Our National Tantrum

I had hoped things would mellow a bit now that the Inauguration is at hand. If anything it’s worse. People are absolutely hysterical. We’re having a national tantrum.

Someone opined that network television brought us together while streaming television tears us apart. We can all be fed only what we want to eat. There is no longer a three-channel mold for us of “Leave it to Beaver”or “Mayberry.”

If you are a disaffected teen and want to eat roasted eyeballs, you can watch tattooed, pierced zombies doing just that in a post-apocalyptic series 24/7. I can watch “Masterpiece Theatre” drinking tea with an upraised pinky.  The teen and I have no common ground. The same is true of politics.

Right and left have a chasm, not a bridge, between them; both are kicking and screaming. I don’t care if you hold your breath and turn blue — you’ll pass out and start breathing again. It’s your head you’ll bump, not mine.

Invective is passing for discourse. I read a Cal Thomas editorial today that was knee-jerk, anti-entertainment, and therefore, anti-Meryl Streep. I read Charles M. Blow who loathes Trump. He’s afraid we’ll be goose-stepping any day. Neither will cede a millimeter. I get where both are coming from.

Surely the truth lies somewhere in between? I realize that by saying that, I am ticking off most of the polarized nation. Even that’s weird.

It’s no secret I didn’t vote for Trump.

It’s no secret I hope he does well as POTUS.

If he flops, we flop.

We don’t have much flop room in this economy. We cannot do what is illegal (torture), unconstitutional (ban Muslims), or downright stupid (send Mexico a bill for a wall) … even if those things got him elected. He knew he couldn’t do them, he was just pandering.

The Congress is full of big egos. They know Article 1 of the Constitution is about the Legislative Branch. If he puts a toe on their territory, I hope they’ll chop it off in an impeachment. They can work with Pence. He has manners.

Before Trump, no one thought our biggest problem was illegal immigration! It still isn’t.

It’s the economy/climate change balance, stupid. How do we grow an economy while protecting our ability to inhabit Earth? Just because people in the 1300’s didn’t know the plague’s cause (Yersinia pestis), doesn’t mean it didn’t wipe out 60% of Europe’s population. Listen up, climate deniers.

Trump is a “disruptive communicator.” He says, “X,X,X,” and everyone whirls around, flapping their hands. They’re either defending him or berating him. In fact, “X” is the prelude to a more moderate “Y.” Repeal Obamacare within two weeks,” may have meant “repeal and replace as expeditiously as possible.”

Disruptive communication is an oxymoron. Say what you mean and mean what you say. He’s raised good kids, he knows this. We deserve the same, especially now that the campaign is over.

While much of his “walking back” is just hyperbolic lying, we are asked to listen to “what is in his heart.” Sorry. Everyone is judged by what comes out of his or her mouth.

The danger in this form of solipsistic nonsense is an enormous waste of time. Every second we spend on DJT’s mocking a man with a disability is a second we’ve lost in solving problems. Some problems are near detonation.

Trump isn’t Teflon. He’s Jell-O. You can’t nail down Jell-O, (which keeps his options open). That’s on a good day. On a bad day, it could wreck the markets or start a war. Let’s hope for only good days.

Trump’s base, the people who chanted, ‘Lock her up!” or “Build the wall!,” may become outraged. I fear for his safety. If you court violent people, don’t tick them off. They call a lie, a lie … not a “walk-back.”

For that matter, so do I.

I’ve been around a few blocks and I see the toadying of reporters trying to stay on his good side in a presser. I see the Congress trying to hustle up a replacement for Obamacare — everyone looks like hysterical headless chickens.

We can’t do this.

We cannot live in fear of POTUS’s displeasure or whim. We must show him we don’t care about his “enemies list.” He cannot have power we don’t give him.

He is our servant. We are not his.

 

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