In her latest piece, TomDispatch regular Andrea Mazzarino peers into an ominously all(un?)-American future in which Donald Trump could emerge from his deep state of confusion to once again become president of the United States. And this time he could do so in a way that would make the previous four-year excursion seem like a holiday trip to… well… Mars. We’re talking, of course, about the former president for whom the term “pardon me” gained a new and far less polite meaning. As Beth Reinhard, Manuel Roig-Franzia, and Clara Ence Morse pointed out recently in the Washington Post, “Never before had a president used his constitutional clemency powers to free or forgive so many people who could be useful to his future political efforts.” And useful many of them are now proving to be.
Let me add just one thing to Mazzarino’s analysis of an American future that could all too literally take us to hell and back: were Donald Trump to become president for four more years in a country where oil and natural gas production has already gone through the roof, he could help ensure that everyone on this planet will be living in a true hell on earth. Keep in mind that we’re talking about the fellow who describes the devastation of climate change this way: “When I see these people talking about global warming, where the ocean will rise by 1/100th of an inch over the next 350 years…”
Of course, if he had no chance of taking back the White House, that would be a joke and a half, especially since global sea levels are already rising by 1/8th of an inch annually and, if the heating of this planet is limited to (god save us!) 2 degrees Celsius, the sea level near Mar-a-Lago could rise nearly three feet in the next quarter century or so!
Meanwhile, the right-wing think tanks that, as Mazzarino points out, are already hard at work on a Trump second term have produced a plan that climate scientist Michael Mann suggests “would block efforts underway to scale up renewable energy and create a clean energy grid. It would defund climate programs at the Environmental Protection Agency and clean energy efforts at the Department of Energy. It would also bar other states from adopting California’s clean energy policies and put the fossil fuel industry fox in the environmental henhouse by turning over regulation of polluters to Republican state legislatures.”
So, keep in mind as you read today’s piece that Donald Trump, who’s been courting the oil and gas industry barons in this election season by promising “to open up more federal lands to drilling, support pipeline projects such as Keystone XL, and reinstate oil and gas leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge,” almost literally breathes nothing but CO2. Now, let Mazzarino take you into a second-time-around version of a Trumpian hell on earth. Tom
Replacing the “Deep State” from Depths All His Own
Recently, on a commuter train, I ran into an acquaintance who works for a government agency here in Washington, D.C. Soon after we started chatting, he indicated a desire to switch jobs in case Donald Trump was reelected president in 2024. “I’d like to be somewhere that Trump wouldn’t be able to politicize,” my buddy said. I listened as he mused about which government institutions would remain well-funded despite Trump’s desire to destroy "the deep state.”
“Maybe I’ll work for the Department of Defense,” my companion finally suggested all too logically.Read More