The story of American decline is the story of an incompetent ruling class. You'll hear many self-serving explanations for it. But the truth is, it's that simple.
The people in charge inherited an industrial superpower with unchallenged military dominance. In a little more than a generation, they squandered all of it.
In exchange for short-term profits, bigger vacation homes and cheaper household help they wrecked what they did not build.
They outsourced entire sectors of our economy to China. They imported a serf class to drive down wages, and they crippled the middle class while doing it.
They ran up trillions of dollars in unpayable debt. They turned the finest universities in the world into a joke. They watched from their decadent little bubbles of affluence as families, faith and public decency died in this country and they laughed because they didn't care.
How people so awful wound up in charge of a nation as great as ours is a question historians will have to answer – and they will, someday.
But at this point, it's clear the population has grown tired of it. Donald Trump's election is one clear sign of that. The rise of Bernie Sanders is another.
The ruling class in other words, is losing its grip on power and the ruling class members can feel it. They can smell it. It terrifies them.
Their first response was denial. It always is. They retreated into fantasy.
They wondered why can't we be just like Joe Biden and make it 2009 again? Well, that didn't work and when it didn't, they reverted to their governing instinct, which is authoritarianism.
They stopped trying to convince the public of anything and instead decided to scare them. Fearful people are easier to control.
You saw it on the front page of their newspaper Friday morning – The New York Times. “Lawmakers are warning that Russia is meddling to re-elect Trump,” read the headline. Inside the story, there was nothing – no evidence, no detail, not even a coherent set of accusations.
But it was enough to alert the morons on cable news. It was time to do their job, which is now and always to run interference for the people in charge.
Now remember, most of the people on television have no idea what they're saying, even as they're saying it.
They're just reading the scripts that were written for them by some 23-year-old women's studies major from Wesleyan – somebody who knows even less than they do.
On MSNBC, host Chris Matthews said: “It's official. Russia has endorsed the reelection of President Donald Trump, who is trying desperately right now to keep that matter secret.”
Also on MSNBC, former CIA Chief of Staff Jeremy Bash said: “If the Russians are attacking our election processes, and they're doing so to benefit Donald Trump, I think frankly, the president welcomes it. He wants it.”
On CNN, host Don Lemon said: “So as bad as it is … the Russians are back at it. Trying to help Trump get reelected. It's far worse that the president of the United States is – he is trying to cover it up.”
On MSNBC, host Lawrence O’Donnell said: “The president is a Russian operative. That sounds like the description of a bad Hollywood screenplay, but it is real. And it is Vladimir Putin's greatest achievement. This is one of those shocking news days if you retain the capacity to be shocked in the Trump era by the Trump regime, which might be better labeled the Trump-Putin regime.”
So these people claim the president of the United States has colluded with Russian President Vladimir Putin to steal an election. No, not just the last one, but the next one, too. Be afraid, says Don Lemon, be very afraid.
Yet the public doesn't seem especially afraid. Maybe they've heard it before somewhere. Their lack of panic is deeply distressing to the Democratic Party, which is counting on another Red Scare sometime between now and November.
So Brian Williams – trustworthy Brian Williams – stepped in to scold America for not being more terrified.
Williams said on his show on MSNBC: “We begin tonight with sad word that funeral services are pending this evening after the death of outrage earlier today – outrage officially died of exhaustion though buoyed at the very end by the one bright spot, the realization that its close relative, apathy survives and is thriving.”
Got that? They are saying: screw you, America. You ought to be falling for it a second time. How dare you? You can see the frustration on their faces.
On the other hand, you think they might take the time to come up with a new hoax occasionally. Why can't they invent Argentine sappers once in a while or saboteurs from Malawi? Something new and interesting.
But no, like a robot vacuum cleaner stuck carving circles under a chair, they are going to keep doing the same thing over and over and over until the batteries run out.
And now they're trying it on Bernie Sanders.
New York Times reporter Peter Baker said on MSNBC, where he is an analyst: “Now you might ask the question as some people have, would they want Trump over Bernie Sanders? Sanders, of course, a democratic socialist is, you know, more ideologically in tune with the old Russia anyway and remember, of course, the Russians did favor Bernie Sanders in the primary in 2016 over Hillary Clinton.
Wait. Bernie Sanders? He is a Putin Stooge, too? We thought he was a Brezhnev stooge, whatever. He's colluding with the Russians. He's got to be because he's not with the program.
Just this afternoon, The Washington Post reported: "Bernie Sanders was briefed by U.S. officials (Intel officials) that Russia is trying to help his presidential campaign."
Now that happened weeks ago, he learned about it weeks ago, but the Sanders campaign never leaked the story. Now, on the eve of the Nevada caucuses, someone in the so-called intelligence community did leak it, just as they repeatedly leaked selective information in the first Russia hoax in an effort of course, to derail Donald Trump, whose policies they disagree with.
You see what's going on here? Yes, you do. Our democratic system is in fact under attack. That much is true. But it's not the Russians who are attacking it. It's not even the Chinese. It's being attacked by our own ruling class. They're undermining democracy because they have no choice.
If they left it up to voters to decide where to go next, they'd be out of a job tomorrow, because they've been terrible stewards of this country. Some of them would be in jail.
So they've got to subvert our system. Their livelihoods depend on it.
Adapted from Tucker Carlson’s monologue from “Tucker Carlson Tonight” on Feb. 21, 2020.