Kudzu Republic

Donald Trump was grudgingly accepted by the Republican Party in 2016 to eliminate the Democratic Party’s control on government just as the Kudzu vine was enlisted to combat soil erosion caused by relentless dust storms on the American prairies in the 1930s.

There are several similarities between Donald and Kudzu. Both outsiders, or in the ecology vernacular, exotics; Donald a notorious, unprincipled real estate baron from Manhattan, and Kudzu an ornamental creeping, twining plant from Japan.

Donald Trump has subverted traditional Republican principles and created a new party in his own image. Basically, he is a shameless outlaw with total disregard for the separation of powers of the three branches of government (executive, legislative, and judicial). While each branch is given specific powers so as to check and balance the other branches, Trump has glued them all together with the help of his mates Mitch McConnell (legislative) and Bill Barr (judiciary). Together they have hijacked the republican party and are steering America into dangerous, lawless territory.

The damage Kudzu can do to American ecosystems is well documented. Congress listed Kudzu as a Federal Noxious Weed in 1998. Kudzu grows rapidly, 30 cms per day, with mature vines extending 30 metres. It out-competes and smothers native vegetation and tree crops by shading them from the sunlight they need to photosynthesise. Cascading effects can be observed throughout an ecosystem as insects and animals that adapted alongside these plants are also lost and biodiversity is compromised.

Trump’s reality-TV-presidency has allowed the world to witness the damage he is doing to American citizens.  His apathy, neglect, ignorance, lawlessness, dishonesty, incompetence and divisiveness are threatening America’s greatness. It’s ironic that his 2016 campaign battle cry was ‘Make America Great Again’. 

Trump’s lack of leadership throughout the global Covid-19 pandemic is endangering American lives and delaying economic recovery. He mostly focuses on stock market indices to spin his tale of how well he believes the economy is going because he has a huge personal stock market portfolio; but economy-wide indicators of economic activity show that USA is officially in recession and the unemployment rate has approximately tripled before declining recently. Any way you want to look at it, the US economy has shrunk under Trump’s “leadership”.

The rules of engagement in this Kudzu Republic of USA have been styled on the Banana Republic playbook in which the most senior government officials coerce other officials to wage personal vendettas against political enemies and to ensure their corrupt friends are given impunity.

As once magnificent trees fall prey to the relentless onslaught of the Kudzu vine and eventually become unrecognisable, the once sacred Rule of Law is becoming unrecognisable. ….

Published by julzlovell

Researcher, Educator, Planet Lover, Grandmother who accepts the science of climate change. Drawing on life experiences and a background in Economics and Geography to share my opinions, stories, follies, gratitude and hope.

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