a thing might happen. But’s very obvious that it could, in fact, occur.

Trump has always been more of an opportunist than a populist and he would quickly use a 9/11 scale attack to do a mind-boggling amount of damage to American civil society. Things that we only read about in dystopian novels, may, in fact, become a reality.

I guess the whole point is I don’t have much hope right now. I need something I can point to, something actionable and real that shows there even is a Resistance at all. But the sooner the Resistance realizes it’s in the wilderness for the long-term, the sooner we’ll stop being outraged by every horrible thing Trump does and start to think about how we can engage people who we disagree with in a substantive manner.

Only by engaging people from Trumplandia will The Resistance eventually be victorious. It’s not an easy path. It’s a narrow, difficult one because it forces us to come out of our “safe spaces” and to stop worrying about being triggered. We have to figure out how someone could vote for a racist, bigoted, misogynist in good faith. Because if we don’t they will do it again in 2018, again in 2020 and yet again every other opportunity they get.

I have no easy answers. I don’t know what the answer is. But we have to realize that should there be a major terrorist attack on US soil over the next four to eight years, there may be no looking back. We may enter an era unlike any other we’ve experienced as a nation to date.

The Trump’s Position On The Paris Accord Is A National Embarrassment

by Shelton Bumgarner

I tried to watch some of Nikki Haley’s opinion on the Paris Accord on Face The Nation and I got too angry. Instead of being the leader of the free world, the Trump Administration more concerned about a few thousand coal jobs in West Virginia.

So, as the world grows hotter and hotter and the weather more fucked up, Trump and his evil cohort Steve Bannon try to figure out how squeeze as many votes out of coal minders in 2020. It’s all very sad. When the history of this era is written, it would be sad if historians mark the Trump Administration as when we were all fucked beyond hope.

It wouldn’t be such a big deal if there were some sane center-Right people willing stand up to Trump. But no one will. They’re all so co-opted, all so Vichy and complicit, that there’s simply no one to turn to. And it’s not going to change anytime soon.

Trump isn’t going anywhere. He could literally kill someone on FOX News in a ritual sacrifice the talking heads of FOX News would say the victim had it coming.

So, we need to start being realistic. There will be no “Blue Wave” in 2018. The entire system is so corrupt and works against change that the only hope we have is 2024 and that’s just because they’re an open seat. But, really, there’s nothing we can do. Nothing at all. We just have to engage. We have to figure out on an individual level how to keep the American spirit alive.

North American Scum: Please Trump, For The Love Of God, Don’t Go To London

by Shelton Bumgarner

Apparently, there is some talk on the part of White House staff that Donald Trump might make a trip to London in solidarity with the city after the recent terrorist attack on London Bridge. THIS IS A BAD IDEA.

This is such an horrific idea on any number of different levels. First, and foremost, there are likely to be huge — enormous — protests in London should Trump show up. And, given that Trump went on a manic tweet storm this morning attacking the Mayor of London, he did not exactly help his case.

Then there is the fact that Trump would be grossly politicizing something he has no business politicizing. He just needs to let London and Great Britain grieve. He should just shut up and, if nothing else, lead the free world like he was elected to do.

But who am I kidding. Trump is tone deaf that he will barge not only into the grief of London, but a national general election campaign taking place in Great Britain right now. He just shouldn’t do it. Please, for all that is holy, Trump, stay away from London and Great Britain right now.


Trump’s Muslim Ban Is Illegal & Un-American

by Shelton Bumgarner

I understand why some people are scared of Muslims as a whole. I get it. It makes sense. But if you scratch the surface just a tiny bit, the argument for a Muslim travel ban falls apart, especially on a Constitutional level. Trump can’t seem to make up his mind if it’s a ban or not.

He tweets about it being a ban, then his lawyers and White House spokesman says it’s not. It’s all very surreal. But the whole thing is un-American because America isn’t supposed to discriminate against you because of your religion and the Constitution as as much itself.

But that doesn’t seem to phase Trumplandia. That doesn’t seem to phase Trump’s supporters. I don’t really understand how people can so willfully go down this dark and scary path that Trump is leading them down. Trump’s vision of “American carnage” is so completely bonkers that I struggle to understand how anyone could possibly support it.

And, yet, people do.

This is all a part of how much of a clusterfuck, a dumpster fire Trump’s administration is to date. I keep struggling for an answer and I find none. I keep trying to figure out what it all means, and there doesn’t seem to be anything that makes any sense.

But we have to try to engage. We have to keep the faith. We have to have hope.

Trump’s Twitter Freak Out Over The London Attack Is Not Productive

by Shelton Bumgarner

So our ever-so-esteemed 45th president, Donald J. Trump did not send his “thoughts and prayers” to the victims of the recent terrorists attack in London. No, instead of doing that he freaked the fuck out. It really makes you wonder what he will do when a real tragedy strikes American shores.

As an American, I find this embarrassing. We have a president who obviously is completely unhinged and is bringing down the dignity of the office every day he continues to serve in his present capacity. And there doesn’t seem to be anything we can do about it. The Republicans are completely callow and Vichy and that is why we are in a surreal and chronic Constitutional crisis.

That is why things are so difficult and aren’t going to get any easier any time soon. The normal levers of power just aren’t working. And not until the mythical “Blue Wave” occurs in 2018 will anything change. And, at this point, it’s very mythical and hypothetical. There’s just no evidence at all that Trump is going anywhere for the next four, if not eight years.

We need effective leadership and that’s just something that Trump can’t provide us right now. He feeds off of fear and division. He feeds off of us fearing “the other” and watching too much FOX News. I just don’t know what we can do to fix this problem anytime soon.

There are some titanic things afoot in the American political psyche that can’t be fixed easily or, even at all I’m afraid. The Baby Boomers are growing older and more conservative every day. Trump and Steve Bannon are surprisingly adept at playing to the base and keeping the opposition divided. These are all basic issues that we’re just going to have to deal with.

As I keep saying — a lot — the only thing we can really do is not rage, but be engaged. If we do our personal part to keep civil society intact while we suffer through the Trumplandia era, then I think maybe things might work out. But it’s tough. It’s tough not to think that someone who simply disagrees with you isn’t trolling you. Maybe they’re not. Maybe they honestly just disagree with you.

So, keep engaging is all I can say at this point. Keep fighting the good fight. That’s all we got.

A Personal Appeal To Hollywood To Produce Movies About Trumplandia

By Shelton Bumgarner

I have made similar appeals several times before, but the continuing epic silence on the part of Hollwyood when it comes to Trumplandia leaves me puzzled. I have not heard about any remakes of Being There, or 1984. I have no heard of any movies in product that would adapt The Mule portion of The Foundation Saga.

If there was a lot of buzz about such movies being produced, then I would at least have some sense that the shock and awe that Donald Trump evoked within civil society might finally have been overcome. But, as of yet, I am not hearing any such buzz. Movies don’t happen in a vacuum. You can’t just make one without someone, somewhere taking note of it being in production.

I am aware that it takes time for scripts to be written and produced. That goes without saying, but you’d think some really talented coke head in Hollywood would have at least finished a script by this point that would be something of an Apocalypse Now of the Trump Era.

I think maybe some of the problem is civil society has yet to figure out what all this means. Is this Watergate? Is this Vietnam? Is it something else completely? I guess I’m being extremely impatient for more than one reason.
All The President’s men came out after Watergate, as did Apocalypse Now. So, maybe if I want civil society to respond contemporaneous to these tragic, surreal events, I’m going to have to rely upon Saturday Night Live or the monologue of The Late Show.

And, yet, given that there is obviously but an audience and a marketplace for art that addresses Trumplandia head-on, you’d think the process might get sped up a little bit. We live in unprecedented, bizarre times and what I wouldn’t do for a movie about Trump written by the folks that produce South Park or The Simpsons. The Simpsons, oddly enough, of late have become more relevant through some the shorts they have been producing on the fly.

Maybe things just haven’t gotten as dire as they need to get for what I want to happen, to happen. Just looking at my twitter account, things seem to be pretty fucking surreal. Things really are dire enough for the usual years-long gestation for content to be sped up a little bit.

If anything, the delay on the part of people with actual talent makes me — someone with only marginal talent — want to produce my own content to make myself feel better, if nothing else. But hopefully civil society will strike back sooner rather than later.

It’s our only hope.

Don’t Rage, Engage: What We Need Is A Good Novel About Life Under Trump

by Shelton Bumgarner

In fits and starts, I’m beginning to work on a novel that’s something of a metaphor for life under Trump. I have been working on a novel just in general, but the concept I was working with grew increasingly meh. So, I’ve decided to spice is up a little bit by trying to tell the same general story but also telling a metaphor for life under Trump.

It’s likely going to take me a long time to finish it if I do it the way I want to, but given that there’s no sign Donald Trump is going anywhere, there doesn’t seem any reason to believe it won’t be timely by the time I finish it.

I’ve decided that the best way to go about it is to make the story something of a surreal sci-fi satire. Something that might not only make you think, but cause a little bit of a chuckle from its absurdity. The fact that I’m using my anger towards Trump’s agenda to create art goes well with my general belief that the time for outrage is over.

Artists, as creative people, need to use the one weapon we have that we can easily use: our talents. I’m not saying I’m all that talented, but I do enjoy writing and I do, in fact, want to write a novel so the concept I have in my head is solid enough to try to turn it into something of note.

But it shouldn’t be people like me on the edges who should be creating art inspired by Trump’s behavior, people with actual talent you do be up to the task, as well. I continue to be puzzled as to why what is so obvious isn’t being done. Where are all the movies, TV shows and novels about Trump?

Maybe creative types in LA and NYC are simply still in shock. I don’t know. I’d like to think that eventually they will stop being in shock and awe and start producing the art that we all need right now. If something doesn’t happen sooner rather than later, I worry that creative types will be look back upon as complicit in this clusterfuck we’ve gotten ourselves into.

I, for one, am going to not only stand up for what I believe in, but be creative along the way as well.

Clueless American Observes: British Press Is Hysterical About Jeremy Corbyn

By Shelton Bumgarner

As the British General Election cycle heats up — they election is just a few days away at June 8th — it seems as though something must be up with Jeremy Corbyn given that portions of the British Press are growing pretty hysterical at the prospect of him winning.

I honestly am a clueless American, so I don’t know if what I’m observing is accurate of what is going on or not. But it makes sense that the mood of Great Britain’s populace may have shifted and there could actually be a chance that Britain’s Bernie Sanders may, in fact, win.

Now, there are some things to take into consideration before center-Left people like in America can get all excited that maybe the long-hoped for “Blue Wave” here in the States may first start across the pond. None of this means squat until people have actually voted and I don’t know about Great Britain, but in America a similar point in an election campaign people are so worked up one way or another that the some of the hysterics on the part, of, say The Sun, could, in fact, just be that.

Jeremy Corbyn would bring Britain to its knees within a week if he snatches power as a chaotic alliance would prop him up is the headline that caught my attention on this matter. So, that seems to be the opinion of people who read The Sun. As you know, The Sun has a topless Page 3 girl, so take that into consideration.

But having said all that, for me, a moderate Liberal, if Corbyn won it definitely would put a spring in this American step. It would indicate that maybe the tied is turning against the forces of Trumplandia. Maybe if someone as Leftist and odd ball as Corbyn can win for no other reason than he’s not center-Right, then maybe, just maybe something similar can happen here in the States.

When Margret Thatcher won in the late 1970s, it was looked upon in hindsight as an indication that the Reagan Revolution was about to happen in the States. The American press would probably flip out if Corbyn won, and make a lot of similar comparisons, only for the reverse political spectrum.

Yet it doesn’t take too much thought to realize a Corbyn win might be a goof, a one-off caused by some very specific British conditions. Say what you will about Donald Trump, he is surprisingly good at the divide and conquer tacit and unless something truly astonishing happens, it is very possible he will not only survive but prosper.

Having said that, a Corbyn win would really make me happy on a personal level. For the center-Left in the States, it would signal that maybe, just maybe the pendulum is beginning to swing back towards some sort of sanity and there might just be some sort of light at the end of the tunnel that, for once, isn’t a train.

So, Like, How Would Trump Handle A Major Crisis?

by Shelton Bumgarner

To date, most of Donald Trump’s disasters have been self-inflicted. His gross incompetency is such that it’s pretty obvious he has no clue what he’s doing and it that’s unlikely to change anytime soon. That, of course, raises the question: what happens if there’s a major external crisis that he had nothing to do with?

Given that the major Western leaders now think Trump is a complete nincompoop, that is a very real question with very real consquences. If, say, Russia was to attack Ukraine in a major way or the DPRK finally attack South Korea, I just don’t see how Trump at this point could lead the free world. And those are just the man-made crisis I can think of off the top of my head. God only knows if there was a Hurricane Katrina level level event or even “the Big One” in L.A.

We are in unprecedented, uncharted territory. There just is no easy answer to any of this. The rank inability of Trump to lead himself out of a tweet, much less a major global crisis is something we all may have to deal with at some point. Trump can only delude the base for so long.

There is going to come a point when the cold hard facts of the modern world will come crashing down on the Trump Administration. The question, of course, is what do we do? Probably what will happen is, as with 9/11 leadership will come from unexpected places.

It could be a mayor, it could be a Senator, it could be a governor. You just don’t know. Or, if you really wanted to rejiggle the international order, it could be the leader of France or Germany who lead the free world to confront some horrible new event.

One thing is for sure, if there isn’t a major crisis in the next four to eight years, we’ve been very, very lucky. My only fear is if it’s a terrorist attack, Trump will use it as an excuse to impliment the darker aspects of his vision for the United States and beyond.