Something else my friend wrote me the other day, about the hard-right lunatic of our mutual acquaintance:
As for how to move on in a nation nearly half-filled with people who would vote for Donald Trump, I think it’s back to the basics of organizing: If you and your neighbor disagree on 10 vital questions but agree on two, there’s the start of a coalition on two issues.
I hear that a lot. It’s Counseling 101: Find the things you agree on, however slight, and work from there. I worry that I’m past that. That requires me to assume that the other side is dealing in good faith, and I no longer do, even as I realize the reason they aren’t, and can’t, is that they’ve brainwashed themselves. They’ve locked themselves into an information bubble so thick and impenetrable I’m not sure it can be breached. Something has to happen to make them unlock it from the inside and come out into the sunlight of facts.
And that’s where my thoughts are on what is, for 2022 anyway, a reasonably nice spring day. The sun is out, it’s chilly but not intolerably so, and I have something in my chest that is making me cough like a tubercular wino. No other real symptoms despite Despair Over This Dog, so I haven’t repeated my Covid test. Maybe I should. We’ll see how things develop.
The dog: Today Kate came over to print a couple of documents for her European trip (they leave tomorrow night). Kevin growled and barked at the printer as though it was an invading predator. He’s also doing it, still, when Alan comes to bed, which is usually an hour or two after I turn in (morning person / night owl). He cries non-stop in the car, and I’m talking about from the end of the driveway to destination, no matter how long or short the trip. Every day this week I open my eyes and think: Fuck. Kevin. What will today be like? No wonder I’m grumpy.
Ah, well. Neutering is bright and early tomorrow. We’ll see how it goes from here. My vet: “It’s the start.”
I joined a Facebook group for former employees of the Columbus Dispatch. This photo was shared today:
The copy desk was outsourced to some other place – maybe Texas – a while back, and I guess the workload is starting to strain capacity, eh? Either that, or someone started the Saturday-night party a bit early.
Finally, in what is turning out to be a mixed Sunday bag: I’ve been reading the reactions to the verdict Friday, the one that acquitted two defendants in the Whitmer kidnap plot and deadlocked on the other two. Of course this is being spun in MAGAville as COMPLETE EXONERATION, as though two other defendants weren’t so convinced they’d be going up the river for a long time that they didn’t plead to six years in return for their testimony. Ah well. The best thing I’ve read so far is this column by Brian Dickerson at the Freep. It’s paywalled so you can’t read it, but here’s the gist:
In her star-crossed 2016 presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton famously consigned half of Donald Trump’s supporters to a “basket of deplorables” that included “the racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic — you name it.” Trump pounced on her indiscretion, insisting that Clinton had slandered every Republican voter in the land. MAGA devotees responded by donning shirts and hats that proudly proclaimed their “deplorable” status.
But Clinton was giving voice to what has since become an article of faith among millions of Americans (including many Republicans): the conviction that, far from being a fringe minority, the paranoiac “deplorables” she spoke of have become a significant presence in thousands of communities.
And even before they began deploying their theory that Whitmer’s accused kidnappers had been snared in an entrapment scheme masterminded by FBI provocateurs, defense attorneys set out to convince the public that their clients were no more sinister or dangerous than the deplorables we encounter everyday at our workplaces, grocery stores and family reunions.
In his closing argument, defendant Adam Fox’s lawyer sought to convince jurors his client posed no greater threat than the garden-variety deplorables in their own lives. “He isn’t a leader,” defense attorney Christopher Gibbons insisted. “He doesn’t have the equipment. He doesn’t have the skills.”
Gibbons was being diplomatic, but his subliminal message to jurors was unmistakable:
Look, Adam Fox and his friends are idiots. When Hillary Clinton spoke of those pathetic souls you’d cross the street to avoid passing on the sidewalk, she was talking about my client.
But hey, you all know people like my client. And if we allow the government to lock up all the Adam Foxes in the country, how long before your own neighbors and crazy uncles find themselves behind bars?
Sorry for the longer-than-usual snip, but: Paywalled.
Personally, I think the jury, freighted with Up North Michiganians, just couldn’t face their neighbors back home if they didn’t acquit at least some of them. So they did.
OK, then. Time to make Sunday dinner and maybe a cocktail. God knows I need it.