Salon asks Brennan Center scholar Elizabeth Goitein "(w)hat would have been the worst-case outcome on Jan. 6." The answer? A military coup. And yet many Presidential emergency powers, granted through law by Congress, could also have wreaked havoc -- the Insurrection Act of course, but also the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, which lets Presidents freeze bank accounts of Americans suspected of collaborating with a foreign power, and the Communications Act, which may allow our President to flip a kill-switch on our internet. And that's before we get to the emergency powers Presidents claim to have in the rarely-seen-I-wonder-why Presidential Emergency Action Documents.
In a related note, Branko Marketic at Jacobin tells us why we should be wary a domestic anti-terrorism bill like the one our House passed last week. Long story short: the bill isn't as repugnant as something Republicans would push and have pushed, but that's not a high bar to clear, and one could easily imagine its mechanisms being turned against liberals, as, indeed, all the other mechanisms of "national security" already have been. The Biden Administration still harasses anti-racism activists far too much, and a future Trump Administration (until the man dies, no sense imagining it'll be some other Republican) will do considerably worse.
When one hears that "Supply Chain Failures Prove Growing Need for Localized Economies," particularly with regard to food, one is right to ask: how do we help recreate local economies? The article suggests more than a few ways to do that -- from supporting mutual aid groups and farmers' markets all the way up to fighting "free" trade deals and supporting seed banks. We should also note that our FTC's proposed merger guidelines (which could also undo mergers) could be a good ally in this fight -- if we can keep corporations from getting absurdly huge, we can also keep them from throwing our lives into chaos at will.
This Harper's-style list about corporate involvement in spreading the "Great Replacement" theory should disabuse any notions we might have that corporations are somehow too "woke." Many corporations find racists to be useful idiots, since they distract folks from what the corporations are doing. It's like they're saying yeah, you did catch me polluting your water table, but before you shoot me, have you ever considered how Black and Brown folks get all the goodies and you can't get anything? And the reason you "can't get anything" is corporate power! And too many folks remember the good times, without remembering that reining in corporate power and taxing the rich were how we got the good times.
Arguing against renewable energy because of the extractive/exploitative effects of lithium mining sure is better than merely saying ha ha you're using coal to power your electric car! or passing around pictures of supposed "electric car graveyards" on Facebook, but it's no reason to throw up our hands and say we're just going to have to use oil and gas and coal forever, either. And it's also no reason to say every advance in technology exploits someone, as if the Indigenous folks who live near the salt lakes that provide around seven-eighths of all extracted lithium simply don't matter, or don't know better. The can-do thinker, of course, would be thinking past lithium in the first place.
Finally, Democrats are starting to see some of their early redistricting victories/non-losses get reversed in court. "(C)ollapsing across the map" is overly dramatic, but that's not the real issue: the real issue is that no Democrat should lose to any of these insane Republicans, and like the baseball manager who's already complaining about injuries three weeks into the season, Democratic politicians seem to be psyching themselves into doing just that. I sure hope I don't find out that it's always been about locking in the big campaign donations! After all, if you win, you have to do things, but if you lose, you can keep fundraising off the knuckle-dragger you just enabled to victory.