In Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado,” a man named Ko-Ko appointed to the job of Lord High Executioner tries to figure out whom he should have killed. “There will be,” he says, “no difficulty in finding plenty of people whose loss will be a distinct gain to society at large.” And then he reveals that he has “a little list” — a list “of society offenders . . . who never would be missed!”
Ko-Ko’s example is being followed exactly by a group of petty and loathsome enforcers of pious attitudinal orthodoxy who have appointed themselves to the collective post of Lord High Career Executioner in post-Trump America.
They literally talk about the “lists” they are making of people who have committed the grievous evil of working for the administration they hated, with the stated goal of ensuring such people don’t find employment afterward.
Last week, there arose something that calls itself the Trump Accountability Project. Its founding manifesto contains these words: “We should welcome in our fellow Americans with whom we differ politically. But those who took a paycheck from the Trump administration should not profit from their efforts to tear our democracy apart.”
Following the oxymoronic sophistry of these two contradictory sentences, the manifesto goes on to name three types who should be punished economically. First, those who elected Trump by working on his campaign. Second, those who staffed his government. And third, those who funded him.
That may not go far enough, though. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez thinks people need to collate information on anyone who might ever have said anything positive about Trump — lest such people scrub their records and try to pretend they were critical of [ … ]