Right now, each journalist in America isn’t just strolling a tightrope, however positively swaying backward and forward. When the person presently occupying the White House is overtly and with out query making an attempt to conduct a coup that might crush democracy and switch the nation right into a single social gathering dictatorship, how can that not be handled as essentially the most severe risk in America’s historical past? On the opposite hand, when the group supposedly main this overthrow is delivering their manifesto from the car parking zone of Four Seasons Total Landscaping, how can it not be simply … hilarious?
A bug-eyed Rudy Giuliani jabbing his finger into the sky as hair dye drips to his chin is objectively ridiculous. Sidney Powell claiming that Donald Trump’s downfall was plotted out in a gathering with a long-dead Venezuelan dictator is ridiculous. Jenna Ellis telling reporters that they must report every part Trump’s group claims—as whether it is reality—is ridiculous. And Giuliani stepping again to the microphone to say “There is no person right here who engages in fantasies” was in all probability the largest single producer of coffee-out-the nostril hilarity of the week—every week that features each Four Seasons Total Landscaping and Giuliani’s star flip within the new Borat film.
At this second in time, it’s inconceivable to differentiate between Republicans who’re genuinely making an attempt to destroy democracy, and those that simply search a candy gig on Fox News. And certain, this additionally applies to most different moments in time, however this week each the risk and the foolish each turned the dials as much as 11, or 111, on the identical time. And simply how do you report on that?
Celebrate Biden’s victory, and get known as a pollyanna. Point out that Trump is completely making an attempt to overthrow that victory, and be relegated to the voices of doom. Exactly how ought to reporters deal with issues, when what may very well be the most harmful state of affairs within the nation’s historical past can also be positively a rip-off for cash, and likewise the most preposterous state of affairs possible?
When a lawyer that represents essentially the most highly effective man on the planet is significantly sitting on tv saying that the vote in each swing state ought to be overturned and a dictatorship initiated, however she’s additionally saying it after a press convention by which she additionally introduced that Trump was defeated by a cabal composed of the Clinton Foundation, George Soros, Hugo Chavez, and antifa … simply how a lot weight does it get?
It’s straightforward sufficient to say “just report the facts,” however information outdoors of context are ineffective, and the entire job of each journalist, whether or not at The Washington Post or Daily Kos, is to current these information in a means that turns into information, empowers choices, and permits motion. How do you report on the political equal of an invasion by Tickle Me Elmo dolls? Even if they’re blood-sucking Elmos … does that assist?
The reality is, the American system has a number of roadblocks in place which might be supposed to maintain anybody from turning into a dictator, expressly as a result of “guy in top job decides he really wants to keep the gig” was a kind of issues that basically did come up once they had been making use of goose quill to parchment. There are the reason why individuals, myself included, have issued scads of items alongside the “calm down, it’s all going to be peachy” theme. On the opposite hand, there’s a cause why Masha’s Gessen’s sadly prescient Autocracy: Rules for Survival was most on the nostril when it stated “Institutions will not save you.” Again and once more Trump has demonstrated that means, means, means an excessive amount of of the American system existed within the types of custom, unwritten guidelines, and expectations that folks would possess an ethical compass that pointed at the very least to the correct hemisphere.
Any story that begins proper now with the concept that Trump “can’t” do one thing as a result of it will violate precedent, and even violate the legislation, ought to simply return to sq. one. Trump is a criminal and a liar. He does unlawful issues whereas mendacity about it. Does it actually matter that Trump’s crack authorized group is 2-33 in courtroom and simply supplied a decide proof from the improper state, when everybody making an attempt to carry Trump to account is zero for infinity?
Trump’s a harmful monster. And an ignorant dickhead. It would possibly appear to be the second cancels out the primary, however we’ve had 4 years to see that it doesn’t.
Right now, Trump is engaged in an overt effort to tear aside the nation. And as The Washington Post stories, Republicans are doing what they’ve demonstrated to be their go-to transfer: Staying out of Trump’s means. How scary is Trump’s effort to show the nation into one of many single social gathering dictatorships he so admires? Exorcist scary. How laughable is it? Puffy shirt laughable.
Expect the identical battle from nearly each story created between now and Jan. 20, 2021.