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capital riot

   Bob Judd's comments January 2021

  Iím unqualified to comment on Americaís chaos but when has that ever stopped me. Now that the pathetic putsch is over, thereís the lurking worry, what would happen if someone with Trumpís charisma, but a lot smarter, someone who had the support of the military, was in the White House?

  Which begs the question, how can a man who has, since the beginning of his campaign to run for President, been contemptuous of the Constitution, of the press, of the Senate, the House, the courts, of everybody who isnít rich, how can he maintain the popular support of almost half the nation? How can they support a liar, a groper, a cheat, a fraud who got rich by hiding behind bankruptcy laws? What is wrong with these people?

  A large part of his support comes from some very rich folks who have gotten very much richer under Trump. But that still leaves the mob that shows up at his rallies. Why are they so pissed off?

  People donít want to wrestle with complicated problems. They like to put their trust in a simple solution, like a strong and confident man who knows all the answers. Wiser and better informed folks than I have a boatload of reasons. Racism plays a part, along with the fascism that never seems to go away.

  If I had to pick two items to explain this widespread failure to see the obvious Iíd say one is the rise of Fox News and the internet. Fox News is the most watched TV in the country. It has charismatic far right ďnewscastersĒ who demonize everything to the left of Herbert Hoover. They are entertaining, funny, outrageous, and Trump, along with a zillion others, watches them daily. Some say for hours. He consults with them. So there is this constant stream of conspiracy theories made credible by broadcast news. It used to be law that newscasts have to be ďfair and balancedĒ but thatís gone. In its place we have non-stop propaganda. Goebbels would have loved Fox.

  Then thereís wages. Wages, in real terms, have not risen in forty years. The rich have gotten a bigger and bigger portion of the pie, the working class, not so much. The gap between rich and poor is now greater than it was in the Gilded age. The working class has been largely displaced by robots. Robots work 24/7, donít go on strike. They also donít buy groceries, donít go to restaurants, donít pay taxes. Find a robot assembly line and you will find a devastated community outside the factory walls. It used to be you could do boring repetitive work and put a kid through college. Now, in large parts of manufacturing towns, people are desperate. Labor has been transferred to capital. And the working class has been left behind. Would that I had an answer for any of this.

  My neighbors in Montana are hard working, responsible people. Generally community minded. If some one gets sick or needs help they are there for their neighbor. Most of them are Trump supporters. They believe the country is in danger from the left, from child prostitution rings, from secret imaginary conspiracies like Antifa, and Qanon. They watch Fox.

  You may have noticed the head of Qanon among the rioters. He was the guy with horns on his head, draped in fox fur, bare chested with the stars and stripes painted on his face. In other photos earlier last year, he was seen chatting with Rudy Guiliani on Air Force One. So no, I really have no idea.