A lot of liberal writers like to point at the ongoing trainwreck that is the GOP primary process, laugh, and declare they are all equally awful clowns, or that the frontrunner is precisely what conservatives want. It’s the lazy article that gets dusted off and republished on Salon every four years, with nary an edit other than the names of the candidates, as if this is just a typical election year.
But this is different. This year is very different, for one important reason. One very obvious reason. King Hairpiece, the Orange Orangutaun, Fuckface von Clownstick himself, Donald J. Trump, is dangerously close to becoming president of the United States. Actually, literally, elected our 45th Commander in Chief.
And most people still haven’t truly come to terms with this reality. The reality that the old, sworn enemy camps of liberals versus conservatives must deal with a threat far greater than each other. You know how the X-Men often team up with Magneto against some far greater threat? We can all go back to our regular squabbling later, if the Trump threat has been neutralized.
Conservatives are more cognizant of the threat, as they are staring down the barrel of a Trump victory in Super Tuesday. A Trump nomination would lead to a splintering of the Republican Party, one or more third-party bids, and irreparable harm to their movement. They are right now in the thick of it, while we progressives are still distracted by Hillary vs. Bernie, while telling ourselves that Trump is no more or less a clown than the rest of them. True conservatives are fighting a defiant, long-shot, rearguard action to somehow, anyhow, stop the runaway Trump juggernaut on their end while there’s still time.
And liberals should absolutely be cheering them on.
Why can’t Mother Jones or The Nation do the same?
To recap: National Review published an entire issue denouncing Trump, inviting prominent conservatives from their competitors along for the ride. Republican operative Liz Mair founded an anti-Trump SuperPAC called “Make America Awesome.” Conservatives on Twitter yesterday launched the hashtag #NeverTrump and kept it trending all day. Rubio and Cruz finally, if belatedly, bestirred themselves to fight Trump instead of each other. Prominent conservatives are regularly denounced as “cuckservatives” by Trump’s white supremacist base. And we all know how Megyn Kelly has been trying to slow down the Trump crazy train since last August.
Meanwhile, if liberal sites can be bothered to discuss Trump at all, it is to reflect on how he merely personifies the racism of literally all Republicans, with the implication that he’s exactly the candidate that the GOP deserves. And thereby ignoring the fact that actual racists — Trump’s most reliable base — hate mainline conservatives as much as they hate liberals.
This is ridiculous, and betrays a total ignorance of history along with the traditional American arrogance of “It can’t happen here.”
For if conservatives are unable to keep Trump from the nomination — and they do need a minor miracle at this point — the one person in America who can save us from an incompetent, fascist ragehead is Hillary Clinton. And she’s perennially just one scandal or one FBI indictment away from being unelectable.
Liberals need to stop being smug about Trump and the GOP, and start being scared as hell.
There are lots of reasons to be terrified by the thought of a Trump presidency. (Can you even imagine what he’d do to the decor of the Oval Office?) But the primary reason remains our nuclear stockpile. Putting a clown like Trump in charge of our estimated 7,200 warheads is like putting Charlie Sheen in charge of your drug stash. It’s not hard to envision how this ends: some tinpot dictator somewhere pisses off Trump, and he decides to make an example out of him with the help of a little weapons-grade plutonium. Or ISIS strikes again, so Trump nukes Raqqa, Syria. Or — shudder — he and Vladmir Putin get into an alpha-male pissing contest over some trifling bullshit. (Did you know that Russia actually has more warheads than we do?)
A limited or even single nuclear attack would be one of the most damaging events imaginable — for us. Let’s take Raqqa. Sure, the idea of nuking ISIS headquarters seems satisfying — until you realize that the bulk of its populace is still civilian. And the radioactive fallout would pollute much of that critical region, friend and foe alike. And that it would actually be the greatest recruitment tool for ISIS ever — that movement is spread from Libya to Nigeria to Indonesia, and they’d just pick a new “caliph” tomorrow and ask the Muslim world to unite with them against the nuclear terrorist America. Surely, some would answer their call.
Furthermore, the seal would be broken. Putin would argue that he sees no reason to restrain himself from nuking his enemies, be they in the Middle East or Ukraine or other former Soviet satellites. After all, if America did it, why can’t he?
I don’t know how long it would take to go from nuking Raqqa to a The Day After scenario, but I wager it would be measured in years, not decades nor centuries.
There is one alternative that is just as scary, at least to America, even if it spares the rest of the world: That the military revolts and refuses to honor the launch order of their democratically elected Commander-in-Chief. This would put us in our worst constitutional crisis since the Civil War, and could lead to de-facto military rule of the country. This would not be so unthinkable for your average schmoe on the street if the alternative is nuclear war.
On the other hand, we know what a Rubio presidency would entail. It would be a rehash of the Bush 43 years, only done a bit more competently (low bar there). It was not a good time for liberalism, true, but we survived eight years of Bush 43. We would survive Rubio 45 just fine.
Furthermore, conservatives know what a Hillary presidency would be: a third Clinton term. As much as they personally hate the Clintons, they must admit to themselves that the Clintons are pretty damn centrist compared to rank-and-file Dems and compared to Obama. They survived eight years of Clinton 42. They would survive Clinton 45 just fine.
I cannot guarantee that anyone would survive even four years of Trump.
It’s time for old enemies to come together.