My friend Tom phoned this morning:
“I can’t take any more Trump. It’s summer. I’m taking a vacation from him,” he said.
“I understand,” I said.
“I’ve been so stressed out since that moron was elected that sometimes I can’t sleep,” he said.
“Totally get it,” I said.
“I quit. If others want to carry on the fight for the next three months, be my guest.”
“You’ve earned a vacation.“
“You bet I have. Every time I see his stupid face my blood pressure goes into the stratosphere. I can’t take it any more,” Tom said.
“You don’t need to,” I said.
“That’s exactly my point. I don’t need this. He’s a selfish, greedy, narcissistic, fascistic, unhinged, bigot. And to think he’s running this great country makes me want to puke.”
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“So … (long pause) “You think it’s okay if I take a vacation from him?”
“Of course, if that’s what you want to do.”
“It’s not as if I’ve had very much effect. I’ve been writing letters, calling my members of congress. I’ve demonstrated. Even gone to a few meetings.”
“Sounds like you’ve been doing a lot,” I said.
“So why the fuck isn’t he impeached already?” Tom raised his voice.
“These things take time.”
“He’s taken bribes from foreign governments, obstructed justice, abused his power. And the asshole does nothing but lie! Probably conspired with Putin to win the election! Doesn’t give a damn that Russia’s trying to kill our democracy!”
“We can’t let this happen!” he almost shouted.
“No, we can’t.”
“We have to fight this tyrant!”
“Couldn’t agree more.”
“If the Dems take back the House next year, they could start the impeachment process. So we have to begin organizing soon, get ready,” Tom said.
“Absolutely,” I said.
“If Jon Osoff is elected in Georgia Tuesday, that could send a clear signal,” he said.
“I’m gonna phone bank all day tomorrow, calling voters in his district.”
“Good,” I said.
“The least I can do.”
“It will help.”
“Good to talk with you, Bob.”
“And to you, Tom. Be well.”
Robert Reich is the chancellor’s professor of public policy at the University of California, Berkeley, and a senior fellow at the Blum Center for Developing Economies. He served as secretary of labor in the Clinton administration, and Time magazine named him one of the 10 most effective Cabinet secretaries of the 20th century. He has written 14 books, including the best-sellers Aftershock, The Work of Nations and Beyond Outrage and, most recently, Saving Capitalism. He is also a founding editor of The American Prospect magazine, chairman of Common Cause, a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and co-creator of the award-winning documentary Inequality for All.
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