Republican Treachery

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is attempting to overturn the election through a an “original action” in the Supreme Court against several other states. Observations (no claim of originality):

  • The lawsuit is utterly frivolous.
  • Paxton is under federal investigation for corruption of some sort, which actions led a lot of his deputies to resign. Trump can pardon him of any federal offense.
  • Paxton’s highly-regarded Solicitor General is not on Paxton’s pleading, which “speaks volumes.”
  • But 17 political hack Republican State Attorneys General have jumped on board, which will create in legally unsophisticated Trump supporters an impression that this must be a pretty solid case, thus turning a case that is frivolous into one that will spark outrage when the Supreme Court rejects it, 9-0, as I predict will happen.

Shame on these creepy 17, including drunken groper Curtis Hill of Indiana, who leaves office in less than a month. (Mumble mumble drawn and quartered mumble mumble taken out and shot.)

Speaking of dumb election lawsuits, David French also has pointed out several times the telltale that there are literally hundreds of highly-qualified, politically-interested conservative legal movement lawyers — not one of whom is involved in any of these post-election lawsuits because they have reputations for probity to maintain. That tells you a lot about the sanity of the courtroom relative to the madness of retail politics today.

Indeed, the only top-drawer lawyer I know who was involved with any of these suits, James Bopp of Terre Haute, Indiana, dismissed the suit and hasn’t been heard of since (so far as I know).

So here’s where we stand: the likes of Rush Limbaugh (who opened today talking about red state secession – what does he care with advanced cancer?) and the Republicans who amplify or concur in Donald Trump’s delusional claims are inflaming the Right half of a potential civil war.

Biden won the election and Trump lost. That is a fact. It is reality. The president could have accepted it and conceded the race. Or if he didn’t, his party could have stood against him, in defense of truth instead of lies.

Some will reply that in this case Trump’s supporters would have stuck by him and turned on the traitors. This is probably true about some, or even many, of them. But many others might have paused in their headlong plunge into derangement if people like Limbaugh and Graham and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham and Greg Kelly and many others hadn’t actively, aggressively, intentionally chosen to spread a miasma of lies.

They made a choice. They make it every day.

A country in which millions of people are being actively cultivated to reject democracy, to cheer on tyranny, to exult in conspiracies and outright lies is a country deliberately careening toward a precipice. The next time it won’t just be a show of nonsense lawsuits thrown out of court. It will be several states tossing out thousands or millions of votes in order to bestow a victory on the loser of a free and fair election.

I don’t know if we’re heading toward authoritarian kleptocracy or a civil war, or if we’ll somehow manage to turn the wheel just before we reach the cliff’s edge. But I do know this: If any of the worst-case scenarios unfold, it will be because some among us made a conscious decision to cultivate madness.

Damon Linker, The GOP is driving itself mad

If you want to know even more, listen to David French and Sarah Isgur on Thursday’s Advisory Opinions podcast, starting at about 5:10.

Too many Republicans are heedless of the eventuality of going along with Trump’s delusions. They should pull on their big boy pants, tell the truth, and risk Trump’s mean Tweets rather than risk what they’re recklessly risking.

Speaking of conservative “courage,” David French observes on an earlier podcast that “weakness” and “cowardice” are charges that conservatives fear much as moderates and liberals fear the charge of “racism”, but:

What is the wildest thing to me is that a draft-dodging narcissist who doesn’t so much fight as pitch temper-tantrums became the iconic example of the new conservative man.

(This point comes up roughly two minutes from the podcast’s end.)

Probably because I stopped visiting or otherwise following the Federalist website (a formerly conservative website that became a semi-swampy Trump Club, unaffilliated with the Federalist Society, cultivator of conservative movement lawyers who tend to become judges and justices), I missed this very fine piece for fully sixty-eight months:

My generation engages in straw men, misinformation, and lies because, in every year of social studies class, we studied the civil-rights movement not as history, but as hagiography. We didn’t just learn what events happened on American soil, we were encouraged to mimic the segregation-defeating holy ones and merit for ourselves a place alongside them in glory. Combining that admonition with our general aversion to hard work, we concluded that the only thing necessary to be as righteous as the saints who fought racial injustice was to decry an injustice that no one else was. And we became so desperate to find that injustice, we lost our minds in the process.

More than we wanted to find the perfect prom date, we wanted to find our own bigotry to eradicate. After years of hearing those saints sing “We Shall Overcome,” we were overcome with jealousy. We coveted Selma. We envied that march. We looked at that footage and hungered for our own cause to devour.

Then, one day, manna descended from heaven in the form of gay marriage …

What did it cost us to embrace this cause? Absolutely nothing! It required no moral consistency, no financial sacrifice, no effort. We could sleep with as many people as we wanted, divorce as many people as we wanted, father and then abandon as many children as our hearts desired, and lose no credibility. We could spend our entire adult lives defecating on the institution of marriage and this could not sully our gay marriage halos.

On top of that, these oppressed souls were so gainfully employed that they paid for their own lawyers and lobbyists, so we didn’t need to give them a cent. All we had to do was change our profile pictures on Facebook and beatification was ours. Our prayers were answered. The bright, shiny diamond of righteousness no other generation could claim had been placed into our hands.

So when you argued that disapproving of gay marriage didn’t deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as oppression of black Americans, we knew you were right … We objectively know you’re not hateful bigots. But we called you that anyway because, in order to keep our righteousness shiny, someone had to play the role of Bull Connor, and you were the best fit we could find.

In the Kingdom of Heaven, countless children of God will embrace the older saints who gave them lives of far greater dignity on earth by following Christ’s example and enduring insults, beatings, imprisonments, and even death for them. We know this and yet we will insist that we’re owed an equal measure of honor because we tweeted our support for every gay kiss on “Glee.”

From the days of our youth, my generation hungered for a cause that would make us as righteous as the saints who marched on Selma. We have found that cause. We have sunk our teeth into that righteousness and, at this point, we couldn’t care less if it’s real. The Lord of Social Justice has finally answered our prayers. And Lord help the bigot who comes between us and our cause.

Hans Fienes, Gay Marriage Isn’t About Justice, It’s About Selma Envy

Is poor-mouthing about how we’re persecuted the religious conservatives’ counterpart to progressive “Selma Envy”? Should we call it “Gulag Envy”?

There’s probably a bit of truth in that possibility, but I’m not going there today.


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