On Trump and his incredible impotence
I was struck with an epiphany on my way home from work. It hit me with the force of the self-evident, all because of Trump pulling out of the Paris climate accord and the reaction it engendered around the country from governors to mayors to corporations. It may seem counterintuitive. However, if you've been paying attention since January 20, 2017, it is undeniable.
It is this: Trump doesn't matter.
Nothing he does matters. Oh, it matters in the short run. And there's the grab-your-ass-and-kiss-it-goodbye nature of the fact that he has the nuclear codes. But, in the end, nothing he does matters. Why? Because he is inconsequential. He's a small man beating his chest trying to seem as if he's of importance. Merely because he holds the office of President doesn't make him be of substance; if anything, it's showing just how insubstantial he is.
Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein sent his first-ever tweet on Thursday -- and he used it to criticize President Trump's decision to back out of the Paris climate pact.
"Today's decision is a setback for the environment and for the U.S.'s leadership position in the world. #ParisAgreement," he said.
The company confirmed to CNNMoney that it was Blankfein's first Twitter post.
In response to President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement, California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr., New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Washington State Governor Jay Inslee today announced the formation of the United States Climate Alliance, a coalition that will convene U.S. states committed to upholding the Paris Climate Agreement and taking aggressive action on climate change.
“The President has already said climate change is a hoax, which is the exact opposite of virtually all scientific and worldwide opinion,” said Governor Brown. “I don't believe fighting reality is a good strategy – not for America, not for anybody. If the President is going to be AWOL in this profoundly important human endeavor, then California and other states will step up.”
California, New York and Washington, representing over one-fifth of U.S. Gross Domestic Product, are committed to achieving the U.S. goal of reducing emissions 26-28 percent from 2005 levels and meeting or exceeding the targets of the federal Clean Power Plan.
No one paying attention had any illusions as to what Trump would do. Indeed, exhortations to him to do "the right thing" merely confirmed him in his delusions:
He is who he has always been. A six year old in a 70 year old's body. And, as the Resistance, we have to treat him as that unruly little child.
As my two examples show, the world is already moving past the Trump Era. Corporations aren't going to undo years of preparation for someone who might not make it out of his first term. And liberal states are using the rhetoric of "state's rights" and "federalism" to make sure that they don't get screwed in the process of Trump's meltdown.
What Trump's ascendancy is doing is transferring the locus of action from the center to the periphery. This, of course, has perils. (Jim Crow, anyone?) But now we have liberal states, which are the country's economic powerhouses, using this language of localism to make sure that big projects can be done. The California Senate has just passed single payer. The numbers are to be crunched out in the lower house. At first, it seemed as if switching to single payer would be a fiscal albatross. But this study from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst shows that it may in fact lower overall spending on healthcare. The devil is always in the details. But those of us in the liberal states are not standing put because the Orange Beast is braying in DC. We are doing our part to save this Republic before it splinters into its constituent parts.
Resist. Resist with all your heart and all your might. But do so confident in the belief that this is a passing phase. We beat fascists once. We'll do so again. And we'll come out of it even better.
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