What is going on right now in Wisconsin (and Michigan, and in North Carolina after the 2016 Election) is the logical progression of the erosion of democratic norms that Newt Gingrich kicked off in 1994 and Mitch McConnell elevated to an art form. If you can't win, change the rules. The Democrats are not without blame, indirectly, since the strategy relies on the knowledge that the dopey-ass decorum addicts will always change the rules back (hamstringing themselves) when in power. It is a perfect example of the Republicans as Air Bud and the Democrats standing there futilely pointing at the rule book shouting "A DOG CAN'T PLAY BASKETBALL!" while Air Bud dunks on them over and over again.

But there's another, deeper component to the justifications the Wisconsin GOP is trying to lay out for its naked power grab.
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The briefest, yet totally accurate, summary is that rural Wisconsin voters are the ones who actually matter so they should get what they want. That's it. That's all it boils down to. Sure the Democrats won the statewide elections, but only because – seriously, this is the argument – people in Milwaukee and Madison voted for them.

The city people (wink!) don't count. They're not real. They exist and sure maybe even they have the right to vote, but they're fundamentally lesser. Their preferences are subordinate to the Real Wisconsinites. Like in the deep south after Reconstruction, Wisconsin's GOP sees its politics as a state with x population but only a small fraction of x that should rightly be making decisions and exercising rights for the whole.

This is the language of European far-right ethno-nationalist parties. We know we are not the majority, but we are the only people who matter.

That's where we are. I reiterate that there is no world in which this era of American politics has a happy ending.

17 thoughts on “CHEESY ETHNOSTATE”

  • I have a fantasy, perhaps perverse, that the steps along the way to the predicted unhappy ending at least include orange jumpsuits and shackles* for a certain individual, his staff, and family.

    *But only the best and most tremendous orange jumpsuit and shackles.

  • And we're just a few states shy of the required number to hold a convention to propose a balanced budget amendment and nothing else, because they would NEVER just start tearing into the Constitution wholesale to remake the USA into the white Christian ethno-state the founders intended it to be but never said so explicitly in the Constitution because, DUH!, it was tacitly understood by everyone who mattered! Merry fucking Christmas!

  • @ ronzie

    Now that the Democrats won a few govonorships and legislatures, we are measurably father away from that particular fever-swamp. So happy holidays everyone, we accomplished something.

    I really hope these naked power grabs cost the GOP dearly, although they never have before…

  • Pfft, I’ll bet much of the urban masses don’t even own land or even their own houses. Our Founding Fathers never intended for renters to have the vote anyway.

  • Townsend Harris says:

    A hefty fraction of Trump's supporters believe anyone on the left is a traitor, and traitors deserve death.
    Where are the Trumpista death squads?
    When do the extra-judicial killings start?

  • The Jeffersonian ideal of the righteous yeoman farmer citizen just never dies, does it, even it was a fantasy right from the get-go.

    The irony is how corporate interests have manipulated this rural bias locked into our electoral system to ream rural residents hollow.

    Having done time in very small rural towns, I cannot say I'm sympathetic. Mencken was right.

  • Yeah. The Democrats definitely have that "Sideshow Bob stepping on every rake in the yard' vibe to them when it comes to dealing with the Republicans and checking their nonsense. I don't even want to speculate as to how egregious it would have to get for most of the dead-eyes populace to care.

  • Can we say the same thing about French rural residents who are leading the current riots? On some pro-Trump left wing sites, this theme in the OP seems to be accepted as true.

    (I have an odd fixation, I will confess, on left wing Trumpalos. Just like "Log Cabin Republicans" and Mexican American Republicans, I cannot compute. :) )

  • @ Brian M:

    Just substitute "left wing Trumpalos" with "nihilist, constantly aggrieved, and willing to cut off their own nose to spite their face chauvinistic basement-dwelling trolls" and you've got your answer.

  • "Our Founding Fathers never intended for renters to have the vote anyway."

    It would be interesting to see just how many of those "yeoman" farmers own anything after mortgaging their properties to the banks to buy seed, etc.

    I will prolly not live long enough to see the tumbrils roll but when it comes, it will be ugly.

  • How many Americans actually own their homes outright with the mortgage paid off or never needing one in the first place, anyway? The statistics I've found suggest under 20% of all housing stock is owned outright, but that almost certainly includes secondary homes owned by the rich.

  • Hey, Ed, longtime fan.

    I know that things are looking up for you and you have some actual paid writing gigs and such, but I feel way neglected as a G&T fan. Obviously the sparse posting is a problem, but I support your move to bigger and better things, so c'est la vie.

    But this posting brings a new problem. How difficult would it have been to provide us with a paragraph clearly recapping what has been happening in Wisconsin? Not all of us are media junkies; in fact, a major motivation for reading this and other select blogs is so that I can get the news that matters without having to get smeared with shit from direct contact with the news media. I was able to infer what is going on (I think) from your scant offerings, but it would be nice if you did what you have consistently done in the past and ensure, with the use of a recap paragraph, that your readers have a basic grasp on the point of your posting. Thanks.

  • Just think how many of these "real Wisconsinites" are totally dependent on government cash – from farm subsidies to retirement to medical care. They aren't just demanding all the power, they're demanding that the people they're disenfranchising keep PAYING them to do it.

    The opioid epidemic needs to hurry the hell up.

  • Also haz pix of people who are either completely recovered or RILLLLLLLLLLLLY high–and they are ALL white people.

    Funny, I don't recollect seeing an ad like that back in the mid 80's when cracksters were destroying the social fabric of MurKKKa.

    * I'm guessing he was into helping people with Transcendental Meditation problems so the move to helping people with Transdermal Medication problems is a natural progression.

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