A Chilling, Albeit Correct, Diagnosis

I don’t know who Thomas Zimmer is, nor do I recall how I came to read his February 8th “Democracy Americana” newsletter. 
It’s likely some reader shared it after one of my periodic rants about racism and MAGA’s takeover of the GOP, but that’s just a guess. The headline and subhead are pretty clear indications of the subject-matter: “Domination or Dissolution, Rule or Ruin: The Right is fantasizing about secession, ‘national divorce’ and civil war–because they will not, under any circumstances, accept pluralism.”

In short, they’re committed racists.


  1. “I, ____________________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the …“

    More than 60 years ago at the age of 17, I raised my right hand to take this oath for induction into the US Army Reserves. While the oath only applies during active and reserve duty assignment, I have always felt a commitment to its meaning as an active citizen.

    It did not occur to me until just a few years ago that there could be a significant fundamental conflict between defense of the Constitution and obeying the orders of an elected official. The events approaching January 6th, during and after, were most reassuring, when our military command demonstrated they take the first part of that oath foremost when subordinated by the second part.

  2. “November’s elections will pit MAGA’s White Christian Nationalists against Americans who support pluralism, inclusion and the American ideal of civic equality.”

    A quote by Joe Matthews, Connecting California columnist regarding democracy, “It’s not something you save. It’s something everyday people have to maintain.” In a column published on August 13, 2023, in the Bay Area News Group newspaper, a Joe Matthews article titled, “Which is more dangerous. “Oppenheimer” or “Barbie?” states, “Very smart people came together from around the world to rapidly create a disruptive technology without fully appreciating its perils and complications until it’s too late. Oppenheimer has prompted comparisons to how Silicon Valley technologies are now making available artificial intelligence without understanding their consequences.” Followers of the MAGA White Christian Nationalists are creating a national internal situation of peril and complications rivaling “the bomb” and those accepting the new wave of AI do not understand it’s consequences. “A Chilling, Albeit Correct Diagnosis” that we are now forced to live within our daily lives and is becoming more and more dangerous by the day as Trump’s MAGA White Nationalists gain more and more support (and money) and our judicial system is losing ground in the Trump indictments in this vital election year. As individuals we are becoming more and more isolated from our once feeling of safety in America to leave home to carry out day-to-day activities as is our right.

    November is much closer than you think and is rushing at us like an out of control train while maintaining democracy is slipping from our lives.

  3. The term white Christian nationalism only applies to a select group of extremists in this country but is used as a highly offensive polarizing political term on conservatives broadly. It is s term that should be used rarely and to point out exact political moves by such a group. To say if one doesn’t approve of leftist ideology and the careless immigration policy at the southern border which is now broadly opposed by 70 % of our indigenous population consecrates those individuals as anti-democracy Nazis is highly polarizing without factual evidence.
    Zimmers viewpoint goes only to put him in the intellectual Majorie Taylor Green without the rough edges and apparel but to the left extreme.
    This country has and is moving quickly more toward mutipluralism, especially over the last 50 years.
    Eric Adams and other politicians in the black community that oppose the southern border immigration policy also must be racists by his analogy.

  4. Once again, it is a political wing supported by unregulated capitalists that want to secede. As opposed to 1850, THIS iteration of the Republican party is the villain. Do these knuckleheads in Texas ever imagine what would happen to their economy if they tried to secede and the real American government left there en masse? Probably not. So, count up the number of military bases, weapons manufacturers and other related Federal entities that employ better than half the population there. Uh oh.

  5. Vernon touched on what I was thinking. The Red states (most of them) are dependent on the Federal government, which collects tax revenue from the Blue states. The Red states, except Florida and Texas, need to collect more income from their taxpayers to be self-sufficient, which probably prevents them from acting on their plans.

    The divided states of America suffer from many ailments, and they will only worsen. We are in the late stages of capitalism, and our country is suffering from extremely poor foreign policy, where forever wars are based on defense industry profits. We are quickly losing ground to China and Russia.

    Our borders are a mess, yet we have spent billions on Russia’s borders. We support 750 military bases abroad and will pay for Kenyan soldiers entering Haiti to fight criminal gangs.

    Both our political parties are corrupt. Every study about democracy shows that the federal and state governments make decisions based on the oligarchy, not the people. Any signs of bipartisanship bring calls to vote out the Republicans for working with Democrats. Democrats have become the party of the military-industrial complex and pro-Genocide.

    The fearful reactionaries on the far right (MAGAs) are getting barraged with conspiracy theories, helping them to understand the complexities of our dire issues. Our media is full of mis- and disinformation, so citizens must research on their own to be truly informed.

    By all accounts, it will get worse before it gets better. Maybe a full-scale nuclear war would do us all a favor.

  6. Todd. Thank you for answering the question I asked you yesterday. Now I see that what you are for is not a return of Trump to the White House, but “full scale nuclear war.” No wonder you have been keeping your purpose under wraps.

  7. Re: nuclear war: It should be law that you can NOT press the button unless you can properly pronounce the word “NUCLEAR,”
    If you’re convinced that the country is evenly divided, it seems that, on issues, the divide is closer to 80 – 20. The problem is that we are very divided on the manner we should employ to achieve a particular goal. One side wants to end gun violence by arming everyone, while the other wants to end access to military style weapons by civilians. History tells us that the former does not do the job. One side wants to assure themselves that our elections are free and fair by limiting who gets to vote, while the other wants free and fair, believes they are already free, and that increased participation is essential to fair elections. We all want an end to the border crisis. One side thinks that we just round them all up and either deport them or shoot them, while the other thinks this is a multi pronged problem and needs a broad based approach that includes paths to citizenship.
    It seems that the problem is actually the minority rule that is part and parcel of our Constitution, the Electoral College and the allocation of Senators being the two biggest hurdles. We are trapped until we are in a position to change the Constitution.

  8. most right wing Americans who looked at the Iraq invasiion as a must do,didnt waste anytime condeming the way Islam( for the sake that the maga type seen them) comdemed the way they treated women/girls in a religious rule. now the christian nationalists want same type of sharia law to become our goverment. as far as the truckers go, ive been in this game since 1978. the discussions are quite prevelent when i park in a truckstop,and try today to mind my own buisness. like myself,many more drivers dont engage in any conversation anymore. whereas we had a lifestyle that dependant on each other,today its dog eat dog. if you dont have clue how the system works, there is no common ground. that so called whatever to the border.was met with a waste of time on the real issues we face. it wasted what little collective push to at least,make aware of how bad it is buisness wise in trucking. the so called freedom,(renamed free to ne dumb) move wasted the facts and our credability. trucking is a total loss in a buisness world. never invest in it. banks will never loan money to buy one and start a buisness, unless you meet 150% of better in liquid capital. (truck,$250K with 20% down)(p.s. $20K for the first month operating capital,and $1600 a month insurance for the first year)getting paid is not enforced,and were EXPECTED to drive for free. cut throating is a game,and everyone does it. brokerages have made it impossible to deal dirrect with a shipper. big investment owned trucking co. make sure by volume you never get started. anti competion at its best. if it takes $3.25 cents a mile to break even with the cost of operation,we have as of 1/2024 $2.35 a mile freight today. the small buisness trucker,is face down now.(and no one is kissing our) there mass sell offs and belly ups,today,not due to a buisness sense, its how the game works by the big investment owned companies. todays internet can provide a steady stream of work for independants, but,getting paid in a resonable time lacks. and the transport brokerages make sure we dont.there is no enforcement anywhere.parking is a major issue. truckstops get tax breaks for parking spaces,but thats a game of small truckstops like flying J/pilot etc just making a fuel stop with little parking. fuel,give us money and GTFO. while they collect the goverment giveaway. theres many more reasons why we fail other than the above,but we remain the poster child of a divided industry because of right wing ignorance.. P.S poll by a few trucker related news briefs,85% want trump. nothing like sinking in that pond marked as a sewage lagoon.

  9. Well, Todd, I don’t see how a full scale atomic war would do any of us a favor, the good guys as well as the bad guys, saints or serfs, and we can’t wait for three million years for another cell to randomly divide via mitosis en route to where we are now as latter day apes with AI on the Darwinian ladder, all assuming the star we call our sun has not burned out and gone away during such interim, taking its orbiting planets and their moons with it.

    Perhaps we homo saps (as my old World Politics professor insisted on calling us) can and should rather work out our economic, cultural and political problems among ourselves on a global level without regard to race, gender, national origin etc., all with a view toward coming up with a system that is just and equitable for all who inhabit this swirling orb in space rather than foreclosure of any choice via an all-out atomic war, a recipe for oblivion of all life, including ours.

    So is my alternative suggestion of a global solution possible or just another dream bubble? Whatever it may be called or whatever any alternative solution by others may be called, I think mine and theirs superior to ending our opportunity to see if they can work, and I think Oppenheimer would agree.

  10. Thomas Zimmer hosts an excellent podcast, “Is This Democracy?” and (from his bio at Georgetown University) teaches twentieth-century U.S. and International history at Georgetown University’s BMW Center for German and European Studies, with a focus on the Transatlantic history of democracy and its discontents.

  11. Liberal and conservative politics are anachronistic terms of historical meaning no longer applicable in the current era but used only to suggest former tribal associations.

    Today, liberals of the past are Constitutionalists but favor original founding concepts reimagined to modern times. Conservatives of the past are anti-establishmentarians today. So be it.

    Of course, if anti-establishmentarians ever got power, they would destroy what defines the country over the crescent past and not replace it with anything but just cash in their chips and go home (of course, they’d have to find new homes.)

    That’s the decision we all get to vote for in November. The Presidential Election then is between a lawful or a lawless candidate.

    Seems an easy choice for me.

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