49 Comments
Jun 3Liked by Steven Beschloss

We are on a ship of fools.

“There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn't true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.” - Soren Kierkegaard

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Projection is the name of the game. As Adam Serwer wrote in The Atlantic, tfg isn’t mad that the trial was rigged. He was mad that it wasn’t.

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Jun 3Liked by Steven Beschloss

The dead giveaway that he knew he was guilty was when he started denigrating the judge, the prospects for the jury, the witnesses and the who process. If he had really thought he was innocent, he would have respected the whole system. I don't see how he could have thought he would get away with it, other than that he has so often before.

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True, as true as Trump not caring whether he won an election fairly, only that he "won."

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B-b-b Bingo on that.

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Excellent article, and I agree on most points. The Republican blind, unethical, and unrealistic push for power - which you refer to in this message - is actually a typical coercive mind control methodology used in dictator-led countries world wide. The current brainwashing epidemic we see in our country is consistently seen in cults or autocratic societies. It is not openly discussed nor is it acknowledged by most Americans. It is time to open the Pandora's Box and deal with this cult-like brainwashing sweeping across our country.

For example, the Jim Jones cult was 900 people who believed and trusted this man. He ordered them to drink Kool Aid laced with poison. They all died. In 1969, Charles Manson convinced his group of followers to perform at least nine ritual, gruesome, and revolting murders. The graphic photos and TV coverage was horrifying - like a pride of frenzied lions tearing flesh from their screaming prey. And of course Adolf Hitler, who converted the minds of a nation-wide population to become mass murderers, committing feverish killings of six million human beings. While these examples may seem extreme, these Trump followers have deviated so far from reality that they are well on their way to frantic violence and self sacrifice. During the Jan. 6th resurrection, five people died that day or the day afterward. Little is mentioned of their deaths because they were over-shadowed by the enormity of the mutiny, the rebellion's destruction, and the attempt to overthrow our government. These people would still be alive today if not for Trump. Then too, our country lost over one million souls to COVID - some of them because Trump told his followers to inject bleach to cure this disease. Who knows how many have died due to this wildly insane suggestion. (Politico, April, 2021)

Donald Trump's cult leadership personality has amassed a large following in the United States. These "followers" are now at the last stage of cult conversion - total, self sacrifice devotion to a leader. And like so many other cult leaders, he is a delusional monster, a perpetual liar, and a violent, narcissistic individual. His talks about a bloodbath if he looses the election should be taken seriously. He could say anything and commit any crime - and his followers will accuse others and deny reality. He calls the insurrectionists "patriots" when in fact they were dismantling and sabotaging the U.S. Capitol, defecating on the floor of a sacred U.S. landmark, destroying valuable artifacts, and attempting to stop the legal election certification. They think Trump is "saving America" when in reality, he is focused on his own survival and doesn't care who falls in the process.

Years and years ago, Trump was likely caught in a typical Russian spy trap. For most Americans, they just cannot comprehend this previous statement or the fact that for Russia, the Cold War DID NOT END. The Moscow Business Survival Guide created a "helpful hint for all those (foreigners) who dare to work with us. It says 'The most fundamental concepts that have guided your judgement for a lifetime are not even known, much less understood, here'." I cannot in one short message, explain the vast differences between Russia's leadership and government to the American democratic public. I can only tell you that the Moscow Business Survival Guide was correct.

Putin has hated the United States since childhood. His life is dedicated to the destruction of our country and our way of life. Trump on the other hand, is a STUPID American who went to Russia once too often and was caught either by beautiful KGB "professional" women, or by the conniving Russian business men. There are many examples of both included in the book From Democracy to Democrazy (by Graham). Other books to read are The Cult of Trump and Putin's People.

Assuming Trump was entrapped by the Russians, and I am personally 110% sure this happened - then he is following directions from Putin. If he runs afoul of Putin, then his life or the lives of his family are in danger. Not long ago, Cassidy Hutchinson mentioned that "Trump is terrified of being poisoned." (The Hill, October 5, 2023) Poison is a lethal method often associated with Russian contract killings. For Trump to even make this statement is almost an admission of guilt. Trump lives in fear - and will do and say anything to ensure his own safety and that of his family.

I lived and worked in six dictatorship countries over a period of about twenty years - and especially experienced the transition from the Yeltsin years to Putin's all-encompassing absolute rule by fear. The same type of fear Trump has now unleashed, and that prevented his impeachment process from succeeding even though the evidence was indisputable - just like the black and white, solid evidence in the Hush Money Trial is now disputed by just about every Republican in the country! The Hush Money Trial was not a Biden-led sham or a political refute. It was honest, home-grown justice.

The many Republican faces who are speaking out against the Justice System in the U.S. or the Trump Hush Money Trial, are NOT supporting democracy but rather "brain-washed stooges" repeating what they are told to repeat even if it has no connection with actuality or truth - true cult members.

As for blame, let's chose William Barr instead of Garland. The Mueller Report was created to investigate Trump and his relationship with Russia. William Barr, the AG at the time, prevented the American public to absorb the full impact of the 2-year and $32 million dollar investigation. "March 24, 2019 may go down as one of the most artfully deceptive and effective undertakings in the history of spin control. In this masterpiece of disinformation, Barr completely stole Mueller's thunder, misrepresented it, and presented Trump forces (including the Russians) with a victory they then used to label the entire Trump-Russia scandal as a hoax." (Unger, American Kompromat). It was not a hoax, but the real thing - a man wrongly maneuvered (by the Russians) into the Presidency of the United States is probably working for the Russians.

Trump's massive and many-sided destructiveness has surpassed plain lying to the American public. He has hypnotized and brainwashed Republicans like they are walking-talking zombies. Our country is in trouble and more so than most Americans comprehend. The only way to combat this rendition of The Walking Dead movie is to seek the truth.

Elizabeth

www.democrazy2020.org

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"For example, the Jim Jones cult was 900 people who believed and trusted this man. He ordered them to drink Kool Aid laced with poison. They all died."

I hate to correct people, really, but according to survivors (and there were a few, those who ran away and hid), many of the dead were murdered by having been injected with poison against their will, including children. There were many people who wanted to leave Jonestown for weeks, seeing that Jones was insane and dangerously so, but they had no means of escape.

In a way, this is true also of the MAGA cult, where it's impossible to believe all GOP bigshots adore that orange faced psychopath.

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Unlike the people who wanted to escape the Jones cult, the GOP big shots have dreams of an oligarchs-like future for themselves.

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deletedJun 4
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You sound so much like Marjorie Taylor Greene that I'm not going to respond further.

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Jun 3Liked by Steven Beschloss

Few words are adequate to describe what Donald Trump has done to our country. As the column astutely explains, possibly his worst is how he has coopted the Republican party and made Republican legislators his sycophants.

Mike Johnson's comments about knowing SC justices and their thoughts is frightening and shows the depths to which the court has sunk. If his comment is true, and I have no reason to doubt it, the court has become the political arm of an attempt to overturn our justice system and make the country into a theocracy.

Mike Lee and the other senators who signed the letter to obstruct our government's operation should be impeached for violating their oath of office. They no longer serve the nation, but only serve Trump. Their actions are unconscionable and, until Trump, would never have occurred.

I was a newspaper reporter during Watergate and remember the integrity and patriotism of Republicans who put country before party and country before one man. Republican legislators today should read some history and get some courage to do what is right. Sadly, they won't.

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Jun 3·edited Jun 3

The difference is that Nixon was not the leader of a cult hellbent on destroying democracy. And the news media weren't afraid of Tricky Dick.

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Great points.

Nixon didn't scare any Republicans who knew they could criticize him without retribution.

Your point about the media is spot-on, and truly sad. As a former newspaper reporter/editor, I am saddened by what the media has become. It's time for them to stand up for democracy and call out Trump and his sycophants every possible chance they get. Some do, but not nearly enough.

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As we write, the media is still doing exactly what Trump wants and expects. The feeding frenzy this verdict has produced is phenomenal, and who have journalists been interviewing? Hardly any Democrats, but the creme de la creme of the MAGA right wing, and this is so one-sided that it probably gives the impression to low information voters that these bloviations are legitimate points of view that are deserving of the coverage they're getting.

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Yes, he needed GOP support. These characters in the GOP all want $$, pardons & power. Nixon wasn’t promising them any of that.

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Trump isn’t alone in this. He has big money backers who are pulling his strings & ordering others to fall in line - look at The Heritage Foundation or The Federalist Society. How about Russian money? They’re all complicit.

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You’ve have painted a perfect portrait of the state of the Neo-Fascist Party, formerly known as the Republican Party…it’s galling, atrocious, and beyond incredible….way beyond…into the yawning mouth of a hellish landscape for the rest of us. What is left, except to run around with our hair on fire, screaming, “The Sky is Falling!”? Asking for a friend.😩

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Jun 3·edited Jun 3Liked by Steven Beschloss

Of course, reconciling the cognitive dissonance this verdict produces would be much more challenging than just spewing the nonsense. Adding it on top of the election denial is too steep a climb for most of them. This is just more of the “heads I win, tails you lose” insanity of what the once proud Republican party has become. I’ve never aligned with their positions or policies, but used to be able to at least respect them. That’s now gone forever. Vote, because the threat is very real.

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I never respected them, my first vote was for Carter right after 18-year-olds got the right to vote. We decriminalized weed the same year I think. If you had told me then we would be where we are now I'd have scoffed at you. Yet here we are...

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I turned 18 in 1981, so missed those elections. Where we are today is difficult to process and frankly, unbelievable. But like you said, here we are. All I meant was having policy disagreements is okay, so even though disagreeing with them fundamentally at just about every level, I used to be able to at least respect the person and their beliefs. For those who have gone full tilt MAGA, that is impossible.

One of my favorite political quotes is from Bill Clinton from an obviously different time and political reality: "I don't hate the people on the other side of the aisle. We just look at the world differently." Kind of how I use to be able to look at the other side. Not any more, and for me, that's sad and a statement of the current insanity.

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Mine, too. I turned 19 that year.

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Ted Cruz, Mike Johnson, JD Vance, Mike Lee, MarshaBlackburn, Marge...their words and actions should disqualify them from serving in the US Congress. The oath of office they all take means nothing if Americans are going to tolerate this kind of behavior. Republicans had multiple occasions to cut ties with this amoral, criminal man, most notably in the second impeachment trial following the insurrection and attempted coup. They chose not to. Their decision to attach themselves to Trump in their hunger for power should end all of their political careers.

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I think they're all jockeying to be Trump's running mate, which is even more disgusting because they have had to convince themselves that he was either "persecuted" or that his being a convicted criminal doesn't matter.

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Amen!

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Where the HELL has integrity gone in this country?? "If you don't have integrity, you don't CARE that you don't have integrity."

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Jun 3Liked by Steven Beschloss

If ever a warning was needed about the depravity of our times, consider this: the Speaker of the House - the individual second in line to the Presidency - is now openly standing against the rule of law and is siding with criminals.

Why isn't this reflected in banner headlines across the country day after day? Have we been so brainwashed into being numb to evil that the best we can do is respond with a collective shrug?

Wake up, people. Or we will get the government our indolence deserves.

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Jun 3Liked by Steven Beschloss

The walls of this deep hole they are digging are steep and unstable. We can still hope the walls will collapse, burying this attempt to take unlawful control of our government. Maybe some learning seeds will sprout about integrity.

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Jun 3·edited Jun 4Liked by Steven Beschloss

I keep asking myself, who or what can change our trajectory towards a fatal fracture of our country. One side has clearly stated and shown their intensions to change how this country is governed. The other side believes the Constitution and rule of law should prevail. Don't waste your energy for the next 154 days arguing about how and why we find ourselves here, but rather find a personal way to join the fight to save our Democracy.

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Jun 3·edited Jun 3

So far “snap polling” indicates a large group of voters DJT needs agree with the verdict and are less likely to vote for him. Even Faux News is concerned.

I think things like the verdict, his old ‘proud boys’ pals who are restructuring, promising to fight for him and want pardons, his raising up criminals who support him — all can be used to help those “less likely” move to “not voting for him”. A very convincing hellscape begins to emerge when the picture is painted.

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/trump-verdict-makes-significant-number-republicans-less-likely-support-him-poll

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Jun 3Liked by Steven Beschloss

It is now more obvious than ever that Democratic leadership is not going to save us. We have to save ourselves, whether by volunteering or donating.

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I still remain hopeful we see the loud, wacko minority for the losers they are and will vote accordingly. We can't ever forget they're fueled by russian & chinese propaganda highlighting their fear of the Other getting more. In the meantime, it's not reactionary to be prepared to protect yourself

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Jun 3Liked by Steven Beschloss

At least the GOP stance is clear: "the Justice system is corrupt when we don't like the result and therefore let us take over and we'll ensure we always do like the result."

That stance will lose as long as enough people open their eyes and see what is right in front of them.

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There is a lot of blame to go around but I personally blame AG Garland for allowing this to continue and build.

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Yes! Garland should have pursued an investigation and indictments long before he did.

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I think becoming Attorney General was a consolation prize for him. He probably had his heart set on being appointed to the SC.

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Exactly.

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100%

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SO TRUE

As you wrote Steven; “In 154 days, we all will decide what country we want to live in and what future we want for ourselves and our children. Each of us has the chance in this election to help ensure that we are not ruled by kowtowing cynics untethered from reality.”

💙🇺🇸

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