NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Wednesday, January 13th, 2021

America’s wrong wing tries bevy of ploys to recover from the trashing of the U.S. Capitol

Don­ald Trump is on the ropes, rat­ings at Fox are down, cor­po­rate PACs are cut­ting off dead-ender defend­ers of the occu­pant of the Oval Office, major tech­nol­o­gy com­pa­nies have kicked Trump off their plat­forms, and Belt­way-based media have dis­cov­ered – big time – the ter­ror threat posed by mili­tia groups.

Our tele­vi­sion screens are filled with mug shots of guys who look like they were sired in the sex scene from the movie “Deliv­er­ance.”

How does the right — or, more accu­rate­ly, wrong — wing plan to regroup with Pres­i­dent-elect Joe Biden assum­ing office in a week, and Democ­rats tak­ing con­trol of the Unit­ed States Sen­ate the moment Kamala Har­ris becomes Vice President?

Sev­er­al approach­es are being sent up the flag­pole or sent out on the air­waves or in email fundrais­ing blasts. Which do you think will endure?

“Contrition is #$%&?@!”

The immor­tal words of Nixon press assis­tant Ron Ziegler appear to have been embraced by Trump. Texas-bound on Tues­day morn­ing, Trump claimed his remarks to a pre-insur­rec­tion riot were “total­ly appropriate.”

He also tried to equate the coup attempt at the U.S. Capi­tol with sum­mer demon­stra­tions at the East Precinct sta­tion in Seat­tle and the Mark O. Hat­field Fed­er­al Cour­t­house one hun­dred and eighty miles to the south.

In Trump’s words: “If you look at what oth­er peo­ple have said, politi­cians at a high lev­el about the riots dur­ing the sum­mer, the hor­ri­ble riots in Port­land and Seat­tle and var­i­ous oth­er places, that was the real problem.”

“The left is dividing America”

After two months of claim­ing the Novem­ber 3rd elec­tion was “stolen,” or indulging Trump’s fan­tasies, the incum­ben­t’s defend­ers are now wash­ing hands, Pilate-like, for their role in the insur­rec­tion. Their claim? Democ­rats are divid­ing America.

“Over fifty mil­lion Amer­i­cans believe the elec­tion was stolen,” Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jim Jor­dan, R‑Ohio, recent Pres­i­den­tial Medal of Free­dom recip­i­ent, intoned on Decem­ber 4th. “I’ve nev­er said this elec­tion was stolen,” Jor­dan told col­leagues Tues­day in the House Rules Committee.

Deposed Fox News mouth Bill O’Reilly has tweet­ed: “The lat­est impeach­ment fias­co is hurt­ing the coun­try, caus­ing even more hatred, and Democ­rats don’t even care, do they?” Or, in the words of Newt Gin­grich: “The left has to learn that they can’t sup­press the voic­es of sev­en­ty-four mil­lion peo­ple,” refer­ring to the Trump vote in Novem­ber. Eighty-one mil­lion Amer­i­cans vot­ed for Joe Biden, folks rarely men­tioned on con­ser­v­a­tive media..

Round up the usual targets

Fox appears to be going into oppo­si­tion mode, as it did when Barack Oba­ma and Joe Biden were in office. Pro­gres­sive House mem­bers from “The Squad” are being depict­ed as the pow­ers behind Biden. When House Speak­er Nan­cy Pelosi sharply put down a hos­tile ques­tion, she was described as out of con­trol.

Of impeach­ment, says Gingrich:

“The will of the Amer­i­can peo­ple has to be sub­or­di­nat­ed to the will of Pelosi. Trump has to be impeached to stop him from run­ning again. Pelosi fears the Amer­i­can peo­ple might pick him if they were allowed to.”

Fox is relent­less­ly claim­ing that its com­pe­ti­tion – CNN in par­tic­u­lar – plans to go soft on the Biden admin­is­tra­tion, even as its host con­duct one soft­ball inter­view after anoth­er with Repub­li­can mem­bers of Congress.

The all-purpose word: Hypocrisy

The con­stant theme of right wing media, even when Trump was rid­ing high, is that we’re get­ting picked up. At the infa­mous Jan­u­ary 6th ral­ly, Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Mo Brooks, R‑Alabama, declared: “Today is the day Amer­i­can patri­ots are tak­ing down names and kick­ing ass.” Rudy Giu­liani called for “tri­al by combat.”

Brooks and Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Paul Gosar, R‑Arizona, tried to gin up atten­dance in advance of the ral­ly. Yet, Trump and his pilot fish are claim­ing that they are being per­se­cut­ed, as Big Tech is dous­ing dis­in­for­ma­tion and delet­ing death threats.

“Unre­strained Tech Titans Tar­get Con­ser­v­a­tives,” said a head­line this morn­ing on Fox News. Or Trump address­ing sus­pen­sion of his Twit­ter account, describ­ing it as “a con­tin­u­a­tion of the great­est witch hunt in the his­to­ry of politics.”

“I think it’s caus­ing tremen­dous anger,” added Trump.

When threats are made, blame the other side

From the Bill O’Reilly spin zone comes this expla­na­tion of the U.S. Capi­tol insur­rec­tion: “How the left’s hatred infect­ed the right.”

Sean Han­ni­ty and Tuck­er Carl­son have picked up the theme, that four years of attacks on Trump spared the fires on Capi­tol Hill last Wednesday.

The theme has also been picked up local­ly by KTTH pun­dit Rantz, who blames all vio­lence on the left, and by the Face­book page of State Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jen­ny Gra­ham, R‑Spokane, who often makes unin­tel­li­gent state­ments. Gra­ham, who has linked to con­spir­a­cy the­o­ries, has redou­bled her Seat­tle bashing.

Ersatz appeals for peace

House Minor­i­ty Leader Kevin McCarthy refused for two months to acknowl­edge that 81 mil­lion Amer­i­cans elect­ed Biden as President.

Even after the Capi­tol was trashed, he vot­ed against cer­ti­fy­ing the elec­toral votes from Ari­zona, along with more than half the House Repub­li­can caucus.

Yet, there was McCarthy, putting in a post-insur­rec­tion phone call to Biden appeal­ing for peace. The Rev­erend Franklin Gra­ham has been Trump’s lead­ing shill in the evan­gel­i­cal com­mu­ni­ty and depict­ed both Demo­c­ra­t­ic Sen­ate can­di­dates in Geor­gia as god­less baby-killers.

Graham’s reac­tion to the insur­rec­tion? With­out men­tion­ing the attacks on Capi­tol Police, he has cel­e­brat­ed Nation­al Law Enforce­ment Day.

He has called for a rec­on­cil­i­a­tion meet­ing between the Pres­i­dent-elect and the Pres­i­dent who still denies los­ing. “Thank you, Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump, for your con­cil­ia­to­ry words to the nation last night,” Gra­ham tweet­ed after Trump read a script more than a day after the trashing.

“Let’s come togeth­er… on our knees,” said Gra­ham, who has been run­ning late night tele­vi­sion ads invit­ing Seat­tleites to come to God.

What to make of this?

Repub­li­can offi­cials accept no respon­si­bil­i­ty for actions they helped trig­ger last week. They are retreat­ing behind test­ed themes, e.g. we’re being picked on, to ral­ly the believ­ers. They will quick­ly piv­ot to attacks on Biden and the com­pe­tent crew of peo­ple he has picked to staff the Exec­u­tive Branch.

“Those who sow the wind shall reap the whirl­wind,” Win­ston Churchill said mem­o­rably, halfway through World War II.

That cer­tain­ly seems to be happening.

Still, there are armed and dan­ger­ous peo­ple out there, and a for­mi­da­ble pro­pa­gan­da machine. The wrong will right itself. The dam­age it has caused to Amer­i­ca goes far beyond bro­ken win­dows and trashed U.S. Capi­tol offices.

And it is not going away.

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