What Does Portland Really Mean?

              What did Karl Marx say in The 18th Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte? Something about you know you’re at the moment of great crisis when the best becomes the worst and the worst becomes the best. Okay – so he stole it from Dickens.  But I think what he said then, may hold true now.

              Let’s start with the FBI. When I was a kid, J. Edgar Hoover was at the top of every liberal shit-list. Could there have been a McCarthyism without the FBI going after every Red under every bed?  I doubt it.

              Now the FBI is a must-save organization for liberals because it has been the target of endless Trump attacks. But Trump is so much against the FBI that he wants to spend $1.5 billion to give this Deep State agency a new headquarters building, which happens to be located right across the street from Trump’s hotel. And by the way, even Republicans on the committee which oversees the FBI’s budget decided last month that the cost of a new building was way too high.

              The day that liberals would be defending the FBI against conservatives is a day I never thought I would see. Julius and Ethel Rosenberg must be spinning in their graves. But notice how Trump manages to take advantage of a situation he created with his endless rantings about the ‘deep state.’

              If you think that the best has become and worst and the worst has become the best is represented by the goings-on at the FBI, the situation in Portland as reported by NPR is even more of a comment on how things seem to have changed. Basically, the story out of Portland is that the demonstrations don’t seem to have attracted much attention from right-wing militia groups who have previously strutted their stuff in Portland and other Western states.

              One of the groups which has appeared in Portland with their assault rifles, camo outfits and (of course) MAGA hats, is a group calling itself Proud Boys, who describe themselves as ‘Western chauvinists’ and have posted an interview on their website with – ready? – Roger Stone! To quote my grandfather, these guys are real drek. And if you don’t know what drek means, I’ll give you a little hint. It’s what is rubbed off on the toilet paper after you wipe your ass.

              The militia movement has been a staple of right-wing political media entertainment ever since 2014 when that idiot Cliven (‘let me tell you about your Negro’) Bundy called for a national get-together of militia groups outside his ranch. They showed up again in Charlottesville for the 2017 rally which resulted in the death of a young woman and then provoked Trump to deplore the violence on ‘both sides.’

              Bits and pieces of these schmucky groups have appeared in rallies protesting state lockdowns, and some of them were particularly abusive towards Governor Whitmer in Michigan, a mini-riot that was applauded by Trump.

              But here is what I don’t understand. One of our friends sent us an email from a participant in the Portland demonstrations which said: “The unfortunate effect of the Federales is that the Black Lives Matter and police reform protests are taking a back seat. The troops are a distraction, are inciting rioting and unwanted.” In other words, the demonstrations have become a response of local residents to the appearance and behavior of federal cops.

              Now I thought that the militia movement and all their bullshit about 2nd-Amendment ‘rights’ was a reaction to the ‘tyranny’ of the national state. So why aren’t all these drek groups out there guarding the Black Lives Matter people and the Mothers and Grandmothers from the tear gas and assaults that go on every night?

              I’ll tell you why. Because the only time we need to worry about federal government ‘overreach’ is when the federal government is run by liberals and worse, if the federal government happens to be run by a liberal who is also Black.

              Like Marx said, the best has become the worst and the worst has become the best. Welcome to the Age of Trump.

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