Sunday, April 19, 2020

Egghead Week: Fun-Size Rebellion

As if we somehow needed any more proof the modern GOP is a death cult, right-wing activist group Turning Point USA and founder Charlie Kirk are calling on Trump's Junior Brownshirts to openly rebel against stay-at-home orders and pick up a virus or two.

As protests against stay-at-home orders due to novel coronavirus break out around the country, Students for Trump, one of the main political groups backing President Donald Trump's reelection, is calling on its young members to join the efforts. 
During a virtual convention on Friday for Students for Trump, the college campus arm of Turning Point USA, the group's founder Charlie Kirk urged members to launch a "peaceful rebellion against governors" in states like Michigan and Wisconsin.

Kirk, speaking to over 500 members of the conservative nonprofit organization geared at activating college students to reelect the president who tuned in to the event, derided governors like Michigan's Gretchen Whitmer for encroaching on their rights and urged them to join the protests around the country. The event was hosted on Zoom. 
It's not immediately clear if any protests have been organized due to Kirk's comments. 
"Peaceful is the operative word. Charlie is simply calling on Americans to exercise their First Amendment right to peacefully push back against the arbitrary overreaches of certain governors who are prohibiting completely safe activities," a spokesman for Kirk told ABC News in a statement. "Americans have patriotically and heroically unified to slow the spread, and now Charlie believes it's time to let our political leaders know that it's time to open the country back up."

Because Charlie Kirk is the final arbiter of pandemic safety and all.

I'm some 25 years out of college now, but I can't imagine even nihilist Zoomers are going to fall for this nonsense, when there's plenty of documented cases of people under 25 dying to COVID-19.

It's not just Kirk, either, both Texas GOP senators are supporting Gov. Abbott's plans to reopen the state.  It's going to be a disaster.  But here's what I want to know.

Why isn't Kirk out there leading the way instead of holding virtual conferences and expecting college kids to risk their health and the health of those around them just to "own the libtards?"

Because all of this is performative, as Steve M reminds us.  And the audience is the media.

The argument is that it's good politics for Trump to do what his base wants -- even though a new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll makes clear that it's not what America wants. 
Nearly 60 percent of American voters say they are more concerned that a relaxation of stay-at-home restrictions would lead to more COVID-19 deaths than they are that those restrictions will hurt the U.S. economy, according to a new national NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll
But while strong majorities of Democrats and independents are more worried about the coronavirus than the economy, Republicans are divided on the question, with almost half of them more concerned about how the restrictions could affect the economy.

How many polls like this have I quoted to you over the years -- polls in which Democrats and independents are on one side of an issue and Republicans on the other? And yet there's never a suggestion in the mainstream press that the right is out of step with "the real America." In this crisis, it's just the opposite -- the press implies that the minority viewpoint is the emerging consensus viewpoint.

Steve is right of course.  There's maybe 25% support for "re-opening the economy" but the press is pretending like it's 85% support.  It's ridiculous.  The number of people protesting is zilch.  But you'd think there were millions of people in every state waiting to unleash hell unless the orders are lifdted by next week.

There's not. The astroturfing is working beautifully.

I guess the "good news" is by May 1 it'll be pretty obvious that loosening stay-at-home orders will be a disaster and people will hopefully reevaluate.

Well, the living ones will, at any rate.

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