We have seen the future, and it sucks.

Democrats Are Boycotting Trump’s State of the Union Address Over ‘S***Hole’ Remarks

13th January 2018

Read it.

That will raise the tone quite a bit.

Wouldn’t it be amusing if Trump just cancelled it? It has no real purpose. There is a brief reference in the Constitution to occasional reports on how things are going that the President needs to send to Congress, and in the Good Old Days the President would send a written report by messenger to satisfy this requirement, and everyone was okay with that. The onset of the Imperial Presidency has turned it into an occasion wherein anyone who attended one of Hitler’s Reichstag speeches would feel right at home. It’s basically a cheap knock-off of the Queen’s Speech at the beginning of every session of Parliament, and if you look at the two ceremonies side by side that ancestry is obvious. It allows the President and the Congresscritters to demonstrate to the nation (nowadays via live TV coverage) that they are Important, and allows them to wallow in their own Importance in a psychologically satisfying way. (Don’t believe me? Ask yourself why the Justices of the Supreme Court are there. I’m sure the Designated Survivor from the Cabinet has interesting conversations with the Vice Chamberlain of the Household, who is held hostage at Buckingham Palace during the Queen’s Speech to ensure the safe return of the monarch, )

So what is the actual function of such a boycott? This has two legs, one old and one new.

(1) The old leg is Democrat Cool Kid Syndrome. Democrats since the time of Kennedy (and probably since the time of Franklin Roosevelt) known deep in their bones that they are the Cool Kids, the People That Matter. (The field guide to this brand of collective narcissism is Thomas Sowell’s The Vision of the Anointed, which I cannot recommend too highly.) As such, any idea that has any value comes from a Democrat, and no idea that doesn’t come from a Democrat can possibly have any value. They are the Football Team/Cheerleaders of the High School of modern American politics. No organization that they do not run has any significance, no trend that they do not originate is of any worth, no viewpoint that is not theirs is of any importance. This puts Republicans in their place: The debate club. The guys who wear pocket protectors and tape holding their glasses together. No idea that comes from a Republican, precisely because it comes from a Republican, can be anything other than Wrong; and, in the modern world, an idea that is Wrong is ipso facto Evil, and must be denounced as such.  (Note how the people line up for ritual denunciations of whatever the Cool Kids in the DemLegHump Media decide to target. It’s like reading Pravda after a purge.)

Therefore an event such as the State of the Union message must have the participation of the Cool Kids or it is of no importance. Therefore threatening to withhold their presence is the ultimate sanction, since surely, surely no Republican would want their gathering to be relegated to insignificance by the absence of the only people who can, by their presence, give it significance. (This is the root of the Democrat tendency to act like they’ve won even when they’ve lost — to their mind, they win merely by existing, and no mere election can affect that. Old-time European nobility tend toward the same outlook.)

(2) The new leg is Virtue Signaling, which is the New Black in modern culture. It is not important to do something about a situation, it is merely sufficient to signal, by some symbolic act, that one is on the Right Side. This is an outgrowth of the Cool Kid Syndrome, and can be seen in most real High Schools by observing who dresses like whom. Rich people are the scum of the earth, but those who show that their hearts are in the right place by being Democrats are given a pass, and if they really want approval they publicly call for their taxes to be raised. White people are the scum of the earth, but those who show that their hearts are in the right place by being (and more importantly voting) Democrat are given a pass, and if they really want approval they denounce white people and call for their extermination. Republicans are the scum of the earth, but those who show that their hearts are in the right place (Muslims call this dhimmi status) by being ‘bipartisan’ (i.e. voting with Democrats more often that with Republicans, or at least not being pains in the ass) are given a degree of tolerance, and if they really want acceptance they obstruct and bad-mouth their fellow Republicans whenever some important item of the Republican agenda shows some danger of being successful. (See Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Olympia Snow, Susan Collins, or Lisa Murkowski for a demonstration of how this works in real life.)

Therefore a boycott of the State of the Union by that Notorious Racist Sexist Bigot Homophobe Simpleton Maniac Narcissist Trump is a public symbol of their virtue. (I shouldn’t be surprised if, come the day, certain RINOs participate in order to preserve their place at the Cool Kids table.) In Real Life not showing up for the State of the Union message has no actual impact on anything important, since it’s just a kabuki dance, but that’s not important; what’s important is to Raise Awareness (i.e. remind everybody that the Cook Kids are indeed the Cool Kids and deserve to rule), like wearing a colored ribbon t0 signify Right Thought on a Trendy Cause.

Unfortunately, this divorce between Magical Thinking and reality has consequences.

(a) Nobody but the Cool Kids care who the Cool Kids are any more. American politics is in the process of changing tremendously, as the election of Trump demonstrates, and the existing political establishment (which is what the Cool Kids depend upon for their position of influence) is running down the tracks trying to catch up to a train that is rapidly leaving them behind. This is why you see everybody on TV running around in circles and jumping up and down Because Trump!, but when the dust settles Trump continues winning. They are like the European elite who were convinced that the intermixed economies of the modern world Made War Impossible These Days, while the guns of August were being loaded up. Democrats boycotting the SOTM will cause Democrats everywhere to say ‘That’ll show ’em!’, but those guys are already Democrats and nothing will change except that they get five minutes of feeling good about themselves.

(b) Those who have transcended Cool Kid Syndrome, the Republicans in Congress who are grasping the coattails of a clue about the Age of Trump, will actually be glad that the Democrats skipped the event, because they don’t like Democrats anyway and this will make everything run more smoothly — no grumpy faces in the audience and rude gestures like failing to clap politely at the sound bites, as happens when a Republican as been so forgetful of his place as to win the Presidency.

(c) The ‘optics’, as Scott Adams says, will be terrible. Americans sitting at home will have visual proof that one half of the American government is willing to Not Show Up to do the things that Americans are paying them to do, merely out of pique; the equivalent of a brat holding his breath because he didn’t get his way. This will be a great visual for Republican re-election campaigns come November. Democrats already think they have a lock on taking back the House of Representatives this year — Because Trump! — but that depends on the Old Way of Doing Things remaining effective, and I suspect that they will discover that the world has changed.

A real boycott is effective because it places economic pressure on the boycottee — he needs customers in order to stay in business, and enough customers staying away makes his business crash. A fake boycott, such as this would be, is dependent on exerting psychological pressure on the boycottee to compromise on the theory that he can’t afford to have the boycotters Not Show Up. This is the Old Way of Doing Things, and what works on past Republican Presidents (who were, for better or worse, steeped in the Old Way of Doing Things) won’t work on this President, who ignores the old political maps and heads for what he wants rather than for what the Establishment keeps telling him he ought to want. The Cool Kids haven’t thought this through, primarily because they’ve never had to do so before.

If the Democrats carry through with this stunt, they will watch (with the rest of America) Donald Trump standing in front of a half-empty House making fun of them for half an hour, as only Donald Trump can; and they can kiss goodby any joy in November. As I have said before, they are playing football while Trump is playing Call of Duty, and while they are waiting for the snap, Trump is swinging in through a window with a flamethrower about to turn them all into toast.

Pass the popcorn.

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