From Smirking Chimp
During the 2016 campaign, I found solace in late-night comedy takedowns of the buffoonish candidate, Donald J. Trump. I remember turning to my wife one night and pronouncing with great certainty, "I don't see how that guy can win when millions of viewers every weeknight are bombarded with such cutting satire and commentary."
Then he won.
"It can't last," I was quite certain. "I mean, Congress is not about to put up with such nonsense for long. After all, the executive and congressional branches are co-equal under the constitution. Congress will soon show Trump he's not running his own business here."
Then the Republican-led congress did just that. They rolled over like beaten dogs and slobbered for his affections.
When Democrats attacked Trump for one transgression or another, Republican sycophants rushed to his defense, accusing Democrats of trying to overturn the will of the people...even though his election was more the will of the Electoral College than the majority of American voters.
After nearly two years, Special Counsel, Robert Mueller, finally issued his report on Russian election interference and the role played in it by members of the Trump election team. I waited with high anticipation; "This must certainly be it, the tipping point."
Instead, it passed almost without causing a ripple in the national consciousness. A timid man, Mueller did not want to be the person to pull the plug on this populous would-be dictator. Instead, Mueller passed that task to a congress he knew full well wouldn't do it either.
Then Democrats took back the House of Representatives and, once again, I was certain that this meant the end was in sight. Now there would be real oversight, and god knows, Trump cannot withstand real oversight.
And soon House hearings began on a host of Trumpian crimes and misdemeanors. Not impeachment though, not quite yet. Democrats said they wanted to get their ducks in a row first. Pressure on them grew from fed-up folks out here in the real world, and then, just like that, we had impeachment hearings.
Finally! I was once more buoyed, "He definitely can't survive this."
Impeachment hearings came and went. Good, honest public servants testified under oath detailing the high-crimes and misdemeanors committed and attempted by Trump. Republicans threw as much dust in the air as they could in order to obscure and divert.
And the polls barely budged, stuck where they've been for the past three years; roughly 40% still strongly supports Trump, enough to keep the Electoral College in play for 2020.
So now I can no longer find solace (or humor) in late-night takedowns of Trump and his deranged supporters in Congress and the US hinterlands. I listen now to the latest revelations of his crimes and misdemeanors the same way I listen to Muzak in elevators. It's just background noise to me now.
Because it's finally come home to me that the America I grew up in from 1945 to around 2000 no longer exists. No longer can I count on the US Supreme Court to do the right thing when other branches of government have decided that it's more politically popular to follow a populous and poisonous pied piper rather than the constitution. And no longer can I count on regulatory agencies, like the EPA, SEC and down the line to rein in corporate avarice and crimes. Even as climate change begins ravishing communities and countries around the globe, carbon emissions each year go on to break new record highs.