Let's first be mad at the Russians, not at each other so much

Milliseconds after Special counsel Robert Mueller's report, via Attorney General William Barr, into Russian collusion into the 2016 presidential election, no one took a breath before ripping into the other side.

I'll leave the post-report fireworks to others before I read the 448-page report that concluded that President Donald Trump didn't collude with the Russians yet couldn't find enough evidence to charge him with obstruction of justice.

But why can't we be as outraged that villainous Russia interfered in our elections, as the years-long and costly investigation proved? This was a direct assault on us--an act of war no less. It was an autocrat's wallop at  our democracy. It was an enemy's strike on our peace, harmony and self-determination.

And, by God, it worked.

Russian dictator Vladimir Putin knew what he was doing when he aimed at the soft-underbelly of self-government--our willingness to unravel our government in a blizzard of insults and reprisals. Our weakness that let's our anger grind us into stagnation. To childishly resolve that "if I don't get my way, no one will."

Putin's victory continues and grows now, as the two sides vow to rip each other's skin off, interpreting Mueller's report in self-satisfying, self-aggrandizing ways. This fight has and will weaken us further, and one has to wonder if the weakness will be fatal.

Ben Franklin's sage observation, repeated to the point of banality, is nonetheless true. “Well Doctor what have we got, a republic or a monarchy,” Franklin was asked. He replied, “A republic . . . if you can keep it.”

Franklin's wisdom was affirmed a few years later when the French Revolution's experiment with self rule ended in a suicidal  bloodbath. Will it come to this in America? Putin's hoping it will, and so far he's been right. 

dennis@dennisbyrne.net

www.dennisbyrne.net 

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  • Oh my. It's early yet, Dennis, but you have a point. Suddenly I'm not looking at the 2020 campaign stories with such "Not yet!" horror, but with great care. As my political science prof always said, the most important question in politics is "What do we do now?"

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