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The Utter Recklessness and Stupidity of Rubio and Daines, and What It Epitomizes

You probably have heard the story that yesterday President Zelensky of Ukraine held a video conference call with United States senators and some Congresspeople. And that Ukraine’s ambassador specifically told them not to show any video of it whatsoever. And that two Republican senators, Marco Rubio of Florida and Steve Daines of Montana, did just what they were told not to do.

Now, it does not take more than low intelligence to comprehend that the reason the participants were told not to share any videos, is because of the risk to Zelensky, who has been targeted for assassination, and who is desperately trying to fight off Russian military power. That is why Democratic Congressman Dean Phillips of Minnesota wrote, “Appalling and reckless behavior by two U.S Senators.”

Congressman Jason Crow, a brave former Army Ranger who was awarded a Bronze Star, and who on January 6 of last year, was trying to save people in the Capitol during the insurrection, wrote, “The lack of discipline in Congress is astounding. If an embattled wartime leader tells you to keep quiet about a meeting, you better keep quiet about the meeting. I’m not saying a damn thing. Lives are at stake.”

Rubio had a spokesperson say in defiance, “Anybody pretending this tweet is a security concern is a partisan seeking clicks.” Daines had a spokesperson say that his tweet was made before it was requested not to be, and contained no identifying information.

I think it is beyond appalling, and that if a Democrat had done that, there would be calls for his immediate removal, maybe a trial for treason; and then a drumbeat of attacks on the Democratic Party as undermining the country. It would be the top story on every network.

To me, this accentuates the nature of the Republican Party. Let’s put it this way: Do you remember the legendary scene in the movie ‘Glengarry Glen Ross,” where Alec Baldwin’s character is brought in to give the salesmen a “motivational speech” which consists of browbeating, mocking, and scorn? Baldwin keeps hammering away at the message, “A.B.C.! Always Be Closing!”

The meaning is that he wants every one of those salesmen trying to sell worthless land to foolish customers, to have every word and gesture they make be focused on one thing, the sale. Everything is about that. The sole purpose of every conversation, every word, with the marks is to try to get them “to sign on the line which is dotted.” There is no room for anything to distract from that goal.

For Republicans, their mantra would be, “A.B.C. Always Be Campaigning.” This is a so-called political party which exists now for the sole purpose of gaining and keeping power. Their only considerations are how to win elections, and concurrently, how to damage the Democratic Party so that they cannot.

This is never out of their mind, it has become almost biologically determined. They cannot let any situation go by without reflexively turning it into an attack on Democrats. They cannot do anything without trying to have it make them look good. It is as if they are desperately struggling actors who need to try to do anything which will gain them publicity. “Look at me! Over here! I’m meeting with President Zelensky! See how important I am? Vote for me over that terrible Val Demings!”

I don’t think that Rubio and Danes were trying to endanger Zelensky’s life, though it is not impossible to conceive of that. More likely, it was a combination of grandstanding, and a complete incapacity to comprehend others’ needs and wishes.

After all, that is Republicanism in a nutshell. People cry out for health protection, a living wage, gun safety–and you ignore them. They are not part of your calculus, which is about staying in office, raking in immense amounts of money, and feeling important. You only need them at election time, and the way things are set up, you probably win no matter how bad a public official you are.

Marco Rubio, at least from a distance, is one of the stupidest people I have ever seen in the Senate, although others are making a bid to reach that level as well. He knows nothing coherent about policies, he just attacks Democrats in inane ways, and then quotes Biblical verses. I can’t stop him from being re-elected, but he cannot be allowed to greatly risk the lives of Zelensky and Ukrainian citizens, because he and Danes had this need to look important, and because they have learned never to care about anyone’s wishes or needs but those of their corporate donors and right-wing foundations.

You will note that it is not Democrats who do such reckless and stupid things, particularly in the midst of a war. It is Republicans, who make everything about them and their needs.. Always Be Campaigning. And they know that they can get away with it, it is like they are ‘made men” who are protected by the people who employ them. The fact that this story will not force Rubio and Daines out of office, if not facing legal prosecution, will attest to the invulnerability they and their cohorts think they have.