The Capitol Coup, the People Power Revolution that Failed

Still thinking about the attempted Coup on January 6, 2021, about the Nazification of the Republican/Right wing, and the consequences going forward.  It ain’t pretty.

One of the defenses that Nazis are raising is to deny it was a Coup attempt at all. This particular party line is that it was a simple riot. Hell, it wasn’t even a riot, it was just a demonstration, a ‘First Amendment Protest’ that got out of hand. Watch for that little descriptor by the way, that’s probably going to be pushed really hard on the right.

“First Amendment Protest” as if anyone in that crowd was thinking of the first amendment as they tried to overthrown Congress.

But the Nazis have the shadow of an argument?  Is it a real coup if it’s such a badly organized shit show?  Aren’t coup attempts supposed to involve the Army, or at least professionals rather than semi-literate cosplayers and fat guys in T-shirts? Look at them, they just wandered around tasering each other accidentally, pooping in hallways, and stealing letters from Nancy Pelosi’s desk! How do we call that a coup attempt.

Well, there are a few responses.

First, history is full of half baked coup attempts by incompetent ass clowns.  Incompetence has never been a defense to a crime.

Second, it’s become pretty clear that amongst all the fat boys, the angry old farts, the real estate agents who flew in on their private jets and costume players, there were some serious people there who were really intent on damage. We know that ‘storm the capital’ was repeated 100,000 times in the month preceding, that there was an immense amount of internet planning and traffic, ranging from admonitions to bring weapons, to sharing maps. We know that people brought sledgehammers, clubs, firearms, bear spray, twist ties. We know that there was intent to kill and intent to capture and take hostages. We know that there were serious people, and dangerous asses like the Proud Boys, the Three Percenters, the Oath Takers.  Simply put:  We got lucky, Pence and the Congress people, some of them, ended up within sixty seconds or sixty feet of capture, some staff sheltered under tables behind locked doors that were hammered but not broken. If this crowd had got its hands on Pence or Congress persons, it might have gone very badly.

And finally, let’s not rule out them getting lucky and succeeding, or opening up a pathway to success.  If they’d managed to kill or take hostages, it’s a whole new ball game, particularly a hostage situation.  If they’d managed to kill or brutalize enough Democrats and marshall (or intimidate) enough loyalist Republicans, they could have forced a vote to go the way they wanted.  Hell, even the specter of enough intimidation might have swayed things.  And once these votes go through, it’s not as if the Constitution or the legislation has any provision to take back or change a vote. They might have disrupted things enough to swing the vote back to the states. Or opened the door for Trump to institute a declaration of martial law or emergency powers.  All of this is unlikely, but not impossible.  Personally, I would have said a coup attempt was impossible, and a coup attempt actually getting as far as it did would be twice as impossible.  But here we are…

So ‘First Amendment Protest’ my ass. It was a goddammed coup attempt, and anyone who says different is either a Nazi, a Nazi apologist or a Nazi ‘useful idiot.’

But still, I keep thinking it.  Assuming the scattering of really bad people who had something like focused goals and plans, what about the rest of the useful idiots?  What were they thinking?

Today I had an epiphany in terms of the goals and objectives of the Insurrectionists and how they expected to succeed.

You just have to look around – 1986 the Phillipines following the murder of Begnino Aquino, suddenly there was this uprising, this vast people power movement of thousands of people demonstrating and coming into the streets against Marcos. And he’s swept from power and sent running.

The Iranian Revolution, 1979, – people power, thousands and tens of thousands in crowds in every city, the Army refuses to fire, the Shah is thrown out of power. Russia same thing 1991, the communists try a coup, and people power runs them off, with Boris Yeltsin standing on a tank.  I can give you a handful of other examples of third world dictatorships swept away by outrage and mass demonstrations, refusal or fear of the military to suppress.

That’s what they thought – they thought they were the Vanguard of a populist revolution. They thought that they’d just sweep in there, hang or throw out a ‘corrupt Congress’, and usher in the revolution. The police wouldn’t shoot at them because the police were secretly on their side, so they weren’t going to shoot the police, or do more than necessary to get them out of the way.

They thought once they started the fire, it would catch on nationwide. That with a corrupt congress swept aside, all their secrets (cannibalism, pedophilia, whatnot) exposed, then the 75 million real Americans who all voted for Trump and believed the Election was stolen would all rise up, right across the country, mass demonstrations in all the cities, the army would refuse to fire and join them. Biden and his evil henchman would get on a stolen plane and flee to China. And puppies for everyone.

They thought that they were the leading edge of a people power revolt, and that was how the coup would succeed.

I think that everyone who went there is pretty shocked that it didn’t happen, the nation didn’t rise up, and people think they’re assholes. The reactions of some of them, particularly people caught venting about being on the know fly list is telling. They thought everyone would be applauding, and now they’re upset that no one is.

They’re also, the movement, sticking to its guns. That Washington and 50 state Capitols shtick? They’re still trying for a people power revolution. They honestly think everyone will take to the streets, and all they have to do is ‘show the way’strike the first blow.’

As video blogger B’eau From the Fifth Column’ says, they’re not sophisticated or organized enough to simultaneously launch 51 attacks. But overall, they probably think they can launch 51 public demonstrations. And maybe in a few places, attacks to inspire people and show them how easy it is, then….. revolution!

I don’t think that they appreciate the massive lack of interest in their tactics. I think they look at polls saying 81% of Republicans believe the Election was stolen, and 18% to 36% actually support the coup, and another larger percent make excuses for it. They think ‘wow, there’s a shitload of people, and even if a small chunk of them come out for us, we’ll make waves, then when people see the waves, he rest will pile on, and eventually, everyone will be with us!’

What will they do when that doesn’t happen?  When America gives a yawn and turns the channel.  When millions and millions don’t come rallying into public squares and the army doesn’t throw down it’s guns, the bad guys aren’t swept away and the millennium doesn’t come round?

(At least, I’m hoping it doesn’t happen – it’s only the 16th, and no sign of it, but wait and see).

If it doesn’t happen, then we’ll see a great disillusionment.  Some of these people will wake up and realize they’ve been sold a bill of goods.  Some of them will cling to their fantasies, but read the lay of the land, shut up and shape up because they want to keep their jobs and families.

Some of them, they’ll get bitter and mean.  Mean enough to join the crazies, or give them enough popular support, enough cover to make them truly dangerous.  A very few of them will join the ranks of the violent and murderous, that’s bad. But all by themselves, mad dogs just get hunted down and shot. I’ll waste no tears on mad dogs, two legged or four.

The worrisome part may be a bitter, resentful, radicalized subset of the population, people maintaining jobs and families, people staying out of trouble, but still nutty as a squirrel’s colostomy bag, who will provide aid and support, comfort, money, hiding places for the mad dogs.  That’s when a mad dog is most dangerous, when it’s got backing.

Because what do you do, when you throw a revolution and no one shows up? Some grow up, some move on, some get depressed…. and a few get ugl.