Topics: Commentary, Existentialism, Politics
“We must live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Tomorrow...is the anniversary of what would be known first as "the carnage" after his inauguration speech, then accented with "alternative news" as truth itself was made malleable, "fake news" as he attacked the fourth estate; feverish, septuagenarian bowel movement tweets (at least he's regular) and "covfefe."
“Welcome to the dawn of a new, unified Republican government,” said a beaming Paul Ryan, just over a week after Donald Trump’s improbable 2016 win delivered control of the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives to the GOP for the first time in over a decade. Eyebrows arched in an expression composed of equal parts glee and incredulity, the House speaker allowed himself a brief moment of public self-reflection. “It feels really good to say that, actually.” 
One year later...we're deep in the throws of an investigation on Russian interference in our elections, two indictments (more coming) and two confessions from a former national security advisor with ties to Russia and Turkey and a drunk, blabbing campaign aid. The stock market looks GREAT, likely artificially propped up by supporters of the president* that want it (and him) to at least look good before the next bottom falls out. 1929...1987...2008...we've been here before. We're hours as of this posting from a government shutdown...a shutdown after a year of "unified republican government." We're now here because of a mythical "wall" that Mexico isn't going to pay for.
One year later, that unified Republican government is on the verge of imploding. Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have been unable to pass a regular appropriations bill for 2018, relying instead on a series of continuing resolutions since September to keep the government’s doors open for a few weeks at a time. Now, however, both parties' appetite for these stopgaps has disappeared. Barring a last-minute breakthrough, on Friday at midnight, a government controlled by the same political party will shut itself down for the first time in modern American history. 
McClatchy News now reports the FBI is looking into links between the NRA and the Kremlin.  From the changing of the Republican platform, the daily violation of the Emoluments Clause; money laundering to his dubious dealings with mobsters and oligarchs, the NRA funneling Russian oligarch rubbles to the Kremlin's preferred candidate and the United States of America is looking a lot more like a criminal enterprise in a Dystopia rather than a federal republic.
The NRA and the KKK have a shared history:
Within months of the surrender at Appomattox, recalcitrant white racists committed to the reestablishment of white supremacy determined to take those guns away from blacks. States in the South passed the Black Codes, which barred the freedmen from possessing guns. Racists quickly learned, however, why gun control is not always as effective as planned: You can draw up any law you like, but people don’t necessarily comply. To enforce these laws, racists began to form posses that would go out at night in large groups, generally wearing disguises, and terrorize black homes, seizing every gun they could find. These groups took different names depending on locale: the Black Cavalry in Alabama, the Knights of the White Camellia in Louisiana, the Knights of the Rising Sun in Texas. In time, they all came to be known by the moniker of one such posse begun in Pulaski, Tennessee after the war: the Ku Klux Klan. 
Racism and white supremacy has been our national shame. What we have buried and ignored, others beyond our shores have exploited to their advantage. It is quite American, like Facebook and social media, Putin the puppet master used our divisions to storm the breech of our republic. Apparently, Forbes magazine is a tool of sadism and masochism. The "golfer-in-chief" is going to Mar-a-Largo at a current count of 91 trips as a new Rome burns. The shutdown is looming, "United States" officially is an oxymoron and "they (the Russians) are laughing...at us."
A-M-E-R-I-C-A (move the I to the front)
I-A-M-E-R-C-A (move the E to the end)
I-A-M-R-C-A-E (switch the C and A positions)
"If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man he won't notice you picking his pocket. Hell, give him someone to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you." President Lyndon B. Johnson with Bill Moyers on a tour of the south. 
 Paul Ryan's Unified Republican Government Is Coming Apart at the Seams, Jay Willis, GQ
 FBI investigating whether Russian money went to NRA to help Trump, Peter Stone, Greg Gordon, McClatchy News
 Gun Control Is “Racist”? The NRA Would Know, Adam Winkler, New Republic
 The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors, Dr. Francis Cress Welsing
 "Lowest white man" related links:
Did LBJ Advocate: 'Convince the Lowest White Man He's Better Than t... Snopes
The Lowest White Man, Charles M. Blow, New York Times
How LBJ Foresaw the Election of Donald Trump, Derek Beres, Big Think