The fully one-fourth of the national workforce that is now officially unemployed finally have the time for a brand new job. And that job is to vent their fury at the political officials who have made most people's lives a living hell long before the Coronavirus ever showed up to throw capitalism into such a state of disarray.
The tipping point for many was the broad-daylight Memorial Day police murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Just as Congress hasn't bothered to hide its own massive and criminal multitrillion-dollar giveaway to the rich under the cynically-named Cares Act, the officers didn't bother hiding their own public execution of Floyd from a crowd of distraught onlookers, their cell phone cameras whirring. Is the police knee pressing on Floyd's neck and squeezing the life out of the man really all that different from Nancy Pelosi's stiletto heel squeezing all hope of health care, guaranteed housing, food assistance and direct cash aid from hundreds of millions of American citizens?
It's considered chic for both liberals and never-Trump conservatives to foist most, if not all, of the blame for 100,000 Covid-19 deaths in the United States on his administration, while they ostentatiously wring their hands over his dangerous tweeted medical advice. But it was New York Governor Andrew Cuomo who closed city hospitals and cut Medicaid funding before refusing to shut down the state for weeks after the virus had already started spreading like wildfire. It was Cuomo who absolved nursing homes of accountability before he sent elderly hospital patients to their deaths at these state-sanctioned warehouses for the disposable. It was Cuomo who appeared on the floor of the Stock Exchange the day after the Floyd killing to maniacally cheer the opening bell of profit and greed even as his constituents stand in line for hours for meager pickings from food banks. It was Cuomo who has refused to give relief to renters even as his legislature plans to bail out the state's landlords, using the tax money paid by New York's potential evictees.
Of course, they all mouth the necessary platitudes and they feebly call for justice for George Floyd even as their own hands are caked with decades' worth of dirt and blood.
If they immediately fire the bad cops and even charge them with murder when faced with incontrovertible evidence of their guilt, they think they can absolve themselves. But the fact is that the police are in essence mere servants of the oligarchs. They act as a buffer zone between the poor and the rich. The plutocracy draws its domestic armed forces not from within its own class, but from the ranks of the working poor, integrating them into its program of economic and political oppression. Police forces are the low-intensity (usually) military ops for the elites.
It's a class war and it's a race war, and it's all right out there in the open. Racist dog-whistles are quaint relics. The Trump-style bullhorn has officially evolved into the state-sponsored snuff film.
Of course, the political-media complex strives mightily to reframe their deliberate policies as a culture war, pitting various segments of the working class and underclass against one another. In Minneapolis, we see self-described rednecks with shaved heads guarding convenience stores against "looting" by black people. Pick a side, and it will take your mind off the real looting of the treasury and the commons by the billionaires and corporations.
Neighborhoods on the elite chopping block have been transformed into military Human Terrain Systems. CCTV at every intersection allows real instances of urban violence to supplement the fictional fare that Hollywood produces to frighten us into submission. If citizens can envision urban areas and housing projects as hotbeds of savagery, then citizens can also accept more police and more jails. It's an endless propaganda feedback loop, in which both the cognitively superior "liberal" elites and the fundamentalist right-wingers are manipulated into joining forces in their hatred of the "Other". One side calls them IQ-deficient gun-loving losers in need of a hand up rather than a handout. The other side calls them godless moochers and takers lolling about on their hammocks of dependency.
And the elites meanwhile moan and groan about why can't "we" just all get along, because "we" are all in this together. If you call them out, you're being "divisive."
Any day now, they will declare a victory in their valiant fight against racism by organizing a cocktail summit between the paranoid white "Karen" and the black bird-watcher whose upper middle class Central Park confrontation was the top story before the Minneapolis police execution spurred even Donald Trump to call for FBI intervention.
Meanwhile, here are your two pre-approved "lock em up" choices in the coming election. As Biden advised in a 1994 Senate speech touting his Jim Crow crime bill, "we shouldn't really care why they are sociopaths."
All we should care about is the sad truth that each contender for the highest office is a sociopath who is shamelessly courting the votes of the very same people they've spent their entire long careers demeaning, robbing, cheating and oppressing.