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Pierce writes: "This whole administration* is about scaring poor and desperate people. It's the only consistent thing about it. It's the only policy idea these geniuses have."

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. (photo: Bryan Cox/Getty Images)
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. (photo: Bryan Cox/Getty Images)

The Fear, Like the Cruelty, Is the Point

By Charles Pierce, Esquire

14 July 19

It's the point of the census fandango and the "massive ICE raids." It's the point of everything the Trump people do.

l Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago, it appears, has decided that there isn't any more fun to have when you've pulled the wings off the last bug. At least for the moment, via The Hill:

President Trump on Thursday is expected to issue an executive order directing the Commerce Department to collect citizenship information by other means than the U.S. census, according to an administration official. The move would effectively sideline the Trump administration’s bid to force the citizenship question onto the 2020 census, which the president abruptly announced after the Supreme Court ruled late last month against its inclusion. But administration officials have cautioned that the situation is fluid and the plans could change.

This whole fandango has been about scaring poor and desperate people. This whole administration* is about scaring poor and desperate people. It's the only consistent thing about it. It's the only policy idea these geniuses have. Fear is the point as much as cruelty is. Which is why I think that the story about "massive" immigration raids might be pretty much the same thing. They'll round up maybe 50 or 100 people in 10 or 20 cities, trot them past a bunch of TV cameras, and wait for the terror to percolate in a thousand darkened living rooms.

It's not a bluff. It's a living, ongoing threat. This is no way to run a democracy. This is no way to run a humanity, either.

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+43 # DongiC 2019-07-14 09:27
The President is becoming more and more despicable. Whom does he think he is fooling? Oh, that's right. - his deplorable base. They are contemptible also.
+23 # Rodion Raskolnikov 2019-07-14 09:27
Yes, this is right. Trump makes the ugly US immigration polices ugly as they are. We now are able to recognize them for what they are -- ugly, racist, illiberal, ungenerous, and colonistic.

It was Bush who created the "zero tolerance" and the end to "catch and release." But he did not do much of that. Obama enforced the Bush policies and deported 3 million people. He separated families and imprisoned migrants and refugees. But Obama always spoke kindly and compassionately (except when in a select group).

Trump is following Bush and Obama but he speaks like the thug, bully, racist, and xenophobic that he is. He lets us see the ugly policies as ugly. Perhaps we should thank him for making so many people recognize US immigration policies for what they truly are.
0 # Texas Aggie 2019-07-14 21:33
Obama was the one who started the DACA program for the Dreamers. And while he set records for deportation, by and large he deported truly criminal immigrants.

Having said that, he did deport a lot more people than he needed to. It's part of being neoliberal.
0 # coberly 2019-07-15 14:27

maybe trivial point, but i think saying that trump is racist, ungenerous, illiberal, and coloristic.. is to miss the point.

cruel and not so unusual perhaps. inhuman, ugly, stupid, dangerous, evil.... well, not finding the word i am looking for, and some of mine would play no better than yours politically.

but take "racist" i am a white boy and i have been treated badly by the cops and other bullies, so i don't think racism is the point except that it helps black people vote for us.... while it makes otherwise sensible enough white people vote against us.

as you point out Obama was not a racist and he talked pretty, but it's not clear he did blacks or poor people or even afghan non-terrorists any good.

no profound conclusions here, but maybe something to think about.
+22 # chemtex2611 2019-07-14 09:41
Is the leader of the United States really the CEO of Caligula, Nero & Co.? Caligula and Nero are two major blotches on the history of Rome.
+12 # Rodion Raskolnikov 2019-07-14 11:04
chem -- yes, he is and this has always been true. This is how policing at all levels in the US works. Women and men are routinely raped, beaten, chained to toilettes, held in solitary confinement in US prisons. The US is a torture state. Here are two recent videos of police conducing routine "cavity" searches of people they'd stopped along the highway. What kind of Caligula would stick his hands up someone's asshole on the side of the road?

This happens every single day all across the US.
+13 # treerapper 2019-07-14 10:23
And all of the people who are doing this are immigrants - offspring of people who came here probably for the very same reasons the present asylum seekers have come here - running for their lives.

+18 # Elroys 2019-07-14 10:25
The only remaining question is not what trump is about or what he wants to do. There is no question about his focus on fear, cruelty, bullying and his moronic behavior. This is a little boy with very real war toys. This is no "stable genius". This is a chaotic imbecile, and 90% of us know this (OK - maybe 75%).
The only remaining questions is how many people will really vote for donald trump in November 2020. If he is elected, it will be the official death knell for American democracy - which is exactly what trump wants. He wants to be just like Vlad Putin, his lover, Kim Jong-Un, the Saudi murderer - Prince MBS, and the others who get to rule as they please - just like crazy King George did up until 1776. Which way will it be, America?
+23 # Jaax88 2019-07-14 12:12
Trump seems to be out to destroy America as we know it. To me Attila the Hun is an apt moniker for Trump as he has "Hun" bloodlines. A very dangerous man, especially since he has the GOP cowed and supporting his behavior and he intentionally riles up his "Brown Shirt" hoodlums.
+1 # jimallyn 2019-07-15 19:43
"Bad cop" is redundant.

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