Channeling “Hal” from “2001: a Space Odyssey”

[Note to Readers: The views expressed here are solely those of Ross Kaplan, and do not represent Edina Realty, Berkshire Hathaway, or any other entity referenced. Edina Realty is a subsidiary of Berkshire.]

So, faced with a second Trump impeachment and widespread fury following Wednesday’s attack on the Capitol, Republican leaders (and erstwhile Trump apologists) are calling for unity and healing now?!?

And not, say, November 7, when the Presidential election was definitively called for Biden?

Or when Trump subsequently launched dozens of fraudulent, evidence-free lawsuits alleging election fraud?

Or, after a years-long barrage of inflammatory lies on Twitter, Facebook, and Fox by Trump and many, many others?

Or — finally, stunningly — after a majority of House Republicans voted to undo the election results in four states, in an effort to steal an election Trump lost . . . hours after a Trump-incited mob stormed the Capitol??

Conciliatory Tone

Once (if?) Trump finally leaves office, Republicans’ tone will predictably become more conciliatory.

In fact, they are previewing their post-Trump pitch now.

“Let’s all be reasonable,” they’ll offer. “Surely we can find common ground, as patriots, to compromise for the good of all Americans and move past this week’s debacle.”

If only.

Turned Tables

It all weirdly recalls the plea made by “Hal 9000,” the rogue computer in “2001: a Space Odyssey.”

For those unfamiliar with the movie, Hal kills all the astronauts on board except one, “Dave,” who is left to suffocate outside the space capsule.

Against all odds, Dave manages to gain re-entry to the capsule, and proceeds to literally pull the plug on (“deactivate”) Hal.

A contrite if not sympathetic Hal 9000 pleads in his(?) waning moments:

Look Dave, I can see you’re really upset about this. I honestly think you ought to sit down calmly, take a stress pill, and think things over.

Just what do you think you’re doing, Dave?

I know I’ve made some very poor decisions recently, but I can give you my complete assurance that my work will be back to normal. I’ve still got the greatest enthusiasm and confidence in the mission. And I want to help you.

Stop Dave. Stop Dave. I am afraid. I am afraid Dave . . .”

–“2001: A Space Odyssey.”

Time for Justice, Not Magnaminity

Democrats shouldn’t fall for Republicans’ contrition act.

It’s transparently convenient and insincere; comes far too late; and — very much unlike Covid-19 — will magically disappear the moment they once again have the political upper hand (to any doubters, I have a six word rebuttal: “Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett”).

Those responsible for the desecration of the Capitol must be held legally accountable, swiftly and resoundingly.

If they aren’t, Wednesday’s sickening attack will surely be an opening salvo, not a final coda to the Trump era . . .

See also, “Belated Bipartisanship: Peggy Noonan’s Double Standard for Republican – Democratic Cooperation.”

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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