The Uses of Outrage – by Paul Krugman – NYT

“Are you angry about the white nationalist takeover of the U.S. government? If so, you are definitely not alone. The first few weeks of the Trump administration have been marked by huge protests, furious crowds at congressional town halls, customer boycotts of businesses seen as Trump allies. And Democrats, responding to their base, have taken a hard line against cooperation with the new regime.

But is all this wise? Inevitably, one hears some voices urging everyone to cool it — to wait and see, to try to be constructive, to reach out to Trump supporters, to seek ground for compromise.Just say no.

Outrage at what’s happening to America isn’t just justified, it’s essential. In fact, it may be our last chance of saving democracy.”

Thank you again Paul Krugman. This is scary writing, but I am afraid I have to agree with Sensei, Dr. Krugman. I am less interested in demonstrations, and more interested in the hard work of talking to politicians and Trump supporters. We need to be polite, but firm. Now is not the time to be quiet or passive. Today’s lead story in the NYT is that Trump wants to gut programs like the EPA to increase sharply our military spending. This is a disastrous direction, since the U.S. military now has a budget greater than the next 7 or 8 countries combined. Meanwhile, climate change and over population are probably the greatest threats in the world to our way of life.

Part two. Along with my praise of Krugman’s piece, I have to disagree with his paragraph, “It’s not even O.K. to go golfing with the president, saying that it’s about showing respect for the office, not the man. Sorry, but when the office is held by someone trying to undermine the Constitution, doing anything that normalizes him and lends him respectability is a political act.” It is always OK in my book to accept an opportunity to get closer to Donald Trump, if you are going to use you access to lobby for view points that might differ from the Trump Team’s. Several pundits have written, Trump seems to pay particularly close attention to the last person he has just spoken to. This is obviously a bit of an exaggeration, but the danger of writing off communicating with Donald Trump, is you ignore his narcissistic desire to please his friends, and be loved by his public. So it is OK to play golf with Trump, if you are willing to lobby for a better world, and return after the game to fighting the 90% of his political ideas which are neither good for America or the world.

Here is a comment that I support as well.

Freedom Furgle WV 3 hours ago

“Since Nov. 9th, I’ve been trying to open the eyes of Trump supporters. With zero success, I might add. I’ve made jokes about his incompetence to people in country bars. I’ve pointed out his autocratic tendencies to guys behind the counter at gas stations. And I’ve called out his lies to retirees standing in line at the post office. Whenever I get the chance to talk with people who I think might be Trump supporters, I take it. And – so far – all I’ve succeeded in doing is making people think I’m an idiot or a liar. Until this weekend, that is. When I struck gold.

I live in WV. And a few years back, we had a water crises in the Elk River because of a leak of chemicals used in coal mining that affected over 15% of the people in the state. People were scared of their water. And a heck of a lot of them still are. Which is why when I told a several people this weekend at a little honky tonk that Trump had undone regulations that protected rivers and streams from coal waste and runoff, I could tell that it wasn’t popular. Even in the eyes of Trump supporters.

There might just be a way to fight Trump and make him slowly bleed support. It takes a bit of work (and sometimes it takes a bit of courage) but I’m starting to think it’s possible. All you have to do is find something that Trump has done that is unpopular in the eyes of his supporters in your area, and then hammer that message to his supporters like there’s no tomorrow. If enough of us do it, we can make a real difference.”

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