June 26, 2018

I feel like I need to point out that yes, Morning Joe helped elect Trump. No question.

I will also point out that, unlike CNN, they do not invite defenders of Trump onto their show, and their show is highly influential in the Beltway. They pound Trump, and Trumpism, every single day. (Except when they're plugging Mika's books.)

So you don't need to nitpick every single thing they say. I'm a blogger -- you think I don't notice when Joe Scarborough starts revising history to make it seem like Republicans "used to be" rational actors? Of course I do. But I look at the big picture.

The fact remains that every single day, they go for Trump's jugular. Every single day. And they repeat their message, over and over and over.

It's the least they can do, under the circumstances -- but they are doing it, and that's valuable. They often pick the wrong reasons, or the wrong explanations, but I'm not so sure it matters anymore. They are in the front of the battlelines, and attack Trump every chance they get. And they make it very, very clear that we are in a fight to save democracy.

They are doing their part -- imperfectly, but reliably.

This morning, they had Steve Schmidt on to discuss Trump using immigration to whip up his base.

"There will be no small number of soybean farmers who lose their farms generationally because of the trade war Donald Trump has precipitated. Because when the markets dissipate, when they dry up, they're gone, the Chinese have been buying their soybeans from Brazil, for example," he said.

"But you look at his undermining of the U.S.-led liberal global order. His sundering of the Atlantic alliance. His zero-sum belief that might makes right. Real lack of imagination for the capacity for tragedy in the world caused by someone like this. but we're seeing somebody use lies to incite fervor in a base."

Scarborough pointed out the lies are easily called out. "'We have to build a wall, we have illegal immigration.' No, illegal immigration down for eight years. The president demanded a study --that he demanded --shows refugees added $63 billion to our economy over the past decade. They killed the study. 'Immigrants cause crime. All these gang members come over. No, it's .07%, something like 350 out of 300,000."

"It's a blizzard of lies where the rapidity of lying is tough to stop and refute all of them," he said. (Ed. note: We hear you, Steve!)

"The building of a fervor. We see scapegoating of vulnerable populations. We see the allegation of conspiracy, hidden nefarious forces conspiring with the scapegoated populations," he said.

"We see a sense of mass victimization, the high-octane fuel of Trumpism. Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, everybody is a victim. Now they might be a victim flying around on their G-650 (jet), but a victim they are nonetheless."

Schmidt went on to say that when we look at Trump right now, "we see Republican party conservatism. There is only one requirement now to be labelled a conservative in good standing -- absolute total obedience to Trump. It doesn't matter what he says so in the 240th year in the independence of the United States, in three states by 78,000 votes, the American people by a fluke elected an imbecilic former reality TV show host and con man whose only affinity for reading anything were the Adolf Hitler speeches he kept on his nightstand.

"So are we on the edge of a tragedy that will unfold for this? America's decline is beginning and we should make no mistake about this. The U.S.-led liberal global order is in peril. It's in threat. Will he take us out of the World Trade Organization? Will he undermine the international system that Franklin Roosevelt conceived, that was sustained through Ronald Reagan and Barack obama? It's anyone's guess."

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