MEMBERS ONLY: The Last Defense Of Kavanaugh Is More Gaslighting Of America

The gaslighting of America by Donald Trump and his moronic fanboys continues to worsen. I didn’t think it was possible for it to get suckier with time, but here we are. To briefly recap: gaslighting is a psychological trick, exploited by villains, that makes us feel like we’re losing our blessed minds. Usually, Trump or Trump-adjacent assholes borrow one of our criticisms about the president, and then they project a bastardized version of that criticism back onto one of their perceived enemies.

For example, earlier on Wednesday, Donald Trump, Jr. accused actor and activist Alyssa Milano of being “entitled” even though there isn’t a man on this continent who’s more entitled than Junior, other than perhaps the president himself, that is. The consequence of this line from someone like Junior is that the Red Hats repeat it in their echo-chamber, while any response calling them on their obvious contradiction is ignored — the libtards are successfully owned.

Indeed, the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation debacle has been ripe with gaslighting. (As I wrote earlier this week, we’re in the post-contradiction, post-hypocrisy era — the era of the eternal now — so none of what I’m about to write will carry any weight with anyone other than those of us Normals here on Earth One.)

Here’s another example. As soon as Democratic senators on the Judiciary Committee began to launch a strategy to derail the Kavanaugh proceedings, the Republicans immediately began to whine about obstruction. They continue to this day to screech about the awful Dems and their horrendousness without an ounce of self-consciousness regarding what happened to Merrick Garland.

While it’s true the Democrats don’t have the Senate majority necessary to spike the Kavanaugh nomination like the Republicans did to Garland, they’re at least playing along. Mitch McConnell, on the other hand, refused to even meet with Garland who, by the way, was a moderate with a spotless record unlike a demagogue and conspiracy theorist like Kavanaugh. Indeed, if it hadn’t been for Christine Blasey Ford stepping forward, it’s possible Kavanaugh would’ve already been confirmed — with Democratic votes, no less. But the Trump-Republicans would have you believe the Dems are unilaterally destroying a good man’s life because something-something-something.

As I’ve been saying since this Trump crisis began: you’re not insane.

The Garland issue is nothing when compared with the brain-liquefying impact of Trump’s latest attack on the Democrats. While skulking his way to Marine One the other day, the president stopped and spoke with reporters briefly and said:

“My whole life, I’ve heard you’re innocent until proven guilty,” Trump told reporters outside the White House. “But now you’re guilty until proven innocent. That is a very, very difficult standard.”

“I say that it’s a very scary time for young men in America when you can be guilty of something that you may not be guilty of,” he said. “This is a very difficult time. What’s happening here has much more to do than even the appointment of a Supreme Court justice, it really does. You can be somebody that was perfect your entire life and somebody could accuse you of something, doesn’t necessarily have to be a woman as everyone says, but someone accuses you of something and you’re automatically guilty but in this realm you are truly guilty until proven innocent .”

This is the textbook definition of the post-hypocrisy gaslighting we’re talking about here.

Trump was propelled into the White House in part due to a catchphrase that emerged from the 2016 Republican National Convention, and which has become one of Trump’s top three or four most popular (and abundantly crappy) catchphrases. I’m of course talking about “LOCK HER UP!” This, duh, is all about Trump and the Red Hats convicting Hillary Clinton in the kangaroo court of the MAGA cult. In American politics, there’s no better illustration of guilty until proven innocent — there’s no greater example of abandoning due process than these chants heard at every Trump rally since July, 2016.

Likewise, there’s also Trump’s personal jihad against the “Central Park Five,” a group of several minority teens who were falsely accused of a brutal rape and murder in New York City. In response to the news of the attack, Trump took out a full-page newspaper ad presuming the guilt of the teens before they were found guilty in court, and, worse, Trump insisted they be executed.

161007_SLATEST_Trump-Central-Park-5-Ad

But damn those Senate Democrats for believing the word of sexual assault survivor over the word of a serial liar like Trump, or, for that matter, a serial perjurer like Kavanaugh. Besides, the Democrats aren’t suggesting Kavanaugh should even be put on trial much less punished by law enforcement for his alleged attack on Dr. Ford. This is simply a matter of character, honesty, and integrity, and following his screaming in the committee room last week, Kavanaugh is lacking in all of the above, especially knowing he’s up for a lifetime post on the Court.

Yet Trump somehow wants his people — the ones chanting “lock her up” — to believe he’s all about due process.

Trump and his enablers in the conservative entertainment complex also want their loyalists to believe Kavanaugh is being destroyed because of his obvious fetish for beer. Junior’s been ranting about this, and Glenn Beck’s The Blaze just published this story in which they dust off an old video of Barack Obama talking about his drinking and drug usage in his younger years. Shocking revelation, eh? That Obama drank and tried drugs is well-documented in Obama’s best selling book, Dreams From My Father. Also, Obama didn’t lie under oath about it, nor did he gang rape anyone while he was hammered.

While I don’t think it’s a good idea for a surly drunk (possibly dry drunk) to sit on the Supreme Court, I also don’t think it’s a good idea for an emotionally unstable man to sit on the Court either. But that’s not even in the top five problems with Kavanaugh. Again, this isn’t about beer. Duh. Kavanaugh’s self-destruction is all about perjury. Is he lying about what happened that night in July, 1982 and the other reported attacks? Is he lying about being blackout drunk a lot? Is he lying about how often he blacked out? Is he lying about getting into fights while drunk? This is about lying. This is about deception. This is about a man who clearly lacks the discipline to decide on issues that impact 320 million Americans. And now it’s clear based on his whiny, belligerent attitude that he’ll carry his bitterness into the Court where it could taint his decision-making for the rest of his life.

Beer? Jesus, the dumbness is powerful.

Because it’s important to repeat: you are not insane. Trump and the Red Hats on the other hand want you to think you are. The gaslighting of America is just one of a thousand reasons why Trumpism needs to be humiliated out of existence. A healthy society can’t endure under these conditions, but we still have the power to pull up before we hit the ground. November 6 will be everything.

Bob Cesca is the host of the Bob Cesca Show podcast, a twice weekly political talk show. He’s also a contributor to Salon.com. Follow him on Twitter and on Facebook.