Thursday, January 7, 2021

Heroes and Villains

Last night we saw real heroes - and villains.

We stayed up past midnight last night watching C-SPAN - the paint drying channel.  No one ever watches the certification of an Electoral College vote - that is, until yesterday. There were several heroes and villains from yesterday's debacle.  Here are just a few I can think off, off the top of my head.


Vice-President Pence:  Not only did he do his constitutional duty, he did it well, standing up to Trump and declaring that he could not, under the Constitution, declare votes invalid.  It was especially poignant when they read the votes from his own home State - that had to be hard.  You can criticize or mock Pence for his toadying behavior over the last four years, but when it came down to brass tacks, he did the right thing.

Congress:  I was fully expecting Congress to adjourn for days or weeks as a result of this riot.  You know the drill - after a fire, flood, or hurricane, the police show up, cordon things off and don't let anyone return to their home for weeks, "to prevent looting!" but mostly just a power trip.  But Congress came right back in, sat down, and got to work and got it done.

The Senate: When they reconvened and addressed the issue of the Arizona vote, the Senate voted 93-6 to overturn the objection.  Would be that the House had such courage (they are up for re-election every two years, and are afraid their right-wing constituents will turn on them).  Not only did they say "No" to this nonsense, but they shouted it.

Kelly Loeffler:  She did the right thing and withdrew her objection to the Georgia vote, and thus saved everyone two hours of pointless debate and voting.   Sure, she could of objected, but what's the point?  As the Arizona vote illustrated, it would all go down in flames anyway.  And after the riots, it really would be unseemly to object.  Kudos to her for admitted she lost her re-election (although not "conceding" per se).  A lady knows when to leave.

Secret Service:  It appears the idiot lady who got shot was shot by a Secret Service officer who was defending the House chamber as Congress was being evacuated.   You can't invade Congress without the prospect of being shot down.  Ditto for the White House, Waffle House, My House, or Your House.  Breaking and Entering will get you killed.


Capitol Police:  Inept and in some cases, in cahoots with the rioters - opening gates and basically leading them into the Capitol and then posing for selfies as the rioters vandalized our Capitol, stole items from desks of Congressmen and generally caused mayhem.    You got guns - use 'em!

Rioters and "Protesters":  These people arrived with mal intent and deranged ideas.  Many had their minds poisoned by Qanon websites - a cult that can turn people against their own families and friends and has ruined careers and lives.

Josh Hawley:  Even after the debacle of the riots, he insisted on objecting to the Pennsylvania vote, even after his other colleagues withdrew their objections to the votes in Georgia and Michigan.  The writing was on the wall, it was after midnight, it had been a long day and everyone wanted to go home.  But because this kid-in-diapers wanted to have a temper tantrum, everyone had to stick around for an extra two hours to debate an "objection" which was quickly voted down.  Idiot.

Qanon:  A conspiracy theory created by the Russian Internet Research Agency designed to poison the minds of Americans, it was responsible for the derangement we saw in the minds of these rioters.  The lady who was shot was at the protest had her mind poisoned by this conspiracy theory - her own husband was unaware she was even there - another family torn apart by Qanon. Her own mother said she went off the rails in recent months.   How sad.  I don't blame the lady as a villain, she was just an idiot for being drawn into this nonsense.  Qanon - a.k.a. Vladimir Putin - is who is behind all of this.

Airline Pilots:  Qanon rioters are causing a disturbance on an aircraft - shouting slogans and harassing Mitt Romney.  If they had been black or wearing hijabs, the pilots would have landed the plane at once and had the offending passengers de-planed, by force if necessary.  Instead, they just kept flying, ignoring a potential riot in the main cabin - and harassment of the other passengers.  Divert and land when that shit happens.  Screw the schedule.

Donald Trump:  If you're going to do a coup, at least do a coup right.  Trump incited these riots, but didn't bother to orchestrate them properly.  If the rioters had been better armed and organized, it is entirely possible they could have taken over Congress and other government agencies, with the cooperation of the military.  It already appears they had the tacit cooperation of the Capitol Police.  But instead, this rag-tag group of idiots seemed surprised they were able to infiltrate the Capitol so easily and then spent hours stealing things, vandalizing, and taking selfies.  The revolution will not be on Facebook!

* * *

Which brings us to the main point:  This half-assed insurrection was put down in a matter of hours, but should have been put down in a matter of minutes.  It should not have even taken place, period, but for the inept actions of the Capitol Police, who are on a par with the Park Police.  A better organized mob could have done far more damage and even delayed the certification of the vote, held members of Congress hostage or hanged Mike Pence (as they chanted they were going to do - why did not the Capitol Police open fire at that point?).

So, in a couple of weeks, we have another event - an inauguration. Will these idiots be back again, and this time better organized?  This was a rag-tag army of idiots and morons with no real clear objective or plan.  Imagine someone with an organized group and plan of action.  Are we prepared for this on January 20th?  Or any other day after that?

A lot of questions will be asked in the coming weeks.  These protesters will be identified and charged, and some will regret attending.  One fellow from Michigan granted an interview to the Washington Post and claimed to "own a business" in Michigan.  It took me all of 60 seconds to find his business and its miserable reviews on Google.  He takes cash only - a neat way to avoid paying taxes - and customers complain about odd and rude behavior, mostly in the last six months.  Sounds like someone else went down the Qanon rabbit-hole.  Do you think anyone other than Trump supporters are going to patronize his business in the future?  That is, if it survives - reading between the lines, it sounds to be failing.

Similar things will happen to other protesters.  Old Fred who "called in sick" yesterday to riot - will he have a job when he gets back to Arkansas?  Or will he be charged with several felonies - Federal charges at that.

And will Donald Trump pardon him before he leaves office?   Yea, he probably will.