The annual theatre surrounding the President’s State of the Union address took another nasty turn in 2020. In times past with Nancy Pelosi (D-Shadow Gov’t) as Speaker of the House we’ve seen her grandstand on sending out the invitation.
She’s always there to take the spotlight onto herself, make herself the story to detract from President Trump. This year she didn’t disappoint against the backdrop of the greatest political defeat of her career.
Bookending Trump’s self-congratulatory speech where he took credit for a stock market he has nothing to do with and celebrating the starving and terrorizing the people of Iran, Pelosi first made a big show of Trump refusing to shake her hand and then tore up her copy of his speech after making sure the cameras were on her.
But what did she expect from someone who hasn’t spoken to her since October and who she hounded with an impeachment that garnered zero support from a single Republican? Flowers?
Remember, Trump called Nasty Nancy a “Third rate politician” before she stormed out of the room, again playing to the cameras with all the sincerity of your average 1990’s late night TV huckster selling steak knives. She’s certainly got the hair color and botox levels adjusted correctly for that gig. Against the Left: A Ro... Best Price: $13.57 Buy New $8.00 (as of 10:15 EST - Details)
And at this point she should actually apply to QVC for that gig. Because the longer she holds onto the ‘awesome power’ of the Speaker’s gavel the more damage she does not only to the U.S. and what’s left of its constitutional authority over its people but to the party she’s supposedly leading into the 2020 election in November.
In making the State of the Union all about her, Pelosi sent the very strong message to her party operatives that opposition to this President is now their number one priority. The impeachment was something that she knew would damage the party, but she went along with it and the lies it was built on because she was told to.
That much she betrayed by her flip-flopping on it. Remember, this time last year Pelosi was talking down impeachment. But, her inability to control the far left within her own party as well as Trump stepping on the third rail of Democratic corruption – the entrenched malfeasance in Ukraine – put her in no position but to try and turn it around on him.
It failed spectacularly.
There’s plenty not to like about Trump’s presidency but it is still his presidency, won against all odds and the kind of under-handed electioneering that was on full display in Iowa this week. And Pelosi acting like she doesn’t believe that is the height of tragi-comedy.
Because, as I said, she’s not that good an actress.
She knows the impeachment was garbage, but she can’t say that. The goal of propaganda is shame. Getting people to believe something that isn’t true puts them into a place where they have to defend it lest they admit to themselves and the world that they were 1) wrong and 2) a fraud.
We saw this clearly on display during Brexit where the hardest of hard-core Remainers were gaslit into believing things that were simply not true. And they used those fake facts as justification for treating everyone who wanted to leave the EU as sub-human.
In a remarkable moment, Nigel Farage took a phone call on his radio show the Monday after Brexit where the caller was ashamed of the person he’d become during the Brexit fight. He realized how vile his behavior had been and was self-aware enough and strong enough to admit it in public. Sure, he still didn’t agree with Brexit but that didn’t excuse his treatment of his fellow Britons.
Do we see anything like that coming from the Democrats in the U.S.? Even Tony Blair realized the fight was lost and asked everyone to put the bitterness behind them. Tony “Mr. Globalist Himself” Blair!
Does Pelosi, as leader of the party, realize the damage she’s doing? Does she understand what message she’s sending in her refusal to admit that she lost and that there are limits to the fight if you care at all about anything other than yourself?
I don’t think she gives one whit about any of that. And that’s why the U.S. is headed for a real civil war not the internal power struggle of factions in D.C.
It’s clear the DNC bosses don’t want Bernie Sanders as their nominee. They will lie, cheat and steal delegates from him to ensure that happens. We saw this in Iowa as somehow they concocted the outcome they wanted – Pete Buttigieg gets the plurality of delegates while Bernie wins the popular vote and has no momentum coming into New Hampshire.
This much is a given. I laid out some of my early thoughts on this in my last article.
This primary season will spell the end of the Democratic Party as a viable political construct after this election cycle. Hillary is the stalking horse for the nomination. She’ll lose to Trump. They will alienate Sanders and Tulsi Gabbard in the process, all those voters will either jump to their potential independent ticket, back Trump or sit on their hands. Amazon.com Gift Card i... Buy New $10.00 (as of 08:25 EST - Details)
Pelosi has signaled her troops to go on the warpath but she also just sent all the centrists that Bernie supposedly has trouble with more forcefully back under Trump’s umbrella.
And with the impeachment’s end Trump will be free to enact revenge against those who have tormented him for the past three years. The most deeply despised members of Congress will now fall under investigation. Trump has the neocons happy right now. The Republicans who work for AIPAC will side with him as long as he keeps things as they are between now and November.
His speech was nothing if not grist for that mill and it’s a shame. It spoke to the civilizational fight that is the backdrop of U.S. foreign policy, which Alistair Crooke touched on in his latest piece here. It’s something that needs changing but it’s not going to happen on either Pelosi’s or Trump’s watch.
It’s our job to win that fight.
But what Pelosi did at the State of the Union tells us what comes next. She knows now that they cannot win in November on ideas, issues or facts. All they have is emotion and envy.
And envy never wins elections, persuasion does. So, violence and theft is all that’s left.
Pelosi’s lack of self-control is the cancer eating at the heart of the political left in the U.S. It overshadows their real and reasoned criticisms of Trump and the Republican party and it will destroy them.
What comes next is full on insurrection against Trump the Impeached. Nothing he says is valid. Nothing he wants is reasonable. And from here to November it will be every decent American’s duty to obstruct this illegitimate president and work for his removal from office.
Now you expect some of that metaphorically in an election year. But I think we’re far beyond metaphor and will be looking at outright thievery.
And the vestiges of the Democratic party still exist within the state and local governments. They exist, like Brenda Snipes the disgraced Supervisor of Elections in Broward County Florida, as wrenches to openly throw into the gears of an election to ensure their person wins.
If you think Brenda Snipes is bad, imagine multiplying her by a thousand in every ‘purple’ county in the U.S. This isn’t a conspiracy I’m talking about. This is pure naked hatred manifest as political action. This is the stuff pogroms are made of.
It is that which all dying empires face as ego and self-interest overwhelm the impulse to decency. Democracy exists, if it exists at all, on the principle of Loser’s Consent. Without that, societies tear themselves apart. Pelosi may as well have torn up a copy of the Constitution the other evening.
I’ve said for a long time that the U.S. is too big to govern as a single entity. Maybe Pelosi did us a favor here in the long run, but as a leader she had the opportunity and, frankly, responsibility to rise above this and be better. To find a way to communicate something other than vitriol and vindictiveness.
Now we all pay the price for her lack of humility.
The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation.