Wednesday, August 10, 2016


The Washington Post has called on the Republican Party to dump Trump. What threw them over the edge was Donald Trump's suggestion that the "Second Amendment people" in his camp might know what to do if Hillary Clinton becomes president and starts nominating judges that they don't like. 

The Washington Post's argument is spot on and forceful:

The Muslim ban, the David Duke denial, the “Mexican” judge flap, the draft dodger denigrating John McCain’s military service, the son of privilege attacking an immigrant Gold Star mother and the constant revisionism and lying about past political positions taken are but a few of the lowlights that have punctuated Donald Trump’s chaotic chase for the presidency ... the political ride will only get rockier for Trump in the coming days after he suggested that one way to keep a conservative Supreme Court after Hillary Clinton got elected would be to assassinate her or federal judges. Trump and his supporters have been scrambling wildly all day to explain away the inexplicable, but they can stop wasting their time. The GOP nominee was clearly suggesting that some of the “Second Amendment people” among his supporters could kill his Democratic opponent were she to be elected ...  A bloody line has been crossed that cannot be ignored. At long last, Donald Trump has left the Republican Party few options but to act decisively and get this political train wreck off the tracks before something terrible happens.

Will calls for the GOP to dump Trump work? Probably not. Trump's supporters don't deal in reality, and are bending over backwards to justify and parse his words. They don't see anything wrong with what he said, or says. 

For their part, the leadership of the GOP have lived in a clueless Christian-neoliberal alternate universe for years. They don't have the intellectual or moral spine to confront their Frankenstein. 

But the real reason Donald Trump's campaign will continue is the idiot fatigue that surrounds Donald Trump. Simply put, every time Donald Trump says something stupid or ignorant too many people are now shrugging it off as if it's just another Johnny Manziel-TMZ moment.  

What we are seeing - and with a nod to Neil Postman - is a society that has become so distracted by trivia that our political culture has been recast into "a perpetual round of entertainments", where serious public conversation is little more than an elevated "form of baby-talk". Give them what they want and they will coo for you. What we would like to think is an informed society living in a vibrant democracy is really little more than an audience in a vaudeville act. Life has become burlesque.

Idiot fatigue is not a symptom for Trump's supporters, it's a condition.

- Mark


Cathee Romley said...


Ryan D. said...

Spot on, Mark! I truly think that his campaign has reached "critical mass" and he's simply looking for a way out hence the over-the-top (even by his standards) rhetoric.