This is not an article I want to write: what the new administration is going to mean with regard to the stuff we talk about here. It’s hard to say, really, but it most certainly is not going to be good.
I’ve been listening to the pundits in similar situations try to parse statements that the candidate-elect has made in order to divine some vision, some position, and it makes me want to tear my hair out. Because nothing that he says matters. As has been proven repeatedly, he’s a pathological liar, he makes things up, he says things just to say them. He has no philosophical core, no real beliefs. He’s an incurious fraudulent narcissistic ugly-id-driven manchild, a Cheeto-faced shitgibbon who always wants to get his way to everyone else’s detriment, and who only decides what his way is on a whim. We have a President-elect who only claims he’s gonna protect the Constitution when he’s talking about guns. Do you think he’s actually read the freakin’ Constitution? Even the Cliff’s Notes version?
Privacy? To the extent we still have any, kiss it buh-bye. The nominee to head the CIA, aerospace and oil tech executive and 5-year Congressman Mike Pompeo, is a big fan of unfettered government surveillance, and thinks anyone using encryption online should automatically be considered suspect. He also thinks Edward Snowden should be hung and that using torture to extract info from fellow human beings is fine. Then there’s the Attorney General nominee, troll-eared categorical racist Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, who’s repeated praised blanket unrestrained electronic surveillance despite a near-total lack of evidence to back up his claims that it works. Session believes the NAACP and ACLU are “communist inspired,” has consistently opposed the Voting Rights Act, has prosecuted (when he was a US Attorney) black activists on sham voter fraud cases, and called the white civil-rights lawyer defending the activists a “disgrace to his race.” His parents named him after Jefferson Davis.
Scared enough yet? How about freedom of speech? The shitgibbon hates criticism, has a long history of bullshit defamation lawsuits against people who criticize him, stated that defamation laws should be “opened up” so he can sue news organizations, thinks that the freedom of speech is an impediment to fighting terrorists, and pathetically Tweets insults against the “dishonest” Washington Post, the “failing” New York Times, the “boring and unfunny” Saturday Night Live, and the cast of the “overrated” musical Hamilton. As of now, defamation is a matter of state, not federal law. Once someone tells the shitgibbon about this, expect there to be a push for federal defamation laws that look like those used to jail journalists and political opponents in his buddy Putin’s Russia.
And then there’s the Muslim registry. Don’t get me started. There is a movement afoot for everyone to register as Muslim when the time comes. That’ll keep ‘em busy for awhile.
The internet? Well, he’s said he wants to “close down” parts of the internet. Not exactly sure how you do that, but. . . . And he’s appointed two telecom-biz flunkies to look after the FCC, guys who want to take internet oversight away from the FCC, if not dismantle the FCC altogether. That means buh-bye net neutrality, buh-bye competition, buh-bye treating the internet as a public utility, buh-bye protections against personal-data collection, buh-bye innovation. They’re gonna let the internet become a closed shopping mall controlled by big corporations, for the particular benefit of those corporations’ shareholders. You? You’ll just have to pay and pay and pay for a dwindling number of choices and increasingly dismal service.
Copyright? Trademarks? Does he even know what they are and what they’re for? Of course not! But hey, he’s a businessman, and things like fair use and criticism and free speech are antithetical to his and his ilk’s bottom line. So expect the shitgibbon to fall behind the push to tighten the protections of copyright holders, meaning Big Media and Big Telecom. They’ve been gearing up for this for years and now, it appears, is their time.
Seems to me much of this damage, like his inevitable devastating nominations to the Supreme Court, could be irreversible, or would take decades to turn around. And the Democrats are gonna need help. Is there a modest coalition of moderate Republicans and tea-party/Libertarian types who haven’t sold their souls to OneCorp who might be willing to stand up for freedom, truth, justice and the American way?
I’m beginning to doubt it. This country, which has proven itself to be infantile, ignorant, silly, and hate-filled, is about to get exactly what it deserves.
Paul C. Rapp is a local art and entertainment attorney who used to try to be amused, and is now disgusted. Should he vanish from the earth without a trace, don’t ask too many questions or you might, too.