Howard Schultz Knows Who To Blame For Trump Closing Mexican Border
We'd almost forgotten all about "centrist independent" Howard Schultz. It was wonderful. We'd started drinking Starbucks coffee again. Unfortunately, the kinda-maybe presidential candidate no one demanded has resurfaced, adding insult to our acid reflux.
Donald Trump is threatening to close the border with the United Kingdom of Mexico and all its subsidiary Mexican countries. People who think for a living argue that this rash response to an imaginary crisis would result in a very real economic one. This is a good opportunity for Schultz to flex his middle-of-the-road moderate muscles and take a principled stand against Trump's buffoonery. He did about as well as a Starbucks barista with our name ("Steven," "Stephan," "Only Black Guy Here").
"Shut up, Wesley!"Twitter
How are Democrats -- or even "Washington" for that matter -- responsible for Trump's deranged "national security" policies? To borrow from the people's president Hillary Clinton, they aren't even "policies" or "ideas" just a "dangerously incoherent ... series of bizarre rants, personal feuds, and outright lies."
Schultz fails to recognize that Trump's racism and xenophobia, especially as they relate to all four Mexican nations, are ideological. It's not about "party politics" or legitimate policy differences. If Schultz were capable of actual leadership, he'd call out Trump for his bigotry. Instead he remains stubbornly brand consistent. He's like the enabling parent of a terrible child who can never chastise them without offering equal time criticism to their sibling: "Now, Damian, you really shouldn't have set your sister on fire. However, Sally, you must admit that you're occasionally quite flammable."
This is why it's unclear what Schultz even believes, aside from presumably thinking he can lecture us to peace and prosperity. The top question when you Google his name is literally "What does Howard Schultz stand for."
Who the hell knows?Google
Schultz believes there's no problem so big that Democrats and Republicans aren't equally responsible for it. If Schultz had been on the Warren Commission, he'd have placed at least some of the blame for JFK's assassination on the president himself because he wasn't wearing a hat. If pressed, Schultz's handlers might admit that he stands for nothing because that would require actually making stands. There is nothing revelatory or visionary about claiming "both sides" are failing the nation. The guy who sold you weed in college said the same thing.
We're also tired of Schultz "shoulding" us to death. Both parties "should" focus on "getting results." How does Schultz even define "results"? Republicans haven't spent the past two years twiddling their thumbs. Mitch McConnell, the most partisan hack who ever blocked a Supreme Court nominee, is in fact "getting results." He's churning out far-right judges through the Senate on a "conveyor belt." We think McConnell's goals are evil and twisted, but does Schultz? He spends more time ragging on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Elizabeth Warren like the slightly embarrassed Republican we all know he truly is.
Schultz appeared on "Fox & Friends" this morning for no good reason. They all looked at him, somewhat confused, as if thinking, "You're a bland white guy in a suit. Why don't we like you?" He bashed Democrats some more, which is truly refreshing content for Fox News viewers. He repeated his ridiculous claim that he's running as an independent because the "two-party system" is broken. He hasn't explained how electing him will somehow magically "fix the system." Schultz cynically argues that opposing parties blocked George W. Bush and Barack Obama's immigration bills because they "couldn't give the president a victory." And if Schultz believes that "Republicans" are the "opposing party" to George W. Bush, then he would be right. (Of course, that motivation would not vanish if Schultz were president. It would now come from both parties instead.)
We're not big fans of Michael "Stop and Frisk" Bloomberg, but we concede that he at least has strong ideological stances, especially when it comes to gun safety and the environment. We can see where he'd possibly build coalitions with like-minded politicians of either party. Schultz's entire value proposition is a mystery because he doesn't believe in anything more cogent than "everyone else sucks." That is a coalition wrecker. He's someone we'd almost enjoy seeing McConnell humiliate on the regular, and that's not a good trait in a president.
The "Fox & Friends" crew dragged Schultz when he suggested the wealthy should be taxed. We hate to say it but they were kind of right. Schultz refused to give an exact number (yet, AOC is the airhead). He said a number "doesn't matter." They begged to differ. Brian Kilmeade had to school Schultz on the deficit and how politics work.
KILMEADE: No one wants to cut anything. No one wants to cut social programs because it's death for politics. No one wants to cut defense because of the race we're in with Russia and China. We keep doing this. It's a circle.
SCHULTZ: You know what we're talking about? Leadership. Real leadership.
KILMEADE: But you don't have all the votes! You have to get people together without a party behind you.
Schultz was somehow the fourth smartest person out of four on "Fox & Friends." We know we say this a lot, but he really needs to go the fuck away forever.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He's on the board of the Portland Playhouse theater and writes for the immersive theater Cafe Nordo in Seattle. Tickets are on sale now for his latest Nordo collaboration, "Curiouser and Curiouser," an adaptation of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass." It promises to feel like an actual evening with SER (for good or for ill).