Iran apparently shot down one of our drones somewhere near the Straight of Hormuz yesterday and Trump soon after Tweeted that “Iran made a very big mistake!” Asked later in the day about his ominous Tweet and how the US would respond, Trump would only reply “you’ll find out.” It’s absurd to think that we might bomb Tehran because they shot down a drone but the Trump administration seems to embrace the absurd as one of its core principles. Vladimir Putin later warned the US not to attack Iran, and Trump then stated that he believed the incident was an accident, but the Iranians countered that their action was very intentional. The New York Times reported late last night that Trump had authorized strikes early in the day against Iranian military targets like radar installations but later abruptly called them off. Perhaps Iran was trying to goad Trump into a conflict, and perhaps Trump eventually tried to diffuse the situation for the sake of his Russian overlords. Coverage in the NY Times:
One thing is clear: Trump adviser and chicken hawk John Bolton has long been dreaming of attacking Iran and has been looking for any excuse. Along with neo-con Mike Pompeo, their goal has for years been “regime change” and their framing of the situation–that Iran is suddenly escalating violence in a way that somehow threatens us–smells a lot like the precursor to the Iraq invasion. They want to send our troops into harms way and cause tremendous carnage and suffering for some bogus, malformed foreign policy theory that serves no legitimate purpose. This would be a good time to urge our Reps to resist an unnecessary war with Iran.
I’ve noted often in this blog that, under Trump, the Republican party has become the party of grievance. Trump’s appeal to his base can be distilled down to a simple phrase: “so unfair.” No president has been more mistreated in our history than poor billionaire Donald Trump! So unfair!
Trump’s pitch resonates because millions of older white men have spent the last thirty years listening to a malignant narrative from Limbaugh, Beck, Jones and Fox “news” that white men have had it worse than anyone else. Guys have been forced to compete on equal footing in the workplace–and their children forced to compete for college admission–with women and people of color…and it’s so unfair! A wonderful editorial on this theme was just published by Windsor Mann in The Week entitled “A party of victims.” Here’s an excerpt:
Multiculturalism sparked a predictable reaction: competitive victimhood. As one group after another sought recognition for their aggrieved status, it was only natural for straight white men to follow suit. Over time, as the number of victims proliferated, these non-victims began to see themselves as victims of all the other victims.
Here’s a link:
Until our nation accepts and processes the privilege that white citizens, and especially white men, enjoy by virtue of their birth, it will be very difficult to make the kind of progress that the rest of us want and need. This topic always takes me back to a profound and compelling sentiment: “To the privileged, equality feels like oppression.”
Keep resisting and keep working to “vote his ass out of office.”