Liz Cheney with another great line today, about Trump’s willful ignorance about losing the election and rejecting advice from his more clear-eyed advisors, instead following “the course recommended by an apparently inebriated Rudy Giuliani” to just claim victory. If I was Rudy, I’d be drunk too.
The pundits all seem to agree that these hearings will change no minds among the 25% to 30% who believe the imperfect vessel of Trump as leader was sent by Jesus Christ Himself, to restore moral clarity to a fallen nation. It certainly won’t change minds among the 3% of Americans who own 40% of the guns, nor the 0.5% who own everything else. Those groups are not the target of these hearings.
The 110,000,000 eligible voters who sat out the 2020 election (that number still blows my mind) which saw record levels of voting, in the teeth of a pandemic, are one target. Most of these apathetic couch potatoes won’t pay much attention, but some will, if the hearings are done right, which, so far, so good.
Another audience is the prudent, apolitical Merrick Garland, who, it must be pointed out, has already indicted several domestic terrorists for seditious conspiracy, a seven tentacled conspiracy the Committee is laying out evidence of. It is inconceivable that a DOJ already investigating seditious conspiracy on behalf of a president who lost and falsely sworn electors for that same person, will not reach the obvious conclusion about who the raging, scheming octopus at the center of these flailing tentacles is.
The pundits remind us not to get our hopes up, and FOX crows that no minds will be changed by the hearings, no matter how clearly and powerfully the January 6 Committee presents their findings. But, you know what, fuck the pundits. They appear to us on mass media controlled by the advertisers, our most powerful corporations.
The real problem for Democrats in the midterms, we are told by most pundits (or “pundents” as Sarah Palin says), is Biden inflation, which afflicts only Biden’s America, and the exploding price of gasoline, which the oil giants are powerless to control (even while making record profits) and which no American law can regulate or offset. Taxing windfall profits is functionally illegal in the USA, unlike in Great Britain where a Conservative government recently imposed a windfall profits tax, payable to consumers, to offset the spike in gas prices.
If you are a wealthy corporation intent on maintaining a wonderful, often tax-free status quo for the wealthiest, the more you raise prices, the higher inflation gets, the better your chances of getting rid of so-called do-gooders like well-meaning, weak Joe Biden and his party of flawed idealists and social justice warriors. Better to have their own in charge of government regulation and taxation. Trump 2024.
I’m watching these hearings with great appetite. A coherent picture is emerging and the only conclusion that makes sense is that criminals of this scale must be, and will be, brought to justice. Like many, I’ve been frustrated at Merrick Garland’s seeming hesitancy, questioning his ability to act as the wartime consigliere we need at this perilous moment in human history. I have to believe he is pursuing a smart strategy, building a complex racketeering case that cannot be overturned on appeal.
Glenn Kirschner points out that by giving the J6 Committee the first crack at a thousand witnesses (something the DOJ always likes to get) Garland allowed all of their testimony to become public, and increase the pressure among the public to bring these criminals to justice. If DOJ had heard them first, in the Grand Jury, everything they said would have been kept strictly secret until indictments, in 2023 or later. We’d learn only “Ivanka spoke to a grand jury under oath for five hours.” How much would that suck?
Be of good cheer. Hope and hopeful action are indispensable.