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October 19, 2019


Professor Kennedy’s blog today deals with Trump’s trashing of the environment via rule and reg and the replacement of weather scientists and other experts in government with political hacks who lack expertise and are hired to put a PR cover on the executive’s destructive whims and asks, rhetorically, whether it is time  to give it up as resistance may be futile. I responded to her query, slightly edited, as follows.

To the argument that we have a corrupt government I here note that there have always been corrupting influences in history (Brute, Judas, Madoff et al), and while my note does not excuse such conduct, it does rightly discriminate between the corrupt and those who are not corrupted in our society, those who do their jobs, pay their bills and their taxes, raise their kids and in general comport themselves to the mores and morals of their limited span on earth.

Thus resistance to Trump’s “deconstruction of the administrative state” and the destructive acts of other dictators is not only not futile but absolutely necessary if not only we but the planet and our progeny are to survive, and I think we should use our limited time resisting Trump’s environmental and other destructive acts and those of such as Putin, Xi, Erdogan and other despots in this time and place rather than lamenting past, current and even future wrongdoing patterns of others in ancient and modern history.

You start from where you are, and today’s humans are starting from a sordid past of Mongols, Caesars, Hitlers, Trumps, and assorted other hooligans who have come to power along with corporate hooligans steeped in terminal greed. Our experiment in Athenian democracy was and is a noble one, one whose defense sent me to the South Pacific in WW II, and I do not propose to surrender its teetered remainder to anybody anywhere but rather propose to strengthen our democratic values, tattered as they may be since, after all, they have been tattered before and have recovered (Civil War, Great Depression etc.).

This is no time to bow to modern day Mongols and Nazis; it is rather a time to stand up for and defend the most precious asset we in this country hold in common – our democracy. I didn’t spend time in the South Pacific in defense of political theories or the political futures of FDR or Truman; I spent it in defense of democracy against the forces of fascism, and here I am 75 years later ready to again resist fascism – but from within. Never thought I’d see the day.     GERALD         E


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One Comment
  1. Niel Johnson permalink

    Jerry  – You laid it

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