And so we come to the weekend between the scheduled Democratic and Republican National conventions, which, this year, because of the COVID-45/Donald Trump plague, are largely "virtual" affairs made for television and computer live-streaming. For his part, Joe Biden made a decision (that I consider to be a catastrophic mistake) of not traveling to Wisconsin, the original "live site" of the convention. Joe, what part of "if Hillary did it, I shouldn't" did you miss? Trump, like the shark he that he is, perceived some blood in the water and made sure to get himself to Wisconsin. Meanwhile, top Democrats publicly say that Wisconsin is really important, even as they (once again) seem unable to get their candidate to fucking go there.
The Democrats' virtual convention had some highlights, like Michelle Obama's inspiring speech that didn't mention the woman of color on the ticket because it was recorded too far in advance. This really is a "WTF"? Seriously, Michelle, I'll forgive you for not going live, but was it your turn on the international space station, a commando mission or your shift in the emergency room that made you too busy to prepare a more timely message? I mean, Barack's rousing speech was live, wasn't it? Otherwise, I'm sure people took inspiration from it because we like Michelle, as well as from the speeches of Biden and Harris themselves, and the Dems had their usual elitist celebrity line-up, and my perception as someone who didn't really watch the damned thing is that it was lining up as "left-wing identity politics grievance fest."
I readily admit I may be wrong about that, because let's face it: the Dems are never really "on brand" because other than "we aren't the Republicans [and we sort of favor abortion]," it's kind of hard to say what the Dem brand actually is. Not at all true of our Republican friends: THEY KNOW. And let the white/privileged grievance fest begin! First, we will ignore that more than 175,000 Americans have died from the coronavirus because Donald Trump and friendly Republican governors have done everything in their power to make the death toll as high as possible.And then we will have the man himself tell "the base" that if they don't vote for him, "those people" will move into their (sacred) suburban neighborhoods (and threaten their precious bodily fluids). And then we will have (and I have to tell you, the Democrats really could learn a thing or two about showmanship here) the GOP, who will be trotting out not one, but two of the best symbols of white privilege grievance that they have.
First, enter Sandmann. Covington Catholic high school grad Nicholas Sandmann will speak at the Republican convention. You will recall that he was involved in an altercation against a native American activist and protester in Washington while confronting said activist in his tell tale red "MAGA hat," and settled a defamation suit against the Washington Post arising from their coverage of the incident. I won't say anymore than that, because I don't want Mr. Sandmann to sue me. And the second noteworthy RNC convention speakers will be
Bonnie and Clyde Hamburglar Karen and Mayor McKaren Patricia and Mark McCloskey, the couple from a gated community in St. Louis who gained fame by pulling guns on Black Lives Matter protesters. On brand!
And so, with nearly 180,000 dead Americans (more than all wars since World War II) and over 5 million infected with a deadly virus, and unemployment claims still seem to be at over a million per week, now going on at least 21 weeks, what's really important is that neither major party spend too much time talking about how the pandemic has exposed some really awful things, like obscene wealth inequality, ESPECIALLY on racial lines, or that our absurd tying of healthcare to employment means that a pandemic resulting in massive job loss... means ginormous loss of health insurance.
In short, the structural nightmare of "winner take all" (that's maybe one, two per cent of the population at most) and the other 300 plus million people live in some variant of slavery (especially debt peonage) as outlined in my book has only been exacerbated by the pandemic. And while the Democrats pay some lip service to it amidst their celebrity worship and identity politics pandering, we can expect nothing of the kind from our ruling party.
Instead, our ruling party's plan to hold power seems to be a combination of reliance on foreign assistance, and (while I am horrified, I do have to admire the sheer cojones of it), destroying the United States Post Office!
Well, alrighty then. The Democrats, once again, have gone "all centrist all the time" with Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. Joe was never my first choice (though for a time, anyway, Kamala was), but this does not matter.They are more than the doctor ordered: our republic is on fire (as is California) and the head arsonist occupies the Oval Office. Our future depends on his removal. It's August; less than two and a half months to what really is the most important election of our lives.
This has been "Convention interregnum of the plague year."