Saturday, January 6, 2018

I succumbed

It's the "in" thing to do and people all over the country are sitting at home reading.
I couldn't help myself.  I wanted to be one of the "in-crowd" and got a copy of "Fire and Fury," the expose book by Michael Wolf about the first year in the Trump White House.  Furious Trump was trying to get the publishers to refuse to release the book, so they upped the date by a week and I wanted to get a copy right away.  Wolf says that Trump's ire is the best marketing ploy he could think of:  "The book the president doesn't want you to read."
Every talking head in the country is discussing it and the consensus is that if you're a Trump fan you won't believe it, and if you are not, you'll be nodding in agreement, and be even more shocked than you have been up to now.  It is probably not a book that is going too change anyone, but should definitely line the pocketbook of the author.
I'm not that far into it yet, only up to the night our Glorious Leader won the election, but already it's an interesting nobody, including the candidate thought he was going to win and he had even promised Melania that he would lose (and as the vote started to go more and more in his direction those weren't tears of joy she was crying). 
In fact, apparently everyone involved in the campaign had post-election jobs lined up and the candidate himself felt that in losing he actually won because he had increased his profile and he was ripe for another reality TV show of some sort.
But he won.  All I could think of that night was that movie where Robert Redford was running for office as a pretty boy with lots of charisma and not too many smarts, whose campaign was run for him by his handlers and then when he won, there was this look of utter shock on his face as he asked .... "what do we do now?"  I somehow envision that happening with the Trump group too.
Anyway, he won and we've seen where that has gone in the last year and I will read more of it as I complete this book.
Ironically, last night I loaded up with a bunch of cold medications, stuck a bunch of throat lozenges in my purse, wore a shirt that I could easily lift up against my mouth to avoid spreading germs and to muffle my inevitable cough, and we went to review a play called "The White Rose."
It is the story of a group of university students in Munich in 1942-3 who are determined to denounce the Nazi regime.  They are arrested by the Gestapo in February 18, 1943 (a date I remember because it was the day after I was born) for distributing treasonous  literature.  Five days later they are executed by guillotine.  For practicing free speech.
It is a powerful play with so many things to consider when comparing their ideals with what is happening in this country today.  In fact, in the program was a sheet listing "early signs of Fascism and How to Combat it in Peaceful Ways" which I want to quote here;
1. Nationalism:  when flags are seen everywhere paired with the idea that your nation is flawless.
2. Destruction of Human Rights -- this could be turning a blind eye to police brutality or the militia being allowed more room to interpret laws.
3. Identification of "the enemy" -- this could be calling one group of people the enemy due to needing a scapegoat or a radical.
4. Controlled media - when the media is being regulated by people in power.
5. Corporate power being protected -- when rich or elite are voted into positions of power and then use the power granted to them to protect their assets.
Make you squirm a little uncomfortably thinking of this compared to #45's administration?  "To combat fascism is to stay informed, inform others, and to elect a diverse group of leaders."
So I came home after the show and went back to reading "Fire and Fury" and listening to the news, learning that #45 had interviewed the candidates to fill judgeships and that one of the candidates that was his choice for judge is a guy who had served on his oversee the district that contains most of the Trump properties and all the banks in New York.  Corporate power being protected, anyone?
Most of my adult life I've wondered how the "good people of Germany" could let the 3rd Reich happen.  Now I'm seeing it happen here.
Char is visiting the Holocaust museum in D.C. today and sent a note saying that one of the films she saw there said that "Germans were sure they could control Hitler."  And we saw where that went.  I suspect that #45's handlers felt they could handle him too and now we are seeing where that is going.
If you want me, I'll be in my recliner, coughing and reading.....

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