The testosterone insurrection coup (Update #7)

Updates

  1. Originally published, January 19, 2021, 5:55 am.

  2. January 19, 2021, 6:38 pm:

    • Based on Federal Bureau of Investigation allegations in court documents, it appears that at least 30-40 people executed a coordinated, planned attack on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.[1] They would have been using the rest of the mob more as a distraction than as a diversion. As I understand all this, and assuming the veracity of allegations that have obviously not yet been tested in court, this rises to the level of a coup.[2]

  3. January 19, 2021: 10:47 pm:

    • I guess I don’t quite know what to make of this Politico story on a Trump administration official who QAnon types think is ‘Q,’ that is, the mastermind behind “Q drops,” but who claims to have been fighting the good fight against the conspiracy theorizing cult.[3] I deeply distrust anyone who would work for Donald Trump and so I distrust this fellow. But it’s an interesting story and for those of us who haven’t been paying much attention, it’s a decent summary of what QAnon is about.

  4. January 20, 2021, 11:52 am:

    • Now that conspiracy charges have been filed in the January 6, 2021, U.S. Capitol riot, the Wall Street Journal has more specific details[4] about the coup plot.[5] While we’ve not yet heard from the defense, the evidence appears damning.

  5. January 20, 2021, 11:11 pm:

    • Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto is up for reelection and has a primary challenger in Ed Gainey who presently represents the city’s eastern neighborhoods in the Pennsylvania legislature.[6] I wish Gainey well. Being resident in Balwin Borough and a registered Green Party voter, I cannot help him. But while I think Peduto means well, he is a jackass in the way that jackasses who have never faced existential crises in their lives is a jackass. A catalog of Peduto’s asinine tweets would be lengthy.

    • It appears that Joe Biden’s and Kamala Harris’ inauguration occurred without further physical violence. I haven’t archived further stories on this yet because I’m looking for something insightful. Right now, it looks like I might be waiting a while.

  6. January 21, 2021, 6:23 am:

    • It appears some right wing militia leaders felt the January 6, 2021, coup was ludicrous and were not interested in participating even at the time, let alone for Joe Biden’s inauguration, that some were discouraged by a dissonance between their self-image as on the side of “law and order” and a mob overrunning the U.S. Capitol, and that some others were following Donald Trump’s orders to stand down.[7] In the event, none of them showed up to interfere with the inauguration.[8]

  7. January 21, 2021, 12:49 pm:

    • Despite the absence of physical violence at Joe Biden’s heavily fortified inauguration,[9] a failed coup attempt two weeks before that led to that fortification,[10] and a looming second impeachment that might bar Donald Trump from future office,[11] the conspiracy theorist mass media continues to spew election disinformation.[12] While some right wing militia groups declined to participate in the coup attempt for various reasons, some right wing militia may have stood down apparently only because Trump told them to.[13]

      It’s hard to see where right wing militia will next have a significant opportunity to strike. What’s important to know is that they are still out there. The threat that they have always posed remains. And it has to be said, that significant portion of the U.S. population that continues to believe in Trump is also still there, even if Trump’s final sendoff from Joint Base Andrews was really rather dreary.[14]


Donald Trump

When arriving in Pittsburgh, I was almost immediately confronted by bullying, aggressive driving, mostly by people of a sort I’d seen before but much less often in California, in monster pickup trucks. So I came up with the language which I initially put in a crude sign I printed at home and taped to my back window, but which I later incorporated into a sticker design (figure 1) intending to exploit presumed homophobic tendencies of, and to shame, men driving what I started calling ‘testosterone trucks.’


Fig. 1. Window sticker design, meant to deter tailgaters, by author, October 10, 2020. It’s now on my rear window, at an angle most visible to people driving large vehicles.

Then I came across references to pickup trucks in connection with support for Donald Trump[15] and I knew I was on to something, a beyond-toxic masculinity manifesting in reckless driving, in reckless boat parades for Trump,[16] and, as it turns out, in the reckless U.S. Capitol insurrection on January 6, 2021, intended to keep Trump in power.[17]

Danielle Kurtzleben, “Macho Politics Defined Trump’s Presidency, Culminating With Capitol Riot,” National Public Radio, January 18, 2021, https://www.npr.org/2021/01/18/957617150/macho-politics-defined-trumps-presidency-culminating-with-capitol-riot

Josh Gerstein, “‘Are you QAnon?’: One Trump official’s brush with an internet cult gone horribly wrong,” Politico, January 19, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/2021/01/19/qanon-trump-ezra-cohen-watnick-460520

Spencer S. Hsu, Tom Jackman, and Devlin Barrett, “Self-styled militia members planned on storming the U.S. Capitol days in advance of Jan. 6 attack, court documents say,” Washington Post, January 19, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/conspiracy-oath-keeper-arrest-capitol-riot/2021/01/19/fb84877a-5a4f-11eb-8bcf-3877871c819d_story.html

Jeremy W. Peters, “‘They Have Not Legitimately Won’: Pro-Trump Media Keeps the Disinformation Flowing,” New York Times, January 20, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/20/business/media/misinformation-trump-media.html

Amy Davidson Sorkin, “Trump Wanted a Big Sendoff—and Didn’t Get It,” New Yorker, January 21, 2021, https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/trump-wanted-a-big-sendoff-and-didnt-get-it


Pittsburgh

Chris Potter, “State Rep. Ed Gainey To Challenge Peduto In Mayoral Race,” WESA, January 19, 2021, https://www.wesa.fm/post/state-rep-ed-gainey-challenge-peduto-mayoral-race


  1. [1]Spencer S. Hsu, Tom Jackman, and Devlin Barrett, “Self-styled militia members planned on storming the U.S. Capitol days in advance of Jan. 6 attack, court documents say,” Washington Post, January 19, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/conspiracy-oath-keeper-arrest-capitol-riot/2021/01/19/fb84877a-5a4f-11eb-8bcf-3877871c819d_story.html
  2. [2]Nicolás Rivero, “Is America experiencing a coup?” Quartz, January 6, 2021, https://qz.com/1953602/is-america-experiencing-a-coup/
  3. [3]Josh Gerstein, “‘Are you QAnon?’: One Trump official’s brush with an internet cult gone horribly wrong,” Politico, January 19, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/2021/01/19/qanon-trump-ezra-cohen-watnick-460520
  4. [4]Aruna Viswanatha, “Conspiracy Charges Filed Over Capitol Riot,” Wall Street Journal, January 19, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/first-conspiracy-charges-filed-over-capitol-riot-11611080191
  5. [5]David A. Graham, “We’re Just Finding Out How Bad the Riot Really Was,” Atlantic, January 16, 2021, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/01/it-was-much-worse-it-looked/617693/; Spencer S. Hsu, Tom Jackman, and Devlin Barrett, “Self-styled militia members planned on storming the U.S. Capitol days in advance of Jan. 6 attack, court documents say,” Washington Post, January 19, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/conspiracy-oath-keeper-arrest-capitol-riot/2021/01/19/fb84877a-5a4f-11eb-8bcf-3877871c819d_story.html
  6. [6]Chris Potter, “State Rep. Ed Gainey To Challenge Peduto In Mayoral Race,” WESA, January 19, 2021, https://www.wesa.fm/post/state-rep-ed-gainey-challenge-peduto-mayoral-race
  7. [7]Mike Giglio, “What’s Next for the Militias?” Intercept, January 20, 2021, https://theintercept.com/2021/01/20/capitol-riot-militias/
  8. [8]Jeff Seldin, “President Biden Takes Oath of Office Amid Heavy Security,” Global Security, January 20, 2021, https://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/news/2021/01/mil-210120-voa04.htm
  9. [9]Zachary Cohen and Geneva Sands, “20,000 National Guard troops expected in Washington for Biden’s inauguration,” CNN, January 13, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/13/politics/inauguration-security-us-secret-service-washington/index.html; Jeff Seldin, “President Biden Takes Oath of Office Amid Heavy Security,” Global Security, January 20, 2021, https://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/news/2021/01/mil-210120-voa04.htm
  10. [10]Ted Barrett, Manu Raju, and Peter Nickeas, “US Capitol secured, woman dead after rioters stormed the halls of Congress to block Biden’s win,” CNN, January 6, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/06/politics/us-capitol-lockdown/index.html; Fiona Hill, “Yes, It Was a Coup. Here’s Why,” Politico, January 11, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/01/11/capitol-riot-self-coup-trump-fiona-hill-457549; Spencer S. Hsu, Tom Jackman, and Devlin Barrett, “Self-styled militia members planned on storming the U.S. Capitol days in advance of Jan. 6 attack, court documents say,” Washington Post, January 19, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/conspiracy-oath-keeper-arrest-capitol-riot/2021/01/19/fb84877a-5a4f-11eb-8bcf-3877871c819d_story.html; Talia Lavin, “The Violent Crescendo of the MAGA Conspiracies,” New Republic, January 6, 2021, https://newrepublic.com/article/160814/trump-protesters-attack-us-capital; Andrew G. McCabe and David C. Williams, “Trump’s New Criminal Problem,” Politico, January 11, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/01/11/trumps-new-criminal-problem-457298; Nicolás Rivero, “Is America experiencing a coup?” Quartz, January 6, 2021, https://qz.com/1953602/is-america-experiencing-a-coup/; Jonathan Stevenson, “Trump’s Lingering Menace,” New York Review of Books, January 9, 2021, https://www.nybooks.com/daily/2021/01/09/trumps-lingering-menace/; Rebecca Tan et al., “Trump supporters storm U.S. Capitol, with one woman killed and tear gas fired,” Washington Post, January 7, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/trump-supporters-storm-capitol-dc/2021/01/06/58afc0b8-504b-11eb-83e3-322644d82356_story.html; Craig Timberg, Drew Harwell, and Marissa J. Lang, “Capitol siege was planned online. Trump supporters now planning the next one,” Washington Post, January 9, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2021/01/09/trump-twitter-protests/; Aruna Viswanatha, “Conspiracy Charges Filed Over Capitol Riot,” Wall Street Journal, January 19, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/first-conspiracy-charges-filed-over-capitol-riot-11611080191
  11. [11]anet Hook and Jennifer Haberkorn, “House impeaches Trump for the second time, focus shifts to Senate trial,” Los Angeles Times, January 13, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2021-01-13/house-begins-final-push-to-make-trump-the-only-president-to-be-impeached-twice; Amy Davidson Sorkin, “Trump Wanted a Big Sendoff—and Didn’t Get It,” New Yorker, January 21, 2021, https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/trump-wanted-a-big-sendoff-and-didnt-get-it
  12. [12]Jeremy W. Peters, “‘They Have Not Legitimately Won’: Pro-Trump Media Keeps the Disinformation Flowing,” New York Times, January 20, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/20/business/media/misinformation-trump-media.html
  13. [13]Mike Giglio, “What’s Next for the Militias?” Intercept, January 20, 2021, https://theintercept.com/2021/01/20/capitol-riot-militias/
  14. [14]Amy Davidson Sorkin, “Trump Wanted a Big Sendoff—and Didn’t Get It,” New Yorker, January 21, 2021, https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/trump-wanted-a-big-sendoff-and-didnt-get-it
  15. [15]Luke Mogelson, “The Militias Against Masks,” New Yorker, August 17, 2020, https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/08/24/the-militias-against-masks; Joshua Partlow, “Politics at the point of a gun,” Washington Post, July 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/07/28/conservative-armed-militias-protests-coronavirus/; Jason Togyer, “Will the sons of steelworkers see Trump’s COVID-19 behavior as strong, or reckless?” Columbia Journalism Review, October 6, 2020, https://www.cjr.org/special_report/year-of-fear-pennsylvania-steel-trump-masculinity-covid.php
  16. [16]Matthew S. Schwartz, “5 Boats Sink At Trump Boat Parade In Texas,” National Public Radio, September 6, 2020, https://www.npr.org/2020/09/06/910322916/5-boats-sink-at-trump-boat-parade-in-texas; Matt Stieb, “Boats Keep Sinking at the Trump Boat Parades,” New York, September 7, 2020, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/09/boats-keep-sinking-and-capsizing-at-the-trump-boat-parades.html
  17. [17]Jeremy Herb et al., “Congress completes electoral count, finalizing Biden’s win after violent delay from pro-Trump mob,” CNN, January 7, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/06/politics/2020-election-congress-electoral-college-vote-count/index.html; Danielle Kurtzleben, “Macho Politics Defined Trump’s Presidency, Culminating With Capitol Riot,” National Public Radio, January 18, 2021, https://www.npr.org/2021/01/18/957617150/macho-politics-defined-trumps-presidency-culminating-with-capitol-riot; Jonathan Stevenson, “Trump’s Lingering Menace,” New York Review of Books, January 9, 2021, https://www.nybooks.com/daily/2021/01/09/trumps-lingering-menace/; Craig Timberg, Drew Harwell, and Marissa J. Lang, “Capitol siege was planned online. Trump supporters now planning the next one,” Washington Post, January 9, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2021/01/09/trump-twitter-protests/

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