What we need to do
It has become a cliche to talking about thinking “outside the box” but that is exactly what we now need. When I look at my FB and Twitter accounts, I see the same expressions of outrage over Trump and his increasingly disgusting behavior. Often these expressions do not contain any suggestions for action and when they do it is mostly for phone calls, on-line petitions, and demonstrations. While a series of demonstrations if they are large and disruptive might have some value, the other approaches will probably have little impact.
It seems clear to me that at least part of the answer must come from within our political system which would require a majority, at least in the Senate, to block Trump’s actions and appointments. Given his clear indication to circumvent conflict of interest requirements and norms, this majority might at some point be able to remove him from office or force him to remove himself. Indeed, my reading of him is that if he can be frustrated and not allowed to follow his personal agenda, he might resign so he can return to his business empire and live in his own bubble of power.
Clearly then we need an alliance that could include most Democrats and a smaller group of sane republicans. There has already been an important break among the Republicans, McCain’s clear intention to block the use of torture. As Trump becomes more outrageous, the number of Republicans willing to break with him will increase. Indeed, while I have personally campaigned against the increasing corporate power over government, it might turn out that the real masters of both parties will decided to take action to stop him. I’m not crazy about depending on the very influences I dislike, but sometimes the greater good demands such compromises.
We are not going to come out of the emergency brought on by Trump’s election unscathed. Our mode needs to be damage control. For the longer term we need good assessments of what went wrong and approaches that will allow us to move forward.