“The very concept of objective truth is fading out of the world. Lies will pass into history.”
Does the truth matter?
It seems to be one of the central questions of our age.
We just held a Senate confirmation hearing for Brett Kavanaugh’s lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court.
And despite multiple women making credible allegations of sexual misconduct against him…
Despite an FBI investigation so grossly limited in scope that investigators couldn’t even interview either the accusers or the accused…
Despite the withdrawal of support from some of the most conservative organizations including the National Council of Churches representing more than 100,000 congregations, the magazine of the Jesuit religious order, and even former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens…
Despite all that, the Republican majority gave their wholehearted approval.
Only Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski bucked her party and voted against him – while Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia was the only Democrat to vote for him.
The result was a forgone conclusion – a Republican majority who blatantly ignored any evidence and made a decision based purely on party politics.
Dr. Christine Blasey Ford testified in front of these people only a week earlier about a drunk Kavanaugh’s attempted rape when they were both in school.
She put her life, her security and her family’s happiness on the line to come forward. She still can’t return to her home after multiple death threats.
Yet those in power chose to ignore her.
They looked at the facts presented to them and chose to interpret them in a way that allowed them to do what they wanted to do in the first place.
Many said that they believed Ford was accosted but not by Kavanaugh.
Yet they refused to allow the kind of investigation that might have gotten at the truth.
These are not the actions of lawmakers interested in what happened all those years ago between Kavanaugh and Ford – or between Kavanaugh and multiple other women who they didn’t even give a hearing.
These are not the actions of lawmakers concerned about picking the best person for the job.
Instead, they are the actions of partisans who put power over objective reality.
They’d rather craft a story that fits their desires than the other way around.
It is craven, cowardly and disrespectful to their office and their charge.
This article began with a quote from George Orwell, author of 1984. Let me offer another:
“Totalitarianism, however, does not so much promise an age of faith as an age of schizophrenia. A society becomes totalitarian when its structure becomes flagrantly artificial: that is, when its ruling class has lost its function but succeeds in clinging to power by force or fraud. Such a society, no matter how long it persists, can never afford to become tolerant or intellectually stable.”
That is what happened here. A ruling class resorting to force and fraud to broaden its power.
Republicans already have control of two branches of government. Now they have stolen a third – a power grab that will echo down the halls of history for decades to come.
This is a senate majority representing fewer people than the so-called minority, lead by a President who lost the popular vote.
It is not democracy or a just republic. It is a coup.
As Orwell warns, when we ignore an inconvenient reality, we are on the road to totalitarianism.
It didn’t matter to those senators whether Kavanaugh was a blackout drunk, whether he still drinks to excess, whether he engaged in sexual harassment or attempted rape.
Heck. He could have attacked Ford on the floor of the Senate, itself, on live TV.
None of it would have mattered.
He was simply a means to an end – the increased power of the Republican Party and the donor class it represents.
GOP senators (and even Kavanaugh, himself) complained about dark money influencing the nomination process, yet the overwhelming majority of that money came from conservative backers!
They raved and foamed at Democrats for stalling the nomination yet refused to take responsibility for sabotaging Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland.
Instead they offered bad faith distinctions between what you can do during an election year vs. a presidential election year – as if it made any difference.
It is not just the spirit of the Constitution that lay in tatters on the Senate floor – but the fabric of reality, itself.
Thankfully, voters have an opportunity to have their voices heard in a few weeks.
We can take to the polls and let these people know how we feel about it.
Honestly, this may be our last chance.
I am absolutely devastated by these events.
I find myself at the ripe old age of 44 chiding myself for being naïve.
I watched the hearing as if it were a TV show or a Frank Capra movie. At the last minute, goodness will prevail.
That didn’t happen.
I, too, was blind to reality.
Well, the blinders are off.
Like so many of you, I am in mourning for a country that never really existed.
But the wake is in November.
Let’s hope it will be the start of a rebirth.
Click here to find ways to get involved in the November 6 midterm election.
Like this post? I’ve written a book, “Gadfly on the Wall: A Public School Teacher Speaks Out on Racism and Reform,” now available from Garn Press. Ten percent of the proceeds go to the Badass Teachers Association. Check it out!
WANT A SIGNED COPY?
Click here to order one directly from me to your door!