Freedom Rider: Liberal sympathy for Trump

Everyone reveals their true self in a time of turmoil. A crisis forces exposure which can no longer be kept hidden. The revelation that Donald Trump was diagnosed with COVID-19 certainly proves this point. The phony resistance immediately showed that their opposition to Trump is no indicator of solidarity with the people. Their allegiance to the ruling classes always comes out whenever it is time for people to speak forcefully.

MSNBC host Rachel Maddow has made a career out of pushing the sketchy Russiagate narrative but she was suddenly overcome with concern for Trump . “God bless the president and the First Lady. If you pray, please pray for their speedy and complete recovery—and for everyone infected, everywhere. This virus is horrific and merciless—no one would wish its wrath on anyone.”

Maddow’s reaction is not surprising. She is a propagandist after all, and not the journalist she pretends to be. Her objections to Trump in no way shows support for popular needs. Like the Democratic Party she represents, she may scorn Trump by ginning up the false Russiagate narrative, but she doesn’t object to Democrats approving the establishment of a Space Force or giving him military budgets larger than the amount he requests. They are of one mind in waging hybrid wars against China, Venezuela or Iran. They support sanctions that create human misery all over the world.

What does one do when the target of phony outrage gets sick? For Maddow it means asking for prayers and even comparing him to a smoker friend who develops lung cancer . We don’t criticize the smoker, we do everything to support that person, says the object of liberal adoration. Interesting that Maddow sees Trump as a friend at all. Then again, she described the late Roger Ailes as her friend and mentor. His Fox News creation is anathema to the millions of Democrats who are obsessed with her program and see her as their spokesperson. Now they ought to know she doesn’t really care that much.

Maddow was not alone. Film director Ava Duvernay also felt compelled to send Trump a rhetorical get well card. But she showed her hand after the presidential debate when she condemned Trump but also managed to throw in some Obamaesque scolding of black people for good measure. “For those who hadn’t been listening for the past 4 years, Trump just told you that he ain’t leaving and that he is a white supremacist. If that doesn’t get every American who is not white into overdrive to toss his ass — we may actually deserve what happens next.” It seems that in her world view, if Trump and his fascist hordes do rise up to attack black people, the victims will somehow be at fault.

Even after getting push back for her first dubious statement, Duverney again tried to have it both ways as she commented upon his COVID diagnosis. “I truly hope you get well as you’re infected with a life-threatening virus and are physically ill. Also, you are a disgrace and a liar. You’ve cost hundreds of thousands their lives. And you’re a white supremacist. Get well. Sincerely. And after that, we’re going to vote you out.” If she really believes Trump is a white supremacist why wish him well?  This is the same Ava Duvernay who announced that questions about Kamala Harris are off limits and are in her view an insult to our ancestors. The black misleadership class is made up of a larger group than politicians. Entertainers and other prominent people like Duvernay always try to limit the scope of black action and even of our thoughts.

Maddow, Duvernay and other well-wishers have done us all a huge service. The real resistance, those who oppose neoliberalism, its racist structures, and its empire, are consistent. If they say anything about Trump and COVID they point out that he dismissed the severity of a disease that has killed 200,000 people in this country. The duopoly work together on giving meager help to millions of people suffering because of COVID’s economic impact. They lack the “socialized medicine” that Trump now enjoys. That is what needs to be said.

These virtue signalers have signaled to us that they believe the little people should never complain too much. Only so much opinion is to be expressed and then we must fall into line and not disturb our rulers, even those they allegedly dislike.

Anyone unwilling to show sympathy to Trump for any reason is showing righteous indignation and is to be applauded. The well-wishers are phonies, either deliberately gas lighting to protect their own interests, or their anti-Trump politics are all for show. Both statements are true for the likes of wealthy opinion makers like Maddow and Duvernay. They speak and act in defense of their class interests. The rest of us must do likewise.

Margaret Kimberley’s Freedom Rider column appears weekly in BAR, and is widely reprinted elsewhere. She maintains a frequently updated blog as well at patreon.com/margaretkimberley and she regularly posts on Twitter @freedomrideblog. Ms. Kimberley lives in New York City, and can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)BlackAgendaReport.com.

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